Modern Times is a pendulum of restraint and excess. In the modern times of craft beer consumers, breweries are compelled to be competent in all realms to remain relevant. Their clean beers are simple and elegant, their pastry batter is ridiculous and finishes at 19 platos. It’s such a bipolar canon, you’d think two penguins loaded the breech. Today I wanted to highlight two such duplicitous swings from this San Diego hit factors to demonstrate exactly what these Point Loma minxes are up to. First, let’s discuss the ULTRA SET. This is a set of three stouts and a Crate and Barrel glass that caused a rift in the very underpinnings of the Modern Times society itself. The Cetacean Cadre got more and the Peasant Narwhal didn’t get guaranteed rights, or something. All I know is that Leanne, their poor PR person has to deal with these husky manchildren and has the patience of a saint. We reviewed the vanilla Ultra live at the Casbah show. I negligently drank the coffee version at 3am and, shockingly, don’t have many salient points to present. Let’s talk about the ULTRA hyped coconut variant. It’s good, but vanilla is better. The viscosity hits that incredible strike zone that Monster Tones occupied so artfully last year. There is a sheeting cling with a touch of lipid structure that oddly helps to wipe away the massive legs. The fats and sweets work in tandem and Mounds bars are evoked. Coconut adjunct stouts are such a crowded segment, you have to be incredible to stand out. This is very good, but the vanilla version swings on the absolute best contemporaries. There is no Hawaiian Tropic/Yankee Candle, it just feels like something you should be hastily drinking.
Let’s clean ourselves up with sleeper hit, the absolutely phenomenal Abaddon. If you’ve had anything from Wayfinder, the idea of a hypehelles collab should have you already in the crispy-cravings zone. It’s almost hard to reconcile a brewery that pumps out sticky flabby frosting bombs, that can also make this ethereal ghost of cornbread refreshment. Perle hops and a light biscuit character, who is this for besides me, at every waking hour of the day. I asked a few SD locals at the Casbah show about this beer and they basically told me not to review this beer. It was something along the lines of “DDB don’t ruin this shit for us” or some other self-serving pleas. Well consider it ruined AF because Abaddon is crushable and so damn good. So yeah, Modern Times continues to impress in this aloof and successful way that’s an industry benchmark but almost irritating in execution. They never stumble and that lack of cracks in the firmament is unrelatable. Everyone needs to pass out in the entry way and smash Goldfish crackers on the floor every once in a while. Get it together MT.l