December 13, 2006

Dublin day 3

Most of the officehere doesn't show up till 10:30 ("half ten") or later so I got up at 8:30 ("eight thirty") showered and had breakfast. The hotel provides a breakfast buffet of cereals and milk, coffee, stewed prunes, grapefruit sections, orange juice, breads, croissants, cold cuts, cheese, bacon (irish bacon is soft and kind of like ham, delicious), scrambled eggs, sausage, white pudding, black pudding, and coffee. Surprisingly (t o me) the coffee does not suck. I have bacon, grapefruit, and coffee; edit yesterday's post and head off to the office.j

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After work a bunch of us head to The Porter House brewery/pub in Temple Bar. Rebecca ("Bink") had suggested it on the way to The Market Bar so I suggested it to some of my co-workers. It's in a four story building, and serves a number of ales, lagers, and stouts they brew themselves. They also serve food. I tried their "Porterhouse Red" (an Irish ale with crystal malt and decent balancing hops), "Brainblasta" (a strong ale advertised to have good hops), and their "Celebration" stout. They're celebrating their tenth year, and from the quality of the beers I can understand why and wish them a prosperous ten more. The Porterhouse Red is a nicely balanced beer with mild caramel notes and a subtle hops balance. It's not as caramelly as, for example, Anchor Steam, but it's more subtle. This is a beer that I could drink all night - it doesn't tug at you demanding attention. The Brainblasta was stronger, but still well balanced, not as hoppy as a hop-head like me would have liked, but still very drinkable - except that at 7% alcohol you need to be a little careful. Finally the Celebration stout. In a city known around the world for one stout, it would be a little presumptuous to brew a competing stout and serve it under the nose of St. James Gate. It would be quite presumptuous to brew and serve two. It would be the height of presumption to brew and serve FOUR different stouts, and to pointedly not serve Dublin's most famous stout. Good for them. The Celebration stout at 10% alcohol celebrates their ten years in business. This stout is strong! It's also very malty and sweet, in the Russian Imperial style. It was a great finish to a delightful evening.

The food at The Porterhouse is much better than typical pub food, but is not the reason to go there. I had an Irish stew, others of my co-workers had fish and chips, burgers, and a salad. They were good, but go for the beer. We sat on the top floor, in a corner by a large copper beer wort vessel and a view of the street, it was lovely.
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