Welcome back to Booze of the Month. It’s almost the end of February and if there’s one brew I’ve drunken (yes it’s a word, the correct one too) more consistently and affectionatly it’s Simpler Times Lager. This may be a Trader Joe’s exclusive since I’ve never seen it anywhere else, and say what you will about Trader Joe’s and their skeptical wine selection but this beer is fantastic.
I was not completely happy with the first Booze of the Month format, it was a tad too casual and I’d like to give you as much information as possible so, in time, we’ll have a mini booze-database built up on Giusto. Allora, in the style of another favorite food blog of mine: TheKitchn, I’m going to gank their format and give everyone an in-depth look into my monthly selection. Letsgo! (how cool is that schooner glass, found it in Boonetown)
Selection: Simpler Times Brand Lager
Product Details: Brewed by Minhas Craft Brewery, Monroe, Wisconsin. Established in 1845. 6.2% Alcohol.
Appearance: A light caramel color with a bright white, thin head that lasted mere seconds.
Aroma: Similar to most lagers, bright and hoppy, but with none of the familiar “skunk” aroma associated with lower cost beers or American domestics.
Taste: Simpler Times is like a really good Yuengling. I’m sorry to all of you devoted Yuengling fans but this brew has got it beat. It’s full of lightly roasted malts giving it a distinct richness while remaining thin and crisp. There’s a small bite from the hops but nothing too overpowering, just a tiny nibble to contrast the strong flavor of the barley and malts.
Food Pairings: Simper Times is great for everyday meals, it’s not a complex beer so it should be paired with your day to day dishes, not the osso bucco that’s been roasting for 6 hours. Great with grilled meats and veg, Mexican cuisine (since it tastes similar to a Negra Modelo), and especially pizza which has the same yeasty, headyness as the brew.
Price: $3.99! It would be wrong of me not to admit that the price makes me a bit bias, but I would much rather spend the $3.99 on a six pack of these gold beauties than a sixer of PBR ‘s anyday.
Overall: Oh Simpler Times, how you bring me back to unpretentious days when beer was just beer, strong, cheap and delicious. A milk stout or triple bock are great in the right environment, but when I’m in the mood for nothing more than a cold brew while I plug away on the compy, cook dinner, or watch a movie Simpler Times is there for me. It’s golden color and packaging reminds me of a little golden retriever, friendly, playful, or ready to cuddle up with you on the couch.
As I started to say, the Trader Joe’s debacle will have to be addressed in another post since there’s much to be said, but if I was given only one item to choose before all of the Trader Joes across the land closed down, you know where my allegiance would lie: Simpler Times Lager. I salute my shorts good sir!