Saturday, July 16, 2011
I finally gave in to my inhibition to buy a bottle of Hoppin’ Frog B.O.R.I.S. Barrel Aged Oatmeal Imperial Stout from Al’s of Hampden. The beer pours a thick black color with a lofty and frothy bubbly tan head. The aroma consists of whiskey, peat, chocolate, lots of coffee, espresso, vanilla, licorice, and oak. The taste is dry and biting with the whiskey coming on the front end of the beer. After the whiskey punch is finished, the flavor sweetens with vanilla, chocolate, and licorice. The finish dries out a little bit with some coffee and espresso, and the after taste leaves some oak remnants. The alcohol content is 9.4% ABV. This was a wonderfully smooth beer despite the sharp whiskey bite that accompanies the beer. I enjoyed the boat load of flavors, from coffee to chocolate, all accented nicely with a touch of vanilla.
While out to dinner at The Black Gryphon in Elizabethtown, I ordered a glass of Harpoon Summer Beer. The beer pours a golden color with a thin filmy white head. The aroma consists of sweet malts, grass, and a light pepper accent. The taste is smooth and malty with a slight pepper spice on finish. The after taste leaves some grass on the tongue, which reminds me of summer. The alcohol content is 5.5% ABV. Anyone that knows me is aware that I am picky with the kolsch beer that I drink, and I would say that Harpoon’s offering is not as fresh and clean as I would like. I wouldn’t put it in a bad beer category, just that it did not live up to my expectations.
Friday, July 15, 2011
My buddy Matt brought over a bottle of Hoppin’ Frog D.O.R.I.S. The Destroyer Double Imperial Stout. The beer pours a thick dark color with a thin tan head. The aroma consists of chocolate, milk, toasted malts, caramel, and vanilla. The taste is smooth and milk-chocolaty with a good base of toasted malts and vanilla, and caramel accents. There is a dry dark chocolate after taste with hints of molasses. The alcohol content is 10.5% ABV. I was surprised as to how smooth drinking this beer was without the slightest hint of alcohol, despite the high content. It has a wonderful sweetness with just enough dry chocolate bite to keep you thirsty and drinking more.
I picked up a bottle of Voodoo Wynona’s Big Brown Ale from Wegman’s and decided to share it with my buddy Matt. The beer pours a dark brown color with a frothy tan head that laces to the glass. The aroma consists of brown sugar, toasted malts, caramel, and cinnamon. The taste is dry and slightly bitter with plenty of toasted malts. Brown sugar is entrenched pretty well in the flavor mix that provides a good balance to the dry and toasted malts. The alcohol content is 7.3% ABV. This was an intense and well flavored brown ale, and if more of this style tasted this way, I think it would be a more popular style.
Thursday, July 14, 2011
I picked up a four-pack of Weyerbacher Sixteen- Dark Braggot Ale from Al’s of Hampden. The beer pours a cranberry-hued amber color with a frothy tan head that last about a minute or two. The aroma consists of sweet malts, honey, caramel, raisin, and tea. The taste is smooth at first before a sharp alcohol and raisin attack the tongue. The honey and malts sweeten out the after taste with some lemon and pepper hops. On the finish, hints of tea and fig remain on the tongue and really dry out the mouth, leaving a semi-smoky residue behind. The alcohol content is 10.5% ABV. This was my first experience with a braggot style beer, and I was quite impressed. It is a larger than life style with plenty of alcohol bite, a sweet honey tinge, and a cornucopia of malts.
I brought a bottle of Captain Lawrence Xtra Gold Tripel to a 4th of July cookout to share with friends. The beer pours a golden color with a bubbly white head. The aroma consists of banana, pepper, yeast, and plantains. The taste is sweet and smooth with lots of banana and pepper all on a yeasty base. There is a biscuit flavor with some tangerine and grapefruit citrus accents before a dry and peppery finish hits. Some plantains come out in the after taste. The alcohol content is 10.0% ABV. This was a great triple with some wonderful citrusy accents not always found in tripels. All in all, another hit for Captain Lawrence.
Wednesday, July 13, 2011
I was visiting my friend in Fall Church and I suggested we stop in to Mad Fox Brewing to grab a growler of Diabolik. The beer pours a golden color with a bubbly white head that dissipates quickly. The aroma consists of banana, pepper, lemon, and yeast. The taste is sweet with banana at first before a strong alcohol and pepper bite snag the tongue. There is a dry finish with hints of lemon and cherry, which was quite enjoyable. The alcohol content is 8.8% ABV. I have enjoyed most of the beers I’ve ordered from Mad Fox, and this beer is without exception. It is a wonderful Belgian beer with well accented banana and yeast flavors, the best of which is a slight cherry hint.
While at the Dogfish Head Ale House in Falls Church, I ordered a glass of Pangaea with my dinner. The pours a golden color with a thin filmy white head. The aroma consists of wheat, pepper, lemon, grass, pine, and biscuit. The taste is dry and peppery with a ginger bite and some biscuit undertones. Yeast comes out to sweeten the beer before the grassy finish with a slight lemon accent. The alcohol content is 7.0% ABV. The Pangaea has a wonderful blend of flavors, and I think Dogfish Head did an excellent job combining an ingredient from every continent on Earth.
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
I was in Falls Church visiting my buddy, so we decided to go to the Dogfish Head Ale House. I saw that the Black and Red was on the menu, so I ordered a glass. The beer pours a black color with a thin filmy tan head. The aroma consists of spearmint, chocolate, and toasted malts, but the mint takes focus here. The taste is strong and intense with lots of mint on front the end. Sweet chocolate and raspberry come out after the mint subsides with a hint of red wine. The alcohol content is 10.5% ABV. I would say that this beer is not for everyone and I wouldn't want more than one glass in a sitting, but it was quite intriguing and interesting. The mint flavor is intense and strong arms the chocolaty goodness of the imperial stout, but I was glad I had the opportunity to try it.
I stopped in to Al’s of Hampden and decided to order a glass of Port Brewing Mongo. The beer pours an orange-tinted golden color with a thin filmy white head. The aroma consists of tangerine, grapefruit, orange, and lemon. The taste is bitter and citrusy with lots of tangerine, grapefruit, lemon, pine, and spruce. The finish is orange, candy-like, and sweet, but very satisfying. The alcohol content is 8.5% ABV. This was a wonderful beer and that was very bitter but sweetens up nicely on the finish. If you love citrus flavors, especially those that come from fresh West Coast hops, this is the beer for you.
Monday, July 11, 2011
I received a bottle of Captain Lawrence Birra DeCicco Limone Luppolo from my buddy Tim as part of a beer trade. The beer pours a golden color with a foamy white head that laces nicely to the glass. The aroma consists of lemon, pine, spruce, grass, wheat, pepper, and tangerine. The taste is smooth and lemony at first before the grassy hops come out to play. The finish is filled with pepper, pine, and spruce. The after taste leaves a peppery taste in the back corners of the mouth and dries the tongue. The alcohol content is 6.0% ABV. I liked the overall flavor of this beer, from sweet lemon to dry grassy and piny hops. But the best part is the peppery after taste that hangs around for a few minutes.
I finally got around to actually ordering and writing a review of Bear Republic Racer 5 IPA. The beer pours an amber color with a thin bubbly white head. The aroma consists of grapefruit, tangerine, lemon, pine, and spruce. The taste is bitter but fresh with lots of lemon and grapefruit up front. It sweetens a bit with tangerine and caramel before a bitter finish arrives with pepper and pine flavors. The alcohol content is 7.0% ABV. This was a great IPA, and I can see why so many people recommend it. So I will jump on the bandwagon and recommend you try it if you have not.
Sunday, July 10, 2011
I ordered a glass of Iron Hill Sayonara IPA while at the Lancaster location for dinner. The beer pours a golden color with a bubbly white head. The aroma consists of lemon, tangerine, grapefruit with sugar, and pine. The taste is bitter with lots of lemon and grapefruit comes out in the finish, drying out the mouth. Pine arrives in the after taste, and it lingers on the tongue for a while. The alcohol content is 6.8% ABV. This was a great bitter beer with plenty of citrus flavors. There was a faint caramel base associated with this beer, but it is difficult to detect with all of the citrus and bitter pine flavors on top of it.
I went to Iron Hill in Lancaster for dinner with my buddy Tim when he was visiting from New york. I ordered the Belgian Witbier first, as it was a warm day and we were sitting outside. The beer pours a golden color with a thin bubbly white head. The aroma consists of lemon, wheat, and orange. The taste is smooth and sweet with lots of citrus, especially orange, flavors. There is a peppery finish with other spices as well that bite the tongue. I can’t located the alcohol content online, but if I recall, it was listed around 5.5% ABV. I thought Iron Hill’s Belgian Witbier was an excellent example of the style and the perfect beer for drinking outside in the warm summer sun.