June: Actually, we did have garlic scapes (a shoot that comes up with the flower pod from the middle of the plant) from the hardneck variety this spring (you probably already knew that)--sauted and added to macaroni salad. We didn't need to thin the garlic at all--they were planted about 12 inches apart.
Fresh garlic is great, I had to harvest some of it early because last years garlic was drying out and sprouting and I needed (garlic fix) some of it. Harvesting a few globes early let me see how close we were to harvest.
I'm surprised at what a low maintenance crop garlic can be, with proper planting, covering, wait until spring, little weeding, easy harvest and let dry. I'm hoping the drying will help in removing the coverings on the cloves, they are difficult to remove fresh. I'll give a try to your suggestion of Aglio/Olio over pasta, thank you, Bliss