BC Beer Baron #32 – Steel & Oak Tortuga Wild Ale

If you had told me at the start of this 366-days of BC craft beer project that February would hit and I still wouldn’t have covered Steel & Oak Brewing (one of my and Mrs. Sip’s preferred breweries), I would have told you to lay off the sauce… and leave it for the Sip Advisor. That’s just a testament to all the good beer out there in this province.

The Tortuga Wild Ale is a special release, as part of Steel & Oak’s Oak-Aged Series. This brew was aged a full year in Caribbean rum barrels and then given a second fermentation to add notes of sour cherry. I’m not very familiar with wild ales and although I’m not a huge fan of sour beers, I did enjoy this beverage. The Tortuga has a strong rum finish following tart sour cherry beginnings and something about the combination of those two elements really worked for me.

Steel & Oak Tortuga Wild Ale

Mrs. Sip’s Take:

This wasn’t really for her. She liked how the beer was strong (7.3% ABV), being a Belgian Dubbel and Tripel fan (are there Beligan Singels?), but didn’t really enjoy the sour tastes. She would gravitate towards other Steel & Oak products.

Tortuga, of course, is an island in the Caribbean – belonging to Haiti to be exact – which was an epicenter of pirate activity in the 1600’s, including being heavily referenced in the Pirates of the Caribbean film franchise. And where there are pirates, there will also be rum. For what it’s worth, a direct translation of the term means turtle or tortoise. The more you know [rainbow swipe]!

It may have taken us a while to get to our first beer from Steel & Oak, but it certainly won’t be our last… especially with a bottle of the company’s Smoked Dunkelweizen sitting in my fridge!

For more BC Beer Baron articles, please visit our main page…

Portugal – Saint Valentine

A Pirate’s Life for Me

The Pirate Code was introduced by Bartolomeu Português of Portugal in the 17th century. From there, each captain adjusted the regulations to fit their desires and sometimes even changed the rules for each journey. Each crew member was then asked to sign an agreement ratifying the code, before swearing an oath of allegiance to the captain and ship. All the expected stuff was there, such as how to split any booty (wow, that came out much more sexually than I had intended) and what punishment was to be expected for abandoning the crew in times of battle. Let’s take a look at some of the more interesting items the code produced:

Article: Rights to fresh provisions and strong liquors, unless they become scarce

Nuts to the provisions, let’s go straight to the strong liquors! I’m sure an argument could be made, even if supplies ran low that you were simply trying to fend off scurvy and needed whatever booze was available. Granted, other ingredients are needed to fight the disease, but pirates wouldn’t have known that.

Pirate Code Guidelines

Article: Lights and candles are to be put out at eight o’clock at night… if any crew wants to continue drinking, it must be done on the open deck

Eight o’clock doesn’t seem very badass and not what I expected from buccaneers, but at least you can continue getting your drink on if you were so inclined. I would have expected pirates to stay up until at least 12, maybe even 13, singing songs of the sea and setting towns ablaze to light their parties.

Article: Not allowed to fight on the ship, but save it for land, using swords and pistols duel style

The pirates duel was kind of crazy. After their paces, they were allowed one shot with a loaded pistol and if that failed, it was a race back to the starting point where cutlasses were used until blood was drawn. That sounds like the makings of a hot new reality TV series, which I’ll soon put into production.

Article: To compensate any injured crewman, according to the severity of his injury

We’re always told that pirates were in it for themselves and nothing else, but this article proves they were willing to look after each other. A lost limb usually meant a payout of 600-800 Pieces of Eight, while more minor inflictions were judged on a case by case basis. Interestingly, in some codes, a right arm or leg was worth more than a left arm or leg… take that sinister ones. Hands, fingers, and even eyes were the least valuable body parts. Who needs their vision, right!?

Caribbean Pirate

Article: If a crewman betrays the ship, he will be marooned with one bottle of water, one bottle of powder, one weapon and one shot

I gotta say, I’m greatly disappointed that the pirates wouldn’t at least include a little flask of booze for the disowned crewman, but that just leaves more for those still aboard the ship. If I was the marooned pirate, I would ration that bottle of water to the very last drop, hoping some other ship passes and takes me into their crew.

Article: To be amorous with a woman without her consent should be punished by death

This kind of proves the Pirates of the Caribbean (where most of us have learned the entire extent of our pirate knowledge) women chasing scene all wrong. They say that there is no honour among thieves, but this may counter that theory, although the bad acts towards women probably still occurred regularly.

pirate-cat

Article: Whoever sees a sail first, shall receive the best pistol found aboard the vessel when plundered

This is like an epic game of ‘I spy with my little eye!’ Problem is most pirates were probably so out of their mind drunk that their blurred vision couldn’t win them this awesome prize, had they even wanted it. On a side note: I have to incorporate the word plunder into my vocabulary more regularly.

Article: Anyone drunk during pirating will be punished according to what the captain and majority of the crew see fit

This could end with the Sip Advisor walking the plank. It also begs the question: Is there any reason to be a pirate if you can’t be shitfaced most of the time? Being a pirate is about breaking the bonds that normal folks are tied to and going on adventures… and many of those adventures should be of the inebriated variety!

Portugal: Saint Valentine

Saint Valentine Martini

  • 1.5 oz White Rum
  • 0.5 oz Port
  • 0.5 oz Grand Marnier
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Garnish with Lime Wedge

In a perfect world, we would still live according to the Pirate Code and I would thrive and flourish in that society. I’m good at following the rules, as well as getting deep into drinking, making me a prime candidate to work my way up the pirate ladder and eventually becoming a captain of my own ship. Perhaps I should explore career options with today’s Somali pirates!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (4.5 Sips out of 5):
This drink was strong (not too strong, mind you), but had a very nice taste. The citrus notes, such as Grand Marnier and Lime Juice were particularly pleasant, as was the Port. I actually used Cachaca as my Rum addition and I think that helped with the whole blend.

September 19 – Daiquiri

Rum-stravaganza

There are a lot of rum memes out there and I’ve narrowed it down to the best of the lot. Once again, I do it for all you little sippers… free of charge!

Rum Before 10am

As I’ve written before, I often get an odd look when I’m pouring myself a drink in the early hours of the day. I personally see nothing wrong with a nip in the morning. Call it the breakfast of champions, if you will. At least now I know I’m not alone and I properly belong as an audio-animatronic on Pirates of the Caribbean!

Rum Gone

I’ve always felt akin to felines and now I know we share the same feelings on rum and the fear of discovering it’s all gone. Luckily, I always keep a thorough stock of the spirit, usually in a variety of styles and flavours. Relax little kitty, you’re always welcome to come party with the Sip Advisor!

oh-they-said-run

I hate running… but if I saw a group of people running with the thoughts that we were all chasing down some sweet liquor, I’d be right at the head of the group and doing everything I could, Wacky Races style, to finish first. Like this meme, though, the minute I learned everyone was just going for a jog, I’d quietly disappear!

Bacardio

Now this is my kind of exercise. Bringing your glass routinely to your lips is a form of bicep curls and if you’re constantly getting up and down to make a new beverage, that could be looked at as doing squats. Finally, drinking while also not dying can be thought of as breathing exercises, and now you’re getting a full body workout!

Disaster Rum

We can learn a lot from our elders, particularly this wise meme lady. I need to do a better job of having contingency liquor. Right now, I have everything in one basic spot and that’s not planning ahead properly. Most importantly, everyone should have one bottle stashed in their bedroom in case they don’t feel like getting out of bed!

Drink #262: Daiquiri

Daiquiri Drink Recipe

  • 1.5 oz Light Rum (I used Bacardi)
  • Splash of Lime Juice
  • Dash of Simple Syrup
  • Garnish with a Lime Wheel

Today we drink the daiquiri, one of the world’s most noble cocktails. Join me, won’t you!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3 Sips out of 5):
Last month, I included the Wildberry Daiquiri as part of Frozen Cocktail Week, but it’s such a classic cocktail, it had to be done for Rum Week, as well. This version isn’t too bad, but there’s not a whole lot going on and the Light Rum taste isn’t masked as well as most might hope for. I like my drinks to play on the strong side, so that’s okay with me, but other’s might want to hesitate.

March 14 – Monkey Gland

Monkeying Around

You may not have noticed by now, but I kind of love monkeys. Along with kittens and potato chips, monkeys have made frequent guest appearances in blog posts. Even after a group of monkeys assaulted me and viciously violated me while on vacation in Indonesia, I still have a massive respect for the creatures. After all, I was guilty of holding a bag of peanuts that they wanted (that’s right elephants, peanuts are not just for you!). Thank god I had a little Indonesian woman to protect me by shooing them away with her sandal. I beg forgiveness my simian friends. Without further ado, are some of my favourite primates:

George – Curious George

You’d think with all the trouble George gets into that the Man in the Yellow Hat would send the little guy packing. And what was up with that Man in the Yellow Hat anyways? Doesn’t he realize how ridiculous he looks? Looks like a freakin’ banana if you ask me (and I know you do). No wonder Curious George was so troublesome, it was probably the result of slow psychotic breakdown from having to live with a giant talking banana. Curious George should just try to eat him sometime.

Curious George

Abu – Aladdin

I often dress my kitty sidekick, Furious B, in Abu’s trademark fez hat and vest. It may result in numerous scratches and one pissed off pussy, but it’s worth it for the half second I can see him clothed before he runs and hides behind the couch and pees on my DVDs.

Mr. Teeny – The Simpsons

The roller-skating, cigar-smoking chimp and sidekick to Krusty the Clown, has lived a life few monkeys have the opportunity to. It is one of celebrity, which comes with good and bad. Hell, I’d be Krusty’s subordinate if it meant an increase in pay and getting to wear a bowtie… even if Krusty has plans to take one of Teeny’s lungs should he ever need a replacement.

Evil Monkey – Family Guy

We later learn that this monkey isn’t so evil after all. He’s actually a nice, mild-mannered being who was just down on his luck (his monkey wife had cheated on him) and found a home in Chris Griffin’s closet. If my wife cheated on me with a monkey, I’d just be crossing my fingers that it turned into a threesome.

Donkey Kong

Originally a villain, Donkey Kong worked his way into the hearts of gamers by barrel blasting and enemy bopping his way through King K. Rool’s gang of baddies. It turns out he just wants his god damn bananas back. Poor guy has to deal with a serious potassium deficiency!

Donkey Kong

King Louie – Jungle Book and Tale Spin

This orangutan sure knows how to party. His joint is always swinging with song and merriment, especially when he and best friend Baloo were given new life in the 90’s cartoon Tale Spin. In that series, he became the owner of Louie’s Place, a tropical bar, which this Sip Advisor aspires to one day track down and go to work there.

Monkey Talents

Whether it’s the air duct-invading monkey (Community), the cigarette-smoking, drug-dealing monkey (The Hangover 2), the skeleton monkey (Pirates of the Caribbean) or any other simian performer, they’re all good in my books.

Phonics Monkey – South Park

Oh my god, he killed Kenny… you bastard!

Drink #73: Monkey Gland

Monkey Gland Cocktail

  • 1.5 oz Gin (I used Beefeater)
  • 0.5 oz Absinthe
  • Top with Orange Juice
  • Dash of Grenadine
  • Garnish with Orange Zest

Monkeys and their distant relatives are awesome… there’s even a gorilla in San Francisco that has a thing for breasts. And yet some people still don’t believe in evolution! Let’s not forget the Ikea Monkey (now somehow available on Twitter), whose winter coat made us all melt.

Ikea Monkey

 

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
I’d love to know why this drink is called Monkey Gland. Regardless, the cocktail was decent and one in which I actually enjoyed Orange Juice. I like how the Orange Twist came across too, as it looks more like a Blood Orange, when it wasn’t.