Saturday, October 9, 2010
I picked up a bottle of Abita Save Our Shore (S.O.S.) from Bass Rail in Campbelltown. Save Our Shore was brewed to raise awareness and funds for the Gulf Coast, donating 75 cents on each bottle to rescue and restoration of the environment, industry, and individuals fighting to survive the oil spill. The beer pours a golden color with a frothy white head that leaves a good lacing on the glass. The aroma is sweet and malty with hints of butter and sour hops. This aroma was a very pleasant one, especially for a pilsner. The taste is smooth and sweet with lots of pilsner malts and a light sour hops finish. The hops linger into a bitter finish and the after taste is malty and sweet. The alcohol content is 7.0% ABV. The Save Our Shore was one of the better pilsners that I have actually had, and the malty sweetness and hop bitterness were perfectly balanced.
I've been to Canada, I've been to Kentucky, and now it was time that I traveled to...nowhere? I ordered a glass of Founders Breakfast Stout from Al's of Hampden. I have previously had the Canadian Breakfast Stout and the Kentucky Breakfast stout, each with their differences from the other. This beer pours black color with a thin bubbly tan head. The aroma consists of mocha, chocolate, coffee, and toasted malts. The taste is big and chocolaty with dry mocha and dark chocolate, and toasted malts. The finish is a little bitey on the tongue with a dry bitter chocolate after taste. The alcohol content is 8.3%. I thought that the Breakfast Stout was really good, although not quite as smooth as the Kentucky Breakfast Stout, but still top notch.
Friday, October 8, 2010
I stopped in to Al's of Hampden to order a glass of Troegs Dead Reckoning (Columbus Dry Hopped) on hand pump. The beer pours a black color with a frothy off-white head. The aroma is big on pine hops, which are not present in the regularly produced Dead Reckoning, with a light chocolate background. The taste is smooth and silky with a good hop foreground, some milk chocolate, and a dry toasted finish. The alcohol content is 5.4%. I thought that the dry hopping of the Dead Reckoning really transitioned this beer, and made it a great beer for both porter and hop lovers alike.
I picked up a bottle of Samuel Adams Harvest Pumpkin Ale from Al's of Hampden. The beer pours an orange-amber with an off-white foamy head. The aroma consists of a big helping of pumpkin with a good nutmeg and cinnamon accent. The taste is smooth with a large pumpkin flavor. It then transitions into a spicy beer with nutmeg and cinnamon, finishing a little dry due to the cinnamon. The alcohol content is 5.7% ABV. I was pleasantly surprised and satisfied with Samuel Adams' offering in the pumpkin category. The spices are perfectly balanced with the sweetness of the pumpkin. Nothing here is overdone or intense, so a good pumpkin beer to share with your friends.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
I picked up a bottle of Voodoo Brewery Pilzilla from Al's of Hampden in Enola. The beer pours a golden color with a frothy white head. The aroma consists of sweet malts with a great hop accent rounding out the smell. There is light hints a butter cream and toffee. The taste is full of sweet malts on the front end with some butter and then turns into a nice hop accent. The beer finishes dry with a pine hop accent. The alcohol content is 7.0% ABV. What a great pilsner the Pilzilla turned out to be. It delivers the great pilsner taste with sweet malts and some butter accents with a wonderful hop twist on the end.
Falling Rock Tap House in Denver was fortunate to have some New Holland Hopquila for serving during the Great American Beer Fest. The Hopquila is as follows: a fermented wash of 100% barley is twice distilled, then steeped with Centennial hops. The vivacious spirit features a grain-centric body framed by citrus-laden hop character in the nose and finish. The tequila pours a yellow clear color. The aroma is potent, being very big on tequila, and a slight hop accent. As expected, the taste is big on tequila that attacks the tongue furiously. However, quite pleasantly, the finish consists of citrus and hops. While I found the information on the Hopquila quite interesting, drinking straight tequila can really make your night take a turn for the worse. I enjoyed the hop and citrus flavors, but I'm not sure how often I would drink this.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
At the Beer for Boobs brunch held at Fresh Craft in Denver, the Women in Beer crew brought some Rogue spirits with them for additions into the draft beers. Naturally, I ordered a glass of Rogue Double Chocolate Stout, to be accompanied with a shot of Rogue Hazelnut Rum. The beer pours a black color with a thin filmy tan head. The aroma consists of chocolate and hazelnut. The taste mostly consists of chocolate with some oak accents as well. The profile of the beer was changed somewhat with the sweet hazelnut finish. The alcohol content is the Double Chocolate Stout is 8.0% ABV, but the rum definitely increased the alcohol content somewhat. The Hazelnut Rum completely made an amazing beer incredible, and I would like to continue adding the rum to my Double Chocolate Stouts in the future. But there is one caveat, the extra shot catches up with you.
Another brewery I stopped into with my friends while in the Denver area was Oskar Blues. With dinner, I ordered a glass of the Ten Fidy. The beer pours a black color with a tan filmy head. The aroma consists of chocolate with oak and alcohol accents lingering. The taste is big on chocolate with some good oak accents. Hidden behind the oak wall is some raisin and toffee flavors. The Ten Fidy was quite smooth while drinking, but quite bitey with the alcohol finish. The alcohol content is 9.6% ABV. I really enjoyed the Ten Fidy, as oak accents and chocolate are two things in a beer that make me very happy.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
I ordered a glass of Odell IPA from Falling Rock Tap House in Denver. The beer pours an amber color with a foamy white head. The aroma consists of grapefruit with sugar. The taste is big on grapefruit with plenty of sugar and a good hop balance. The beer has a dry finish as expected with an IPA, but a quite enjoyable after taste. The alcohol content is 7.0% ABV. The IPA from Odell was very delicious and is a very solid performer in the category.
Based on the recommendation of my friend Jason who lives in Denver, I ordered a glass of Odell 90 Shilling while out on the town prior to Great American Beer Fest. The beer pours an amber color with a thin bubbly white head. The aroma is malty with lemon accents tagging along for the ride. The taste actually brings the lemon to the front end of the beer with a malty and caramel finish. The alcohol content is 5.3% ABV. IT is said that you should always trust a friend, and mine did not let me down in this instance. The 90 Shilling was very good and actually quite refreshing for the warm summer evening in Denver (yes, September is still summer).
Monday, October 4, 2010
One other beer I ordered at the Left Hand tasting room was the Imperial Stout. The beer pours a dark amber color with a thin bubbly white head. The aroma consists of raisins, malts, and chocolate. The taste follows suits and has chocolate, malts, raisins, and coffee dancing on the palate. The alcohol content is 10.2% ABV. I will say that the Imperial Stout was quite smooth for the high alcohol content and didn't have a sharp alcohol bite on the finish.
Another beer I sampled from the Left Hand tasting room was the Twin Sisters Double IPA. I have not previously seen this beer on the east coast, and I was quite excited that Left Hand was offering a Double IPA. The beer pours an orange copper color with a bubbly white head. The aroma consists of caramel with grapefruit and sugar. The taste is big and strong with lots of caramel and some grapefruit and sugar accents. The alcohol content is 9.6% ABV. The Twin Sisters has a surprisingly smooth finish that doesn't bite or leaving any bitter remnants behind.
Sunday, October 3, 2010
While in the Denver area, one is expected to visit the local breweries. Therefore, my friends and I took a road trip to visit Left Hand Brewing Company. Being left handed, I am quite fond of the namesake and seek their products whenever I can. One of the samples I tried in the tasting room was the Milk Stout. The beer pours a black color with a thin filmy tan head. The aroma consists of coffee and chocolate. The taste is smooth and creamy, filled with chocolate and coffee flavorings. Finally, the Milk Stout has a bitey toasted finish. The alcohol content is 6.0% ABV. I really enjoyed the Milk Stout offering from Left Hand, as it is smooth and easy drinking, yet it comes with a nice kick on the end to remind you this is a beer and not a child's drink like chocolate milk.
I ordered a glass of the Dry Dock Seven Seas Double IPA on my visit to Denver for the 2010 Great American Beer Fest. The beer pours an orange amber opaque color with a thin bubbly white head. The aroma is big on grapefruit and orange. The taste has a lot of grapefruit on the front end accompanied with plenty of sugar. Background flavors include orange and tangerine. The after taste is smooth and citrusy. The alcohol content is 8.5% ABV. The Seven Seas Double IPA was delicious brew but completely had an unexpected look, as it was opaque and slightly more yellow than the Double IPAs that I am used to seeing. Big points on being different, Dry Dock.