Monday, March 19, 2007

what i'm drinking: st. patti's day @ park chalet

me @ park chalet with the menu and the beers
Originally uploaded by Eri•chan. Photo by Janel.

ahh... saint patrick's day, how a saint is celebrated with drinking. that saturday my friends janel and ellie (including my self) had a picnic in golden gate park. but i'm not writing about the picnic (fresh salmon burgers, sausages, lambic beer and much much more).

after the picnic, we walked around the park toward the ocean where beach chalet resides. we went in for some coffee and tea but somehow got enticed by the menu. the building houses two chalets -- beach chalet and park chalet. beach is the more formal dining (although there's nothing formal about it) with a beautiful view of the ocean while park chalet has smaller dishes, a fuller bar, fireplace and a bunch of patio chairs in the park. since the day was cloudy and misty, we decided to sit by the fire to warm up.

the chalets brew their own beer and offers a sample of their six regulars -- VFW light, west end wheat, playland pale ale, presidio IPA, riptide red ale and fleishhacker stout. sadly their brewer's special isn't part of the sample. we ordered three with a plate of beer beard and string onion (think fried strands of onions).

VFW light: this is much lighter than i expected from microbrew. it tasted lighter than say, bud light. however the taste is much better. "light" crisp with a follow-up of hoppy wheat. a quick refreshing brew. one of my favorites.

west end wheat: a cloudy hefeweizen that surprisingly tasted like the VFW but wheatier and malty. again, it's a quick drink.

playland pale ale: a standard pale ale brew. malty, simple and mildly bitter.

presidio IPA: i'm not a huge fan of IPAs. yes, i know... all beer drinks should love IPAs but i wasn't too keen on its instant bitterness which overwhelm the flavors and lingers. both janel and i were flinching with each sip.

riptide red ale: i'm a huge fan of amber ales (fat tire, ful sail amber, etc). mild, malty, quick hops and very quick bitter finish.

fleishhacker stout: i love stout. i'm a guiness kinda guy. here's a stout that isn't trying to be guiness. it's lighter with a toasty caramel taste and a foamy head. i wouldn't say it has a smooth finish. maybe a bit bitter.

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