Beer Geek Breakfast x Still Crazy After All These Years
And we talked about some old times and we drank ourselves some beers.
Drink: Beer Geek Breakfast – Mikkeller Brewing
Song: Still Crazy After All These Years – Paul Simon (1975)
Some days, when you have a free and easy day coming on, you need to start your morning with a proper drink. No, coffee alone won’t do. Tea? Too weak. Juice? Pure sugar. Smoothie? No, this is a day not for physical health but for mental well-being. You need a drink that starts with a yawn and eases you into your day of working for yourself. It’s your day, dammit. Enter “Beer Geek Breakfast” by Mikkeller. A clean black, white, and orange label in the classic Mikkeller style with the image of a character sitting in a chair , petting a cat, with the big and bold words “BREAKFAST” spread across the bottom, makes you feel like you have a quiet guest joining you for your morning pint. You’ve settled in with the paper (put the phone down for a minute), poured your “coffee”, now it’s time to drop the needle on something just as mellow.
Still Crazy After All These Years is Paul Simon’s 1975 solo album that let Simon express some seriously light blue emotions. Most of the tracks on this album lean heavy on Paul Simon’s hushed, coffee house, voice with some warm horns and keyboards. Perfectly morning, I say. In the opening song, the title track, the lead character runs into an old flame and decides to grab a drink or two at the bar with her. The words and sung beautifully, the strings rise up like you’re slowly walking toward them, and the sax on this track, dang. All these combine to make a song that feels like it should be pretty smiley. It’s not. This is stuck right into the middle of the tune:
Four in the morning/Crapped out/Yawning/Longing my life away/I’ll never worry/Why should I?/It’s all gonna fade
That is more or less the mood of the album. Simon’s beat, tired, and going over the past. “My Little Town” has similar sentiments aimed, with a little more heat, at his old hometown. Angsty pity for a place full of people going nowhere. “Nothing but the dead and dying back in my little town.” It’s a bit on the nose and reads like something you’d cringe to find in an old high school journal. But he got Garfunkel on the track, so that’s cool. Also, this album’s got “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” which has one of the my favorite drum lines in history. It rattles softly and is 100% sure of what it wants to say. It quickly and steadily taps along like a fella in deep contemplation, his chin in his hand, knocking his fingers against his cheek bone. Now you’ve got some more upbeat tunes warming you to the idea of being awake, it’s time to look back into that beer.
BGB cracks open with a whisper of dark coffee leaving the can. It pours out with a heavy “glug” and leaves behind a burnt caramel look on the side of the glass. The nose is delightful, all coffee grounds and coco powder. A touch of burnt toast keeps things for smelling sweet. The taste of this beer follows right along, with dark chocolate notes like a realllly good mocha latte. There is some sweetness to this beer but it is kept in check by all the dark malt and coffee. Low noticeable acidity from the coffee leaves with just all the best parts, like all the warm feelings you get walking into a coffee shop. As the record spins on and the beer warms, subtle spice notes creep out as will as a touch of lightly toasted bread. It really is a tasty breakfast.
The record fades away with “Silent Eyes”, tinkling piano that knocks along like the SNL outro. A chorus sings oohs and ahhs in the spaces of the song. Paul Simon sounds perfectly Paul Simony, with held notes that are somehow both whispery and bold and demanding at the same time. The beer also leaves you with a rick chocolate bar coating that leaves you missing it after it’s gone.
Time to start the day.
Sip & Spin.