Though citing ill-health and overall inability to execute the position, it’s clear the pope is retiring for the same reasons we all retire: Getting away from annoying co-workers (least-favorite-cardinal’s “a priest walks into a bar and says ouch” joke is really losing its zing), moving somewhere sunny and sandy (i.e. Miami, bro), and getting your fill of tasty, tasty beer.
In honor of the pope’s departure, here are four sacri-licious beers to pop open while you and the pope listen to “Stairway to Heaven.” Again.
What else is going to inspire the all-Vatican edition of the “Harlem Shake?”
Weyerbacher, Merry Monks, Belgian-Style Tripel Ale
With a gentle but ample aroma of clove and banana, this smooth-tasting, gold amber-colored ale has a lingering spice finish that accompanies the subdued but prevalent alcohol content (9.3%). A medium, prickly effervescence is short, but keeps it interesting, peaks the spice a bit and balances the medium-full bodied texture and fruity esters (tasty chemical reactions).
Probably a good pairing with some unholy savory/sweet combination like a banana nut muffin/cured meat sandwich.
Inlet Brewing Company, Monk in the Trunk, Amber Ale
This certified organic amber ale has a sweet and spicy (holy mass incense) aroma, followed by a slight spicy bite but overall creamy, malty tone with a lasting malt finish – all with a very drinkable consistency throughout. This brew zipped by and genuinely had a slightly fresh feeling (maybe it’s the “organic” hop benefits, either real or imagined).
Its “authentic Belgian Abbey yeast” would make a pope proud, as it’s known that traditional Trappist monk methods have the most rigorous of standards and their brews’ profits have a history of altruistic purpose.
This beer makes an excellent pairing with a vow of silence, although too many may ruin a vow of chastity.
Ommengang Brewery, Three Philosophers, Belgian-Style Quadrupel Ale blended with Liefmans Kriek
Slightly sweet and a lofty clove spice aromas lead to a fairly well balanced taste with classic Belgian quadrupel style characteristics of sweet malt, slight esters while adding lingering cherry, dark fruit notes.
A medium-to-full bodied consistency throughout and an almost prickly, rolling effervescence gives way to a long creamy finish. Philosophers is a popular and interesting mix that begs pondering life’s biggest questions, who better to join you than someone who arguably has the answers?
Chimay, Grand Reserve Blue, Belgian Strong Dark Ale
While creative American interpretations are nice, there’s going to come a time where the top pop is going to crave a genuine brew of a holy order: Enter the Trappist monks.
As one of only 8 remaining Trappist breweries (Orval, Chimay, Westvleteren, Rochefort, Westmalle, Achel, Koningshoeven, Mariawald), Chimay beers are created in that strict tradition and have been brewing since 1862. They even have a unique brewing yeast, apparently discovered by Father Theodore in 1948.
Perhaps an overwhelming experience for the casual beer drinker, this dark, complex brew weighs in at 9% ABV. The complexity of the fruity, peppery and alcohol combination makes it difficult to pinpoint a predominant taste; its medium body and creamy mouth-feel demands further exploration. A lasting dryness alludes to wines with high tannic content.
It just tastes like it was brewed with secrets. Maybe enough of these will get him to reveal the real reason behind retirement (maybe coming back as Ziggy Starpope or St. Benedicta Fierce?).
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