Wednesday, 25 April 2007

Review: Chimay Tripel (White)

Chimay Tripel (White) from Bières de Chimay (Abbaye Notre Dame de Scourmont)
Rating: B+

Popped open and poured into a Duvel tulip to celebrate my last day as an undergraduate.

Appearance: Amber, almost orange in color. Big, rocky, white head with great retention. Some lacing. Fairly clear.

Smell: Belgian yeast (but not as intense as others...), spice, a certain "bite" to it that suggests bitterness. Some fruit.

Taste: More bitter than I was expecting, but perhaps simply because there's not a whole lot of flavor to compete with that here. Some yeast flavors (fruitiness) but not much. Very dry, reminiscent almost of Orval in that respect. Aftertaste somewhat astringent. You can just taste the alcohol, not surprised at the 8% but it's not overwhelming either. I do like the dryness, at least.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation perhaps a little on the high side. Light-medium body.

Drinkability: Disappointing after the rest of the Chimays, but I have high standards for this style and this one didn't fit my expectations - perhaps I'm not giving it a fair shake. In any case, nothing can disappoint me today: I'm done!

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-25-2007 22:24:48

Tuesday, 24 April 2007

Review: Tremont IPA

Tremont IPA from Shipyard Brewing Co.
Rating: C

Appearance: Light orange/amber in color, good white head. Solid retention. Some lacing.

Smell: Very interesting aroma... hard to place. Some toast, fruit (but in an almost artificial, gumdrop kind of way), Not much hops, but I'll give it the benefit of the doubt and attribute that to it being an English IPA. Rather strange on the whole: too much artificial fruitiness, not enough hops.

Taste: Interesting, to say the least... Bready, diacetyl, weird fruitiness at the finish. Very little in the way of hops: I know this is an EIPA, but still. Aftertaste is less weird.

Mouthfeel: Okay.

Drinkability: Won't be buying this one again, for sure. I wasn't expecting an English IPA, and I'm sensitive to diacetyl to begin with. Oh well.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-24-2007 21:50:23

Review: Full Sail IPA

Full Sail IPA from Full Sail Brewing Company
Rating: B-

Appearance: Fairly light golden/amber in color. Big white head that exhibits good retention and excellent lacing. Color a little lighter than I expect in an IPA, but good otherwise.

Smell: Maltier/grainier nose than I would expect. Earthy hops. Not nearly as hoppy as I'd expect in an IPA.

Taste: Slightly astringent, grapefruity hops - especially in the finish. Before that, much lighter flavor than I'd prefer in an IPA: some herbal hops, but not aggressive enough. Malts are a little sweet at the front of the palate.

Mouthfeel: Not bad, but nothing notable.

Drinkability: Easy-drinking, I suppose, but that's about it. There are many better IPAs out there.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-24-2007 20:48:24

Review: LongShot Boysenberry Wheat

LongShot Boysenberry Wheat from Boston Beer Company (Sam Adams)
Rating: B+

Second bottle of this I've had, purchased in Atlanta the day of the NCAA championship game (go gators!)

Appearance: Very pale straw in color, slightly hazy despite sitting in the refrigerator for a long time. Good white head, with good retention and lacing.

Smell: Lots of berry aroma. I know this was made with extract, but it smells very fresh.

Taste: Raspberry middle, blackberry finish, raspberry aftertaste - slightly bitter here, really the only place hops show up. That late bitterness keeps it from being too sweet.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth, light enough to be refreshing.

Drinkability: Not a big fan of fruit beers, but this isn't bad.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-24-2007 00:47:06

Friday, 20 April 2007

Review: LongShot Old Ale

LongShot Old Ale from Boston Beer Company (Sam Adams)
Rating: B+

Purchased in Atlanta the day of the NCAA championship game (go gators!)...

Appearance: Rich garnet in color, very clear, big head that exhibits excellent retention and lacing. A fine looking beer.

Smell: Malt and dark fruits, alcohol. Not much hops.

Taste: Lots of dark fruit, brown sugar. Alcohol warming at the swallow. Reminiscent of an underhopped barleywine, perhaps - or a Belgian dark ale brewed with American yeast. Slightly soapy finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, good carbonation.

Drinkability: I didn't realize this was 10.6% abv when I opened it - I would rather have split this 12 oz bottle...

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-19-2007 23:46:32

Thursday, 19 April 2007

Review: Sinebrychoff Porter

Sinebrychoff Porter from Oy Sinebrychoff Ab
Rating: B

To my knowledge, my first Finnish beer... had this one at Stubbie in Gainesville.

Appearance: Very very dark, but with some ruby tints. Good head, some lacing.

Smell: Nice aroma: typical porter aromas, plus a decent bit of ale fruitiness.

Taste: A little bit sweeter than I might prefer, but good. None of the smokiness I like in my favorite baltic porters. Good bit of dark fruit flavor.

Mouthfeel: Full body, good carbonation.

Drinkability: A bit on the sweet side, but good.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-19-2007 02:57:17

Review: Watou Tripel

Watou Tripel from Brouwerij St. Bernardus NV
Rating: B+

Appearance: Amber/gold in color, good head, retention and lacing.

Smell: Banana, spice, Beligan yeast. More banana than I prefer in a triple.

Taste: Lots of spice, acidic, citrus. Something of a "bite" to it, a good bit of banana.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, good carbonation.

Drinkability: Good, but not as good as the St. Bernardus triple.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-19-2007 02:12:00

Review: Saint Bridget's Porter

Saint Bridget's Porter from Great Divide Brewing Company
Rating: B

Appearance: Smallish off-white head over a dark brown body with ruby highlights. Some lacing.

Smell: Fairly weak aroma. Typical roast aroma, with sweet undertones, but very light.

Taste: Typical porter flavors: roast, coffee, chocolate. Some molasses. Great Divide is reliable.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, fair carbonation.

Drinkability: Okay.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-19-2007 02:05:10

Review: Salvation

Salvation from Avery Brewing Company
Rating: B+

Had this one at Stubbie in Gainesville...

Appearance: Golden in color, very clear. Good retention. Lots of lace.

Smell: Belgian aroma, with a good bit of spice, and some citric hop aroma.

Taste: Much more bitter than I expected, my dad described it as being more hoppy than the pale ale he was drinking. Good bit of spiciness. Reminds me of a Belgian IPA I brewed in December.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, good carbonation.

Drinkability: Good! I liked this one a lot.

Serving type: on-tap

Reviewed on: 04-19-2007 01:56:54

Tuesday, 17 April 2007

Review: Stoudt's Scarlet Lady ESB

Stoudt's Scarlet Lady ESB from Stoudts Brewing Co.
Rating: B

Received from mymrngjckt in the Secret Bunny exchange. Different color label (actually scarlet...) from the picture displayed on BA.

Appearance: Fairly red in color, fitting to the name. Very clear. Two finger white head, good retention. Some lace.

Smell: Toasted malts, some fruitiness.

Taste: Very tannic, fairly light on malt and hops... Toast just before the swallow, resolves to a tannic/bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: On the lighter side, acidity makes up for what seems a little light carbonation.

Drinkability: Definitely drinkable, but fairly light. Sessionable, but not something to enjoy just one bottle of.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-17-2007 18:23:46

Review: Nøgne Ø Imperial Stout

Nøgne Ø Imperial Stout from Nøgne Ø - det kompromissløse bryggeri
Rating: A-

My 300th review, hard to believe... Picked up after a very long day. Poured into a Samuel Smith's nonic.

Appearance: Dark head over an incredibly dark body. Completely opaque, even when held up to a light bulb. Exceptional retention and lacing.

Smell: Coffee and bitter roast aroma.

Taste: Acidic. Flavor a bit lighter than I'd expect from the color, but good. Fairly typical chocolate & coffee, finishes bitter.

Mouthfeel: Full and creamy. Sticks to the inside of your mouth.

Drinkability: Good, particularly after a long day like this one. I'd anticipated planning out my 300th review, picking something in advance, and all that, but after such a long day this did just as well.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-17-2007 03:05:24

Saturday, 14 April 2007

Review: LongShot Dortmunder Style Export

LongShot Dortmunder Style Export from Boston Beer Company (Sam Adams)
Rating: B

Reviewing this the second time I've had it, I like it much better than I remember the first time I tasted it. Not available in Florida, so I'd purchased the sixpack in Atlanta.

Appearance: Golden in color, big white head with decent retention and lacing. Very clear.

Smell: Pilsner-y aroma, grain and grass.

Taste: Like a pilsner, except a lot richer. Somewhat sweet. More grainy malt flavors and grassy hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, carbonation maybe a tad on the low side.

Drinkability: Good. Maybe my favorite of the three Longshot winners.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-14-2007 20:50:43

Friday, 13 April 2007

Review: Anchor Porter

Anchor Porter from Anchor Brewing Company
Rating: B+

Appearance: Deep deep brown in color with ruby highlights. Good head, some retention, some lacing.

Smell: Lighter than expected. Roast and chocolate.

Taste: Again, a bit lighter than I expected. Perhaps served too cold, it improved as it warmed. Typical roast, chocolate, coffee, but a good bit of molasses as well.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body, creamy carbonation.

Drinkability: Good.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-13-2007 05:10:55

Tuesday, 10 April 2007

Review: Batch 376

Batch 376 from Magic Hat Brewing Company
Rating: B

Received from mymrnngjckt in my Secret Bunny package - thanks! Only the second schwarzbier I've had.

Appearance: Very dark, almost black but revealing tawny & garnet tints when held up to a light. Initially a large tan head, but fades rather quickly to bare whisps. Good lacing.

Smell: Roasty, almost like a well-made porter. Some coffee and chocolate, none of the ale fruitiness - as expected, in this lager.

Taste: Roast, coffee... decent amount of hops bitterness. Very little diacetyl butteriness! A first for me among Magic Hat's beers - typically I find it very distracting in their beers.

Mouthfeel: Thinner in body than you'd expect from looking at it, but remember this isn't a porter or a stout - it's a schwarzbier and they "tend to lean towards light"

Drinkability: Good - most drinkable Magic Hat beer that I've had.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-10-2007 20:54:54

Tuesday, 3 April 2007

Review: Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale

Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale from Sweetwater Brewing Company
Rating: B+

Sampled at an Irish pub in Atlanta...

Appearance: Surprisingly light in color, more golden than the amber/orange I expect in an APA. I guess that explains why it's called an "Extra" pale ale on the label.

Smell: Hoppy aroma. Not a whole lot else, but who can complain about too much hop aroma?

Taste: Solid APA, plenty of flavor despite the light color. Hops take the lead, but there's enough malt and yeast "fruitiness" playing backup.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, good carbonation.

Drinkability: A good session beer, I wish this was distributed in Florida, I'd make it a regular.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-03-2007 22:20:36

Review: Terrapin Rye Pale Ale

Terrapin Rye Pale Ale from Terrapin Beer Company
Rating: B+

Sampled at an Irish pub I can't remember the name of in Atlanta.

Appearance: Amber/orange in color, clear, good head with some lacing.

Smell: APA levels of citrusy hops, with some rye twang and ale fruitiness.

Taste: Not a whole lot of rye character, but the "twang" is present. APA bordering on amber.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body, good carbonation.

Drinkability: Pretty good.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 04-03-2007 22:14:09