I’ve been listening to Opie & Anthony/Opie & Jimmy since 2012. I was a Howard Stern guy for years, listening to his high-powered Rochester affiliate that stretched all the way to Syracuse’s Northern suburbs. I basically stopped with Stern in college, since he was not carried in Olean and the Buffalo station was either nonexistent or low-powered. Anyhow, I picked back up in grad school and listened until he left the airwaves for satellite.
Stern signed with Sirius Satellite Radio, which was the much weaker of the two companies that existed in the mid-2000s. I had already invested in XM Satellite Radio home units and car adapters by the time Stern had signed, so my last full-time listening days were on terrestrial radio. And, since I think the SiriusXM merger has led to a lesser product than promised, I refuse to pay extra so I can listen to him during my 10-minute, one-way commute.
And, let’s face it, Stern’s show is not what it once was. It’s not just me that thinks so either. But, then again, neither is the product on XM 103/Sirius 206. The show, canceled twice thanks to an incident at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan and another flap in Boston, has certainly mellowed over the past 10 years. It’s actually a completely different show since the firing of Anthony Cumia, and I think I’m in the minority that believes that the last year of Opie & Jimmy has been better than the previous year of Opie & Anthony.
So, what does this have to do with anything? It’s the best I could come up as a lead up to Schöfferhofer Grapefruit, the beer that Opie calls his favorite and for which he has taken abuse for drinking by listeners and the on-air staff.
I can see the appeal. It’s sweet and light and does not pack a tremendous alcoholic punch. It’s sips smooth with more of a candied grapefruit than, say, a grapefruit IPA or shandy. It’s bottled as a traditional radler, with equal parts hefeweizen and grapefruit soda. Now, usually these mixed beers blend crappy-to-average beer with artificially-flavored fruit. Schöfferhofer claims that it uses actual grapefruit juice to sweeten, but the surprise was the beer. The hefe actually better than average. There were subtle hints of banana and clove, as well as a little bit of a bready flavor. It wasn’t great, but it was certainly better quality than the swamp water used by Leinenkugel and Shock Top.
For a summertime poolside drink, Opie might be on to something here.
Beer: Schöfferhofer Grapefruit
Style: Radler/Fruit beer
ABV: 3.2% IBU: n/a
Container: 11.2 oz. bottle
Price: $1.79 (purchased as a single) Point of Purchase: Sam The Beer Man, Binghamton, N.Y.
To The Eye: Orange in color, with an unfiltered haze. The latter is part-hefeweizen and part-grapefruit pulp.
To The Nose: Like a glass of grapefruit juice.
To The Palate: Medium carbonation and light-bodied, this tastes like grapefruit candy with hints of traditional hefeweizen flavors like clove and banana.
Aftertaste: Sweet and refreshing with a little hint of wheat from the beer.
Boozy Factor: Laughable.
On a Scale of 1 to 10, with 10 as highest: 7.5