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Belt's Beer Garden: Drinkin' buddies

There is nothing better than having a few beers with your best friend.

"I would kill everyone in this room for a drop of sweet beer."  — Homer Simpson
"I would kill everyone in this room for a drop of sweet beer." — Homer Simpson

This week one of my oldest and best friends, Taylor (a fellow Huskie faithful and beer connoisseur), dropped by and wanted to share a new beer with all of you. I was happy to oblige.

Taylor:

coopers parachute

Cooper's Parachute is a Urban Legend's take on a West Coast IPA. It pours a golden copper color and has a light, crisp taste that is not overpowering but still fulfilling. It smells wheaty and yeasty, but refreshing all the while. For an IPA that is 7% ABV, it definitely relies on its citrus/wheat taste and the hint of hops for its flavor.

To me, this is a very easy, very drinkable IPA. Even at 70 IBU, it's not too bitter at first, but still gives you an IPA experience. If someone is looking to make the jump from wheat beers to IPAs, this would be one I would recommend to them.

As you continue to drink it, be warned the bitterness will sneak up on you. But it provides the great flavor that IPA drinkers enjoy.

This is a beer that I would absolutely drink again without hesitation.  Cooper's Parachute provides good reason to visit Urban Legend Brewing, located in the Chicago suburb of Westmont. Urban Legend hasn't been around too long, but has made a decent splash in the Chicago area since its inception.

This beer shows that even the Midwest can take a crack at that West Coast style IPA. And seeing that summer is just around the corner (finally), I'm keeping this beer in my repertoire of easy to drink (even when it's hot out) beers that will still find a way to get you drunk. It does cost $8.99 for the 22 ounce bomber but, considering the quality of the beer, it's worth it.

So whether you're cruising in the boat, hanging by the lake, partying around the bonfire, or chilling at home, Cooper's Parachute is sure to give you the buzz you want while still letting you party all night.  Because of the overall flavor and being such an easy beer to drink I plan to have a Cooper's Parachute waiting for me in my fridge all summer long. 8/10

8 beers

Dave:

For my beer, I chose a brewery from California that just began distributing out our way - 21st Amendment.

brew free

Literally just last week 21st Amendment Brewery began to distribute in my area. So naturally I had to try their beer. They come to us from San Francisco and began making beer way back in 2000. Their name comes from the Amendment that repealed prohibition (personally, my favorite Amendment).

For now they mostly distribute solely on both coasts but Ohio, Minnesota, and Illinois are the lucky few in the middle to have access to them. I have decided to try their mainstay IPA - Brew Free! Or Die IPA.

Brew Free! Or Die IPA pours a golden copper color which is topped with roughly two fingers of head. From the aroma, you can tell that there is a solid backbone of malts in this beer, as there is a nice smell of caramel, with just a hint of the hops.

As I've never had any 21st Amendment beer, I dove right in.

As suspected from the smell, the caramel hits you first and is followed by just a hint of honey. However, the hops are not to be outdone by the malt. The tail end of each sip gives you a piney, slightly citrusy, hop attack. There is a definite bitterness that comes from the hops (as expected from the 70 IBU it has) but, like its malt counterpart, does not overpower your taste buds.

Brew Free! is given a slightly sweet flavor from all the caramel and honey and is quite the smooth, easy drinking IPA that is perfect for the summer months. It's a beer you can drink multiple of in one night, and would be a perfect companion to a night of fireworks. But be warned, with it clocking in at 7% ABV, it'll sneak up on you so you'll have to be careful.

Along with the easy to drink aspect, it's also easy enough on your wallet, as it only costs $9.99 for a six pack.

I must say, for this being my first taste of 21st Amendment, they have made quite the impression. This is a very easy to drink, very solid IPA that has a great balance of flavors between the malts and hops. It's got me wanting to go back and try all of their offerings...but I know I'll be back for this one again. 8/10

8 beers

@UrbanLegendBeer