The infamous Coldest Beer issue. Yes, that's a sentence fragment and consider "fragmented" what Coldest Beer does to our collective psyche at BW. At least temporarily. (Don't worry we'll be back on track for next week's big Black and White Photo issue.)
There are a few issues every year that people inevitably ask about repeatedly. Occasionally, I still get comments asking if BW was really sold to Rupert Murdoch (2009 April Fool's issue). Less often, someone will tell me they think Best of Boise balloting is biased (Best of Boise issue). And I can guarantee you that a few dozen times over the next year, I'll be at a cocktail party and someone will ask: "So how do you test the temperature of beer?" (Answer: a cheap kitchen thermometer you pick up at any grocery store.) Or, I'll walk out of a meeting with a group of journalists from other media outlets and someone will ask: "How do I sign up to be a Coldest Beer tester?" (If you're a journalist, just ask. The Associated Press' Todd Dvorak did, and now he's stuck with us.)
This year, it's already started with Coldest Beer. I've heard a few times that a joint's cooler/fridge/lines/you-name-it was down and it's imperative that we retest. I've been told once that the beer testers were holding the thermometer all wrong. I've been lectured on how flawed our testing method is scientifically speaking. Without doubt, some people take this Coldest Beer thing seriously. Some, I have no doubt, take it more seriously than we do.
Our Coldest Beer mission: to get you thinking about beer after we've consumed copious amounts in the name of work, science and the future of mankind ... and, of course, there's the part about stumbling upon the coldest beer.
Who has it? Turn to Page 21 to find out. And if you just have to have a guide to the Coldest Beer in Boise on your person at all times, pull that sucker out of the middle. We set it up so that you could pull the center pages out of the paper, fold 'em up and put 'em in your back pocket.
I'll also direct your attention to the warmest beer. It's a dubious honor, for sure, but one that should be taken as seriously as the coldest beer honors. Here's my advice to the bartender who has to deal with any flak from it: tell your patrons to order a cocktail instead and shut up.
On a personal note, I'd like to thank my beer testing crew. Andy, Bob, Dick and Danny, thanks for the help and the hangover. Let's do it again next year.