Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Back in Texas, C company birthday, and Raspberry Reserve

I arrived back in Texas last night after a whirlwind trip to Pennsylvania.  Visiting friends and family and celebrating our recent wedding made for little rest and lots of travel time during my 4-day pass.  I hope to have a bit of time on my hands since the rest of the company is on block leave, but I suppose that depends on the temperament of the sergeants they've left in charge.  I will do my best to recount everything in the next few entries. 

Last Thursday was the C company's one-year birthday.  Previously most of the folks in my company were part of an engineering company in 1-5 cavalry with other combat troops.  They were re-organized as part of our special troops battalion last year and this was the first anniversay of that event.  To celebrate, we had the day off of regular duties and reserved a picnic space at the nearby Belton Lake Recreation Area.  Families were invited and there were sports and food for everyone.  Two of the highlight events were the mechanical bull they had rented and the pie auction.  The Mechanical bull operators we able to give the smallest kids a gentle ride as well as wreck the spirits of more macho soldiers who confidently climbed on.  I lasted longer than average, but it was clear they were just toying with me.

After the food and bullriding, they auctioned off the right to pie the Commander, first sergeant, as well as all of the lieutenants and platoon sergeants.  After winning the bid, one could purchase extra "toppings" for the pie at $5 each (relish, mustard, cottage cheese...).  It of course became a big competition to see which platoon could scrape together the most money to pie their leadership and all of the proceeds went to a charity service that would be helping supply us with contact and creature comforts while we are deployed.  It was a fun day until I discovered exactly how sunburned my exposed arms had become.

Sly Fox Brewery's Raspberry Reserve
I found this one in Oakland at the bottle shop on the corner of Atwood and Louisa.  This place has quadrupled their selection since I moved away from Pittsburgh a year ago.  I chose this one because a) Sly Fox is a Pennsylvania brewery and I doubt I will stumble upon their products here in Texas and b) I was buying for myself, but also some folks who had a taste for fruity brews.  If you like raspberries, the aroma on this is wonderful.  It smelled strong, but also bright and rich.  The taste, however, didn't seem to match.  It was light on the tongue, with a fairly mild raspberry character (at least in comparison to the rich scent).  It went down very easily (and at 8% ABV, got the job done), but I was left wanting something heavier and richer to sip and savor.  I think there is an occasion for every beer, but this is more of a post-dinner or post-dessert apertif, probably suited for good lighting and stemware to show off its rich color and aroma.

1 comment:

  1. Wish you had a video of the bull-riding...