Friday night we headed out to Bulls Head Public House in Lititz. Lititiz is quaint little town in Lancaster County that is practically inaccessible by car at certain times of the day due to a combination of poor roads and traffic. Better suited for already slow-moving buggies. I call it Lititz Island as a result. Bulls Head touts itself as the only authentic British Pub in the region and I think that is a true boast. Other places just don’t seem to cut it authenticity-wise. Having Guinness (and primarily other Guinness products) on tap does not a Pub make. Particularly dire are the food rip-offs of British Isle cuisine. Not that this cuisine is really much to write home about anyway.
Such establishments shall remain nameless. Apparently, an Englishman co-owns the Bulls Head and it does taste true to it motto. As it was, we had a quick drive with little traffic and soon were seated with friends at the pub. Last time we were there, it was winter. We found the Bulls Head to be delightfully cheery and on this Friday night–although much balmier outside, we found the same.
I started out with some brewery’s Red Rye. It had an overly hopped flavor and I was hoping to do better with my second choice. I’m fine with hoppy beers for varieties like IPA’s. Otherwise, I think it is a short-cut to craft status by taking an average brew and hopping it up and thinking that one has moved the beer closer to the apex. Not so.
I am keeping myself to two beers per weekend night and not drinking beer during the week so a lot was riding on this brew to fulfill my hopes and dreams for a satisfying libation. After trying a couple of samples of other beers and starting to feel like a mooch, I made my decision on faith without tasting. Remembering that I greatly had enjoyed the Old Rasputin Imperial Stout that I had partaken of in Hoboken, NJ, several months ago, I opted for the same style. The Yeti Imperial Stout from the Great Divide Brewing Company of Denver, Colorado. I spotted it up on the big chalkboard and thought I had a sighting of quality.
And, in a way it was a keeper. It took me so long to drink it that the night was over and I had to gulp down the last two ounces. I didn’t hate the stuff yet it was more my ethic of not throwing food and drink away that compelled me to completion rather than a love for the taste. Here is what I thought of the taste: Burnt, practically an ashtray of tobacco leaf smoked to a white powder and thrown into the Wort from what I could surmise. The Yeti seemed to lack the sweetness of other Imperial Stouts that I have had in the past. Imperial Stouts are supposed to be super-strong yet sweet.
Generally, I have a broad beer palate. But, it does have its limits. The Yeti gets a very good rating on Beer Advocate so it looks like I am representing a minority position. But if I see it again on tap elsewhere in the future, I am not going to take notice of it. There are better beers to spend time nursing. All I have to do is peer upon the picture above and recall its bitter taste. No need to go on a expedition looking for it again.