Tuesday, January 22, 2013


You and I probably weren't around for the late 40s/early 50s "red scare" - I know I wasn't - but I imagine it was a pretty wacky time. The iron curtain was descending onto Eastern Europe, Hollywood was run by Commies, and we were about to be annihilated by hundreds of Soviet ICBMs pointed at LA, DC, NY and Lawrence, Kansas. Joe McCarthy, the honorable senator from Wisconsin, was the public face and most well-known proponent of the red scare, a man who found a commie under every bed and in every film reel. Because the beer we're about to talk about, "McCARTHY'S BANE" from Lincoln, CA's KNEE DEEP BREWING, is an imperial red, it's presumably something that Senator Joe would have disliked. It's red, you see. Hey, you try naming a beer.

I'm a massive fan of this style and I think this one's pretty all right. It's an 8% ABV hoppy red, but I'm digging it greatly because they really smoothed out the happiness in this ale and put the emphasis on amber malts. It has a sort of rye taste, too, and is very, very malty. Crisp, even. It rolls around on the tongue and then goes down only a little scratchy, and the next thing you know you're tipping it back again. Also great to see Knee Deep come up with a winner, because I really didn't care for their HOPSTAR and I almost gagged on their SIMTRA. This is a fetching imperial red, and I'll bet even Joey McC and his commie-hating pals would have tossed it back with gusto. 7.5/10.

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