Friday, December 17, 2010

Palo Santo Marron by Dogfish Head

Dogfish Head Palo Santo Marron, an unfiltered brown ale aged in Palo Santo wood barrels.
Aromas of vanilla, dark cocoa, dark fruit (plum and black cherry) and slight woodiness.

The taste has certain characteristics of the nose with a light but defined oak flavor with some lighter alcohol and vanilla notes. There is a boat load of darker roasted grains you do not detect in the nose. Burnt grainy malts and dark chocolate, pretty freakin’ delicious if I do say so…

The mouthfeel is full but with adequate carbonation, solid, but never syrupy or cloying despite the 12% ABV. Overall this is one of the top offerings from Dogfish head, which is saying quite a lot because they churn out a pretty solid portfolio of brews.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Caroll Gaarden by Kelso of Brooklyn

Growler from work poured into a Blue Point pint glass.

Good sized, two and a half finger white pillowy head, atop a darker body. This is about the color of unfiltered apple cider, way darker than the straw yellow I was expecting. Even bulky witbiers are still lighter in body than this.

I can smell some clove, and some spice that might be coriander. No yeast smell???

As for the taste, Herm. A lot like a hefeweizen, actually—there’s plenty of esters from the yeast, but nothing that suggests “Belgian.” More clove and much more oily butterfat diacetylic notes. The tang from a considerable wheat presence does come through and cut this a little, but it still doesn’t belong. And where’d the coriander go? Where’s the citrus, of any variety? Put a blindfold on me and I would guess this was a Bavarian wheat beer, though not necessarily a very good one.

Mouthfeel was pretty good, light and spritzy and creamy all at once. That had a suggestion of witbier to it. But all in all, this isn’t much above mediocre.

I really wanted to like this beer. Really. But I have to judge with my head, not my heart. Sorry, guys.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Magic Hat Odd Notion(Winter ‘10-Hibiscus Red Ale)

Pours a red-amber color with a tiny head that retains well. Just a bit of lacing.

It smells of sweet malts with a floral aspect.

I’m actually a huge tea kind of girl, and really really enjoy this. This beer has a total tea sort of taste, probably due to the hibiscus brewed with it. It’s a delicate sort of beer, anyone expecting something bold will be let down. However, give it a chance to appreciate the subtle floral and tea character, the light-handed use of Saaz hops, and the slightly sweetened malts. This isn’t going to knock anyone’s socks out, but this is an incredibly well balanced beer that’d absolutely delicious.

Perfectly carbonated, it goes down perfectly, and the aftertaste is spot-on - the hibiscus really comes into it’s own here.

This is very drinkable. No flaws here.

This is a delicate beer that many people looking for the biggest, boldest thing might look by. That’d be a mistake though, because it really has some complex flavors that are worth seeking out. A winner from Magic Hat.

Midas Touch Golden Elixir by Dogfish Head

This brew poured with a nice golden body. It had a wonderfully foamy and thick white head. As it settles, the faded pretty quick and left some lacing, but nothing special.

The aroma was very fruity and a bit sweet. The nose was hit right away wiht sweet white grape flavor, which is expected since this brew is made from Muscat grapes. The aroma is almost that chardonnay, there is a bit of a spice and honey aroma that finishes out this brews profile.

The flavor this beer is great. Something I have really never had before. After having so many traditional and other such brews, this one was great because it was different. There flavor is strong with grapes, some oranges as well. This nice alcohol push at the end that gave it a nice warming heat. Which is expected from the 9% ABV.

This brew has a medium to light body. The carbonation on this brew was kinda of heavy, but gave it a nice balance. So I enjoyed it a lot.

This brew has a higher ABV at 9%, but it was great. A great sweet, almost wine like flavors, but a nice heat that comes along with the brew. Another great brew by DFH.

Cold Front by Ithaca Beer

Sorry about the glasses, I was at my friend’s place when we drank this beer and his drunk ass insisted on showing that they’re Rolling Stones glasses.
A very nice seasonal beer, the coor was excellent an almost perfect shade of amber (somewhere between red and orange). The color was somewhat cloudy. There was a taste of cinnamon that I did not expect. The smell was just to die for, it was very floral. All in all a beer I would drink again and again this time of year, because it certainly make me feel warmer.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Sixpoint Brownstone

Another Growler from work. A nice looking brown with a thick headed pour. A tad caramel to the caramel wash color. Mild cloudy. Nose is subdued floral and toffee malt. Palate is a nice caramel malt toasty a little hint of coffee. With a mild tang that blends into the rather dry crisp bitter. Quite simple but very enjoyable and drinkable.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Greenport Harbor Ale Leaf Pile Ale

I liked the strong pumpkin-spice taste that was creamy like Cappuccino and the first aromas were very inviting. I couldn’t tell what the abv was, but the medium to light bodied ale was very easy to drink. Having tasted a few other pumpkin ales this week, I was impressed with the quality of this one. It has more of the nutmeg and cinnamon spices to it than most other Pumpkin ales.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic

Pours a clear golden with a thin off-white head that retains OK. The aroma is impressively unique with a ton of white grape notes, along with some green apple and chamomile, a little honey and candi sugar, belgian yeast, wheat, a little funk and some alcohol…very unique and intriguing. The flavor has a winey edge upfront with white grape and green apple notes, along with some white pepper and chamomile, honey and candi sugar, funky yeast and a touch of alcohol. The mouthfeel is a bit sharp, and drinkability is very good considering the ABV. A unique twist on a tripel, certainly out of the box but still very tasty. Can’t wait to see how it ages.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Captain Lawrence Pumpkin Ale

Smooth, semi-creamy, easy to drink with a great pumpkin taste that is well-balanced with mild spice and pepper notes. Contains some cinnamon and nutmeg as well to complement the pumpkin sweetness. Nothing that pops but this is a standard pumpkin beer that is a must try at least once. I would love to try the Vanilla Pumpkin Ale they make.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Gulden Draak Ale

This is my (so far) all time favorite drinking beer. I love it for any time of year and I find myself in an uncomfortably dependent relationship with it. It’s an ass-kicker and after about 3 minutes, you know you’re drinking. Alternate with waters if you’re at a bar.

Yes, it is heady and has beautiful Belgian lacing and a strong, rich taste and I suppose there are some fig or plum or fruity overtones, etc. Maybe with some time and effort I’ll be able to refer to these attributes with less flippancy and more accuracy.

What you need to know is fairly simple. If you like dark, strong Belgian triples - this is one of the best. But then - if you already know you like these types of beers, then you’ve probably already tried this one. It’s one of the prominent Belgians in just about every self-respecting alehouse that serves them that I’ve visited.

I find that served cold from the fridge, or right off a tap - as with many strong ales, its flavor is really masked by the temp. My usual trick is to pour, let sit for 7-10 min. and then sip it slowly over the next 15 minutes. This allows the full flavor experience, which is what separates this beer from other similar styles.

To perhaps bring something new to the discussion, I can discuss the difference between the 11oz bottles, the 750 and the on-tap offerings, as I’ve experienced all three.

These conditions may affect many beers similarly, or they may not. Your mileage may vary, obviously. I find that of the three ways I’ve had it - the larger 750 bottle is my favorite. This beer isn’t served by more carbonation, and the big bottle has the least, while the tap version seems to have more. That may be dependent on the bar’s system. The differences are subtle, but the smaller bottle is the lessor of the three.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project Jack D’or

Let me start off with saying, Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project is one of my favorite breweries.
22oz bottle to Blue Point pint glass. Very hazy yellow, with slight orange tinge. Head is a small top covering of pure white bubbles. Not the large fluffy head you expect from a saison.

The nose is dominated by the yeast strain. A bit of grass and biscuit in the background. Banana and clove primarily.

The taste is very similar to the smell, the saison yeast strain is more fruity than peppery and spice. Faint mingling of floral hops and a bit of grass. A bit of graininess in the beginning.

The mouthfeel is very smooth, doesn’t have a strong zip to it like other saisons. Carbonation is also lower than some of the more traditional versions from overseas. Very light on the tongue.

Saisons are a very drinkable style for me. And at just over 6% this one is straightforward and unobstrusive. A bomber is a good size for this beer. Has a thirst quenching property that makes you return for that second pint. Well done.
Even my Turkish Angora Roxie loves it. I got up to text someone while my phone was charging in the other room and come back to her drinking it out of the glass. Now I don’t support getting your pets drunk, and I did shoo her away so she couldn’t have anymore.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Recessionator by Kelso of Brooklyn

As you can see, this is another growler from work since Kelso doesn’t bottle their beer this is my only option. Malt was the expected sniff, yup, as expected. Nice malty brew, notes of whole wheat crusts, caramel, the advertised raisins, with the abv well hidden. Low hopping , but the back end remains dry, and thus highly drinkable. Nothing real special, just a well put together and malty (duh) doppelbock.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale

I know its hard to see(damn camera phone), its Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale

Aroma is mostly pumpkin, with some pumpkin spices and bready malt also noticable. Taste is pretty much like the aroma, with the pumpkin flavor being the strongest. Pumpkin spice, bready malt and hoppy flavors are noticable too. There’s also a slight bitter finish. I don’t think this is as spicy as a lot of the pumpkin brews I’ve tried before. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, with decent carbonation. Drinkability is OK, it’s easy enough to drink. Not a bad brew overall. For the style, it’s a decent enough beer. It’s definitely worth a try.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Saranac Pumpkin Ale

Very interesting color with off white head which does not hold very long. This is certainly meant as a seasonal beer. When I smelled the beer I was not so impressed. It hints certainly pumpkin with spice but also had a very grainy feel to it. After tasting those aromas increase and actually become pleasant. The aftertaste of the beer is actually great. To me this would be a slow drinking beer and little quantity of it.

Sly Fox Oktoberfest

Bought this in growler form from work. It has a medium orange color with a slight head and some lacing. No bubbles. Slight hoppy scent. It’s more of a bitter, German style Oktoberfest, which I prefer. It’s a very calm fall beer, with a bit of spice, but very easy on the mouth.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin

Pours a clear dark amber color with about 1 1/2 inch of slightly off-white fluffy head.

The scent was dominant of pumpkin spice and caramel malt.

The taste is again of dominant pumpkin spice and caramel malt, a little nutmeg and cinnamon, light presence of alcohol.

Medium bodied crisp and refreshing, high carbonation.

I’m not usually a big fan of the sweeter Pumpkin Ales but this was very tasty. The flavor was strong and it was very easy to drink.