Saturday, March 16, 2013

March 16th, 2013 - Diary Of A Mad Bigfoot

Alright head-bangers and brew-guzzlers, the Meista has rockin' pairing for you Today!  I thought I'd go with some classic Ozzy... his 1981 masterpiece, "Diary Of A Madman" (1995 Remastered Edition) and a Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale.  This one goes out to my brother, Dain... cheers Dain-o!!

Way back in 1981 (long before Ozzy's wife and marketing whore, Sharon decided to turn his career into a joke), Ozzy Osbourne released what I consider his crowning achievement as a solo artist... "Diary Of A Madman."   What really makes this album so noteworthy is not necessarily Ozzy (although he is great), rather it is the breathtaking and amazing guitar work of the late Randy Rhoads.  "Diary..." may also consist of the greatest lineup for the Ozzman's bands.  As mentioned, it included the genius of Rhoads on guitar, but also included the impressive work of Bob Daisley on bass and Lee Kerslake (of Uriah Heep fame) on drums.  (Both Daisley and Kerslake were fired from the band before the album was released and replaced by Rudy Sarzo and Tommy Alrdridge who were initially given credit.  To add insult to injury, in 2002, Sharon decided to release a remastered version of the album with Daisley's and Kerslake's work completely erased and rerecorded by Robert Trujillo and Mike Bordin.  What a bitch!!  So don't buy that one!  But enough about her!)  The beauty of this album lies in the deeply mystical, mythical, and dark mood it sets along with the fantastic acoustic and electric guitar acrobatic artistry of Rhoads.  Just listen to that closing solo on "Tonight" or the opening work on "Diary Of A Madman"!  Inspiring!!  And "Over The Mountain"??  DAMN!!  Sadly, Rhoads died in a plane crash during the "Diary Of A Madman" Tour in 1982.

The Bigfoot Barleywine Style Ale by Sierra Nevada is characterized by huge malt flavors and bitter hops.  The Bigfoot is quite the monster of an ale like "Diary..." is a monster of an album!  Unlike its mythical counterpart, the Bigfoot's intensity is not elusive.  Coming in at 9.6% ABV, he is most definitely very present!  Bigfoot pours a deep copper-amber with a frothy, cream-colored head that leaves a wonderful spiderweb lacing.  The nose is much hoppier than most barleywines from an abundance of whole-cone, Pacific Northwest hops.  There are also some nice, sweet caramel and malt notes.  More carbonated that most barleywines I've tasted, the Bigfoot's mouthfeel is also not as syrupy or full-bodied as I'm used to from this style, but it makes it more drinkable and refreshing.  The flavor is big and bold and absolutely refreshing, perfect for the massive sound of "Diary..."  There is a great balance of the roasted malts and barley along with spicy and sharp hops.  The danger with the Bigfoot is that he sneaks up on you.  With all that refreshing and intriguing flavor, you forget about the big ABV content.  'Tis a might beast... and deserves respect!

Well, I'm "Flying High Again" and going to finish my beer... you all have a kick-ass day!  Be safe, be cool to one another, and enjoy a glass or two!  Until next time, cheers!!

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