The picture above was taken at Waterfront Alehouse in Brooklyn, on Sunday 11 August 2013 at 14:49:16. It shows a serving of “sliders” and a pint of Long Trail Lemmon-Pepper Kolsch. Where have heard about that beer before? Could it have been on a visit to the Long Trail brewery earlier this year? Could it be the very beer we tasted at the pilot-brewery there? (CLICK TO REVISIT)

Yes, it was.

As I remember the tasting in the pilot-brewery the sample was cool, crisp and had a pepper flavor that snuck up and stayed for a long while as is slid down to join lunch. I remember thinking this would be a perfect beer for after an afternoon on the ski slopes; refreshing and warming at the same time.

So much for my culinary and beverage imbibing fantasies, back to the sliders pictured above.

Placed before me was the Long Trail final-version of the beer I sampled in Vermont. I had been there at the conception of this brew. How had it turned out? Would I remember it? How would it go with a plate of mini-cheeseburgers ordered before I knew the end of the Long Trail was neigh?

The first sign of my less than professional reaction was the fact that the first sip of the brew had to fight with the flavors of the mini-burger. I frantically searched for familiar flavors. Cool refreshment was all I could recognize.

After the burger-bite was history I concentrated on the brew. A re-visit found a good whisper of lemon in the aroma but just barely a whisper in the flavor. As far as the pepper flavors were concerned I was still searching for them after the second swallow when they found me; just as warming as the pilot-beer but a lot sneakier. This pepper flavor rises from the depths rather than swirls downstream.

Did the brew go with the burgers? Yes it did.

And so the circle, and the story, comes around on the guitar… and that’s how Long Trail Lemmon Pepper Kolsch turned out.