Friday, October 31, 2008

Robust Porter, Smuttynose Brewing Company, Portsmouth New Hampshire

Well, I once again crack open a beer which gives me great excitement and regret at the same time. I know it'll be awhile before I can indulge in a Smuttynose beer again, but alas - I'll relish the ones I have - and this one is their Robust Porter.

It pours opaque with a tight caramel colored head.

The smell is smoky and malty. There are hints of chocolate and a mildly sweet aroma.

It is a thick beer with deep malt. Very robust indeed. There is definitely a smoky taste, as well as chocolate tones that arrive just after the smokiness. It has a very full body - perfect to enjoy as the days grow colder.

The aftertaste is very chocolate - fairly thick and as it lingers, the smokiness is there as well.

As I've mentioned in prior posts, the Smuttynose is a MUST if near New Hampshire - check out the Portsmouth Brewery in Portsmouth!

From their website:
Pale 2-row, Carastan, Dark Crystal, special "b", chocolate malts
Hops: Cascade
5.7 % with 15 IBU's

Also, a little trivia.... From the website, they mention that porter was a favorite among dockworkers and warehousemen - thus the name "porter". I'm curious if this is really how the beer got it's name....


Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Monk's Uncle Tripel Ale, Pike Brewing Company, Seattle WA

We'll reel it back to the West Coast with Pike Brewing Company's Monk's Uncle. This is a Belgian Tripel Style ale....

It pours a glowing amber, unfiltered with a big foamy head.

The smell is spicy yeast with a mild citrus sweetness.

It is strong and the yeast dominates. It has a pronounced bitterness and is crisp and refreshing but has substantial body to it.

The aftertaste is a citrusy bitterness. It lingers for awhile in the mouth.

I enjoyed this on our sunny streak one afternoon here in Portland. It comes available in the Spring. I found mine at a grocery in Bellingham, WA. Pike's beers are available all over, I encourage you to visit Belmont Station, here in the Portland area.

Pale, Pils, Wheat, and Aromatic malt varieties are used with Nugget and Saaz hops. It is a hefty 9% with 38 IBU's.

I think this is a strong example of the Tripel style and highly recommend it to new comer's of Belgian ale's or those well versed in these beers. Pike is located in the Pike Place Market in Seattle, WA. It is sometimes difficult to get a parking spot near the area, but I recommend checking it out if you find yourself in the area. Perhaps before hitting the Showbox. It's a good place to grab a few good beers with some good friends.


Monday, October 27, 2008

Fluxus, Allagash Brewery, Portland ME

As their anniversary release, Allagash comes out with a "Fluxus" beer each year to celebrate. Each year it's different, and this year, I was able to buy a bottle on the day of it's release from their brewery in Portland, Maine. The brewery is located as you are heading out of town and offers a tour and has a small, but well-equipped gift shop. I highly recommend visiting!
This year, the Fluxus is a double white ale.

The Fluxus pours a bright amber with a big head.

It has a mild aroma, mostly yeast and mild spice.

The taste is mostly yeast, but also has a nice brown sugary taste to it as well. It is very very well balanced, though a little on the strong side, which settles nicely with it's crispness. The slight spice is there (from their website, I learned that it's been brewed with grated ginger). It is a little sweet and very refreshing. It has a fairly light body and cleans the palate easily.

The aftertaste is mildly sweet and mildly bitter. As I said, it's very refreshing and a well crafted brew!

I've seen Allagash beers all over this great beer nation, but mostly just their main standards: Dubbel, Tripel, and Grand Cru. These are all great, but their other beers are extremely worth getting your hands on!


Sunday, October 26, 2008

Bad Juju Double IPA, Fort George Brewery, Astoria Oregon

On a birthday visit to Astoria, Oregon, we discovered the Fort George Brewery and Public House. this is a wonderful place, a must to check out when in Astoria. The beers are plenty and interesting, the food was very good (I had Albacore Fish & Chips with homemade tartar sauce - Excellent!). So let's talk about one of their beers I had while visiting.... The Bad Juju Double IPA. If you've read my blog, you'll know my affinity for Double IPA's, so it's no surprise, I had to order this beer upon spotting it on the menu...

It pours a dark coppery amber with a medium head.

It smells heartily of hops. It smells tart instead of a flowery bouquet, it has a balanced hop aroma.

The taste is strong with hop all over the place. It is full body and malty and a little thick. The bitterness sets in on the back of the tongue.

The aftertaste is bitter and coppery. It lingers for awhile on the palate and destroys your taste buds for any subtle beer after it, which I love the girth!

Their beers are available from to go from the brewery, I don't think they bottle at all, unfortunately!


Thursday, October 23, 2008

Farmhouse Saison, Bison Brewing Company, Berkeley CA

I raved in an earlier post about Bison Brewing Company's Pumpkin Ale, and now we will turn our church key to their Saison offering....

It pours a very bright amber with a big foamy head.

The smell is predominately yeast, but there is also a citrus and slight peppery/slight spice aroma.

It is a smooth beer with a medium body and full taste. There is a bit of citrus, but it is mostly yeast with a slight bitterness.

The aftertaste is a lingering yeast and spice. It is quite refreshing and tastes great all on it's own or with a meal.

Bison is an Organic Brewery. This beer contains 24 IBU's and is made with 2-row, carapils, wheat, and munich malts. I found this beer at Whole Foods and several of Bison's beers are available all over the Northwest. I'm not sure how far east they distribute.

Our next Beer Lesson will cover Belgian Ales....


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Double-Wide IPA, Boulevard Brewing Company, Kansas City MO

First of all, Happy Birthday to me. Second of all, what's with all these coastal breweries we've been trying? I've been saving this next beer for a special occasion, which takes care of point #1. And, since it is a beer I picked up half-way along move from Coast to Coast, it also takes care of point #2. The Double-Wide IPA is from Boulevard Brewing Company's Smokestack Series. Now, although we did stay in Kansas City for a night, I was only able to indulge in one brewery. I picked the closest to our hotel and it happened not to be Boulevard, but 75th Street Brewery (which we greatly enjoyed and I had one of my favorite Hef's there). I did, however, have the foresight to grab a 750 ml of the Double-Wide at a grocery store. Let's crack it open....

It pours a cloudy/hazy dark amber with a big head.

The smell is subtle and mild. It has a slight sweetness to it's hoppy character.

It is creamy tasting. It has a medium to full body. It is very much hoppy, but also there is a kind of malty thickness which rounds it out nicely. It is bitter, but not overly done. It is strong and very dry. This is definitely a sipper! There is slight sweetness to it along with a certain outdoorsy flavor to it. I can't put my finger on it, but almost mild mint or something akin to it in the undertones. It is strangely complex and I like that. It is a bold beer, but it also has it's sensitive side...

The aftertaste is bitter, but that falls off fairly quickly. The hop lingers a little longer. As I said, it has a dryness to it, so it is nice to enjoy for awhile.

I really can't tell you when this beer is available or how widely distributed Boulevard's beers are, but I can tell you that it is worth while to get your hands on one if you happen to see one. It is 8.5 % and available in the 750ml size. It also has some great artwork on the label, which never hurts.

This is a great Birthday beer to enjoy! And enjoy I can as the bottle says "Relax, it's twister proof!" With that, I will settle in for another great year!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Finestkind IPA, Smuttynose Brewing Company, Portsmouth New Hampshire

The bold and the beautiful - my name for our next beer, Finestkind IPA from one of my favorite breweries, Smuttynose in Portsmouth, NH. This brewery makes several fine ales and they are available all over the Northeast. I HIGHLY recommend sampling ANY of their beers. I don't think it will be something you'll regret!
Although I try to be impartial about the beers I drink, it is hard to suppress that this is tied for number 1 in my list of IPA's. What's the other one? Another time, another post...

It pours a glowing amber with a big foamy head.

The smell has a full hop aroma. It is flowery, with a slight citrus. There is also a very subtle yeast aroma, as well.

The taste is all big hop flavor. It is quite bold and hop front. There is both a coppery and a flowery flavor to the hops. It isn't overly bitter, but there is bitterness there. For being so hoppy, I feel it still has a smoothness to it. It is crisp and refreshing.

The aftertaste is all hop with bitterness. It is full strong hop.

The Smuttynose website states that this is a beer for Hopheads, and I agree. It slakes my need for the hop! It has 65 IBU's and is unfiltered, so don't be afraid if there is some sediment floating around in your pint. It is dry hopped (hops added late in the brewing process).

If you like hops and have the chance to sample this beer, please do and let me know your thoughts!


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Belgian White, Long Trail Brewing Company, Vermont

And now back to the Northeast with Long Trail's Belgian White Ale....

It pours a bright golden with a nice foamy head.

The smell is all citrus and yeast.

The citrus/yeast flavor dominates the flavor. There is also white pepper and a general spiciness to it's character. It has a medium body and is slightly flowery.

The taste lingers on the palate nicely. It is a fresh & crisp beer and is very refreshing.

From their website, I learned that it is made from two-row and wheat malts - see the beer lesson earlier concerning two-row malt. The hops are Nugget. It is 4.7% with 14 IBUs.

The beer is available in 6-packs March through August all around the Northeast.


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

20th Anniversary Imperial IPA, Anderson Valley Brewing Company, Boonville CA

Well, maybe to celebrate a week away from a landmark day from me (stay tuned, next wednesday will be a special tasting) or maybe to wash down the pizza we had while watching the debate tonight, I decided to tap the Anderson Valley 20th Anniversary Imperial IPA - Imperial IPA's are one of my favorite styles, so let's go....

It pours a dark amber with a creamy full head.

The smell is all hop - it has almost a raw hop aroma to it. A hint of that smell you get when you are a few blocks from a brewery. It also has a mild malt smell. It is spicy and flowery, as well.

The taste is bitter (in a good way). It has a medium body and an aggressive hop flavor. There is also some yeast in there, as well. The maltiness does not balance the hop too much, so there is plenty of floral hop flavor to fill the senses. It is not for those who do not enjoy the gift of extreme hop, but if you do or willing to try it out, this is a wonderful example of the Imperial IPA.

The aftertaste is hoppy with a lot of bitterness. It dominates the palate, so beware of what you decide to enjoy along with it.

I found this particular beer at Food Front over here in NW Portland. Anderson Valley beers are available all over, I found them plenty in Boston. I'm not sure how long the 20th Anniversary Imperial IPA will be around, my suggestion is to grab it soon.

Beer Lesson #3

Let's talk hops. An interesting topic, at least for me. Here in the Northwest, our hops are known for their citrus aspects, in England, hops are less acidic with less of the 'citrus' flavor, other areas are know for their flowery varieties or their aromatic aspects. Hops are added to the mash and boiled. Hops can be in pellets, cones, flakes, etc. It is up to the brewer or the brewery to decide on the variety and type of hops used in any particular beer. Boiling the hops results in two things being extracted. The first are resins which will account for a beer's bitterness. The next are oils which release the hop flavor we all know and some (like I) love. Flowery...Citrus...pine...etc. At this point, we can learn about late-hopping or dry-hopping. Simply put, hops are added late in the boiling process (late-hopping) which maintains the beers hop flavor (the hop chemicals evaporate rather quickly) Dry-hopping is when hops are added at the end of the boiling process. All of this will affect the beer's flavor, aroma and bitterness. Bitterness is measured in IBU's (International Bittering Units). A beer like an Imperial IPA will have a high number of IBU's, a lager will have a significant lower amount of IBU's.

Let's drink to that....

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Pumpkin Head, Shipyard Brewing Company, Portland ME

So I was indeed excited to see Shipyard beers available here on the West Coast. They are from Portland, Maine and if you are near that area, they have tastings and a great store with a full stock of their beers available. Most of their brews are only available on the East Coast, but I have found Pumpkin Head at several stores around the Northwest. Let's give it a try....

It pours a pale amber color, and on their website, that it is a wheat beer.

The smell is definitely pumpkin pie, with cinnamon and nutmeg are noticeable. It definitely has a fall aroma.

The taste is predominately nutmeg with a little cinnamon. It lingers nicely on the palate. It is a crisp and refreshing beer. It has a light body and is very drinkable. The spice might be a little strong for a newcomer of pumpkin beers, but it settles nicely over the course of the beer.

The aftertaste is all spice, which lingers for a bit.

All-in-all, a great fall beer! Crisp and refreshing!


Saturday, October 11, 2008

Punkin Ale, Dogfish Head, Milton Delaware

Our next pumpkin offering comes from Dogfish Head Brewery in Delaware. They are home to some fairly extreme ales, so I am excited to see how punk the Punkin is....

It pours a dark amber, more pumpkin in color than the other's I've sample so far. It has a medium creamy head.

The smell is very spicey, it has a very full aroma.

The body is a little light. It tastes of an array of spices, kind of a mash up of the cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and brown sugar - which gives it a general spiciness. It isn't too pumpkin pie and the pumpkin is too predominant. It's not sweet (due in part - I believe - to the fact that it is a brown beer). It is mildly malty. As it warms the malt comes out more, but the spice hangs in there as well.

The aftertaste is a little thin. It rounds out nicely, but a little quickly, leaving just a mild spice in the mouth.

All-in-all, not overly extreme, so still quite drinkable to the new-comers of pumpkin beer. Punkin ale and other Dogfish Head beers are widely available. It is 7% with 24 IBU's,


Friday, October 10, 2008

Pumpkin Ale, Bison Brewery, Berkeley CA

Our next beer is an interesting and exciting choice. This is the first beer I have had from Bison, which is an organic brewery out of Berkeley, California. Straight to it....

The beer pours a bright amber, it is cloudy with a thin head.

The smell is mild, slightly sweet, and mild pumpkin pie.

The taste is a little bit of a surprise. There is hop and yeast noticeable in the beer. The yeast makes the beer a little like a White beer with a little white pepper taste in it. It is spicy and the pumpkin is definitely there. It is slightly reminiscent of a Belgian beer, but for the pumpkin spices.

The aftertaste is sweet, then white peppery and spicy with mild pumpkin.

This is a delicious departure from the other pumpkin beers due to the presence of yeast. I highly recommend grabbing one while they are available. I bought mine at Belmont Station here in Portland, but I've seen it all over the Northwest. Check for it in the 22oz bottle.


Thursday, October 9, 2008

Wolaver's Will Steven's Organic Pumpkin Ale, Otter Creek Brewing

Our beer today is from the Otter Creek Brewery in Vermont. Otter Creek/Wolaver's beers are available all over the country. Their pumpkin beer is named Will Steven's, as it comes from the organic Will Steven's pumpkin farm next to the brewery in Vermont. I never made it to the brewery, but Vermont is a wonderful place to visit with many beer destinations to keep you fueled.

It pours an orange amber. It is cloudy with a light head.

The smell is definitely spicy, almost a little musty. It is a heavy aroma with slight pumpkin. There is also a distinct sweetness that lingers.

The taste is very sweet, especially at the end. There is spiciness all around but I taste only a slight pumpkin flavor. It gets even sweeter as you drink it. There is cinnamon but it is curved by the sweetness. It has a light body, but a little thickness builds as you drink it. The sweetness also builds.

The aftertaste is light and crisp. It is refreshing except for the sweetness. There is a lightly lingering spice.


Beer Lesson #2

A rainy day in Portland. Let's talk beer.

So once your barley is secured it needs to be geminated. Starch is the vessel for the sugars in barley. To release that starch, barley needs to begin germinating. The widespread process for doing this requires large drums which will rotate with air being pumped through it. This continues for a few days, before germination is stopped via heat. This is commonly done in a kiln and the science of this is very detailed. Once the barley is out of the kiln it is referred to as malt.

So the process of malting creates color in the malt. It can result in light or dark malt depending on the intensity of the kilning process. Light malt is more delicate, where as dark malt gives us the robust flavors. At this stage, dark malt can create the chocolate flavors or smokiness in some beers.

After the parts of the barley that began to germinate (referred to as culm) are removed, the malting process is complete. It is now stored before it is milled into a grist which resembles flour. At the brewery, grist is mixed with water to make a mash. Again, there are several variables during this process. How much water, what kind of water, amount of time are all dependent upon the brewer. Mashing results in the starches from our barley transforming into sugars. One more term of the day: Wort. Mmmm. Wort.

Wort is the sugary liquid that is released from the mash. It is separated from the rest of the mash and is now kept in a kettle. It is now ready for Beer Lesson #3 to be completed soon!

Let's recap:

Barley germinates to release starch. Germination is stopped with heat in a kiln. Kilning will give the beer a light or dark malty tone. The culm (or germinated sprouts) are removed from and the kilned barley is dried into a grist. This grist is milled and mixed with water to make mash. Mashing results in a sugary liquid called wort. Wort is then kept in a kettle and is ready for to make beer!


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Buffalo Bill's Pumpkin Ale, Buffalo Bill's Brewery, Hayward CA

Alright, let's forge ahead and try out this season's specialty: The Pumpkin Beer! The first comes from Buffalo Bill's Brewery, advertised on the bottle as "America's Original Pumpkin Ale", so it seems like a logical start for us. Buffalo Bill's is in Hayward, CA, the beer is brewed and bottled by Pyramid Breweries (Seattle, Portland & Berkeley).

It pours a bright amber with a thin head.

The smell is all pumpkin and spice. Not too sweet. The spice is hard to distinguish: cinnamon, clove, allspice...all together.

It is a light body with a decent amount of spice. I wouldn't call it bold, it is fairly balanced for being a "flavored" beer. It has a slight coppery taste - not unpleasant, it balances with the sweetness. The spice is again a general flavor.

The aftertaste is very mild. It dissipates quickly, which is nice. With flavored beers, I've noticed that there can be a sweetness that lingers a little too long. A general toasty taste remains for a few moments.

In all, a great beginning to our pumpkin season. It's not overly intense, so a new-comer looking for to ease into the pumpkin beers might find this one a good starter. I have about 5 more ready to go in the fridge!


Monday, October 6, 2008

Shipyard IPA, Shipyard Brewery, Portland ME

Well, studying is only so much fun. Let's deviate from our beer lessons with wild abandon and take a look at another IPA, the Shipyard IPA...
And just so we don't loose all of our geekiness, IPA (India Pale Ale) is a beer from the 17th Century and was developed with the beer trading between Britain and India. American IPA's tend to be more extreme with their hoppiness. Okay, more about that in a later beer lesson, let's drink...

The Shipyard IPA pours a mellow amber with a creamy head.

The smell is of mild hop, not too florally. It has a little spicy aroma to it.

The taste is quite mellow and mild. It's a little on the bitter side, but nothing extreme here. It is crisp and refreshing. I think it goes well with the fall weather outside, which feels the same. From their website, I learned that this is a single hop beer (made with Fuggles hop, which is a traditional English hop). So, that explains it's balanced character. It is a medium body and fairly smooth.

The aftertaste is mild hop and slightly bitter, but dissipates quickly.

So, if you are a reader of this blog, you will notice that I try not to pass judgement on ranking beers. I am tempted at times, but I think it is important that all beers, like everything, have different purposes and different intents. Some align with my taste, some don't. What I am interested in, is understanding the intent of the beer along with it's history. So, I will continue to try to be as impartial as I can....but I do have my favorites!

Shipyard is available all around the Northeast in beer stores and bars. The gift shop at the brewery in Portland, Maine is massive and they have their beers available with lots of other swag. On an interesting note, I did find Shipyard's Pumpkinhead beer out here on the West coast last week and will blog about that in the upcoming days.


Beer Lesson #1

So what is the beginning of beer? The answer lies in grain. As the root of many a great thing, grain is also the first step to understanding beer. Grain is a blanket word used to describe many different cereals including barley, wheat, rye, etc... The most popular grain used in beer making is Barley, but wheat, rye, oats, even rice are used depending on the brewers taste and intention. Apparently, barley's sugars are fairly easily released during the brewing process. There's a lot to be said about this first step of the brewing process, but let's keep it simple for now. We'll conquer Barley, using it as our first staple and talk about uses of other grains later.

Barley is distinguished by the amount of rows grow along the stem. According to my research, there is 2 row, 4 row, and 6 row varieties. 2-row is apparently the most popular in Europe, while 6-row is more favorable in the US. Why?

Taste, I guess. 2-row is said to be more starchy and 6-row starches can more quickly be converted into sugar.

So, let's recap. Grain is the basic element of beer and the most popular grain is Barley. Barley can arguably be grown several places which offer a cooler climate and flat land. I would suppose there are gentle differences in the barley from different areas of the world and I hope further research into beer will provide a glimpse into the role Barley and it's geography play in the final outcome of particular beers.

Stay tuned for Beer Lesson #2 when we learn what to do with all this Barley....

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Long Trail IPA, Longtrail Brewing Company

Well, I'll be the fist to admit that I have a hard time letting go of summer. So in honor of the passing season, I'll take a few posts to enjoy the remaining IPAs in my fridge. This one comes from the Long Trail Brewing Company in Vermont. Their beers are found all around the Northeast, but the brewery is great if you can make it. We stumbled across it by chance on a trip to Woodstock, Vermont. A great coincidence....

Their IPA pours an unfiltered amber with a thin head.

The aroma is of mild mild mild hop with some mild citrus.

The taste is very slight, first citrus, then a little hop. It has a medium body and is very crisp and refreshing.

The aftertaste is slight floral hops with citrus with a mild bite.

From their website:
5.9% with 56 IBUs
Malts: Crystal and Two Row
Hops: Nugget and Cascade

It is listed as an English IPA which explains the mild hop flavor.


Saturday, October 4, 2008

Whittier White Belgian Ale, Haverhill Brewery, Haverhill MA

Alright, I'll admit to being a little behind with my blogging. The trouble comes when I only make one blog a night, but happen to get overzealous on my research some nights.

I've been making my way through Pumpkin beers recently and the next few blogs will detail the several I have found around town, but for now let's take a look at the Whittier White Belgian Ale.

It pours a bright amber, a little like a cloudy honey colored with a creamy head.

The smell is lively with some distinct white pepper. There is a slight citrus or orange aroma as well.

The taste is definitely white pepper along with some general spice on the tongue. It is crisp and refreshing. It is a light to medium body and seems very thirst quenching. There is mild orange as well. It is slightly wheaty.

The aftertaste is fairly lively with citrus and white pepper lingering on the palate.

In all, a refreshing brew indeed. I spoke in an earlier blog post about the Tap Room at Haverhill and I HIGHLY recommend checking it out if you are near the Boston area.

I am looking forward to posting the pumpkin beers soon, and I will start the long trek of examining the making of an development of beer!

In the meantime....Happy drinking!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Jefferson's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout, Bluegrass Brewing Company, Louisville KY

It was the first rainy fall day since moving back to the Northwest and such weather dictates tonight's tasting. This is a beer I found on our visit to Kentucky. We happened across the Bluegrass Brewing Company (2 locations in Kentucky - Extremely recommended! Great pizza! Truly great beer! We shared a taster of their beers, but sadly this was pre-blog) and I got a four pack of their special beer at the time: The Jefferson's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout.

It pours opaque with a caramel colored head.

The smell is of chocolate, malt and mild oak.

The taste is mild chocolate at first. It is malty, but not thick; rather is stays on the clean and smooth side. I get a slight hint of vanilla with a slight sweetness to it. It is not a bitter beer at all. It has a medium body and not as thick as one would expect. As it warms the oak becomes more apparent and the beer thickens a little, but retains it's crispness.

The aftertaste is chocolate, smokey and lingers nicely.

From the four-pack, I learned that this beer is a coordinated effort between the Bluegrass Brewing Company and McLain & Kyne Distillery (Advertised as the "2005 Bourbon of the Year". The stout is brewed in the barrels from the Bourbon batches for up to 90 days.

It is 8% and this is from their website:
Malts: Special Pale, Wheat, Chocolate and English Roast Barley
Hops: Northern Brewer and English East Kent Goldings

I'm not too sure about the availability of BBC beers around the US or even near Kentucky (I never made it to a grocery store to investigate). But if you come across it, indulge!


Thursday, October 2, 2008

Scotch Ale, Smuttynose Brewing Company, Portsmouth NH

And now to one of my very favorite breweries...ever, the Smuttynose Brewery in New Hampshire. I strongly recommend enjoying any of their beers if you get a chance. They are all over the Northeast. Let's see how their Scotch Ale holds up - it's a beer I haven't yet had from their line-up.

It pours a deep hue, brownish/caramel and has a light head.

The smell is all malt, a little on the sweet side. There is a mild chocolate and subtle alcohol aroma.

The taste is malty, but with a distinct smokiness. It doesn't taste as sweet as it smells, though there is a caramel flavor. It is a full body beer, a little on the heavy side for sure. If you let it warm up a little, it gets thicker with a fuller body and the flavors are pulled out and more distinct.

The aftertaste is smokey and malty. A great cold weather sipper!

From the bottle I learned that the peat smoked malt provides the smoky flavor in the beer. It is 8.2%.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Grey Lady, Cisco Brewers, Nantucket MA

A trip to Trader Joe's led me to buy some naan, which then led me to make some Aloo Gobi (my first attempt) which finally led me to tonight's beer selection.

"The Grey Lady" from Cisco Brewers in Nantucket is a Belgian-style Wit beer. I looked for some details on their website, but the beer most be a seasonal, since I did not find any info about it.

It pours a golden hue, think very light honey and has a big foamy head.

The smell is distinctly wheat, with a slight white pepper aroma. It is a little sweet.

The taste is wheaty with a citrus or orange. There is a little white pepper to it. It is a light body and crisp (almost sparkly). It is refreshing and went well with the semi spicy and heavy food. It clears the palate, but doesn't linger too long.

There isn't much aftertaste, a very soft spiciness, perhaps. All in all it is fairly dry and mild.

I found Cisco beers at almost every beer store/liquor store when I lived in Boston. Oh, and if you are curious there is this from the bottle:
"The name 'Grey Lady' comes from the nickname for the often-foggy island on which it is brewed." There you go, beer and geography!