Saturday, March 3, 2012

March 3rd, 2012 - Living In The NWPA Tense

Today I am pairing Red Chair Northwest Pale Ale (NWPA), "courageously crafted" by Deschutes Brewery and the only solo album by Rush front man and Canada's favorite son, Geddy Lee and his 2000 album, "My Favorite Headache."

Deschutes Brewery's Red Chair NWPA pours a deep, caramel amber with a 1.5-finger head showing sustained lacing.  The nose is intense - aromatic, hoppy, and floral like a good IPA.  Yet the flavor is much smoother, much more mellow than a traditional IPA.  A good pale for those that are not into the "full-on hop assault" of Deschutes Inversion IPA (which I highly recommend!)  Red Chair NWPA is brewed with 7 (yes 7!) European and American malts along with those famous, Northwestern, citruys hops.  This is a flavourful, yest smooth ale with a clean and refreshing finish with a slight lingering hoppy aftertaste.  A great beer for kicking back on a Saturday evening with the musical genius of Geddy Lee.

In 2000, on hiatus from Rush, Geddy Lee teamed up with Ben Mink and Matt Cameron (of Soundgarden fame) to create the wonderfully layered and smooth "My Favorite Headache."  Sadly, as with the majority of Rush albums, Lee's solo album received very little attention in the American media... but was greatly received by fans.  Much like the Red Chair NWPA, "My Favorite Headache" starts off strong from the opening notes of the title track - that signature thumping bass of Lee.  And yet, the album as a whole is somewhat mellow, but definitely not week; it is deeply layered in flavor and goes down smooth.  Songs like "The Present Tense," "Working at Perfekt," "Moving to Bohemia," and "Home on the Strange" embody the intensity and richness of the beer while "The Angels' Share," "Slipping," and "Still" pair perfectly with the subtle "seduction" of the beers flavor.  As with the Red Chair NWPA, this is a beautifully balanced album and a must for any Rush fan, prog fan, or hard rock fan!

Check out Deschutes Brewery at!

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