Bourbon County Stout in a Paper Cup

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Goose Island Bourbon County Stout. A beer that has created a lot of beer buzz, no pun intended. Meaning, this is a much sought-after beer and that of those pursue great beer will seek out. Its number 12 on BeerAdvocates Top-250 list. Even with all the "buzz" I had a four-pack firmly in my grasp but couldn't pull the trigger on a $30 purcase with Christmas looming. Regrets? Perhaps, but been able to put that behind me.

So I found a single at a newly discovered and recommended shop. I'd been waiting for just the right moment, the perfect occasion, the deserving person to open this beer. We've had a weekend planned to explore the lower Eastern Shore of Maryland and Virginia with another couple we've known and thoroughly enjoyed their company.

The February day was cold, windy and raining - and we enjoyed every moment - touring the Blackwater Wildlife Refuge, watching bald eagles, sika and white-tail deer. Breakfast was an experience at Cindy's near Cambridge, MD, a little restaurant just tucked away off the highway and time - still a favorite to local eastern shore hunters and families. Lunch was another hideaway at Mallards at the Wharf in Onancock, VA with incredible waterfront views, excellent seafood, and even some surprize Alesmith ale.

We were preparing for dinner at Bill's in Chincoteague VA and while waiting for the ladies to get ready was the perfect time to open the prized beer.

Now this was a wonderful, little hotel where we were staying for the evening. I looked around for glasses because a beer and moment deserved to be poured into a glass. None was to be found - except paper cups. Paper cups, but the beer and the moment was waiting. So paper it was.

From the moment I pried off the cap I could smell the rich aroma of the bourbon that I've come to love and expect from these beers. I poured slowly, savoring the momoment.

With many highly anticipated moments such as Christmas morning the expectation is exciting and the experience comes and goes quickly. I have learned to slow down, pause, contemplate, breath, enjoy. I had one-half a beer in my cup. I took in the aroma, holding it in. Sipped the dark, thick liquid. Meditated on the flavors swirling across my tongue.

The moment, the beer came and went. But I still have the memories. Perfect!