Our Friend of the Blog Kyle McCan't chimes in with this week's Friday Drinking instructions, and they are AWESOME. 100 cocktails to you, good sir. Promoted to the front page for obvious reasons.
Typically, this space is used as a casually informative bridge into weekends (hopefully) filled with the imbibing of copious amounts of Big Ten-centric beer. Typically this is a wind-down piece, a nightcap for the week if you will. Typically, however, the college sports world doesn't LOSE IT'S FUCKING MIND!
Talk of Big Ten expansion, Pac 10 expansion and Big XII implosion are all the rage in the salon (Voltaire not Vidal Sassoon) these days, and with conjecture finally morphing into concrete it's official: it's the end of the world as we know it (and I feel drunk)! Thus, it seems only appropriate to direct you, dear reader, to a beer oh-so-representative of the chaos of expansion.
1. Expansion pushes our boundaries.
Some basic research will show that Brewery Ommegang is located in Cooperstown, New York (The Baseball Hall of Fame and the best Belgian-style brewery this side of Antwerp, what a drag...) which means, for the second week running, YFDI is squarely outside of the Big Ten footprint. However...with the dominoes just now beginning to fall, don't be surprised if we're talking about said brewery as a "local" in the near future.
2.Expansion requires patience.
If one is to do expansion right, one must explore all options while weighing all benefits vs. costs. Trying to figure out the give-and-take of Nebraska against, say, Rutgers can be a time-consuming proposition. Likewise, Ommegeddon doesn't come cheap; at over $10 per bottle (granted, it's a 750ml "bomber") it's not exactly lawnmower beer. Additionally, you're going to have to search (appropriately) for this puppy as it's brewed in rather limited batches.
3. Expansion can be uncomfortable.
While some results of expansion could not be any more natural (Iowa v. Nebraska, why have you not been played every year?), others are downright weird (footage of Aggies in Berkeley coming soon to YouTube!). Likewise, Ommegeddon is going to make you squirm if you're not open-minded. While it has almost Champagne-like carbonation, its other attributes are all over the map; funky, slightly sour/tart notes of hay and lemon peel end up assaulted by peppery, even herbal, spice. The aroma is that of a classic Belgian farmhouse; dank, damp basement with a good measure of barnyard thrown in just to fuck with you.
4. Expansion is refreshing.
When all is said and done, despite its getting used-to, Ommegeddon is a bracingly refreshing brew, perfect for muggy Midwestern summer nights. Its acidity makes it a natural partner for food while its bruising alcohol by volume (8%, or twice that of a Bud for comparison) can enliven even the most dogged of the dog days. Hell, knock a whole bottle back and you may find that making friends has never been easier.
"You'll be gone by the time ND is ours"