Sunday, November 22, 2009

Beer #165 - Vesuvius Belgian Style Golden Ale, Full Sail Brewery, Hood River Oregon

November represents the last month that Vesuvius is available, so don't delay! Brewed up the river from us in Hood River, this Belgian Style Golden Ale is available in the 1pt. 6 fluid ounce bottles with 8.2% - Let's give it a try!

It pours a cloudy straw with a tight head.

The aroma holds white pepper, yeast and coriander.

The medium/full body introduces yeast flavors with white pepper and slight coriander. THe yeast spice continues to expand on the palate finishes with a mild earthy hop.

Mild yeast notes linger on the tongue. It finishes fairly clean, crisp and refreshing.

A great introductory example into the wonderful world of Belgian style ales, it does go well with these fall days. As I said, it is only available for a short time more, so enjoy soon!



Thursday, November 19, 2009

Beer #164 - Bigfoot Barleywine 2009, Seirra Nevada Brewing Company, Chico California

Consistently one of my favorite Barleywine style ales each year! Let's try the 2009 -

It pours a caramel color with a thin head.

The aroma is dominated by molasses with sweetness and caramel. There is also a slight hop apparent.

As it warms, a complex mixture of molasses, oak, sweeteness and roast malt are evident in the full body. Alcohol tones arrive later and it finishes long with bitterness, biscuit and caramel.

The aftertaste hold roasty malt notes with oak sweetness and a bright citrus hop at the very end.

Something that ages well, buy enough to enjoy now and later!


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Beer # 163 - State Pen Imperial Porter, Santa Fe Brewing Company, Santa Fe New Mexico

A very limited edition beer - The State Pen Imperial Porter from the Santa Fe Brewing Company looks like it will offer up some big flavor. A beer that is hard to find outside of New Mexico - if you happen by Santa Fe - make the Santa Fe Brewing Company a stop - for sure!

It pours a deep black with a roasted malt colored head.

The aroma reveals a lot of flavor with hop, chocolate and roasted malt. It also offers up some sweetness of oak.

It starts sweet with oak and malt, but the big/full body takes over quickly with big dark chocolate, molasses and roasted malt flavors. It finishes roasty - since it is oak-aged, it also offers hints of oak and wood in the finish, as well.

Hop arrives at the end with freshness and bitterness, which blends nicely with some dark chocolate bitterness that linger nicely on the palate.

A delicious porter that is especially enjoyable on these stormy evenings. It ages well, so it is worth buying if you happen across it - The State Pen Porter is brewed in honor of the Santa Fe Brewing Company's 20th Birthday -

Beer # 162 - Honey Basil Ale, Bison Brewing, Berkeley California

An interesting sounding ale - probably best suited for the summer months, but let's give it a try...

It pours a cloudy straw color with a thin head.

The aroma is of slight hop with citrus and floral notes. There is also a honey essence.

The medium/light body reveals honey with a crispness on the tongue. Hop builds in the body giving away to sweet malt. Mild basil notes are evident in the finish.

It finishes clean, the basil and honey flavors linger momentarily on the palate.

Light, crisp and refreshing with some unique flavors - Makes me miss summer!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Beer # 161 - The Abyss 2009 & 2008 Deschutes Brewery, Bend Oregon

This month marked the arrival of Deschutes' Reserve imperial stout. It is a limited release, so don't delay to give it a try. At 11% & 65 IBU's, it packs a punch, as well it should. At their Portland Brew House location, they offer samples of the 2008 release as well. Let's travel back in time, then return to the present release. Come follow me into the Abyss!

The Abyss - 2008
It pours opaque with a light-tawny head.

The aroma holds strong alcohol tones and malt with mild sweetness.

The full body delivers a robust roast malt flavor. The intense flavors seem surprisingly balanced. Biscuit, hop freshness and licorice all unfold on the tongue. Molasses also makes an appearance and lasts through the full finish.

The aftertaste holds the roast malt and molasses sticky on the palate, but is very smooth and gets smoother as you drink.

The Abyss 2009
It pours opaque with a dark tawny head.

The aroma is malt with sweetness. The roast tones are there, as well but a little lighter than expected. Lighter, it seems, than the 2008.

The full body presents BIG malt packed with licorice, roast, oak and bitter chocolate tones. There is a lot there and it evolves as it is enjoyed. It holds a dominating presence over the palate. These flavors last through the finish where the licorice and roast tones take it to the aftertaste.

It finishes relatively clean for such a big sticky thick beer. A hop freshness arrives late and helps the palate from being too dominated. Malt roast and sticky molasses linger on the palate delivering a robust dominating presence without being overly sticky and coating the taste buds. It has more alcohol presence and gets more complex as you drink it.

The Abyss does not hold back. There are many flavors hiding in it's opaque mysteriousness. As it evolves over enjoying, you'll only know the true virtues of the beer when you reach the bottom of the Abyss!


Monday, November 2, 2009

Beer #160 - 13th Anniversary Ale, Stone Brewing Company, Escondido California

I didn't know too much about Stone's Anniversary Ale this year, but at 9.5%, it seems to offer up the promise of some big flavor...

It pours a brownish hue with a decent head.

The aroma is big hop with some balancing barley tones.

Hop arrives straight off with barley and yeast giving it an intricate backbone. It has a big body where the yeast gives a nice earthiness. The yeast lingers on the tongue as the beer finishes strong but smooth with lasting hop.

The aftertaste has a nice earthy hop with yeast and spice that linger with a dominating presence.

DEFINITELY a 5-star beer. Grab one while you can, you won't regret it!!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Beer #159 - Local, 1 Brooklyn Brewing Company, Brooklyn New York

This beer has been waiting for me to drink it for awhile, the time finally came!

It pours golden with a white foamy head.

The aroma is strongly yeast with citrus hop and white pepper.

It starts light, sparkly on the tongue. The body reveals yeast spiciness with a hop bouquet. It is lively on the tongue and that holds through the finish with hop freshness on the tongue.

The aftertaste is mild hop with a lingering spice.

A refreshing and sharp ale!