Recently I wrote about what to look for in a good beer store. When you are looking for a favorite beer (or a beer that you want to write up for your weekly beer column) that no beer store seems to carry, having a helpful beer retailer is indispensible.
One of my favorite Irish Stouts is Beamish Irish Stout. When I lived in the South Beamish was readily available even in the grocery stores, but my feeling is that Beamish isn't as widely known on Long Island. I drove to three beer stores closest to my house and didn't find any Beamish. My last stop on this search was Village Beverage in Wading River, New York. There I finally piped up and asked Jay White and Scott Pflug, the owners, what the deal was. "Where's the Beamish?" Turns out that Village Beverage has carried Beamish in the past but they stopped carrying it because it wasn't selling. Which is too bad since it is a decent beer. When Jay saw the look of disappointment on my face he said, "Hey, we can get you some Beamish here tomorrow." Scott went back into the office and placed a phone call to one of their distributors who operate a delivery truck that evidently makes daily runs out onto the Island from Manhattan. I gave Jay my phone number and he said he would give me a call when the Beamish arrived.
The next day I did get a call from Jay of Village Beverage. The delivery truck had safely delivered a case of Beamish to their store and they were holding a four pack for me.
My usual route home from my office doesn't take me through Wading River, so to run out there after work would take a extra twenty or twenty-five minutes depending on evening traffic. Not a problem except I pick my son up from school after work and he would be with me on that extended ride. My son will be three next month and he is not a big fan of extended car trips, but I figured he would just have to tough it out so his dad could get his Beamish.
The day that Jay called me to tell me the Beamish had arrived, it was bucketing down rain. As a result, the ground was soaked and muddy. There were puddles---deep puddles of water and mud everywhere outside of my son's day care. Since my son is a little boy, he has a little boy's fascination with jumping into puddles. And guess what, he found a huge puddle to jump in while we were on our way to the car. He didn't just jump in the puddle he bathed in it. He was completely soaked---shoes, socks, pants, the works. Being a conscientious father I couldn't just let my son sit in wet clothes for an extra twenty minutes and drag him into a beer store. It's winter after all and cold. So I elected to head straight home where my son got a hot bath and supper. But by the time I got my son scrubbed and he had eaten the supper that my wife had kindly prepared for us, it was getting close to eight o'clock, the closing time for Village Beverage. I hopped into the car and without breaking any traffic laws got to Village Beverage at about five minutes after eight. Fortunately, Jay and Scott were still there. They unlocked the door for me and I got my four pack of Beamish. "Hey, I thought you weren't going to make it," said Scott. "Oh no," I replied. "A little rain won't keep me away from my Beamish."