Welcome to the 2nd edition of Opinionated Drinkers. Now that fall is here it’s time to break out some darker, warming beers like stouts and porters. It’s also the perfect time to stay inside and play a game or three, what with it getting dark so early and all those Essen releases just crying out to be played.
NOVA LUNA, PAIRED WITH TOTAL ECLIPSE PORTER (BREWMASTER JACK, MA)
I’ll be writing a full review of Nova Luna soon, and Brandon gave you a preview a couple of days ago, so I won’t go into too much detail other than to say I am enjoying the puzzle aspects of this one and I am very glad I picked it up. It paired well with the rye porter. I am not a big fan of rye flavor in general, but it’s subtle here, and the roasty flavors balance it out. I may have also been singing Total Eclipse of the Heart during this play because I might still know all the words, but I’ll never admit to that.
THE BLOODY INN, PAIRED WITH SHALLOW GRAVE PORTER (HERETIC BREWING, CA)
We always play a thematic game on Halloween while handing out candy. For the past couple of years we’ve played Halloween for obvious reasons, but this year we decided to go with The Bloody Inn, since we had a perfectly-named beer to go with it. This game from 2015 is a card-based strategy game. You and your fellow players are farmers turned innkeepers whose business plan is to kill off your guests and steal their money; the player who steals the most money wins the game. You can read more about it in our initial preview of it here.
The Heretic Shallow Grave Porter was delicious. It was roasty, with a bit of a coffee flavor and just a touch of sweetness. It was definitely a treat.
ARKHAM NOIR CASE #2: CALLED FORTH BY THUNDER, PAIRED WITH CRIME (STONE BREWING, CA)
As a kid I played a lot of games solo, even though that is not how they were meant to be played. As an adult I can usually find someone to play with me, but I am often drawn to games with a solo option. Arkham Noir is a game designed only for one player. You can read my review of the original game here. Case #2 has the same mechanics, but adds a new story, new victims and a new twist. I’d been meaning to give it a try, and needing one more game for this post was the perfect excuse. The game holds up well and is still an enjoyable solo experience. It’s made even better by Yves Tourigny’s great art. Someday I’ll win this one on the harder setting.
The beer was interesting. It’s an ale with peppers, aged in bourbon barrels. I could taste the bourbon, but it wasn’t overly boozy, and the peppers added a little bite, but not too much. (I am an absolute wimp when it comes to hot peppery spices). It was a good beer to sip while pondering how to solve the murders.
I’ve got a few beer and game pairings in mind for my next post, but I’d love to have suggestions if you have any. I live in Massachusetts, so beers available here or nearby are most appreciated, but I will be travelling to Ohio, North Carolina and California over the next few months, so any recommendations there are welcome as well.