Saturday, March 21, 2015

Coney Island Brewing's "1609 Amber Ale."

Coney Island Brewing Company's "1609 Amber Ale" takes its name from the year Europeans first set foot on what we now know as Coney Island. I paired it with a "Smokin' Henry" (smoked turkey, Black Forest ham, smoked Cheddar, bacon, lettuce, tomato, and Russian dressing) from Lassen & Hennigs.

Here are my tasting notes:

Color: bright amber.

Head: moderate, stood up well.

Aroma: banana and peach, with a toasty malt undertone.

Flavor: good balance of fruit and malt flavors, with a hop finish that's satisfying but not overwhelming.

Technical details (from the brewery's website):  There are five kinds of malt used. Along with the usual two row barley, there are carapils and caramunich, melanoidin, and chocolate malt. The hops are Cascade, Amarillo, Tettnang, and Northern Brewer. ABV is a moderate 4.8%.

This is a well made, satisfying ale that complemented a tasty sandwich but could be enjoyed by itself. The flavor is complex but well balanced.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

TBT: Etta James, "Tell Mama."

We're back to 1967, when Etta James went to FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama and recorded "Tell Mama," a superb example of pedal-to-the-metal R&B that she co-wrote with Clarence Carter. "Tell Mama" charted at 23 on the pop and ten on the R&B chart.

James had a versatile contralto voice that, during the course of an over fifty year career, was applied to R&B, doo wop, blues, pop, jazz, and rock, while showing gospel influences. She died in 2012 at the age of 73. She is in both the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Blues Hall of Fame.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Three Irish tunes by the Boston Pops

The Boston Pops Orchestra, under the direction of Keith Lockhart, plays three traditional Irish tunes:"The Cat Rambles to the Children's Saucepan"; The Otter's Nest"; and "Richie Dwyer's." Thanks to WQXR.

Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig oraibh!