Thursday, May 05, 2005

Liveblogging: Steel Reserve

There's this new beer at the gas station called Steel Reserve. It's pretty cheap ($1.19 for 24 oz.), and it has an 8.1% alcohol content, which you usually only find in exotic Belgian ales brewed by monks. I've heard nothing about it before, so I'm going to pop it open and see whether it's any good. I am just a guinea pig, dear reader, for your cheap beer edification.
[opens beer, pours into glass]
It smells and looks like a standard American cheap lager. Maybe the tiniest bit darker, though that could be the lighting. Head goes away pretty fast.
[drinks]
Okay, not too bad. It mostly has the flavorlessness of cheap American lager, except that you can feel some of the extra alcohol content, and it's a bit... sweet? Yeah, sweet. Well.
[10 minutes later]
Did I just get tired or something? This is coming on fast. The sweetness is somewhat cloying, but it's fairly drinkable.
[25 minutes later]
Sometimes when I sip this stuff, it seems to have an oddly meaty taste. Meaty? that can't be right, but I've tasted it twice. Now I'm listening to Liz Phair's "Dance of the Seven Veils" and liking it even more than usual. At this point I read the ratings and discover that it's a malt liquor. Can someone explain to me what differentiates malt liquor from other beers?
[40 minutes later]
I'm looking for the meaty, which I can't find again, but that's good because it distracts me from the sweet. My final verdict: this would be a fine beer for when it's been a bad day and you just want to drink something cheap and put everything behind you. If I did the numbers right, one 24 oz can of this is like more than 3 regular beers. For $1.19, not a bad deal. Neil out.

4 comments:

Dr Pretorius said...

The difference between beer and malt liquor is, to my knowledge, a matter of alcohol content. I've seen some imported beers labeled 'malt liquor' (in very small print, Spaten, for example) as a result.

DevP said...

I feel like you're fucking with us, but I have no way of knowing.

Neil Sinhababu said...

Well, right now I feel a little dumb about this post, because I went on for a whole screen about drinking a beer. But... fucking with you? I did drink the beer, and it really was that cheap, if that's what you're asking about.

Chris said...

Steel Reserve...One of the first beers I actually drank. When I was in high school there was this really low-brow liquor store that sold to underage kids. And, being young and poor, I bought the cheapest, most potent drink I could find. I remember someone once telling me a joke that they made Steel Reserve by soaking up all the liquid left on the bar at the end of the night with a towel and squeezing it into a bottle.

By the way, I think the difference is that malt liquor is made with malt and not flavored with any hops. I could be wrong though.