Saturday was a very special day. Saturday was Zwanze Day. It was a day many people won't understand, even after reading this post. But for the people who do? Oh, for the people who do, you know I have but one word to describe Saturday... sublime. Twenty-one places in the world were hand-picked by Cantillon's brewer to showcase his masterful creation. Holy Grale was one, and the wonderful people at the Grale took that responsibility seriously and created a spectacular event for all of the day's patrons. My words cannot do Saturday justice, however. So I'm going to let the toast, written and orated by Michael Minton, explain what that day was really about:
[pullquote]Today, we raise our glasses in concert with myriad enthusiasts around the globe in order to pay homage to a culture, a region, a family, and a singular man without whom this toast would not exist.
We honor this man, whose unique artistry and unbending authenticity remain rooted in the storied history of the Cantillon family brewery and, at the same time, expand with playful but focused experimentation beyond the traditions that emerged in Payottenland many years before.
We acknowledge the accomplishments, such as the one resting in this glass, as more than just catalogued entries into our culture's discourse, but rather as testaments to the natural beauty that they impart.
This inaugural Zwanze Day was generously created for us to appreciate the mystery, humor, and mastery involved in producing lambic, concepts that transcend the post-modern beer culture that has emerged in recent years.
We should never forget how lucky we are to participate with one another in this conversation. We should be thankful that there are craftsmen, like Jean Van Roy, that are willing to not only push boundaries but also rein them in for the enrichment of what we all should believe in: the true ideal.
And so we raise our glasses higher and toast...sante!... Cheers![/pullquote]