Oh, why not start a little imperial series here. 1st up is Big Hoppy Monster, an imperial red ale from the Terrapin Beer Company in Athens, Georgia. BUT, wait! It's brewed by Frederick Brewing Company in Frederick, MD. Yea, I know, contract brewing but what a strange combination of names/places. If I hadn't read the label, I would have thought this was an IPA. Grassy, piney hop nose/taste with citrus zestiness but it is well-balanced by a generous amount of malt, I'd guess a mixture of caramel and other malts. Fairly smooth. It has a faint reminder of Killian's or the Mishawaka red ales with a bit of sweetness. As the bottle says: Watch Out! This Monster Bites! And at 8.3% ABV, they are correct. Not sure I've ever had an IRA but this one would be great with ribs/burgers or other grilling/cookout fare. Saving one each for CB&B and Lavabe. I think.
Looks like Sweetwater found a distributor in Raleigh/Durham, Greensboro, and Charlotte.
Of course, we can't mention some of the names of their brews on the DBR.
In honor of just having a really awesome Friday the 13th, I'm going to go start Saturday the 14th celebrating in the bath tub with a Victory Old Horizontal. Excellent days call for excellent beers. Beats the hell out of Calgon.
Imperial brew #2. Paging RMD. I may have found a pilsner that will tickle your palate. Sam Adams Imperial Pilsner. Loaded with Hallertau hops which are a bit sprucey and very floral. Really no citrus in this one. If I hadn't read the label, I would have sworn IPA here. This one would be really a nice beverage with grilled chicken/specialty chicken dishes, grilled fish/seafood entrees. Lavabe and CB&B will also find one of these in their Easter baskets. 8.1% ABV.
Got a lot of tasting done today, I love Harris Teeter's selection. First up is Sierra's Bigfoot 2009. This has been reviewed before, and is a favorite of Devildeac. I was happy to see they stock 6 packs. A classic sipper, this barleywine style ale has a great color top and bottom. A rich dark amber, pretty to look at held up to the light, the head is a nice soft tan foam, with good retention as it holds the sides of the glass. High ABV, it has a nice fruity flavor, reminscent of a merlot wine. I'll see how long I can hold on to one of them, but as long as they sell 6 packs nearby, I'm not giving good odds on the shelf life in my house.
bumpity, bump, bump, bump. Beeeeeerrrrr, it's what's for supper : )
I also had Founders Double Trouble which is a very nice Imperial Pale Ale..Didn't like it as much as DFH 90 minute but still very good. If the store keeps it in stock, I'll probably make it a spring regular..
Imperial #3-a few days late: 90 Minute IPA from the folks at DFH. They advertise on the bottle that it is the best IPA in America, or something like that. Darn good stuff. Think I reviewed one last year but it's tasty enough to review one from 2009 also. Just about all the things you'd expect from an IIPA. Massive hop presence with an IBU of about 90, IIRC. Good malt balance. Grapefruity and a bit sprucey. 9% ABV so you could enjoy this in a pint glass or a snifter. $8.99 for a 4 pack but a nice treat for yourself or a friend or two. I'll save one of these for CB&B if he can't find one at Harris Teeter at the coast-maybe.
Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti Stout--Had one of these last night and it was fantastic..Black, thick and very smooth. Chocolaty and a bit sweet but not in an alcohol way (DHF world wide stout)..Could be the best imperial stout I've tried to date...
Morehead City Alt Bier-aka CB&B's homebrew of the old German style-Nicely done. A bit darker than most alt biers but just as toasty and bready and just as sweet/malty. Not much bite but it's not supposed to have much bitterness.
Nice combination with a sammich or some cheese (mild) and crackers. Modest ABV-I'd guess about 5%. I'll save one for 30-60 days from now and, yes, one for Lavabe during our next beer exchange.