Top five fermented grogs fer the pirate in ye (updated)
Avast, me hearties! Don’t ye forget that September 19 be International Talk Like a Pirate Day.
In honor o’ this most momentous event, Cap’n GerARRd o’ Sea Voyages for Beer will list th’ top five pirate brews that you can toast t’ day with, in no perticular order.
Heavy Seas: Brewed by Baltimore’s Clipper City Brewing Co. From the Jolly Roger logo to the names of the brews, this brand is all about livin’ the pirate’s life. It even has a line of Pyrate Fleet Beers: Loose Cannon American Ale, Peg Leg Imperial Stout, Small Craft Warning Uber Pils, Red Sky at Night Belgian Style Saison and its seasonal Winter Storm Ale.
Gaspar’s Porter – “The last of the buccaneers,” Jose Gaspar raided merchant ships off the west coast of Florida until the early 19th century when, rather than surrender in an ambush, he wrapped the anchor chain around his waist and leaped to his death. That’s what the folklore says, anyway; no one has ever proven he existed. But that doesn’t stop the city of Tampa from throwing an enormous Gasparilla Festival each year, and it didn’t stop Florida Beer Company from resurrecting in his honor this seasonal porter, once brewed by the now defunct Ybor City Brewing Co. in Tampa.
Piraat – Though we’re not linguists here, it didn’t take us long to figure out that this translates to “Pirate.” Brewed by Van Steenberge Brewery, the only brewery still operating in Meetjesland, Belgium, its description seems kind of sissified for a pirate-themed brew: “This light, amber-coloured sea dog with its full white head fires bitter, spiced, malted and alcoholic fumes at your nose.This is followed by a perfect harmony of malted, sweet and bitter hopped aromas, after which you are immersed in a very long, slightly sweet finish with a hint of bitter to it.” But with an alcohol by volume of 10.5 percent, this blonde amber has enough kick to spark the gunpowder in any buccaneer’s cannon.
Dead Guy Ale: Dead men tell no tales, but if they could they might sing the praises of this German Maibock style brewed by Rogue Ales of Oregon. With its skeletal label and 6.5% ABV, it appeals to the roguish pirate and the Grateful Dead fan alike. And if that’s not enough to make you feel like you’ve taken a trip to Davey Jones’ Locker, try the Double Dead Guy Ale, with its blood-red bottle and an ABV kicked up to 9%. (Update: Road Trips for Beer larned Dead Guy be the OFFICIAL beer of International Talk Like a Pirate Day. Put yer eyes on the commentin’ place belowdecks t’see more.)
Invasion Pale Ale – Sometimes a buccaneer seeks the strongest grog after a long day and night of pillaging, but a mighty thirst comes during the invasion itself. Rather then become a soshed scallywag during the plundering, a smart pirate reaches for this heavily hopped 5-percent ABV pale ale from Tampa’s Cigar City Brewery. Please do not be distracted by the handsome visage adorning the container; you might get skewered by a scabbard.
By the way, International Talk Like a Pirate Day was started in 1995 by John Baur and Mark Summers, a.k.a. Ol’ Chumbucket and Cap’n Slappy (that’s their mugs at the top of this page). The movement really took off after nationally syndicated humor columnist Dave Barry wrote about the unofficial holiday in 2002.
Have any of ye other scurvy dogs plundered any fermented grog that should be included on this fine list? Put ‘er down in the talkin’ section belowdecks.
(Scribbles from Th’ Cap’n: Twas Talk Like a Pirate Day in The Year of Our Lord Two-Thousand and Ten when this list of grogs were first enter’d in th’ ship’s log. Twas updated three years after fer Talk Like a Pirate Day 2013.)