As a door knocker, one of the benefits of my job is the ability to smoke and drink on the job.

Well, maybe not drinking on the job. But certainly after the election, and in the off time on the immediate days leading up to it.

So, as I stood outside of campaign HQ smoking my Newport with Puds on Main street, I see my boss head down the street with a rack of the Beast under his arm, and a small brown bottle in the other.

“Danny!” He shouts, as I go to reach open the door.

“No this is for you.”

The small brown bottle is now mine.

“Had it up in New Hampshire. Enjoy.”

He heads inside to make more phone calls.

Now, I might not make a lot of money as a door knocker. (I might also still be in college.) But when my job involves talking with people about issues I care about and wandering my great and illustrious state, and my boss buying me a pint of the Hen, well, shit.

I couldn’t be happier.

I cracked her open the night before the election, and she poured a deep red caramel into my pint glass. Little to no head.  Before I even poured I could smell the grassy noble hops. A little bit of spice, a little bit of lemon, and a little bit of caramel earth invite the nose into the polling booth.

English ales are something I’m new to, but the hoppy bitterness is something my taste buds favor. An IPA lover, I love bite and citrus. There’s not so much citrus here, but a fair amount of bite.

I bubble in the empty box on the Character line. She’s cross-endorsed by the Complexity party as well.

Now, I’m not a rubber stamp IPA drinker, there are some out there that just fail in composition and lack complexity and charecter, but my first experience with English Pale Ale is having me love the drinkability. It’s bitterness gives it body up front, but the caramel/butterscotch finish is balanced and not overly saccharine. The Hen’s got a heartiness to it that doesn’t fill me up, but invites another medium sip.

Carbonation isn’t felt until the latter half of the sip, as it allows the flavor to hit the palate first.

It’s balanced, sweet, and with a strong but not overpowering hop presence. Butterscotch is still on my throat as I hand my completed ballot to a blue-hair standing next to the staunch and official grey cube.

As I walk away from the polling place, I look down to the “I voted today!” sticker on my chest and I realize the Hen had an easy election. Most of her constituents in the bitter ward were already supporters, and she managed to reach out to the new sweetness voting bloc as well.


It’s ABV means it won’t be a session beer, but I can see myself couping up with the Hen till summer beers hit the shelves.