RUSSELL CREAM ALE—Won’t start a fight, or at least stays in the middle

My Fellow Inebriates,

Miss P never had a kindergarten nemesis, but of course Miss V has found hers. If you met V, you’d understand how natural this is. You’d know, after having a meal at the LBHQ table or witnessing bedtime, that V cannot operate without adversaries. She has to live with the ones at home, which means everybody gets along most of the time—but her school nemesis is another story.

PaperCamera Veronica 2012-05-13-11-47-16Take V at the end of a long row of monkey bars. From across the span she sees “H” starting to swing across, bar by bar. This is a logical prompt for V to start from her own side, monkeying her way with characteristic aggression, surely anticipating a clash in the middle and prepared to hang there until Saturday or her nemesis gives up and drops.

In fairness to V, H has been pretty mean to her this year.

In fairness to H, V’s reports are not terribly objective.

According to their teacher, they have a real thing going, and that’s why they sit at opposite sides of the classroom. The teacher does her best to prevent matter meeting antimatter, but she can only do so much, especially when the two seek each other out.

“That’s got to be stressful for the teacher. You should pack a beer for her with V’s homework,” I told my parents, generously thinking of our small stock of RUSSELL CREAM ALE.

What? You think other parents don’t send beer to school with their kids?

russell cream aleYou knew this already, but my parents aren’t that kind of progressive thinker. Oh well—more for us.

RUSSELL CREAM ALE is pretty quintessential—can you say “pretty quintessential”?—for the brew. It pours a clear, deep amber with a soapy-hued head that takes a few minutes to dissipate. Inhale and you get sweet malt and nuts and pronounced breadiness with some floral hops chiming in. The flavor is mild, with the hops pulling their punches until the aftertaste, where they linger with hints of fruit and weeds, providing an effective balance to the initial malty sweetness. The beer sits on your palate politely—kind of a Goldilocks mouthfeel, which obviously passes muster with bears, particularly this one.

Overall, RUSSELL CREAM ALE is nicely balanced although not especially memorable. Just a solid, good-tasting, perfectly standard exemplar of the kind of cream ale your barkeeper might pour you from the tap. In other words—totally non-provoking and non-confrontational—the sort of thing I bet V’s teacher could have used this morning.

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