Archive for June 23rd, 2009

I spotted pint bottles of McNeill’s Firehouse ale in the Co-op today, and grabbed one.  This ale brings back memories, because it was one of my first draft beers. Definitely the best.  The brewery is in my high school hometown of Brattleboro, Vermont, where it is served in its own well-resepected run-down-floorboarded pub just off Main Street.  Firehouse is a dark amber ale, pretty hoppy but not overly.  Flavorful, a pleasure to drink with some salty green olives, sharp cheese, or just some bar mix.  It’s also conducive to déjà vu for me because it was what Peter and I drank on our first New Year’s Eve together.  Neither of us is one for sentimentality about holidays, but this one was just good fun.  After having dinner with my parents at home, we looked into The Marina, a bar on the West River, but it was just as I expected: crowded with all of the jocks and hometown girls who’d already married and had children.  We decided to go downtown.  It was colder than cold—around zero.  I remember, I was wearing not just a thick wool sweater but a thick wool turtleneck sweater.  At McNeill’s, there were a few small groups of locals and Marlboro College types sitting around at little tables, which were home-crafted just like the brews.  I was twenty-one, but Peter was a year younger.  I went up to the bar attempting to be cool as a local (cucumber).  “Two pints of Firehouse?” Not a look or a word questioning my legitimacy as a beer-purchasing adult.  It was New Years Eve.  We sipped our first pints happily.  They were probably playing The Band.  We started a game of darts.  Cheers to ’97!



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