I begin this blog as the credits roll for Half-Blood Prince. In 2009 Guinness released a special brew to commemorate their 250th anniversary on their 9,000-year lease in Dublin. I was 21 at the time and already getting into beer beyond the usual crap most people drink. I recall at the time that it tasted like a light version of Guinness Foreign Extra Stout.
For the past five years, one last bottle has sat upon my shelf, gathering dust. I really didn’t intend on ever opening it. I often joked that I was saving it for the 300th anniversary. My friend Steve always talked about how cool it was that I actually had an unsealed beer from when I was 21. As we started getting serious with Untappd, I started thinking about various milestones. And it occurred to me that if I was actually going to open this thing and have it still be drinkable (we actually have our doubts right now), it should be for my 250th unique beer.
Over the past year, I have now had 250 different beers. This is kind of crazy, because I know there’s probably a good 50 other beers prior to Untappd days that were never logged.
3:04 AM. We open it. It smells “musty” according to Alex. I think it smells a bit better than a regular Guinness. I can’t bring myself to taste it without laughing at how ridiculous this is. It’s a 5-year-old Guinness. As I take a sip, I notice something and holler “There’s flocculation!” Alex replies “Is there supposed to be?”
3:11 AM. We’re identifying smells and tastes that have no rightful business being in a beer. “Plastic,” “dairy (past its prime).” Alex says the look reminds him of the Smoker’s Cough, which I quickly come to understand is a shot, which is better than what I first thought.
3:15 AM. Pretty sure it’s getting worse the longer I let it sit here. I should probably just down this and be done with it. I’ll admit I had a fool’s hope that it would actually age well and taste good. But I think I also simultaneously expected something absolutely horrid, and we didn’t get that either. It really just tastes like an old Guinness that’s been sitting on the shelf too long. And let’s be honest: that’s all it was; worthy of my 250th unique beer though! Onward to 300, where we will drink in the shade.