This week I have been drinking beers from German brewery Schwaben Brau, which are currently on sale at Aldi branches throughout the UK. It's time for the final beer, a bright and clear Pilsner called Das Helle, to come chip away at the hangover that its cloudy sibling Das Naturtrub started up last night.
I pop a half litre bottle, and then another. I inhale the pointed lemon scent from the necks of both, and then pour them into a one litre German beer boot. I'm going out in style, ticking the last of the beerfest cliché boxes.
The head is a thick lunar landscape of white, but diminishes quickly while I jostle and juggle for a good photographic angle. Bronze on its own, yellow-gold with a light through it, the beer is sharp and clear and on the first mouthful thin and a little oily in texture.
The scent from the leg of the boot is mixed citrus and post-rainstorm air. Lemon, hay and faint honey characterise the taste, and the honey flavour toughens up on the aftertaste. The boot quickly empties down to the ankle, the aroma of damp meadow filling the glass as the beer interacts with the air.
With both hands holding the boot, and my head angled back, I unleash a deluge and see off the remaining beer in about two seconds. This is the sweet spot of Schwaben Brau beers, it's clear. These are Good Time drinks, loud, barking swing tops to share on nights of loud, barking camaraderie. They are unfussy and simple for the most part, and they do the job. Their flavours are simplicity and function in a world of complexity and art, a wild haymaker thrown in a sword fight. Both are valid, I think. Although the code duello might disagree on the latter.
They are fun, simple beers, and cheap and readily available for now, if my local Aldi is anything to go by. I've just necked a glass boot full of simple beer, and I'm ready to put that boot on and kick the shit out of the weekend. The white-bearded brewer on the label is ready to do the same in his hand-drawn, two dimensional world. Of this I am sure.
Let the weekend begin!