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October: The Usurper

“The new spirit, as it becomes more conscious, is increasingly capable of transforming the moments of contemplation into one moment, into a permanent vision.”
-Piet Mondrian

The feeling of winter is beginning to scratch at the surface of my skin, looking for entrance between the over-abundance of hair follicles, and hoping to take up residence amidst the whirlwind of travel and busy-ness that is becoming of my life. Even the frigid fingers of winter are in need of a warm residence and an occupation – time away from itself and the boredom that might ensue. Fortunately for mother nature and those windy, leaf blowing tentacles, my October is the perfect vehicle for inane antics and time away from itself.

Friday the 17th of October is Russian Imperial Stout Project Day. I have invited some of my very good brewer friends here in Denmark to each submit their ideal recipe for this particular beer style. I, in turn, will then synthesize the 7 recipes into one behemoth recipe which we will all brew together on Friday. The participants are myself, Michael Murphy [from Gourmet], Mikkel Bjergsø [Mikkeller], Christian Skovdal Andersen [Ølfabrikken], Rune Lindgreen [Djaevlebryg], Jacob Storm [Amager] and Peter Sonne [Halsnaes/Nørrebro]. Although I have not yet formulated the final recipe, it appears that it will be somewhere around a 12%abv Russian Imperial Oatmeal Espresso Stout – aged in both Port and Bordeaux Barrels and combining somewhere around 15 different ingredients. More to come on this…

Sunday the 19th of October is a fundraising event called Beer Drinkers for Obama and is going to be held at the Black Swan here in Copenhagen. Thus far both Murphy and I have donated beers for the cause – Mike his APA and I a blend of an APA and a bit of oak aged barleywine…

The following week, we’ll be releasing one of my favorite creations here thus far – Mikkel’s Monster Barleywine at Nørrebro Bryghus on Tuesday, October 21st. A beast of a beer that was a collaboration between myself and Mikkel from Mikkeller – 14+% abv, a blend that was aged in Bordeaux and Port barrels. We’ll have three versions on draft: Columbus Dry Hopped Version, Port Barrel Version, and the blend.

Wednesday, the 22nd, I fly to Turin, Italy for five days to attend the Salone Del Gusto where I will be pouring beer for the American Craft Beer booth.

Lastly, and sadly (for me), my best friend here in Denmark, Michael Murphy, will be leaving the last weekend of October to move back to Italy where he has taken a job with Birra del Borgo. It seems fitting that a going away party will ensue – as will at least one visit to Rome prior to my own departure from Denmark.

And the quote atop this entry? I found it most fitting to my current state of mind – as I’ve been reading a great deal of Ken Wilber of late and recognizing the zeitgeist-consciousness at play in the world around. On a personal level, perhaps equally integral in its own right, this spirit o’ mine is becoming more conscious and, I hope, is finally beginning to transform all of these years of contemplation and foolishness into a unified and permanent vision: Hill Farmstead. As the battle ensues with permitting and my own personal struggle to leave Europe… Thus, each entry that follows is, in part, a member of my/your/our One Moment and a vision that may continue to evolve as does our consciousness…and Hill Farmstead lurks beyond the horizon.