|The Beerlinguist Blog|
Elysian: Night Owl Pumpkin Ale
6.10% alcohol by volume
Buying details: $6.50 for a 22oz bottle bought through Lets Pour!
Well, tis the season for Pumpkin beers - I am starting to lose count on how many I have seen in the stores. And, well, somebody has to try them all. The goal is to find something that matches up with Southern Tier's Pumking Beer which is the best pumpkin beer I have had to date. Does Elysian's Night Owl do the trick? Read on to find out.
The beer pours a very attractive coppery-amber color with a nice cream colored head, leaving good lacing at the edges.
There are some standard pumpkin pie spices - cinnamon, cloves, etc. on the nose, but nothing over-powering. Hints of ginger too to mix it up a bit - again, nothing over-powering
There is definitely more pumpkin notes once you taste it, along with the spices, but not too strong. To counter that there is also a presence of citrus separating this beer from other pumpkin
|Bold City Brewery: Duke's Cold Nose Brown Ale
6.0% alcohol by volume
Buying details: ???? for a 16oz pint at Aroma's Cigar Bar in Jacksonville on 27 June 2012
While traveling for business, after meeting with the client, we wound up at Aroma's Cigar Bar and Beer World, and though I am not a cigar smoker, still found it a cool pace. Best feature I saw was the build in "ice" portion of the bar to keep glasses cold
Anyway, on to the beer. Bold City Brewery is local to Jacksonville and I later found this on tap at a number of places - but for now it was new to me. Ordered a pint from the tap.
It poured a very dark brown with slight reddish hue. Latte colored head of about 1 finger that lingered for a fair bit.
Aromas were of dark malt and nuts, a little smoke in there as well - pretty pleasant really.
First taste is similar, but with just a hint of sweetness. This is actually quite good tasting. It is a bit thin though keeping it from being an
Midnight Sun Brewing Co.: Monks MIstress
11.5% alcohol by volume - nope, you read that correctly
Buying details: $9.99 for a 22oz bottle at DeCicco's on 27 May 2012
So we hit up DeCicco to stock up on some fancy beers since it has been a while, and this one really caught my eye - obviously the name is cute but the idea of a dark Belgium Tripple was really intriguing.
This pours as a really dark beer - not quick black, but very dark brown with a late colored head a bit over an inch high. And the head lingered for a bit so their was pretty impressive.
Not a ton of strong aroma too it - some yeasty notes and a little dark/dried fruit to it, but fairly mild. At first I thought perhaps it was just the head hiding it all but even after it dissipated it wasn't a strong smelling beer.
Now when I taste it I see where all the flavor is hidden - the same dark/dried fruit flavors and yeasty notes are now very strong. Towards the finish is also where you
|Dogfish Head: Burton Baton
10.0% alcohol by volume - yeah, probably shouldn't have too many
Buying details: $8 for a 8oz pour at Holy Smoke BBQ on 24 March 2012
Tonight was another one of their Brewery nights this time with Dogfish Head as the featured beer - and they tried to feature as many uncommon ones as they could - which was fine by me.
Of the ones I tried this was the best one - a blend of two brews: An English-style ale and an IPA - which is then oak aged.
This pours a nice amber color with little to no head. You definitely get the aroma of the citrus and other typical IPA notes, but also some of the oak comes through.
At first taste it is a bit on the bitter side but that subsides rather quickly and you get more of the sweeter, malty tones along with some spice and honey - along with some vanilla. The strong IPA notes are mellowed nicely and it becomes a fairly easy drinking beer - especially for being 10.0% ABC (which
Weyerbacher Brewing Co.: Winter Brown Ale
5.6% alcohol by volume
Buying details: $5.50 for a pint at Holy Smoke BBQ on 12 November 2012
Tonight was one of their Brewery nights and Weyerbacher and Oskar Blues were the featured beers. Here is a pic of their bar with all the tabs allocated:
These were two breweries I wasn't that familiar with. Weyerbacher is from Pennsylvania and Oskar Blues (featured in next post) is from Colorado. .... onto the review
This beer is really dark - almost black - especially considering this is a brown winter ale. The head is close to 2 fingers, a caramel color and lingers for a spell. No super strong aromas but some caramel and toasted notes.
The taste is really interesting. A little bitter, but more than that it is the sweetness you notice. Nothing too severe but a bit unexpected. Overall it is not to heavy (if anything a little thing - considering the color) and finishes pretty smooth.
This is a really enjoyable
Magic Hat Brewing Co: Hi.P.A.
6.7% alcohol by volume Buying details: um, still from the the case was left at my house after hosting poker night .... Thanks Paul!
In the mixed case that was left at my house I left the IPA's for the end as I don't always like those. This is part of Magic Hat's year long IPA tour
It pours a nice light amber color, a little cloudy with about 1 finger's worth of head that dissipates fairly quickly. The smell is heavy on the hops (uh oh) with some pine notes as well.
The taste is initially very similar to the aroma - but it actually finishes quite smooth and certainly isn't overly-hoppy. Definitely bitter, but not in an off-putting way. This is a relatively easy drinking IPA and quite refreshing.
I must say that one of the things I have liked the best about writing this beer blog is trying beers and enjoying them when I didn't think I would - with IPA's being the most often to fit that category.
For those who
Magic Hat Brewing Co: Hex Ourtoberfest
5.4% alcohol by volume
Buying details: um, the case was left at my house after hosting poker night .... Thanks Paul!
One of my favorite things about the fall is that all the breweries put out the fall/harvest/pumpkin beers. For poker night I had picked up a variety pack from Saranac and Paul brought one from Magic Hat.
Their Hex beer (or Ourtoberfest) is a American Amber ale. The color is quite attractive: a slightly hazy amber color that poured with a decent light cream colored head that dissipated fairly quickly. The aroma has a little citrus to it, some spice notes and a good amount of toasted malts to it.
The taste is, um, ok. It's definitely not bad, but it isn't super great either - it's interesting. A little carbonation, decent mouthfeel, definitely smooth - a lot of those toasted malt flavors coming through. Very crisp and a little
Left Hand Brewing Co: Milk Stout 6.0% alcohol by volume
Buying details: $13.99 for a six pack at Wegmans. Purchased on 2 July 2011
We don't have a Wegmans near us, so while out running errands while back visiting Judi's family we decided to stop there for some lunch and to pick up a few items. One of the best part of Wegmans is their beer section as they stock a ton of microbrews - both local and national/international .... so of course I had to take a wander.
This beer caught my eye as it was a brewery I wasn't familiar with (they are located in Longmont, Colorado) and the package indicated that Draft Magazine rated this the best stout in America. Long time readers of this blog know I am a sucker for a dark beer, so I felt it was my duty to try the beer out.
Full review is below, but as to Draft Magazine's claim I have to say that this beer isn't a patch on Mother's Milk's fanny.
Pours near jet black with a cream head that is fairly thin. Definite caramel notes in the aroma with some
|Bard's Beer Co.: Bard's Gold
4.6% alcohol by volume
Free! (for me at least, it was leftover from our 4th of July party)
This beer is indicated to be "The Original Sorghum Malt Beer" ... that is to say it is gluten free as it contains no wheat, barley, rye, or oats. Which begs the question, is this even beer?
The beer pours a light golden, almost honey color. Basically no head to it and not very carbonated. It looks nice
The aroma is a little sweet, and a bit like honeysuckle but also with vegetable notes. It's pleasant
And then when I take a sip, the positive things to say about this "beer' end. I am not even sure what it tastes like ... I assume this is what sorghum tastes like. All I know is that it is bad. The closest thing I can think of is malt mixed with tea leaves that are bitter and sweet at the same time.
The one thing I would like to say is that based on other reviews I have read, this is probably the best
Keegan Ales: Mother's Milk
6.0% alcohol by volume
Purchased a pack of 6 bottles for $9.99 at Hudson Valley Beverage on June 30th
Before we get into any details, I should mention that this beer is my favorite beer in the world. Not one of my favorites, not top 5 ... the best beer in the world (in my humble opinion)
hmmm ... maybe should have used spoiler tags
This beer is from Keegan Ales which is located in the Hudson Valley (Kingston, NY to be exact) and I first tried it at the NY Craft Beer festival several years ago. Since then, whenever I am at a bar and it is on tap I always get it ... and if I am with some one I always recommend it ... and they always like it ... always
So, um, yeah, I kinda think it's a good beer.
To the details: The is a milk stout beer that pours dark (duh) with a rich chocolate head that does dissipate fairly quickly (only negative I can think of). The aromas are strong with cocoa notes and roasted
21st Amendment Brewer: Hell or High Watermelon Wheat Beer
4.9% alcohol by volume
Purchased a pack of 6 cans for $11.49 at Hudson Valley Beverage on June 4th
This seems to be one of the first beers that my view differs from the general public - as I really liked it, but most people didn't - guess that is why there are so many beers out there :o)
21st Amendment Brewery is a new brewery for me. Their beer was only available in cans, which is also unusual for me to buy - but the packaging caught my eye and we were headed to a bar-b-que the next day, so a watermelon flavored beer seemed like it would fit the bill.
Beer pours with a decent head that is nearly white. The beer itself is of a light golden color - more so than typically for wheat beers - and the beer certainly is an attractive summer beer
The aroma is just ok - you definitely get the watermelon, but there is a lot of sweetness to it and some almost stale notes. Nothing awful, but definitely
|Redhook Ale Brewery: Mudslinger Spring Ale
4.5% alcohol by volume
Purchased a pint (well, then another) for $3.50 (it was Happy Hour) at Opus 465 in Armonk NY on June 3rd
I must admit that it was the tap handle that first caught my eye - and then hearing that it was a nut brown ale that was their spring release had me intrigued. So I gave it a try and am glad that I did.
First the appearance: it is a dark nut wood color with a substantial light cream colored head. I've seen some reviews say that the head was small and then disappeared - I know they were changing kegs when I got mine, so that might have something to do with the difference I saw.
On the nose, it has notes of a brown bread and malt - fairly mild, but pleasant. The beer tastes similar to how it smells - toasty nut tones. At the finish you get more of the typical spring ale notes - herbal, etc.
This was a really pleasant spring ale. It has the
Magic Hat Brewing Co: Wacko (Summer seasonal)
4.5% alcohol by volume
Purchased 6 pack for $9.99 at Stop & Shop on May 14th
Wacko is a new summer seasonal brew put out Magic Hat Brewing company. The "gimmick" to this beer is that it is brewed with beet juice which gives the beer a deep pink color. This has caused some in the beer community to refer to this as a "chick beer" (and to be fair Judi did really like the color) - but I am secure enough in my manhood to give it a go.
Starting with the appearance - it is as expected bright pink in color, with a touch of amber to it. It has a nearly white head that doesn't stick around too long. The nose is very light with some grainy hops and fruity yeast notes.
And I must say the light nose is kind of a hint of what is to come - a beer that is just kinda "eh" in taste. Especially given the bold color I was definitely expecting more. Guess you could call this beer a
Olde Burnside: Ten Penny Ale
5.5% alcohol by volume
Purchased for $5.5 at 151 Grill & Bar in Mahopac on May 6th
First off, we got this at a new Bar-b-q joint that opened up down the road from use 151 Bar & Grill ("Put some south in your mouth!" is their saying) and it was quite good and very reasonably priced, so if you are in the area, give it a try.
I asked the waiter what was on tap and most of what they had was spring seasonals and citrusy which I just didn't fell like with the bar-b-q I knew I was ordering. So his description of this beer as a dark beer that was still light sounded like a good option. Find out if it was after this short break. Mike & Mike in the morning ... on ESPN Radio!
So the beer came out in a custom pint glass which was quite neat looking so I thought I would mention that. The beer is a very dark copper color, almost amber. There wasn't much of a head to the beer, but that could be
|Three Floyds Brewing Company: Gumballhead
5.5% alcohol by volume
Purchased (well, my company paid for it) for $7 at Henri's In Chicago on April 7th
Well, I wasn't expecting to record some beers for the blog during my recent business trip to Chicago, but came across a few - and thanks to the magic of a camera phone, I was able to take a picture as well.
The first of these was purchased at Henri's - a fairly upscale restaurant (gotta love corporate accounts) which also has quite to eclectic mix of beers available. The description of this one (and the name) caught my eye and I decided to give it a go.
Three Floyds is a brewery that is known for being aggressive with their hopping - however the bartender pointed out that this particular beer what a wheat beer and because of this the hoppiness is not as strong and is much smoother than typical IPA's.
And he was right.
First, the beer has a nice light golden color and pours with a nearly white head. The citrus
|Captain Lawrence Brewing Campy: Smoked Porter
6.4% alcohol by volume
64 oz Growler refill @ $9.50 at the brewery on 1 April 2011
Ok, so spoiler alert - I have had this beer many times and it is one of my all time favorites ... but just for fun, let's do this write-up in a super duper professional manner
The appearance of this beer is extremely dark, almost black, with some dark amber tones. The pour produces a nice head that is a dark coffee colored.
The aroma is fill with toasted notes and some coffee and caramel undertones. It is really pleasant and not too strong. Seriously, if they made perfume that smelled like this I would buy it for Judi to wear. (though Judi has just informed me she would not wear said perfume, so that was a wasted expense)
And the taste is similar in notes - just stronger than the smell. One of the reasons I really love this beer is that is had all the bold flavors of a dark beer, but has a smooth finish and doesn't
Magic Hat Brewing Company: Encore
6% alcohol by volume
part of a sample 12 pack @ $15.99 at Stop % Shop on I forget
Encore is part of Magic Hat's IPA on Tour series and is listed as a "limited engagement". This is an IPA, but the color of the pour is a bit more orangey/golden than most IPAs I am familiar with. It does appear to be unfiltered (or at least slightly filtered) so that might be why - as it is fairly hazy. It is certainly a pleasant looking beer with a nice light cream colored head.
The aroma, however, definitely is reminiscent of IPAs I am familiar with - heavy on the hops with a lot of herbal notes, and some light citrus tones as well.
The taste is almost identical to the aroma - hoppy with herbal and citrus notes - orange to be specific. It ends with some sweet wheat tastes and is pretty pleasant - does not leave much of a bitter mouth feel at the end.
One additional note, the flavor and presence of this beer doesn't stick with you
|Dogfish Head Brewery: Pangaea
7% alcohol by volume
1 750ML bottle @ $9.99 at DeCicco's on 13 February 2011
And now for the next beer for the Beerlinguist from Dogfish Head Brewery - while they aren't all winners, I do appreciate what they try to do there so it isn't surprising that i have sampled a couple of these already.
Pangaea is a beer whose gimmick is that it contains ingredients from every single continent. Yes, even Antarctica - that is where the water is from. The other extremely unique ingredient is crystalized ginger from Australia.
I must admit that I poured this beer into a regular pint glass and then later found out I should have used a snifter - oh well, party foul on my part. Despite the glassware, this beer pours a very nice light amber color with an ample nearly white head. The first thing you get from the aroma is the ginger, so they weren't kidding when they mentioned they used that.
You also get the ginger with your
|Blue Point Brewing Company: Spring FLing Ale
6% alcohol by volume
6 pack @ $9.99 bought at Whole Foods in White Plains 26 February 2011
Well, they call this a coper ale, and that is exactly what color this beer is - a really nice and inviting coper color to it. It pours with a decent sized off-white head. The aroma is full of hops and some floral notes.
The taste is very crisp - fairly hoppy with some nutty and caramel tones to it as well. Then the malt flavors dominate the tastebuds while holding the beer in your mouth. The finish is not quite as great as the rest of the sip as some hoppiness/borderline bitterness is left in your mouth.
Overall, this is a nice, easy drinking, somewhat hoppy bear whose finish prevents it from being a truly great beer .... but I find it is appropriately named as I can see this being very enjoyable on a warm spring or summer day.
I would give this $5/pint so the 6-pack was definitely a good value.
Samuel Adams Brewing Company:
6% alcohol by volume
1 pint @ $5.50 bought at Blue Chips Restaurant and Bar in Danbury CT on 5 March 2011
This is a beer I have been wanting to try and when I saw they had it on tap when we were out for dinner on Saturday I figured I would give it a try ... they also had the cool corresponding coaster (which I took home as a souvenir)
This beer is brewed using a blend of 5 Noble Hops from each of the world's only remaining Noble Hops growing regions (Hersbruck, Spalt, Tettnang, and Hallertau in Germany, and Saaz in the Chech Republic), and the first thing that struck me about the beer is the smell of hops when the beer was placed in front of me. Now, those of you that know me know that I am not a big IPA guy, so I was getting a little worried at this point - the good news is that I had nothing to be worried about.
The first taste brings a herbal flavor to my palate ... like, really herbal - but in a