Monday, July 6, 2009

Left Hand Imperial Stout

With all the bad press credit card companies have been deservedly getting, is there anyone out there that still loves any creditor? Mine have had their drawbacks, have raised rates, have been bought out by other banks and have cut services. But when a card from one of my creditors was compromised this past weekend, I was never so happy with them. I've actually been in love with them for a long time as they are also an insurance and brokerage company that holds insurance policies and IRA accounts of mine. And the main reason they are so great is their customer service. In addition, as other banks and financial institutions were folding or holding their hands out to Uncle Obama recently, these guys were cutting dividend checks as they have every year since I joined. So when their fraud department called me to check on 5 suspicious purchases at Publix and Wal-Mart (that turned out to be fraudulent), and they told me that they'd take care of everything, I confirmed to myself why I have never considered changing. Then a quick check of the other cards, including the corporate card, gave me some peace that the fraud was limited. I'm not so sure that those other guys would have ever called me though.

With that being said, I'm having "A Black Ale to Brighten Your Day" which is a slogan on the label of Left Hand Imperial Stout brewed by Left Hand Brewing Company in Longmont, Colorado.

The aroma is amazing--dark fruit, caramel, chocolate and coffee all standing strong together. The flavors start out sweet with some chocolate, orange and coffee flavors. A hint of roasted and spicy flavors also shows up. Bitter and hoppy then take over, which is nice to take some of that sweetness away. Then the alcohol arrives, leaving a nice warming sensation before a drier finish takes over. Full body, medium carbonation and a really nice beer. Sweet, bitter, dry and alcohol all have their day, but in the end I think sweet takes the silver with alcohol taking the gold. I really did like this beer, but 22 ounces is too much considering the 10.4% alcohol content that is not masked for most of the beer. I like that element, but on the last sip, my body did that whiskey face and shiver as the alcohol started creeping up. Share Big 22 with a friend or find a smaller bottle, that's my recommendation, and you will enjoy this beer!

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