Beer of the Week: Space beer

Yesterday was a big day for NASA. The 11-year-old probe that’s been orbiting Mercury ended a successful mission collecting data, plummeting into the planet’s surface. NASA has also apparently invented warp drive – it’s an engine that uses just electrical energy instead of standard fuel to produce momentum (enough to create a warp field, or something). Need to travel a few light years to make first contact with an alien species? Make it so!

Lately for me, there seems to be a bit of a theme playing out. I’ve been watching a lot of TNG on Netflix… a LOT. I finished reading The Martian for my beer-drinking lady’s book club. And there’s all this great NASA news. Good thing there’s a perfect beer to celebrate the accomplishments of our beloved space agency. USA! USA!

Ninkasi’s Ground Control

Imperial Stout / 10%

Ninkasi-GroundControlGround Control was made with one thing in mind: Space yeast. The Oregon brewery sent a few vials of brewer’s yeast into space on a rocket in October last year, traveling 77.3 miles in altitude before returning safely back to Earth.

The space yeast didn’t actually change properties, but it’s an impressive feat. Ninkasi has gone where no brewery has gone before (sorry).

Of all the beers with a kind of gimmick (we don’t mean that in a bad way) to get you to take a bottle home, this one’s pretty darn good because it’s a good beer. It’s certainly no Voodoo Maple Bacon Donut, nor is it made with cow balls. It’s not marketed that way either. It’s an honest approach to an Imperial Stout… with space yeast.

As for the beer itself, I get the hazelnuts on both the aroma and flavor, along with some vanilla and chocolate. It’s light on the mouthfeel and very drinkable. Is it out of this world? I mean, it’s space beer.



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