January 7, 2010

Flying Fish Exit 1 Oyster Stout

As I write this I'm sitting on my floor. That's because there's something wrong my my router, and I have to sit with my laptop connected to the router in order to get on the internet! This is crazy! I was on the phone with Comcast yesterday because my internet connection was so slow. So while my downloads are faster, now it only works if I'm directly linked to the router. Grrr! (if anyone has any suggestions on how this might be fixed, I'd appreciate hearing them!)

Anyway, since one of my last posts was about my newfound appreciation of stouts and porters I thought I'd write about one I've had a couple of times and really enjoyed - the Flying Fish Exit 1 Oyster Stout.

Before I write about the beer, though, I'd like to talk about the "Exit 1" part of the name. For those not living in the Delaware Valley, the beers take their names from the exits on the Jersey Turnpike. Each beer represents something about the exit it represents. Exit 1 on the turnpike is Carney's Point Township; it seems that the southwest bayshore (which I'm assuming falls in this township) has been responsible for supplying oysters to Americans since colonial times. While there are efforts today to save the oyster, hundreds of millions of oysters were harvested from this bayshore annually through the 1950s.

Another interesting fact is that oysters and stout had a long history in the UK, but eventually the pairing of the two fell away.

I, for one, thank Flying Fish for bringing it back. It mixes two things I love - oysters (mmm!) and beer. If only there were chocolate in it, it would be perfect. Oh wait. There is chocolate! This might literally be the perfect beer for me (even minus the hoppy bite).

The pour is a deep black. There's not a lot of carbonation, and it's really creamy. You can smell roasty malts and chocolate, as well as a hint of that ocean smell (anyone who has driven down the shore and rolled down their window to announce to their olfactory sense that they've arrived knows the smell of which I write). It's not - I repeat NOT - overwhelming and no one should be put off from trying the beer because of this. A lot of people don't smell this at all, as a matter of fact. And who knows, maybe I'm just imagining it because I want it to be there.

As far as the taste, it's a great combination of roasted coffee, chocolate, and a hint of brininess. I don't mind this taste (and a lot of others don't seem to, either). This is so good I could drink it all day! Or night. And given that it's only 7% ABV, that seems quite doable.

I think this is a great winter beer with just enough of a reminder of summer in there to lift my spirits through the cold, gray days. Seriously, try this if you see it. You won't be sorry you did (even if you swear you hate oysters).

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