If you think “cask beer” means “flat, warm, and funny tasting,” what you’ve had is some seriously messed-up cask beer — a cask is a lot easier to mishandle than a keg. Keep trying. When experts are involved, this is a damn fine way to do your drinking.
Last night experts at Engine House No. 9 tapped a firkin full of their damn fine Don of Time American Pale Ale loaded with grapefruit flavor, due in part to the fresh squeezed citrus profile of Waimea hops. Because cask-conditioned beer is unfiltered and unpasteurized beer that is conditioned and served from a cask without additional nitrogen or carbon dioxide pressure, Don of Time was a fast, delicious drink. Unlike super chilled beer that holds onto bubbles leading to that much maligned bloated feeling, cask beer produces a smoother and easier to drink pint.
DonnyLlama, E9’s assistant brewer and namesake of the night’s beer, joined Quan Fi behind the turntables, spinning exotica and Hawaiian music — a nod to the citrus flavors of the firkin Don of Time. After E9 bartender Todd “The Bod” Mclaughlin poured a Don, Donna Herren — beer, wine and cheese manager at Tacoma Boys grocery — would plop a paper umbrella in many a patron’s pint.
Here are a few snapshots from last night’s Firkin Tuesday at E9.