Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Hop Czar

I was watching The Glenn Beck program yesterday so I could cultivate my talking points for the week. One of the segments was about the new Hop Czar in the Obama administration. Apparently Obama was concerned that American craft brewers are using hops a little too willy nilly and he thought we as a people needed a hop czar to better control the use and price of hops.

Beck then went on to show a speech given by the newly appointed hop czar where he announced that Mao was his personal hero and everyone should read Saul Alinsky. Beck has the new hop czar dead to rights as being a progressive.

I was a little surprised last night when I went to Tipsy's and saw that the hop czar already had a namesake beer called Hop Czar (those damn progressives just aren't very creative). I found it strange that the hop czar chose Bridgeport Brewing to brew his namesake beer. But, when I considered that Bridgeport is from progressive paradise Portland it began to make more sense. When I got home and found out that Bridgeport was founded by the Ponzis, better known for their scheme, it made even more sense.

Even though I am completely opposed to the hop czar politically, I thought it might be nice to give his beer a shot. I couldn't argue with the price, $7.99/sixer of an 8% ABV double IPA is a bargain (until you factor in the hop shortages that will result in the necessary subsidization of hops to meet Obama's affordability index). The beer looked like a typical IPA but the smell reminded me of the 3 hours I spent in a pine tree looking for the Medallion in 1984 (I could smell pine in my fingers until school started the next fall). The taste was exactly what you would think a government dictated double IPA would taste like, real hoppy bitterness with an herbal note to it. When I was eating it with some buttered white cheddar popcorn the bitter aftertaste went away. But once I finished the popcorn the bitter aftertaste stuck around like the New Deal. Like most west coast double IPA's the sweetness was manageable and you really got hops from the Hop Czar.

I certainly don't like the politics of the Hop Czar but he makes a fine beer. Better double IPA's can be had, but, since Hop Czar comes in the convenience of a six pack of 12 oz. bottles and is reasonably priced, it has its charms. I would recommend drinking Hop Czar with a nice salty snack or you'll be left wanting to wash your esophagus with a washcloth. If the hop czar continues down this path, I don't think he'll be the worst part of this administration no matter what Glenn Beck thinks (and people don't think Glenn Beck viewers think for themselves).


  1. No, Obama is worried about Kanye West. He has appointed a new Hip Hop Czar, not a Hop Czar.

  2. Good to read. BridgePort's beers were some of the first craft beers I drank back when I realized beer could be more than just an intoxicant and I still enjoy revisiting their IPA and ESB. Glenn Beck seems like a Michelob Honey Lager type of guy, to me.