Well, unless I go hunting for some in the next few days, I'm having my final New Belgium Frambozen of the season tonight. I bought a 6-pack for NYEs and we only went through four of them (too busy sampling Avery Salvation, DFH Indian Brown, and Great Divide Old Ruffian). I had one last night during the Buckeye game and another tonight.
One beer that I did have over the holidays that I'll post some quick thoughts on was Rogue's Double Dead Guy Ale. This is from Xmas Eve memory (and, prior to drinking it, I'd had a few glasses of champagne) so it's not great. The beer was not nearly as hoppy as I expected. Instead it had a distinct malt sweetness that provided a great balance. The usual bitterness--pine and minerally lemon zest--were there, but didn't dominate. ABV was, IIRC, around 9%. Good beer, although you can do better for the price.
A blog about beer in Seattle - places to get it, places that serve it, beer brewing, beer tasting, all beer!
DevilDeac, I'm sorry I didn't find this before your trip out here last summer!
Edit: But for those of you visiting Oregon anytime soon, particularly those who love barleywines, from one of the more recent posts
Deschutes Hop Henge should be on shelves soon this month, if not already. This year's version is a new recipe. Also, Deschutes Mirror Mirror barleywine will be back in April. Great beer, that will be making a welcome return. For those not familiar, it is essentially an oak-aged imperial Mirror Pond.
I have on hand or rather on table my beer for tomorrow's football game. Left Hand Milk Stout and Fort Collins Chocolate Stout. Serious games call for serious beer. I know the chocolate has been reviewed here recently with,IIRC, glowing terms, but am not certain about the Left Hand product. Any comments on which I should start with, I assume they should not be too cold or poured into a cold glass. I bought these this afternoon from my favorite beer store. Three of each. The beer lady (one of my former students) was high on the Milk Stout.
Save the Left Hand for the finisher. It's a beautiful beer, I believe a couple of us have tasted it. Both are winners, but all meals end with a sweet dessert.
Tonight for the second half of the Duke game (didn't get home until 5:50) and the Nuggets game I'm drinking Great Divide Denver Pale Ale. Not sure if I've posted thoughts on this before, but it's pretty good. It's listed as an English Pale Ale, and I'd agree. Citrus in the form of lemon zest instead of grapefruit, and a very nice bite. Not a huge malt presence, which I appreciate. Although I prefer American Pale Ales, this would be a nice refreshing summer session beer. Hoping to stop by there tap room on Saturday to taste some brewery only brews.
Also got a big bottle of DFH Fort. Really looking forward to that.
Drinking the last of my Brunchgate trades from Devildeac, I've saved the 2007 Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Ale as long as I can stand. I love the soft body and fruit flavors balanced by the heavy alcohol, it's a dance in a bottle. I figured tonight's win and Tommy's victory was good enough excuse to finally enjoy it. My only complaint..it's in a twist off top. Shame to the brewer for this infraction! (secondary infraction though)
Living between Cleveland (Great Lakes), Chicago (Goose Island) and Kalamazoo,MI (Bells) means there are always good beers on tap in most bars and for sale even in super markets. Our local market sells all the Great Lakes' products. On the other hand, no New Belgium anywhere unless I go out to Fort Collins to visit my daughter. I wonder if NB starts to sell here if they will lose some of their mystique?
I don't think it loses its mystique. I still eagerly await the arrival of Springboard, Skinny Dip, 2-Below, and Frambozen each year and love drinking the Abbey. And, I still make a Saturday trip up to the brewery every 2-3 months.
I tried a Double Bastard (Stone Brewing) on tap at my favorite BBQ joint County Grill. It pours a deep red with a good head. What sets it apart from Arrogant Bastard is its sweet caramel malt flavor on top of the heavy citrus hops. An excellent brew, but almost too sweet to drink with a meal. It's also 10.50% ABV.
I had the Fort Collins Chocolate Stout last night--very good--very,very good.
Confirmation from CNN about a certain brewery or more in St. Louis:
Hurray for Schlafly!
I'm not a lager guy, and I picked this up by mistake. It was in a basket with a bunch of other beers and after a long search I grabbed the wrong bottle. I'm glad I did. (Athough now I definitely have to go back for the ale. The beer I did grab, the Pils has an amazing flavor, which is so rare in lagers. The smell and taste of honey are on the nose and tongue, the color is a nice golden with an orange hue. Everlasting thick white head makes it even more presentable.
2pt deduction for the twist off cap! Weird bottling setup also, it says "Brewed and bottled in Ashurn,VA by Old Dominion Brewing Co. for Tuppers' Hop Pocket Brewing Co." Not sure how that all works out, but whatever, I'm just here for the beer.
Heavy Seas Hang Ten.
This is what Ymmm, Beer is all about. This is hell yeah good, it might give SN's Bigfoot Ale a serious run for the money. Hang Ten is unfiltered wheat beer, specifically a weizen dopplebock. Mine poured surprisingly exceptionally clear until the yeast at the bottom of the bottle hit the glass. 10%ABV, this ale is smooooth. On the dry side, it is sweet with a heavy body. A wonderful sipper.
Picked up a bottle of this earlier this week for the hefty price of $19 for a 750ml bottle. I can't pinpoint a specific style, so I'll just repeat what the bottle says: raspberry ale. The owner of the shop told me that, for 2008, the raspberry has been toned down a bit, which, having not tasted previous vintages, I would say is probably true. In fact, I think they toned it down too much. On the nose it's tart and bitter, sort of like a raspberry cider, if such a thing exists. The flavor has a faint hint of raspberry, but again is tart and ciderish/vinegary (reminds me of La Folie by New Belgium). I don't get a lot of raspberry, which is a disappointment. The nose and flavor are also dominated by the alcohol (18%) which works in some beers (The Beast, World Wide Stout) but not in all. This is the second DFH beer I've tried in a month that I felt relied too heavily on a boozy flavor (the other being Olde School Barleywine). This makes me think--and I'll give them the benefit of the doubt--that these beers really are meant to cellar and drink in a year or two or three...
I'll probably pick up another two bottles or so and throw them in the fridge and forget about them until next Xmas/NYEs. Hopefully by then the booze will have softened and the berries will be the focal point.
And, as if this needs to be said, this is a beer to share and/or have a glass or two and cork for the following night. Unless Duke just lost a heartbreaker to the Heels (which won't happen this year ), don't try and tackle a full bottle.
I'm curious about the cheddar pairing with the barleywine. I've always paired BWs with really pungent bleu cheeses (and nothing else) simply because the beer has to be paired with something that can hold up to it (and its sear-the-tastebuds nature). Would you recommend this only with a very sharp cheddar?
Full disclosure: I'm planning a beer tasting dinner at my place and am looking for good pairings. BWs are tough to pair with and many people don't like bleu cheese, so I'm trying to plan around that.
I actually had not read the boards since Sunday. 12 hour days most of the week and our daughter was hit from behind on I-40 on Monday so we have been dealing with that for 5 days now.
Ruination IPA-Stone Brewing-This was the 1st of 2 highly hopped bombers (on consecutive nights, not the same night!). Just as amusingly and seriously described on the bottle, this is a real palate buster. There is some grapefruitiness/zest, but also a fair amount of spruce/pine nose and taste. Lots of malt balances the bitterness fairly well. This one took a couple hours to enjoy with some simple pretzels and spicy brown Carnegie Deli mustard as "palate cleansers." IBU=100+ on the bottle and, IIRC, from a link RMD sent me/posted here a couple months ago, it may be 110 IBU. ABV is 7.7%. Not for the faint of tongue.