Lent is about to begin, traditionally a time of fasting. One of the pillars of beer development and keeper of tradition, the monasteries, had the habit of brewing their heaviest, highest quality beers for exactly this time of year. Hardly a contradiction: to be able to fast, and still sustain their bodies for all the hard labor required for the upkeep of the abbey and the grounds, they compensated their decreased food intake with fuller, heavier bodied and stronger beers. Not bad at all... So in solidarity with the great brewer-monks, I will not give up beer. And not just that, but I will seek out heavy, rich beers. May this lent give you as well clarity of purpose, and the experience of great beer to sustain you!