Cheers!: Let Us Not Curse the Darkness!

Nothing rattles my fragile eggshell mind like a trip out of the county into the thick of humanity for a weekend in a place like Pewaukee.

It becomes very easy to understand why life in Door County suits me so well.

Nothing horrible happened. In fact, I quite enjoyed myself. But the frustration of movement within a metro area made me sick. I hate traffic lights so much, and they seem endless in greater Milwaukee, synchronized for maximum stoppage. Each one makes me long for my largely traffic light-free home in Door County (a few remain, but god bless the roundabouts!).

But, honestly, I could not wait to point the car north and head home. As per usual, I took a circuitous route that probably took double the time of the straightforward freeway drive, but I hate what people become on freeways, so try to avoid them as much as possible.

Sadly, I ended up taking the freeway home most of the way, and that wears me out.

Once home, I felt drained, washed out, used up. Too much driving for my delicate soul. If a guy ever needed bucking up…

I had a terrific craving for the deep green taste of broccoli as I was trying to find my way home from Pewaukee, so a quick stop in Sturgeon Bay to pick up the ingredients to satisfy the broccoli-tofu-sesame stir fry recipe I came up with on the drive.

To wash it down? My mind was focused on getting home, where the magic fridge held a bottle of Export Porter 1750 by the Dutch brewer Brouwerij Kees!, with a label that promises “Black and sticky to the bone.”

Oh, yeah, baby!

What I first poured it, I thought it was a mistake. It was black as an oil change and completely still.

And then, suddenly, the thinnest rim of carbonation I have ever seen formed at the very top of the beer in my glass, making the slimmest head I’ve ever seen. No matter.

It’s alive!

This beer is full of the darkest fruits (dates, plums/prunes) and just a squirt of darkest berries, darkest chocolate, darkest coffee and darkest smokiness (just short of burned beyond redemption smoked).

Perhaps you get the impression that a lot is going on with this beer.


This is a 10.5 percent powerhouse of dark flavors. This is an incredible beer. I must find more. You should too.

Someone once remarked that education is the movement from darkness to light.

Allow me to rephrase that for beer education:   “Beer education is the movement from light to darkness.”

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