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June 11th, 2014 12:01 am MARTIN CIZMAR | Drank

Drank: Ireland Style Premium Light Ale (Henry Weinhard’s, 1984)


In 1985, a "1984" time capsule was buried in Pioneer Courthouse Square. Inside, with a pair of Nikes, a boom box and a “Frankie Says Relax” T-shirt, went two bottles of Henry Weinhard’s ales. Henry’s was, after all, Portland’s premier local beer in the same year BridgePort, Widmer and McMenamins all opened. As long-cellared beers go, a 4 percent ABV Light Irish Ale in a green bottle wasn’t promising. But, after signing a waiver agreeing not to sue the city or the Oregon Historical Society, I was allowed to sample it. The metal cap split on the side as it was opened, and the carbonation was long gone, but the beer kept a clear, uncloudy golden hue. It smelled of sweet, dirty earth—like low-gravity bum wine stirred with a garden trowel. Though not a red ale, it had the same musty cardboard sweetness you’d expect from a half-empty Killian’s discovered behind the shed a month after your last party. They’re reburying the capsule later this year; having survived this round, I vote for including a wax-dipped bottle of Deschutes Abyss.

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