Back in the ’80s, there was a Scottish country-western band dubbed The Dan Blocker Experience playing bars in Edinburgh. My genuine American accent earned me the chance to stand up and sing “Your Cheatin’ Heart” with them every once and awhile, and my genuine American TV-watching childhood meant I alone in the audience knew that Dan Blocker was the outsized actor who played Hoss Cartright on Bonanza.
I don’t think Pa, Adam, Hoss and Little Joe were allowed to drink a beer on the show, but Great Divide’s Hoss Rye Lager would have been a good antidote to all the trail dust – or that prairie fire that consumed the screen in the opening credits. Hoss is a German märzen, and the golden-orange color fits the style. It has a medium-full mouthfeel, with a lot of tingly carbonation, which gives way to rich malt with hints of dark candy. The addition of rye contributes to the mouthfeel and adds a welcome, astringent twist to the finish. The rye renders the beer Reinheitsgebot non-compliant, but if it’s banned at the German biergarten, Hoss is right at home on the range.