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2014-04-22    来源:网络    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

When Russian River released Pliny the Younger in February, 300 thirsty fans lined up outside the tiny Santa Rosa, Calif., brewpub for the first sip of this super-hoppy beer. Hop flavors fade fast, and for IPAs and even stronger Imperial IPAs like Pliny, fresh is best: It's on tap once a year and runs dry in days. But as the screechingly hop-forward brews of the craft-beer movement's first wave give way to deeper, more complex flavors, the revolution is moving down to the cellar. For some beer lovers, the best bottles aren't the freshest, they're the dustiest.
加州 罗莎(Santa Rosa)的小酒馆Russian River今年2月份推出Pliny the Younger时,300名发烧友排队等候在门外,迫不及待地想在第一时间品尝这款酒花味超浓的啤酒。由于酒花味会迅速变淡,因此印度淡色艾尔啤酒(简称IPA)和Pliny这种更加浓烈的帝王IPA(Imperial IPA)最好趁新鲜品尝:这款啤酒一年推出一次,几天就会售罄。但随着手工精酿啤酒第一波浪潮中代表性的刺激酒花味让位于更加深邃复杂的味道,这场变革正在延伸至酒窖。在一些啤酒爱好者看来,最好的酒并不是那些最新鲜的,而是最有年头的。

As with many of beer's latest trends -- limited editions, a preoccupation with terroir, cork-sealed bottles -- this one takes cues from the wine world. At restaurants like San Francisco's Abbot's Cellar, the cicerones, beer's equivalent of sommeliers, pour celebrated vintage brews like Baladin's Port-like 2009 Xyauyu Etichetta Oro.
和啤酒界许多最新潮流(如限量版、重视产区、采用软木塞封瓶)一样,本轮浪潮也取道于葡萄酒界。在旧金山的Abbot's Cellar 等餐馆,侍酒师会为客人斟上Baladin 2009年产的Xyauyu Etichetta Oro(相当于葡萄酒中的波特(Port)酒)等著名年份佳酿。

But amassing an all-star beer cellar doesn't have to be a white-tablecloth endeavor price-wise. Great age-able beers can be quite affordable. A six-pack of Sierra Nevada's Bigfoot -- a spicy barley wine that turns as syrupy as sweet Sherry after a few years -- goes for about $12.
打造一个全明星阵容的高档酒窖其实并不一定要花很多钱。有陈年潜力的上品佳酿价格可能相当实惠。Sierra Nevada六瓶装的Bigfoot(一款辛辣的大麦酒,保存几年之后会像雪利甜酒(Sherry)一样甜腻)售价仅在12美元左右。

Still, you can't buy just anything and lay it down to age. Not all beers get better with time. Hop-driven IPAs lose their kick quickly as light, heat and oxygen degrade the flavorful flowers' acids and oils. Stone Brewing Co.'s Enjoy By IPA touts its bottled-on date as a badge, and the brewery's cicerone, Bill Sysak, recommends immediate consumption. Instead, Mr. Sysak stocks his personal cellar -- 2,800 bottles and counting -- with strong, dark and bottle-conditioned beers. The sometimes overpowering fusel alcohol notes of stronger beers, 8% ABV (alcohol by volume) and up, mellow over time; living yeast in bottle-conditioned beers adds character as it continues to ferment residual sugars.
不过,不是随便什么啤酒都可以买来放置陈年。并非所有啤酒都是越陈品质越好。酒花味突出的IPA会迅速丧失那股冲击力,因为光、热和氧气会降解啤酒花中的酸和油。Stone Brewing Co.的Enjoy By IPA以其装瓶日期为卖点,这家酒坊的侍酒师比尔·西萨克(Bill Sysak)也建议尽快饮用它。而西萨克的私人酒窖(有 2,800瓶啤酒,而且还在不断增加)藏有瓶中熟成的烈性深色啤酒。烈性啤酒(酒精含量在8%及以上)中有时过强的杂醇油味会随着时间的推移而变得柔和起来;而瓶中熟成啤酒中的活性酵母会持续发酵残留的糖分,从而为啤酒增添更多个性。

Aging beers truly is an adventure. Sweet, bottle-conditioned Belgians dry out; fiery barley wines turn smooth and caramelly. Stone's Imperial Russian Stout, Mr. Sysak said, 'might be astringent, fresh, like espresso. But aged, it's a delicious chocolate-coffee dessert.' One of the oldest he's tried, a 1968 Thomas Hardy's Ale, 'was like an Oloroso Sherry: nuts, toffee, leather and smoke.'
啤酒的熟成确实是一场冒险。甘甜的瓶中熟成比利时啤酒(Belgians)口味会变干;辛辣的大麦酒则会变得柔滑并带有焦糖味。西萨克说,Stone酿制的Imperial Russian 烈性黑啤酒(Stout)“新鲜时也许像浓咖啡那样有些苦涩。但陈年后就成了美味的巧克力咖啡甜品”。他品尝过的最陈年的啤酒之一是1968年产的Thomas Hardy's Ale,他说:“这款酒味道很像欧罗索雪利酒(Oloroso Sherry):它混合了坚果、太妃糖、皮革和烟草的芳香。”

The beers may be strong, but they must be aged gently. Aim for 54 degrees Fahrenheit -- a mini-fridge with a temperature control is nice, but a dark interior closet works too. Mr. Sysak found a sweet spot in his guest bathroom. 'People would open the cupboard and find all these rare bottles,' he said. Above all, you want consistency. Temperature fluctuations will age beer prematurely and might throw its proteins out of solution, turning the brew hazy.

There's no need to bother with horizontal storage, even with cork-sealed beers. Most modern corks are treated with wax so they won't dry out, and vertical storage minimizes contact between the beer and air in the bottle, slowing the aging process.

The biggest question is when to drink. Allagash recommends about three years for a Belgian brew like its Interlude, bready and tannic. Alaskan Brewing Co.'s Smoked Porter -- thought up by brewery founder Geoff Larson over a plate of lox with a salmon-curing neighbor -- 'hasn't peaked yet,' said Mr. Larson. Since most of these beers are relatively affordable, buy a bunch and open one from time to time. After a few years, try a vertical tasting: one beer, different ages. Start with the oldest bottle and proceed chronologically, so the younger batch's more intense flavors don't overwhelm your palate at the outset. And, as with wine, sip and savor. Tasting, like aging, takes patience. 'Drinking these beers is like getting into a hot tub,' Mr. Larson said. 'Go slowwww.'
最重要的问题是酒应该在什么时候喝。Allagash建议,像Interlude这种带面包和单宁味的比利时啤酒可以搁三年左右再喝。Alaskan Brewing Co.烟熏波特啤酒(Smoked Porter)的创意是该酒坊创始人杰夫·拉森(Geoff Larson)与加工三文鱼的邻居在享用一盘烟熏三文鱼时想出来的,拉森说,这款酒“还没有达到巅峰”。这些啤酒价格大都比较适中,不妨多囤一些,每过一段时间打开一瓶。几年之后,可以尝试一下垂直品酒:即品尝不同年份的同款啤酒。可从最陈年的啤酒开始,按年代顺序依次品尝,这样新鲜啤酒更为浓烈的味道就不会一上来便征服你的味蕾。另外,和葡萄酒一样,请小口啜饮,慢慢品尝。 品酒和存酒一样,都需要耐心。拉森说:“饮用这些啤酒就像泡热水澡一样,请慢慢来。”


1. Deschutes The Abyss, 11% ABV
F. Martin Ramin/The Wall Street Journal1. Deschutes的The Abyss; 2. Alaskan Brewing Co.的烟熏波特啤酒;3. Hair of the Dog的 Adam; 4. Jolly Pumpkin的 Oro de Calabaza; 5. Ommegang的Three Philosophers; 6. Sierra Nevada 的Bigfoot1. Deschutes的The Abyss,酒精含量11%
This pitch-black imperial stout is devilishly smooth, even when young; given time, tannic molasses turns to rich chocolate, licorice spice to soothing plum pudding.

2. Alaskan Brewing Co. Smoked Porter, 6.5% ABV
2. Alaskan Brewing Co. 的烟熏波特啤酒,酒精含量6.5%
After a few years, the alder smoke turns richer and less sharp, the dark malt gets syrupy sweet and a bracing cold-night nip becomes a warming frontiersman's breakfast redolent of maple-cured bacon.

3. Hair of the Dog Adam, 10% ABV
3. Hair of the Dog的Adam,酒精含量10%
A boisterous roomful of distinct flavors when fresh -- dark chocolate, espresso, a wisp of cigar smoke, cacophonous and loud. A year's rest or more trains those voices into a warmly lilting chorus.

4. Jolly Pumpkin Oro de Calabaza, 8% ABV
4. Jolly Pumpkin的 Oro de Calabaza,酒精含量8%
A straw-hued, bottle-conditioned brew, aged in barrels with a bit of wild yeast, Jolly Pumpkin's flagship starts perfect and only gets better -- sliding from sweet, fruity golden raisins to zesty dry Champagne.

5. Ommegang Three Philosophers, 9.7%
5. Ommegang的Three Philosophers,酒精含量9.7%
Young, this strong blonde Belgian quadruple is sweet and hot, rum soaked cherries and caramelized figs. Bottled with a bit of live yeast, it'll dry out in time, honing a sharp, peppery edge.

6. Sierra Nevada Bigfoot, 9.6% ABV
6. Sierra Nevada的Bigfoot,酒精含量9.6%
A British-style strong beer, or barley wine, with a decidedly American hop-centric twist. Viscous with Chinook hops' throat-coating pine and citrus resin, this monster sweetens into old age.

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