Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Latitude 48 Deconstructed IPA: East Kent Goldings

Look closely. You might think I'm being lazy and just posting the same thing as yesterday. Nope!

Today I'm drinking Latitude 48 Deconstructed IPA: East Kent Goldings brewed by The Boston Beer Company in Boston, Cincinnati or Breinigsville, Pennsylvania. The label says EAST KENT GOLDINGS in red lettering to set it apart from the others in the series, just as they did with SIMCOE that I reviewed yesterday. The story on the back talks about the East Kent Goldings and their history, noting their East Kent, UK growing region, on the 48th latitude. Enjoy before September, 2011.

Sweet bread dough and quite a malty aroma. Flavors also start out sweet and malty, with herbal tea and earthy characteristics. You progress next with some medicinal flavors while still not shaking the overt sweetness. There is not really any bitterness in this beer, though there is a bit of a spicy kick toward the end. You finish with some dry band aid flavors. The 6.0% alcohol wasn't really that noticeable. I guess this is a British IPA based on the hops used and the contrast to the American IPAs I usually drink. Not sure. This beer wasn't a winner for me.

Bulova Men's 96B113 Marine Star Chronograph Stainless Steel Bracelet Watch

CloneBrews, 2nd Edition: Recipes for 200 Brand-Name Beers

American Brewer Magazine

Monday, May 30, 2011

Latitude 48 Deconstructed IPA: Simcoe

So Samuel Adams released this Latitude 48 IPA last year, and it was well received. Latitude 48 is made with five hop varieties all grown along the 48th latitude. Go figure. Some genius got this idea to take the beer apart and brew individual beers with each of the five hop varieties alone, and that idea recently came to fruition when they released the Samuel Adams Deconstructed mixed 12 pack. Two bottles of each new beer plus two of the original Latitude 48 IPA.

Today I'm drinking Latitude 48 Deconstructed IPA: Simcoe brewed by The Boston Beer Company in Boston, Cincinnati or Breinigsville, Pennsylvania. The label for this beer is identical to the original except for the haphazard ALL CAPS SIMCOE written in red on the banner. I know they are trying really hard to brand these beers, but I think Sam needs a face lift. There is a little story on the back letting you know that they used Simcoe hops from the Yakima Valley, Washington growing region, on the 48th latitude. Also, Simcoe is a registered trademark of Select Botanicals Group, for the record. Enjoy before September, 2011.

Bready, hoppy fruity aroma, even with a hint of white wine. Right from the beginning, this was quite a hoppy IPA, nicely bitter. Lots of grapefruit and lemon rind are prominent throughout, but the flavors don't stop there. There is a nice flowery and fruity orange component that adds a hint of sweet balance, too. Lightly spicy and you can taste the 6.0% alcohol ever so slightly. Quite fresh and a welcome refreshment. The carbonation was medium high and perfect. So far, Sam is one-for-one in this series. Can't wait for the next one.

RiteBrew - Simcoe (US) Pellet Hops - 1oz.

Sam Samuel Adams 25th Anniversary Sensory Boston Lager Glass, Set of 2

Beer!!! (Album) [Explicit] MP3

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Karma Belgian Style Pale Ale

Today I'm drinking Karma Belgian Style Pale Ale brewed by Avery Brewing Company in Boulder, Colorado. Last time I drank this was August, 2009, so let's see how the reviews compare. The label says "Good Ale Happens To Good People" and I've been known to be a pretty good guy. Let's see.

Orange and grainy, spicy aroma. Sweet candy sugar flavors right in the beginning smack your palate. This beer is also quite spicy, perhaps with a bit of clove and cinnamon. Some citrusy orange tries to balance out that sweetness but is mostly unsuccessful. Yeasty and grainy flavor and textures come next. Carbonation is good, but it is the sweetness that sticks out like a sore thumb, and some of the flavors just didn't seem to jive with each other. I'd skip this one. Comparing to the review from a few years back, it's hard to believe it's the same beer. Hmmm.

Karma -- Alicia Keys MP3

Why Good Things Happen to Good People: The Exciting New Research that Proves the Link Between Doing Good and Living a Longer, Healthier, Happier Life

Extreme Brewing: An Enthusiast's Guide to Brewing Craft Beer at Home -- Sam Calagione

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Blue Point Summer Ale

Today I'm drinking Blue Point Summer Ale brewed by Blue Point Brewing Company in Patchogue, New York and under special agreement, Rochester, New York. Again, they brand themselves as "Long Island's Brewery".

Bread, grain and a faint fruity apple aroma. Same flavors, bread and grain, but now throw in a soapy strange flavor element. A little weird. Tiny fruit, small hoppy balance to initial sweet grain. Carbonation is good, grainy texture takes from refreshment. A "dime-a-dozen" beer at a higher rate than that. I'd look for something more flavorful and extraordinary than this guy.

I Love PATCHOGUE, NEW YORK City Limit Sign - Aluminum - 4 x 18 inches

Dudu-osun African Black Soap (100% Pure) Pack of 4

Alaskan Summer Ale Bicycle Jersey Large

Friday, May 27, 2011

Chocolate Oak Aged Yeti Imperial Stout

Today I'm drinking Chocolate Oak Aged Yeti Imperial Stout brewed by Great Divide Brewing Company in Denver, Colorado. This version hasn't been in South Florida before, as far as I know, but I really enjoyed the Regular and Espresso versions of Yeti. Nom Nom Nom! The bomber bottle story calls this a "revered incarnation" of normal Yeti that has "an aroma and flavor akin to a gourmet chocolate bar." Bottled on April 19, 2011.

Hello rich chocolate cocoa powder with your luscious hints of vanilla. Wow! What an aroma! Your flavors start out with prominent chocolate too. There is also a ton of vanilla and wood flavors making for a sensory overdose. Pause. Pause. Pause. Next, orange and licorice come in before you really start feeling the effects of this beer. The wood is smoldering making some smoke, and a fire finally breaks out in your mouth and chest.

Yep, the 9.5% alcohol is pretty boozy from start to finish and really makes the wood stand out. Now I was sitting here kicking myself trying to figure out what this strange lighter fluid woody hot twang was from middle to finish and lasting long after the beer was gone. I guess that should be my 800th lesson on reading before opening. The story on the side says they used "a dash of cayenne [to keep] things lively, adding just a bit of heat to the finish." Holy shit! A dash? I almost blamed the roaring hotness on this chick I saw at Publix today, but alas it was just the added peppers in my beer.

That burn sticks around, no joke! Now, anyone who's ever been around me knows I LOVE hot peppers, the spicier the better. I eat hot peppers alone. But for real, these guys should have just skipped that part of this beer. I think it was unnecessary and actually seriously detracted from an otherwise great beer.

Smooth, thick body, low carbonation, all really nice. Not a sweet beer at all. Check it out, watch out for the burn. Serious wood too, which is also not a super plus for me, as I've mentioned before.

Nature's Way Cayenne Extra Hot, Capsules 100ea
Cayenne Herbal Supplements)

Chocolate Bar Variety Pack - 30 ct

Blue Microphones Yeti USB Microphone

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Ovila Dubbel

Today I'm drinking Ovila Dubbel brewed by Sierra Nevada Brewing Company in Chico, California. This beer was brewed in collaboration with The Abbey of New Clairvaux, and a portion of the proceeds go toward restoring the Santa Maria de Ovila chapter house at the Abbey. You can read the interesting story below, William Randolph Hearst's involvement and all. Nice wine-bottle presentation, corked and caged.

Raisin and caramel aroma, sweet candy, brown sugar--really nice! Caramel and spicy clove flavors dominate the beginning. The body is actually quite a bit thinner than I was expecting, the first thing to cross my mind. Sugary  sweet candy flavors work well with a tangy yeast and strong carbonation. A sweet raisin and fruity unripened grape-like sourness really play nicely off of one another. The 7.5% alcohol is not very noticeable. You finish lightly dry with more of those spicy and yeasty flavors lingering. Interesting and enjoyable. Worth checking out!

Abbey of New Clairvaux

Haribo Gummi Candy Gold-Bears, 5-Pound Bag

Mike Schmidt Philadelphia Phillies Bobblehead Doll

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Red Brick Dog Days Ale

Today I'm drinking Red Brick Dog Days Ale brewed by Atlanta Brewing Company in Atlanta, Georgia. The label tells a little story about brewing beers for only the South, manages to take some shots at NCAA Football teams in the North, and goes on to brand its "Beer From Around Here" slogan.

Powerful wheat and banana and clove aroma. "Hello! Is that a banana or are you just happy to see me?" Damn, big banana. Plenty of cloves, too, like a little too much. Wheat flavors and texture are OK, but this is still a little watery. A light hoppy and bitter metallic nip hits your palate right at the end, not great. That's about it. Decent at best. I guess that confirms my suspicion that South Florida isn't really the South.

Dog Days (Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Book 4)

LEGO® Bricks & More Builders of Tomorrow Set 6177

Dog Days Are Over -- MP3 Download

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Warmer Winter Winter Warmer

Today I'm drinking Warmer Winter Winter Warmer brewed by Cigar City Brewing in Tampa, Florida. This beer, at least the 2009 version, was the first beer from Cigar City I ever drank. Today's bottle is from Winter, 2010--I've just had it laying around for a while. I don't remember the older bottle saying it was an English-style Barley Wine, but this one does. The label, designed by Juan Alvarez, is different and more colorful this time around. The story goes on to suggest this beer is made "to celebrate the idea of a snowy winter landscape" which is very funny for us Floridians. I did turn the AC colder as was recommended though!

Enormous head! And it sticks around too. Huge toffee and caramel aroma, sweet, and with a big raisin helping on the side. Flavors are just like that as well. Caramel and toffee and raisins, each more prominent than the others. Go figure that one out. Despite the large sweetness, you can taste quite a good dose of hops. Between the hops and heat from the 10% alcohol, the beer tries to make you forget how sweet it is. But more sweet orange and brown sugar flavors don't let that happen.

Chewy, sticky, syrupy. Quite a bit too sweet and unbalanced. The sherry-like flavors and others mentioned above are nice, but it's hard to get past the beer's sweetness and consistency. Tough to finish, though to be fair, we are talking about finishing a wine bottle of beer!

500 Soup Recipes: An unbeatable collection including chunky winter warmers, oriental broths, spicy fish chowders and hundreds of classic, chilled, ... soups from fresh ingredients to suit

Heath Milk Chocolate English Toffee 24 Bar

Newman's Own Organics Organic California Raisins, 15-Ounce Cans (Pack of 6)

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Maharaja -- Mug Of Saint Arnold Guest Post

Chalie from the Mug Of Saint Arnold blog and I were chatting the other day about swapping guest posts. I mentioned Avery's The Maharaja as a possible option, but obviously there was a bit of miscommunication. We both ended up reviewing that same beer. Anyway, we decided it would be interesting to have a Dueling Maharaja Day and compare notes. Here is Chalie's review...

Avery Maharaja

I have often over looked Avery Brewery when I make my beer runs. Not that they have bad beer, they  actually make really good ones. It’s just that they are always there, and I tend to look for new beers to my market. That all changed for me a few months ago when I found out that Avery would be pulling out of central Florida. I am not going to lie, I got scared.  Avery was a brewery that I took for granted, and now they could leave my area at some point in the future.  This realization inspired me to return Avery and their fine beers.

To celebrate my return to Avery, I cracked open a bottle of Avery Maharaja, an American double IPA with 10.3% alcohol. Maharaja is a seasonal brew from Avery in their dictator series.  There was no date on the bottle and I served the beer in a snifter.

The beer simply looked beautiful after I poured it. There was third of an inch, white, bubbly head on top of a clear copper body. The aroma was full of pungent citrus and pine hops, with herbal mint undertones. I took my first sip and it was like I drank some hop juice, which was absolutely delightful.  Within the hop flavor profile were white grapefruit, pine,white pepper and herbal mint notes.  There were also some subtle caramel
and bready malts trying to balance out the aggressive hop flavor. The high alcohol appeared on the finish, leaving a slight warming on the palate.

Maharaja is a near perfect DIPA and I enjoyed every sip of it.
Beer Score- 4.35/5.0      A

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Sunday, May 22, 2011

Shock Top Raspberry Wheat

Today I'm drinking a Shock Top Raspberry Wheat brewed by Shock Top Brewing Company in St. Louis, Missouri. I don't want to burst your bubble, but if you didn't know, that is Budweiser in disguise. I will not let that impair my judgement though. I tried the original Shock Top Belgian White a few years back and didn't seem to mind it, so let's check this one out. The label still has Orange-Face Mohawk dude with shades, but a few raspberries let you know this is an added flavor.

Lots of raspberries for an aroma. It smells like someone tried a little too hard to impress the boss, and came back from the lab with a super powerful raspberry candle aroma, with wheat. Sweet flavors, raspberry and wheat. I wish some tart fruity flavors were present, too, but this was more like a fruit juice or a flavored vodka minus the alcoholic bang. Your 5.2% alcohol is not really noticeable. What is noticeable, however, is the high prickly carbonation. Slightly too sweet but above their normal bland mass-produced beers. I know many friends that would totally dig this beer. Was OK.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Bohemia Clásica

Today I'm drinking Bohemia Clásica brewed by Cerveceria Cuauhtemoc Moctezuma in Monterrey, Mexico. I was approached by their Ad Agency to see if I'd like to do a review of this beer. Of course I said yes, and they sent me a six pack at no charge. I just need to do a review and give my honest opinion, no other strings attached. Talking to Total Wine's Ed Roberts, I don't even think this beer is distributed in South Florida. The bottle is one of those fat stubby bottles. The label is very simple, with a small depiction of a Mexican warrior. The cap and neck were covered with gold foil.

The aroma is full of corn and grain, and it is sweet. Sweet corn flavors to start, very smooth. Those sweet flavors meet some hoppy bitterness, balancing it slightly, but this beer remains on the sweet side throughout. Medium body, not watery or thin at all. Carbonation is good--I could have even used a little more. A bit boring, but sometimes boring is OK. A refreshing and decent beer.

Friday, May 20, 2011

April 2011 Top Five

I drank some nice beers in April. I will admit that this month wasn't as difficult to select a Top Five as was March, but there were still some awesome options and tough choices.

The famous Ed Roberts did two guest posts of beers from the Diamond Bear Brewing Company.  First, he explored Paradise Porter and the next day tackled Presidential IPA and Two Term DIPA. April also brought me a bottle of Home Brew Vanessa's Allez Brassé! Tripel. Mmmm! Nom Nom Nom!

Finally, I guess I took the Sam Adams Longshot challenge, meaning I drank and reviewed each of the three styles. I didn't really like any of them and was totally unimpressed and surprised that these could possibly be the winners. If you care, Friar Hop Ale, Honey B's Lavender Ale, and Blackened Hops are their names.

Anyway, here are your beers for this month:

April 2011 Top Five

1. Lagunitas Cappuccino Stout

2. Sea Bass

3. Flossmoor Station Brewers Whim Series

4. Samuel Adams East-West Kolsch

5. Namaste

Honorable Mentions:

Joe's Premium American Pilsner
Papaya IPA

Here is the Master List of Top Five Lists if you're looking for something to curl up in bed with! If you'd like to see all of April's reviews or just want to make your own list, here are all of April's reviews. Thanks for reading! If you find yourself slightly entertained, refer your friends.

Nerf N-Strike Longshot CS-6

Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies

Papaya Tree Live Outdoors/Container growing