Life is still not all that fun for Baxter, but he’s extremely happy that the Cougs took down USC last Friday. He’s on Week 2 of a four-week period of crate rest, meaning he sits in his crate all day, only able to come out to do his business outside or lay on the couch. I think any of us would need a tasty beverage to deal with that daily schedule.
It lifted his spirits a bit to know that he is becoming a bit of celebrity in Pullman. I got several messages last Saturday wishing him well, and one random Coug shouted “Best Baxter’s beer ever!” to me in the celebration following the USC win. Bax is a humble dog, but everyone likes to be noticed.
As for this week’s beer, Baxter went with Black House Nitro with Coffee, Coconut and Cocoa from Modern Times Beer. Black House is the flagship stout from Modern Times, and this variant takes its tastiness to another level. The coffee, coconut and cocoa are not overpowering, and the nitro gives it a smooth, creamy texture (think Guinness).
The evolution of the nitro can is interesting. They first popped up from Guinness—the ones with the “widget” inside (who among us didn’t spend hours trying to coax that thing out of the can before just cutting it in half). I think American breweries have now surpassed Guinness in nitro can technology, starting with Colorado’s Oskar Blues, the pioneers of canned craft beer.
What does nitro mean? There is nitrogen added during canning, or during kegging, that is pushed out along with the beer when it is poured. To get this effect from a can, the drinker needs to pour straight down into the beer glass, these beers are not meant to be drank straight from the can.
As for Modern Times, it’s a San Diego brewery that made its debut in Washington and Oregon earlier this year. You can find their stuff at beer stores, big box wine and liquor stores and higher-end grocery stores. Black House nitro is one of the most popular Modern Times beers and goes pretty quickly off the shelves.
So that’s what Baxter and I will be drinking while the Cougs take on Oregon, what will you be having?