I have been on a quest for Tramp Stamp Belgian IPA from Clown Shoes Brewery since I first heard about it. I checked the Internet, and the word was that it was a small regional brewery that only distributed in a few surrounding states.
First, I tried to get some of my beer blogging buddies from the Northeast to send me some…no response :-(. Thanks a lot beer blogging buddies.
I started my campaign to get it in Virginia or Maryland. I went to every beer store and asked for it by name. At first they were saying that they couldn’t get it because the distributor didn’t carry it, so I began to request it in writing at each place across the state.
The first break was when the Wine Gourmet sent me an email they were tasting some Clown Shoes – not the Tramp Stamp, but we were heading in the right direction.
Then I stopped in the Cellar Beer Store and they had a couple of Clown Shoes beers – again not the tramp stamp, but looking good.
Finally, I went to Beer Run in Charlottesville to see if they had any of the Dogfishhead Hell Hound, and they did have one yummy bottle stashed for their favorite beer blogger — and they had the Tramp Stamp!
I purchased two bottles and took them home. That weekend we were headed to Greenville for the Top of the Hops, so I took one with me to share with my brother-in-law. We had enough beer at the festival, so we didn’t crack it open. We returned home and one thing led to another and we didn’t hit the other one, either. Memorial Day we were headed to the Cabin on Craig’s Creek and decided to take it with us to sample. I searched high and low. Looked in the fridge – not there. Looked in the kegerator – not there. Looked in the auxiliary fridge – ditto. Hmmmm. Texted my daughter and found out that she and my son’s girlfriend had a little private tasting…Grrrrr.
I had my usual big fit and said some bad words and headed to the cabin with lesser brands.
Depression set in, so I headed to the Cellar for something to cheer me up and, low and behold, Clown Shoes Tramp Stamp right there on the shelf. All is forgiven for the children. Mrs. Fin and I opened a bottle last evening, and it was just as good as I had imagined! I hope they continue to import this into Virginia as it will make a nice addition to my hoppy beer selection!
I hope it’s not being egotistical to believe that my asking for this beer in so many place may have instigated its importation into Virginia. I just have to think that the old sayings about one motivated person can make things happen are true, and I now have a personal example that shows the result of personal conviction and perseverance.