No More WalMart AR Sales

There was a recent article where WalMart indicates they will stop selling AR type rifles and I must admit I am not surprised. I’m sure you are thinking they are bowing to pressure from gun grabbers, but in reality the market has gone soft, I mean really, really soft. There are plenty of people out there who would never have purchased an AR if it had not appeared the government might try to impose a ban. I was in a pawn shop recently known for their firearm selection and they had an entire rack of fairly new ARs just waiting to be purchased. It wasn’t long ago you had to pay 2X for one and now they prices are bargain basement. So the news from Wallyworld doesn’t come as a surprise and I would not be surprised if other retailers didn’t follow suit.

Now as far as the Forbes article title, I think Clare is trying to sensationalize a business decision. Bad form Clare, bad form.

Smokehead Scotch

I ran into an old friend last night in a Georgia steakhouse. It was Smokehead which I had last seen at a Scottish Pub ran by Australians in Antwerp, Belgium named Café Highlander. It was every bit as smoky as I remember and surprisingly awesome with a splash of water to quell the savage beast. I don’t know as much about Scotch as I should, but it is a single malt from Ian MacLeod. This Scotch is so freaking smoky it isn’t even funny so before you indulge, know what you will be getting. A glass full of smoke, hence the name. If you ever have the opportunity to have some, do it, but be aware hours later you will still taste smoke!

Sure Glad I Don’t Live In Arkansas

A YouTube video of an interaction in may with a Police Chief (who seems to be a bid of a douche) and a man who was open carrying surfaced and the man was eventually convicted for illegally carrying a weapon. He has appealed the decision, but the entire thing leaves a bad taste in my mouth. It seems they are letting individual jurisdictions in Arkansas decide whether or not to open carry is legal and the AG doesn’t have the cojones to step up to the plate and make an intelligent interpretation of the laws for Arkansas. I’d like to see his verdict overturned on appeal and force Arkansas to realize open carry is not illegal unless they enact statutes to prohibit the practice.

I.W. Harper Bourbon

I was very excited when I heard I.W. Harper Bourbon was returning to the US after a long absence. I located a bottle and stuck it in the queue with anticipation of opening to great job. It’s a 4-year-old, 82 proof Bourbon with a mid-range price point. I was hoping for an outstanding aroma and flavor and what I got was subdued and borderline pedestrian. It does have a nutty character, with caramel and brown sugar and a bit of leather, but not enough complexity to demand the price and certainly not enough character to keep my attention. If you see it out and about it might be worth trying, but I know I won’t be purchasing another bottle at this price point.

Heroes In France!

Cheers to the two American servicemen who stopped a gunman on a train in France. As I understand it Spencer Stone serves in the Air Force and Alek Skarlatos is a member of the Oregon National Guard and a third man, Anthony Sadler is a college student. Sadler and a British citizen, Chris Norman, assisted in restraining the criminal. If more people would act like this in critical situations many crisis may be avoided.

Sour? Tart? What Flavors Exactly?

Last night a question popped up about sour beers and how to make a portion of one sour after fermentation. The group pretty much agreed it would be better to start out with that as a goal rather than taking a portion and trying to sour after fermentation is complete. We didn’t have time to dig into the flavors the person was after, but I thought of a good exercise on the way home which may have helped him narrow down what they liked and what they do not. My thought was they could make up several acids as mead makers often do to complete their meads. They could make up small amounts of malic, acetic, citric, tartaric, lactic, acid blend, etc. and put them with an eye dropper into an ounce or so of beer to taste and learn what flavors they would like to create in his beer. Once they find the flavors they prefer they could then balance them as desired and even dose the batch if they find a perfect balance. They could even create an acid additive blend and then add to taste as they sever the beer.

People have a hard time describing sour beers and the flavors they are after, with this exercise they may be able to pinpoint exactly what they are after and then devise a means to achieve that through yeast/bacteria selection and potentially adding acids to the beer for the final product.

Natural Selections: The Wake County Science and Brewers Expo 2015

Tonight is an event I have not attended before, it is being held at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences from 7 to 10 pm and is touted as an evening of beer and science. It is a mini festival/tasting with educational panel discussions. In fact I will be participating on one of the panels so it should be interesting. If you have nothing better to do and want to attend I believe tickets are still available.

Participating Breweries and Beers:



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