I needed a gallon of spring water. OK, that's the lie I told myself because I wanted to pay a visit to the bar at Whole Foods. I really did need that water -- the tea that comes out of my pipes these days is a muddy brew -- but I could have gotten it anywhere. That's how the Whole Foods bar works, though; It's the ultimate excuse. No honey, let me get the milk.
Whole Foods doesn't have the tap list of say, a Meddlesome Moth or Goodfriend Beer Garden, but they do a solid job of mixing things up and keeping their selection fresh. The Duchesse De Bourgogne was calling me because I always love a sour, and especially ones with funk. But I wanted to try something local, which meant I only had one choice.
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Bishop Cidery was listed at the bottom of the board. They'd been brewing for almost a year and I had yet to try their juice, despite Gavin Cleaver having given the place a positive review last fall. I should have taken his cue and guzzled some down that second, but I did not. My pantry must have been well stocked.
Their Cideways cider promised 9.5 percent ABV, which might be one of the reasons this golden nectar was poured into a small tulip glass, though the glassware also may have been chosen to show off the floral hoppy tones that were floating around. The most predominant sensation, however, was that of tartness -- not enough to induce a pucker, but more than enough to kick salivary glands into overdrive. The cider was light, crisp and refreshing, which could make it a hell of a thirst quencher, except chugging too much of this stuff could also really get you into trouble.
I didn't stand much of a chance on account of an empty stomach, so I did my best to nurse the beast, wandering the aisles of the grocery store to buy myself time. When I finished, I can't quite describe my orientation as sideways, but I will say I had a bit of a slant. Two more glasses and I'd have got completely past sideways to upside down, and that's a lot of trouble for a gallon of spring water.
Wait, why was I here?