Saturday, August 27, 2011
I received a bottle of Sweetwater Waterkeeper Hefeweizen Ale in a trade with Lance Martin (Beers of the Night) and Alfred Hugh Leonard III. The beer pours a golden color with a lofty and frothy white head that leaves specks of lacing on the glass. The aroma consists of wheat, lemon, funk, grass, pepper, and hay. The taste starts off with lemon that is slightly puckering with a bit of funk. There is a wheat and yeast sweetness that then comes in to play with a pepper, hay, and grassy dryness from the hops. The alcohol content is 5.7% ABV. This was a slid hefeweizen that was light on the tongue and refreshing, but has a nice little bit of lemon funk that tickles the tongue.
Part of a beer trade with Lance Martin (Beers of the Night) and Alfred Hugh Leonard III, I received a bottle of Highland Black Mocha Stout. The beer pours a dark brown color with a frothy tan head and a nice lacing on the glass. The aroma consists of coffee, chocolate, toasted malts, vanilla, and caramel. The taste is smooth but dry with plenty of coffee flavor and roasted malts dominating the palate. The coffee comes back, in black form, to dry out the finish, and some vanilla and caramel sweeten up the after taste. The alcohol content is 5.6% ABV. The dryness of this stout from the coffee flavors was wonderful, and a nice sweetness balances out the bitter coffee on the finish and after taste.
Friday, August 26, 2011
I acquired a bottle of the Jester King-Mikkeller collaboration Drink’in the Sunbelt from Jason through a beer trade. The beer pours a golden color with a frothy white head. The aroma consists of lemon grass, wheat, peppercorn, and a hint of orange. The taste is light and slightly bitter with plenty of lemon, pepper, wheat, peppercorn, a grass. There are plenty of hops in this beer which adds a lot of body to the wheat beer style that sometimes is a bit light. The alcohol content is 4.2% ABV. I really enjoyed the dimension that this beer has with the addition of plenty of hops on top of a great wheat base with plenty of lemon flavor.
As part of a trade with Lance Martin (Beers of the Night) and Alfred Hugh Leonard III I received a bottle of Jailhouse Brewing Slammer Wheat. The beer pours a pale golden color with a foamy white head that leaves a hint of lacing of the glass. The aroma is wheat, lemon, and grassy hops. The taste is smooth and sweet with lemon, honey, grass, wheat, and slight pepper. The beer dries a little bit on the finish and leaves a creamy taste that lingers. The alcohol content is 5.0% ABV. I enjoyed the honey sweetness in this beer that I feel filled the watery void left by most wheat beers.
Thursday, August 25, 2011
I grabbed a bottle of Birra Collesi Imper Ale Ambrata at Stateline Liquors because my fiancee loves amber ales and wanted to try it. The bottle opened with a loud pop and followed with a rush of beer out of the bottle. The beer pours an amber color with a frothy off-white head that takes some time to dissipate and has an enjoyable sound while doing so. The aroma consists of sweet malts, caramel, toffee, and pepper. The taste is smooth and sweet with plenty of caramel for the palate to take in and also a good helping of malts. The finish has a slight dryness to it with a bit of pepper. The alcohol content is 7.5% ABV. I will say that this is one of the better amber ale I have ever had with a great sweet malty and caramel base. The slight pepper hop accent provided good balance as well.
My buddy Matt bought a bottle of Hoppin’ Frog Turbo Shandy for his sister at the beach and she allowed me to try some. The beer pours a cloudy yellow-gold color with no head. The aroma consists of passion fruit, pineapple, lemon, grapefruit. The taste is sweet with lemon, passion fruit, canned fruit mix, pineapple, and sugar. There is a slightly dry finish with lots of bubbles on the tongue. The alcohol content is 7.0% ABV. I would say that I like this beer better than Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy. I’m making this comparison because the Summer Shandy is the only other shandy I’ve had. While it is on the fruity side, it was a refreshing beverage and enjoyable.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Al’s of Hampden recently received some casks from Heavy Seas, so I decided to try the Loose Cannon with Simcoe, Amarillo, Centennial, and Palisade hops. The beer pours a golden color with a frothy tan head. The aroma consists of grapefruit, lemon, tangerine, and pine. The taste is nice and citrusy with lots of grapefruit, orange, tangerine, lemon, and pine. The finish is creamy due to cask conditioning. The alcohol content is 7.25% ABV. This was a nice and bitter beer with a great with creamy accent. If you see this on cask somewhere, definitely crab a glass, and the creaminess goes great with the citrus flavors.
Another beer I ordered from McKenzie Brew House on my way home from the beach was Melody Nelson. The beer pours a copper color with a thin filmy white head. The aroma consists of sweet orange, yeast, malts, and light pepper. The taste is bitey with pepper and light smoke, sweet malts, lemon, and orange. Molasses comes out in the finish with a faint alcohol burn. The alcohol content is 7.5% ABV. I liked the variety of flavors in this beer, but wouldn’t rank it among my favorites of McKenzie’s brew. It was also a little difficult to finish an entire beer due to it sweetness.
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
On the way home from Ocean City, I stopped in to McKenzie Brew House in Chadds Ford. I first ordered a glass of The Chronic, an IPA. The beer pours an orange amber color with a frothy white head that leaves lacing on the glass. The aroma consists of lemon, grapefruit, grass, smelling very much like a saison. The taste is bitter with a bit of smoky charcoal, orange, grapefruit, lemon. Plenty of pepper comes out in the finish and it has a grassy after taste with some hay. The alcohol content is 6.25% ABV. The Chronic was like no other IPA that I have ever had, with its smoky and charcoal flavor. I really enjoyed the depth and complexity of it though, and I suggest ordering one if you get a chance to stop in to McKenzie.
When I returned to the Dogfish Head Brewpub for the Life and Limb Volume 2 tapping, they also had the other Sierra Nevada collaboration Limb and Life Volume 2 on tap, so I decided to give it a try. The beer pours an amber color with a thin filmy off-white head. The aroma consists of light maple syrup, caramel, coffee, and spruce. The taste is malty with caramel notes and light coffee accents. There is some maple flavor that makes up the dry finish. In a way, this beer almost reminds me of an Oktoberfest. The alcohol content is 4.8% ABV. I liked how light and refreshing the beer was, and considering it was sessionable, it could be drank all day. However, if both beers are on tap at the same time, I am steering my order to the Life and Limb first.
Monday, August 22, 2011
While in Ocean City, Dogfish Head tweeted that they had just tapped their collaboration with Sierra Nevada, Life and Limb Volume 2. I previously had the first version, but I was rather excited to see this beer on taps again. The beer pours a black color with a thin tan head. The aroma consists of maple, birch, chocolate, coffee, and toasted malts. The taste is smooth and sweet with lots if maple on the front end before some toasted malts, coffee, and chocolate come to light. There is a biting and bubbly finish. The alcohol content is 10.2% ABV. I recall this beer being just as good as the first batch with its wonderful maple flavor. This was the first time I had the beer on tap and I hope to acquire a bottle or two for my cellar.
My buddy Matt picked up a case of Brooklyn Summer Ale for our trip to the beach and we needed to have cans on the beach. The beer pours a golden color with a frothy white head. The aroma consists of wheat, lemon, pepper, grass, and funk. The taste is smooth and sweet with yeast and lemon, a grassy hop accent, and a pepper spice. The finish is slightly sour, but not a pucker sour. The alcohol content is 5.0% ABV. This is a nice, light, and refreshing beer to drink on the beach, and has a nice sour twist to it.
Sunday, August 21, 2011
I previously reviewed the first four Black Hole beers from Mikkeller, those being the Bourbon, Whiskey, Red Wine, and Rum barrel aged beers. I picked up two more, the White Wine and Tequila, from Stateline Liquors, leaving only the Cognac for another time. As with the previous beers, the Black Hole pours a black color with a frothy tan head, and both versions here looked very similar.
The Black Hole in white wine barrels has an aroma that consists of chocolate, vanilla, toasted malts, grapes, and sugar. The taste is smooth and sweet with lots of chocolate and toasted malts. There is a faint dry white wine accent before the alcohol warmth kicks in and a coffee finish. Overall, this was similar to the red wine barrel aged Black Hole in that the wine isn't overbearing and difficult to detect. It only adds a slight accent of grapes and sugar, while helping dry out the finish.
The Black Hole in tequila barrels is a completely different story. The aroma is not as tequila-y as I expected but it was there and covers most of the flavors in the nose with some faint coffee and chocolate in there as well and a slight sweetness with agave fruit. The taste is wonderful and might be my favorite of the versions I have tried. The chocolate and tequila go well together, a sort of Heaven and Hell mix. The tequila version allows a dry coffee finish to come out and is overall pretty dry as well.