Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Bok Bock

Beer + Goats = happy Goatmaiden!

Many times, if you are a peruser of beer labels, you may notice a picture of a goat on certain kinds of beers. Examples include:

So - what is Bok (or Bock or Dopplebok) beer? It's a German word and could have originally come from the medieval town of Einbeck, which was known for its brewing. Bocks are high alcohol dark lagers that historically were created by monks (who have a surprising history of brewing - see this link to world famous beer expert - don't laugh at his name - Michael Jackson's webpage) and was a high calorie beverage many times drank during colder months. Bock is also German for a male goat; thus the goat image on many "bock" beers.

- Maibock is a lighter bock beer brewed in the spring (mai = May)

- Doppelbock is a heavier, higher-alcohol beer, considered "liquid bread" by some. According to Wikipedia, the original was called Salvator and so breweries give their Doppelbocks names ending in - tor in homage (such as Celebrator above.)

- Eisbock (ice bock) takes Doppelbock, freezes it, and takes out the water. Wow.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

First inductees to the Goat Hall o Fame

So, my plan. At some point I will have a goat farm. On that farm I'll have some goats, and in the goat barn, I will have, if nothing else, paintings of famous goats. I was in a conversation with people the other day, I think that the first painting I will have to have, and the first inductees into the Goat Hall of Fame will be.....

What do people think about when they hear the word "goat"? Many think of Billy goats, mostly due to this fairy tale. It's a simple tale and, in case you forget it, here's a quick retelling:

"Once upon a time, three brother goats named Gruff awoke and got ready to head off to the green mountainside for breakfast. To reach the very best and tastiest treats they had to cross a bridge. This had never posed a problem for them before, and so when the youngest of the goats raced ahead, his older brothers thought nothing of it.

The little Gruff ran across the bridge: 'trip trap trap trip.' But what he didn't know was that a huge, hungry troll had taken up residence under that very bridge, and so when he heard the hoof-falls of the little goat, he growled: "Who is that trip trapping across my bridge?"

The frightened little goat said , "it is only I, the youngest of the goats Gruff."

"I am hungry and I think you will make a tidy breakfast for me," said the troll.

"Oh no!" said the little goat, "please don't. I am ever so skinny and bony. Wait for my brother to come. He is much bigger than I and will make a much better meal."

"Fine," said the troll, and the littlest goat dashed to the mountainside.

Next came the middle brother. He started across the bridge without a care: 'Trip Trap Trap Trip!'

"Who is Trip Trapping across my bridge?" roared the troll.

Startled, the middle-sized goat said, "it is only I, the second of the Goats Gruff."

"I am hungry and I think you will make a grand breakfast for me!"

"Oh no," said the middle goat, shaking his head, "I am stringy and thin. You want to wait for my oldest brother. He is much much bigger than me!"

"Fine," said the troll, and the middle goat ran up to the mountainside.

Finally, the oldest and largest of the brothers came along and stomped across the bridge: TRIP TRAP TRAP TRIP! The troll's eye's bulged in the darkness under the bridge! He wrapped his sharp fingers around the edge of the bridge and jumped up in front of the oldest of the Goats Gruff. His mouth watered and drool dribbled down his sharp white teeth as he gazed upon the large burly billy goat.

"I am hungry and I think you will make the best breakfast for me!" he bellowed and lumbered towards at the oldest goat. However, the oldest goat was very wise and had dealt with trolls before. He lowered his head and charged the horrible troll. He stabbed him with his horns and dashed him with his sharp hooves and butted him off the bridge where the troll fell to the river below, never to be seen again.

The oldest goat joined his brothers on the mountain side, and together they ate until their bellies grew so fat and round, they could barely walk home again."

*The End*

The story may trace its origin to Norway.