Derek Warren

HOW TO PAIR BEER WITH EVERYTHING: Calm Before the Storm by Ballast Point Brewing Company

HOW TO PAIR BEER WITH EVERYTHING: Calm Before the Storm by Ballast Point Brewing Company
Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page

Beer: Calm Before the Storm

Brewer: Ballast Point Brewing Company

Style: Cream Ale

ABV: 5.50%

Description: Calm Before the Storm pours a clear golden hue with a foamy white head that leaves a very thin layer of lacing on the glass. The aroma is filled with coffee aromatics with backing hints of creamy vanilla and sweet malts. The taste follows the nose with incredibly fresh coffee up front, followed by vanilla with the very subtle enjoyment of lightly roasted malts.

This beer is incredibly smooth, and the coffee never becomes astringent. The medium body and light carbonation aid in this beer’s very smooth mouthfeel. This is yet another world-class beer from a world-class brewery and is a must-try for all who love coffee or great craft beer!

Ideal setting: The aromatic coffee notes and creamy vanilla-flavored body make this a delicious beer to enjoy while relaxing on a weekend afternoon. It also makes it a great beer to enjoy with a late morning brunch! It is best enjoyed outdoors to full invigorate the senses.

Ideal music: Coffee is most definitely the beverage choice for the morning because it helps to awaken the mind and sharpen the senses, preparing us for the day ahead. The perfect touch of coffee in this delicious cream ale calls for music that also awakens the mind and sharpens the senses, and nothing does that better than indie rock, or more specifically what used to be referred to as “emo” before that tag was co-opted to something else.

Some great albums to enjoy with Calm Before the Storm are:

  • Brandtson – “Dial in Sounds”
  • Pop Unknown – “If Arsenic Fails, Try Algebra”
  • Sunny Day Real Estate – “Diary”
  • Texas Is the Reason – “Do You Know Who You Are?”
  • Mineral – “The Power of Failing”

Ideal movie: There are few things more gratifying in life than sipping a wonderful coffee while enjoying the arts in some manner, especially while watching a great artistic film. Movies that inspire through visual flourishes or in-depth character development are the perfect accompaniment for this delicious beer.

Some great movies to watch with Calm Before the Storm are:

  • “The Fall”
  • “Wild Strawberries”
  • “The Science of Sleep”
  • “8 1/2”
  • “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind”

Ideal book: Relaxing with a good coffee and book in hand is the classic setup for a day of unwinding. However, relaxing with a great beer with coffee and book in hand is a setup for a day of true bliss. A novel with something deeper to speak of reflecting on life and the trials faced within make the best pairing.

Some great books to read with Calm Before the Storm are:

  • “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak
  • “A Long Walk to Water” by Linda Sue Park
  • “Life of Pi” by Yann Martel
  • “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee
  • “Counting By 7s” by Holly Goldberg Sloan

The perfect experience: Calm Before the Storm is a brand new release from Ballast Point and is meant as a summer variation on their extremely popular Victory at Sea porter. The light, refreshing qualities of both the coffee and cream ale make this the perfect beer for relaxing on an afternoon while enjoying some great music.

This beer was also discussed in the latest episode of the brand new How to Pair with Everything Podcast, available now on iTunes, SoundCloud, Stitcher, and!

How to Pair Beer with Everything is a weekly column about stimulating all of the senses through beer. Look for it every Thursday on NEPA Scene.