Beer by the Grill: Lagunitas Cherry Jane

Beer by the Grill: Lagunitas Cherry Jane
Lagunitas Cherry Jane. Photo: Mark McDermott

I’m trying to bring a happier ending to some pretty crappy past few weeks. First, just a week or two after putting a new muffler in the older Beeronaut Excursion Vehicle, the BEV decided to die completely. At 2:00 am. On Roosevelt Road. After several hours spent with my little girl in the ER.

I managed to coast my dead car into a parking lot and get Roadside Assistance. Turns out the motor died (maybe by my neglecting the oil, maybe not). $4,300 for a replacement, that at least has half the miles on it the old motor did. Gotta go with that, because there’s no way we’d trust another used car at a similar price, and no way we could finance anything more recent.

Then this week, while in the city doing field research for one of my missions, I cleverly parked the BEV in a Street Cleaning zone. When I return in less than an hour, it’s been towed.

Oh, I’ll have full details on this escapade at the blog with my name on it later. But then today, I started going through my plastic storage totes in my garage after finding mouse turds on one of them, and find that somehow, a mouse had made its nest in… my stamp collection (my hobbies are obsessive, but transitory).

Right now, I just want to open a beer that someone sent me to comment on, and set fire to something, even if it is a frozen hamburger patty.

Appropriately, today’s grilling companion is a sour beer: Lagunitas Cherry Jane Sour Ale. It’s another in their One-Hitter Series, a wheat ale fermented with Brettanomyces, then packed with Turkish Delight cherries and further soured with Lactobacillus. It’s 5.5% abv, so just a bit more oomph than the usual Berliner Weiss.

The cherry nose is actually a little sweet under the cap. Pours a definitely cherry red beer, with a definitely pink foamy head. I just had to take a picture with head all frothed up to show how pink it is. A little of a tart nose once it’s in the glass, but also a creamy sweetness of a cherry pie filling.

And that’s where the taste settles, too. Tartness, but not really that sour. Strong cherry flavor with, as a said, a bit of creaminess. Along the lines of a cherry-ade with some vodka sneaked in.
I definitely feel better for having sat down with some hamburgers on the grill and this beer close to hand. Keep in mind, though, the Beeronaut does not advocate drinking to make yourself feel better. Make it part of your whole relaxation routine, and keep it to just one or two.

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    Mark McDermott

    Writer, trivia maven, fan of many things. I thought to learn all there is to know about beer as a way to stay interested in learning. It is my pleasure to bring Chicago's craft beer scene to you.

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