In what is becoming an annual tradition, I decided to celebrate the season premiere of "Lost" with a beer that I've never had before. This was a bit of an accident this year as I meant to have the new Boulevard Imperial Stout while watching the show. But, after going to 2 stores in Kansas, I concluded that it wouldn't be in Kansas until tomorrow. Since I had my cold dark heart set on an imperial stout, I picked Avery's The Czar Imperial Stout.
Stella and I sat down to watch the 3 hours of "Lost" around 8:00. We burned through the pre-show show in about 40 minutes. In between the pre-show and the season premiere I ran my Czar through the Cooper Cooler for about 5 minutes. I would guess the Czar came out of the cooler at about 55 degrees, a little cooler than John Locke err Jeremy Bentham.
I used my trusty Boulevard Smokestack glass to pour the Czar. The Czar pours black with just a hint of a reddish tint and leaves a nice one inch creamy tan head. The smell contained some dark chocolate, a hint of hops, some fruit and a whole mess of alcohol. The smell alone would have intoxicated one of my kids. As I sat down to watch the good doctor film his training video I took my first taste. It was a little bit chocolatey with some fruit flavor and then all of that went away and all I tasted was alcohol. It was like eating a Hershey Kiss with a bourbon chaser. The aftertaste was dominated by the alcohol. I probably made a mistake by cooling it down as much as I did.
By the time it was revealed that the island is a time machine, I knew I was going to struggle to make it to 10:30. The 11% alcohol was going to have its way with me. The Czar was my own personal smoke monster. As the beer warmed throughout the 2 hour show, it never quite got to the point that I wasn't tasting the alcohol. I even had to eat a salty snack which I always want when drinking bourbon or scotch.
Don't get me wrong, the Czar wasn't a bad beer it was actually pretty good, I just think it could have had a sweetness to balance out the alcohol burn. To put it in "Lost" terms I wanted it to be like Benjamin Linus. I knew it had a lot of alcohol in it just like I know Benjamin Linus is a slimy snake. But Benjamin has a charm that even though you know he's a snake, he can still convince you to do what he wants. I wanted the Czar to have that charm, in the Czar's case a sweetness to balance out the snakiness of the alcohol. The Czar in short is what Benjamin Linus would be if he were played by Jon Voight (see Voight playing the coach in "Varsity Blues" if you don't know what this means).