Lazy Magnolia Southern Pecan Nut Brown Ale
T here’s nothing like the evening breeze blowing through the toilet paper on Magnolia Avenue at Toomer’s Corner. On a Saturday night in the Fall in downtown Auburn that means only one thing…. we won. We beat Florida 17-6. It wasn’t the prettiest win we’ve ever had but considering we were written off for the season because we lost Cam Newton and just about 3/4’s of last year’s National Championship team I think we are doing pretty good at 5-2.
It was a night out for us boys. I took Mr. Ben so Mrs. Dan could have a day off. Mr. Ben cheered the entire game. I was proud of him. Even at 5-years-old he was able to spot Florida fans from 100 feet. When we stopped for a potty break near West Point a stretch Excursion pulled up and about 10 men wearing sky blue shirts climbed out each clutching about 10 empty beer bottles looking for the trash can and a restroom. Mr. Ben pointed and said “Do you see those are Gator fans. We’re going to beat them.” That’s my boy!
We tailgated with my brother’s and nephew’s families (and a host of their friends). One friend, Andrew, deep fried chunks of gator meat. It was pretty good. Tasted like a free range chicken on a bug diet. Even Mr. Ben had a bite. That’s my boy!
After celebrating at Auburn’s beloved oak trees at Toomer’s Corner, letting Mr. Ben toss a roll or two, we took off to Griffin to stay with Unka Charlie and Aunt Chris for the night. Too far to drive to Augusta at 11PM.
I stopped at Kroger in Opelika to buy some Back Forty Beer Company Naked Pig (and dinosaur gummy bears) and was shocked. Kroger didn’t have any of their brews. No Naked Pig, no Truck Stop Honey. About the only Southern brews I could find were from Highland Brewing and Sweetwater. I can get those in Augusta. Then I saw Lazy Magnolia Southern Pecan Nut Brown Ale from a little town in Mississippi. Lazy Magnolia is the current brewer for Back Forty Beer (until their new facility is operational) so I guess that’s close enough.
We got to Griffin and I put Mr. Ben to bed.
I kicked back and enjoyed a nice Southern brew. Kinda brought back some memories. I remember picking up pecans for a friend’s dad. He paid us 50 cents a bucket. We saved enough money to buy walkie-talkies. We used them to coordinate our candy collecting for Halloween. Tommy Brown and I mapped out with military precision a grid around Third Ward School. No house would be spared. We split up and each took one side of the street. If one of us hit a honey hole we called the other on the walkie-talkie to come over.
I still have that walkie-talkie somewhere.
Our house had been built in an old pecan orchard but only two trees on the edge were left. The squirrels made sure we seldom found any to pick up but occasionally I found a few on the top of my tree house and I relished them. We frequently had a tray of pecans and a nut cracker in the TV room. (That was back in the days when having a TV was a big deal, especially color, and the room were it lived was the “TV room.” Didn’t matter that before it arrived it was the living room. After that it was the “TV Room.” ) Pecans have always been part of my life. I digress.
I propped my feet up and savored the nutty brown flavor as well as the victory over the Florida Gators. It has a roasted nut flavor. The color is more red than the usual nut brown ales from England or brown ales from Duck Rabbit. The aftertaste takes a bit of getting used to. A tiny bit dry and bitter but not much. Kinda like when you get some of that pulpy stuff around the meat of the pecan in your mouth.
I was debating if this was a drinking beer or a session beer. I think it could be either, just depends on your mood. It’s definitely smooth but not super creamy. Not too bitter or hoppy except for the tail end of the finish. Slightly sweet but that’s tamed by the roasty flavor of the pecans. UPDATE: After I got back to Augusta I had one at the suggested 50 degrees. It mellows out and doesn’t appear as sweet. But here’s the cool part. This beer pairs up really well with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I have to wonder if this nice little Mississippi brew would pair nicely with one of Mississippi’s favorite son’s favorite food…Elvis and his peanut butter and ‘nanner’ sandwiches. I might have to make some up and get Mark and Brett over to give a try. I have to admit it might be difficult if I drink them first.
If you don’t like the taste of pecans don’t buy this brew. If you know someone who likes pecans this is much better gift at Christmas than the pecans we used to get from my old boss and his 5,000 pecan trees. Hmmmm. Now that I think about it we had to buy those pecans. Yes, this would make a nice Christmas party gift.
I visited their website and here’s what they had to say.
“Southern Pecan Nut Brown Ale is the first beer in the world, to our knowledge, made with whole roasted pecans. The pecans are used just like grain and provide a nutty characteristic and a delightful depth to the flavor profile. This beer is very lightly hopped to allow the malty, caramel, and nutty flavors shine through. The color is dark mahogany. Southern Pecan won a Bronze Medal in the 2006 World Beer Cup in the Specialty Beer category.”
“Mark is the crazy, creative force behind Lazy Magnolia. He comes up with ideas that often seem to have no chance of succeeding. One of those ideas was to make a beer with pecans. Many attempts at nut-beers have resulted in failure due to the high oil content. Mark was determined, so Leslie designed the recipe to work around the problem of nut oil. Even so, she had very little faith in the creation until they poured the first perfect pint. Southern Pecan has been a big hit ever since.”
I plan to buy some more during my next trip to Auburn.
Here are the specs for the beer nerds out there:
Original Gravity: 13.5
Final Gravity: 5.2
Bittering Units 19
Lovibond Scale: 15
Alcohol by Volume: 4.39%
Grains: Maris Otter, caramel malt, wheat, roasted pecans
Hops: Domestic nugget and willamette
Flavor: Profile Sweet with a soft maltiness, lots of caramel flavors
Aroma: Nutty and caramel
Ideal: Serving Temperature 50 degrees F
Ideal Carbonation Level: 2.5 Volumes
From: Kiln, Mississippi
Brewery: Lazy Magnolia