Saturday, January 26, 2019

Episode 25: Mickey's Fine Malt Liquor with Squire Brendan Roche

I. Introduction

"This is a session malt liquor."

Close your eyes.  Unless your driving, of course. C’mon.  I don’t even know why I have to say that. Sheesh.  But otherwise close your eyes.  Imagine the coolers, foggy and pleasant, of your favorite grocery or gas station.  You want a beer, but what to buy?  You’re not sure, but you’re sure to notice the stubby green bottles in the shape of a grenade, lightly gilt, alit with a golden hornet.  What you’re seeing, there, gleaming like a malty emerald in your mind’s eye, is Mickey’s Fine Malt Liquor – a beer that, whether you’ve tried it or not, you recognize, despite its limited reliance on advertising. 

Today, on Pickled Eggs & Cold Beer, we’re talking about the most famous child of Evansville, Indiana.  Today, friends, we’re talking about Mickey’s Fine Malt Liquor. 

This week's music is the 1921 piece "Jabberwocky" by Yerke's Happy Six.

II. Our Guest: Brendan Roche, Elegant Lawyer

Roche found this baby at Target wearing Red Sox stuff and just took him home.  

III. Rubrics, Reviews, and Talking Points

"Smells like the Southwest Virginia Community Jail."

BeerAdvocate: 2.51 of 5

RateBeer: 1.71 of 5

Untappd: 2.6 of 5 

ABV: 5.6% 

Ingredients: Barley malt, corn syrup (dextrose and maltose), yeast, hop extract

Cost: $ (cheap as free)

Appearance:  Fair amount of head when poured proper.  Very gold, very translucent and transparent.  

Aroma: Strong malty immediately with a rapid dissipation.  Clayman described the smell as "not bad if you like domestic violence," which echoed a review we read on air. When the bottle is empty, though, DO NOT JUST SNIFF THE BOTTLE.  It is very bad - like a garage or, as Brendan said, "like the back of a cop car."  Not skunky in the bottle till you're low on beer, then well, Meister Brau, notes Clayman.

Flavor: Inoffensive, largely tasteless, like a mild Foster's.  Better from the bottle. 

Mouthfeel: A fair amount of carbonation (burpy). A filling beer.  

Authenticity, Marketing, and Other Factors:  We like the rebuses.  Now part of the SAB Miller super-corporate amalgam, no longer brewed in Evansville, but in Albany, Georgia (NOT THE CAPITAL OF GEORGIA), Fort Worth, Texas, and Irwindale, California.  Visually still interesting, though we prefer the old Irish imagery, we have no idea the degree to which Mickey's adheres to the original recipe.  We also noted that despite the lack of apparent advertising everyone knows Mickeys, even folk who don't drink, probably in no small part thanks to the hand grenade bottles ubiquity. 

Overall: Brendan gave Mickey's a solid 2, Clayman shocked and awed the audience by dropping a gorgeous 3 for the hand grenade, and Eric split the difference for a 2.5 of 5.  Overall?  Mickey's got a 2.5 of 5 from us. 

IV. Sponsors

Today we have two magical sponsors:

Leben Farms of Abingdon, Virginia

Leben Farms is a community supported-agriculture (CSA) program that offers locally grown fresh vegetables in weekly boxes to its members in Southwest Virginia and East Tennessee.  Using organic and regenerative practices to grow nutrient dense food, community-supported agriculture is a food production and distribution system that directly connects farmers and consumers. In short: people buy "shares" of a farm's harvest in advance and then receive a portion of the crops as they're harvested.

Check them out on Facebook or Instagram.


Glade Pharmacy in Glade Spring, Virginia
33472 Lee Hwy, Glade Spring, VA 24340

Locally owned and managed, Glade Pharmacy provides the highest quality pharmaceutical service in the Emory/Glade Spring area.

V. Plugs

My Girl (1991) - The Infamous Bee Murder Scene


Abingdon, Virginia

VI. Selected Readings & Viewings

Marc Bona.  January 19, 2011.  "Mickey's Big Mouth: A Fine Malt Liquor to Crack Open." The Cleveland Advertiser.

Matt Kettman.  February 22, 2007.  "Mickey's Malt Liquor."  Santa Barbara Independent.

Mark Mikin.  June 10, 2010.  "The Right Way to Pair Beer With Food." Esquire.

Ryan Pitkin.  April 25, 2018.  "What to Drink When You're Boozy on a Budget."  Creative Loafing.

Staff. February 18, 1964. "Advertising: Brewers Uncork Malt Liquor."  The New York Times.

Ronald Theriot. January 8, 2011. "Mickey's Fine Malt Liquor." Louisiana Beer Reviews. On YouTube.

VII. Selected Advertisements 

c. 1964-1965

c. 2009

c. 2016

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