The boy is chasing the waves back and forth in a seemingly endless game of tag. The girl builds fleeting castles with drippy spires of sand. My wife re-devours an old, well-loved book while taking in the sun. The din of a lightly populated beach is drowned out by the bluster of a steady shore breeze. I am as relaxed as I can possibly be. I have the sun on my face and a cold can of Troegs Brewing Company’s Nimble Giant in my hand.
There is no email. No phone calls. No meetings. No editors asking for content. I am not even exactly sure what day it is. “Is it Saturday? Wait… it is Sunday, right?”
I take a hard pull from the pounder can and push my feet into the warm sand. Grapefruit and pineapple wash over my palate. I swallow the big gulp, exhale, and sinking deeper into my chair. My shoulders drop a bit and the relaxation eases further.
Summer has taken hold and I can’t be happier.
It is a just a bit audacious without being arrogant.”
Troeg’s once-a-year double IPA, Nimble Giant is a wonderful companion for my beach vacation. A double IPA as only Troegs could create. Nimble Giant has the aforementioned grapefruit and pineapple flavors in abundance but they are supported by hints of papaya, apricot, and tangerine with a faint piney backdrop. There is a slight pepperiness in the middle and a very long finish. It holds just a hint of the 9% alcohol by volume to remind you that you are drinking a big beer but it lacks astringency so as to never offend.
It seems almost axiomatic that summer 2017 is about 4.0% ABV beers with lemon drop notes and faux nostalgia for Zima and jolly ranchers. We are handed a summer full of beers that are brewed to be light and crisp. Session IPAs, Kolsch, and wheat beers are all great in their own right and are generally proper for the heat of the season.
On the other hand, Nimble Giant dares to be something else and therefore it offers something different. It is unapologetically big, yet fitting for those who can imbibe with nowhere to go and nowhere to be but in the moment. It has bold flavors that are not subtle or hidden. It is not tangy and salty like a Gose and it not exactly quaffable like a fruit-infused blonde.
As such, it is a just a bit audacious without being arrogant.
The tagline on the pounder can reads “Without sway, there can be no balance.” It rings true while also being both paradoxical and sounding as a bit of Confucianism. But as I polish off the first and reach into the cooler for a second, it is clear that this is the sway.
Now is the downtime that brings the balance.