Almost every craft beer drinker has a beer bucket list – or at least you should. Loaded up with your favorite styles and breweries, the bucket list is tailored to each drinker’s specific desires.
It doesn’t have to be written or exist in any truly tangible way. It is perfectly fine to store this information in your memory, only recallable when running across a store shelf or bar tap list.
My personal list exists part in digital form – yes, I have a file of dream beers on my computer – but also in my mind. If I listed every beer I want to try in a tangible file, that seems like too much for me. Too much work to create for sure, but even more so, too overwhelming and discouraging to consider. Am I really going to drink all of these beers?
Probably not – and that sucks. But it is also liberating. The minute I accept that fact, my bucket list becomes less of a chore. Crossing a beer off the list is an event to be celebrated, not just the next step in an endless journey. It should be a treat to enjoy a bucket list beer – after all, the expected enjoyment is the whole reason a beer finds its way on the list to begin with.
Taking it less seriously also helps with expectations, lowering them while simultaneously putting less pressure on the experience to live up to them. My point here is just relax. Next time you have a beer from the top of your leaderboard (or ours), savor the experience for what it is. No outsized expectations or nagging pull to cross it off your list and move to the next beer, just relax and enjoy.
One beer that has long been on my personal bucket list is Three Floyds Zombie Dust. The seventh overall ranked beer in our directory also tops the leaderboard for American Pale Ales. While it might be cheating a little to get there, it’s impossible to completely fake numbers that high. This is clearly a well regarded beer
It’s nuanced but bold, everything you want from a pale ale and even more.”
Putting Zombie Dust on my own personal leaderboard wasn’t difficult, it was tracking it down that I was having trouble with. Luckily, the only nice thing about a 13 hour drive home for Thanksgiving was that it took me through Paducah, Kentucky – one of the last outposts in Three Floyds distribution.
A little advanced planning, a few pleading phone calls, and hundreds of miles later, I had my six pack of Zombie Dust riding shotgun. I cracked one open almost as soon as the car was in park for good.
This beer is perfect right off the pour – a beautiful hazy orange with a hint of amber. A nice bubbly white head pumps out aroma and clings to the glass.
The smell of Zombie Dust is intoxicating. The aroma is full of huge citrus notes and a brightness that is reminiscent of the best wet hop beers. Pine and some dank resinous and grassy qualities peak out from behind the citrus and tropical fruit bouquet.
The flavor is off the charts. Notes of berry, peach, mango, pineapple, orange, and lemon all swim together and play off one another. A light earthiness (maybe even onion?) teams up with pine to keep the fruitiness in check and ensures Zombie Dust is a perfectly balanced beer.
The taste, like the aroma, is incredibly bright on the front end before giving way to the more bitter drying flavors at the back end.
Three Floyds manages to hit all the highlights with this one. The mouthfeel is somehow slick and appropriately carbonated, soft and full bodied.
There is a depth and complexity to the entire drinking experience, and it is this quality more than anything else that makes Zombie Dust so incredible. It’s nuanced but bold, everything you want from a pale ale and even more.
The worst part of drinking this beer is knowing that means you have one less left. It’s perfect, what else is there to say? Figure out a way to get this beer – it belongs on your bucket list.