Sunday, March 18, 2012

My Goodness, My Guinness

I was able to celebrate St. Patrick's Day after all! After my dinner of Colcannon topped with Sausage and Lentils (alas, I have no idea how to make vegan corned beef!), I was feeling better. So, I honored my Irish ancestors (and accidentally, brought shame upon my fellow vegans... more on this later), and I drank a Guinness Stout.

To review, I have hence tasted 4 other kinds of beer during this project. Since I figured I was supposed to start light and work myself darker and darker, I tasted the Trader Joe's Corona-style beer, a Hoegaarden, a Hefeweizen, and a Stella Artois (in that order). I didn't even remotely come close to liking any of them. I decided to throw caution to the wind and just jump right into a Guinness. At least I knew it would taste different than the light beers that I hated. And I know that almost everyone (especially men, and lord knows, I'm a manly drinker!) loves Guinness. I looked at it this way.... I'm the kind of lady who doesn't appreciate the flavor of vodka, and shuns vodka drinks, but who is happy drinking a complex, smokey Scotch, served neat. Maybe light beers are just too wimpy for me?

Anyway, I am shocked to be able to report that I actually liked the Guinness! It tasted more like an iced coffee than like one of those icky light beers. I mean, I didn't love it so much that my very world has changed, but I feel like if someone offered me a stout, I could accept it and enjoy it. I liked it enough that my Irish grandfather and his grandfather before him are at least not rolling in their graves now!

However, since this is also a vegan blog, I must confess. I found out, after I drank the whole thing, that many types of Guinness are not technically vegan. I had no idea, since beer is not something I ever gave any thought to before. But apparently, they use animal stuff in some of the processing. That said, I personally don't let myself get too worked up over products that may use egg whites or gelatin as part of the processing. I wouldn't eat an omelette or Jell-o, of course, but I guess I don't lose too much sleep at night wondering if the red wine I'm drinking maybe flowed through an egg white at some point on its journey from grape to glass. To me, it's like fretting over the fact my vegetables may have been grown in soil that is treated with manure fertilizer. Life's too short! ;-) However, I felt obligated to bring this subject up, just so none of you non-vegans ever try and offer a Guinness to a very strict vegan!

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