Thursday, June 30, 2011

Bourbon Barrel Aged Lake Trout Stout -- Beerlyweds Guest Post

Today, a guest post by The Beerlyweds team, Jess and Chad. They have a previous appearance, reviewing some big DIPA by Rock Art Brewery, but this seems to be more of a back-and-forth exchange than that. Totally dig the IM-type conversation. Chad let me know that they preferred reviewing local beers when they do guest posts since most of the time it's a new experience for most readers. So here you go...

Bourbon Barrel Aged Lake Trout Stout

Hi, we're Jess and Chad, we review as The Beerlyweds or @Beerlyweds on Twitter. We are a couple from Maine, married on St. Patrick's Day 2007. We enjoy visiting breweries, attending brewfests and trying anything new we can get our hands on. Although we rarely find the time to write our own reviews, we love guest reviewing for friends. For those of you that have never read one of our reviews, it's pretty simple: H=Husband, W=Wife. We live together and drink together, but we don't always agree with each other.

Tonight we are reviewing a Bourbon Barrel Aged Lake Trout Stout by Sebago Brewing Co. This is a limited release stout. Lake Trout Stout is available year round but the Bourbon Aged is not. We were unable to track down a % ABV on this beer but the straight up LTS is 5.8%.

This beer pours a deep black color with a ring around the glass for head.

The Smell

W: this will be an interesting review, I'm not sure my sense of smell or taste is quite right being sick.
H: It'll be fine, what do you smell?
W: This smells like a high alcohol beer, picking up a hint of smoke.
H: I don't pick up on the Alcohol in the nose, it's definitely a very roasty, malty smell, I do get some smoke and some of the oak is there, something else but I'm not quite sure what.

The Taste

W: Pretty smooth, Slight carbonation.
H:This has a smooth, creamy mouthfeel.
W:I'm getting a lot of smoke, This is very Malty, no hops flavor at all.
H: I agree with the smoke and malt, I'm getting a little bit of a Bourbon flavor up front but that drops immediately and is replaced with a smokiness and a bit of a harsh Oak flavor.
W:I'm not getting any of that Bourbon.
H: i'm not getting any of the Vanilla that the bottle mentions, I wonder if thats what i was picking up in the Nose, There isn't much for sweetness in this even though it's malty.
W: No this is more of a Roasty Malt than a Sweet Malt.
H: I will say that this doesn't leave you with a Clean palate, The smoke flavor hangs around, if there was some alcohol burn in there i might feel like i could breathe fire.


W:This is really not a beer for me, I love a good stout but this isn't something i'd choose for myself.
H: I like this beer, I agree it's probably not an everyday drink
W:No, i wouldn't mind it again but not anytime soon
H: This strikes me as a nice beer to Pair with a Cigar, but not something i'd want to drink more than one of in a night.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Oro de Calabaza

Today I'm drinking Oro de Calabaza, a Bière de Garde brewed by Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales in Dexter, Michigan. This is Batch 728, bottled in a wine bottle on 4-19-2011 after being aged in oak casks. The label art depicts an open treasure chest on the beach of a deserted tropical island, palm swaying in the breeze. The colors are very soothing, except for the treasure, bright golden glowing bottles of Oro de Calabaza. Mmmm. A story on the side talks a little about the beer.

Lemony citrus aroma, very much surrounded by a bouquet of yeasty, musty, wet clothes. Yum! Sour Granny Smith Apple flavors are sharper than expected, but in a pleasant surprise kind of way. Nice tartness! The carbonation really makes for a great mouthfeel as well. There is plenty of lemon citrus, and an intense acidic, wine-like (let's go with Pinot Grigio) flavor is present for the entire wine bottle. Some light peppy pepper and spiciness also come in and out of play.

Now, there is definitely a funky yeasty flavor, but not nearly as much as in the aroma. The tangy fruit flavors linger long after each sip, and the 8% alcohol does a great job of accentuating that right at the end. Very pleasant and enjoyable aftertaste. And a great beer! BTW. I am enjoying this at a cool and NOT cold temperature, so think about that. Get yourself a bottle!

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1917 Series One Dollar Gold Certificate

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Corne du Diable

Today I'm drinking Corne du Diable brewed by Microbrasserie Dieu du Ciel in St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada. The illustration of the Devil with horns drinking a beer out of another horn and dressed in a fancy old-time suit was done by

I'll tell you what. I'm very confused. The front of the label says this is an American-Style India Pale Ale, but the story on the side says this is their "interpretation of the classic English India Pale Ale [and is] very much in the American style." WTF does that mean? At least we know that the name translates to Horn of the Devil.

Quite the sweet caramel, malty tea aroma. Sweet caramel flavors open things up as well. Soon after, a little astringent lemony bitterness comes next and persists, slowly eating away at that sweetness until it's totally gone. Grassy and a little spicy in the middle. The aftertaste is not that great. Alcoholic dry (6.5% alcohol) with an unappealing medicinal flavor that lingers for a long time. Decent prickly carbonation but the one-dimensional flavors ending with an unwelcome aftertaste leave me to yearn for many other beers. Oh, and this tasted nothing like an American-Style IPA. Maybe a bad British one, but whatever. Pass.

A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs: Of Eastern and Central North America (Peterson Field Guide)

Great American Craft Beer: A Guide to the Nation's Finest Beers and Breweries

Monday, June 27, 2011

Red Brick Double IPA

Today I'm drinking Red Brick Double IPA brewed by Atlanta Brewing Company in Atlanta, Georgia. The standard "Beer From Around Here" slogan appears on the cap and front of an extremely uninspiring label. The phrase DOUBLE IPA appears on a shield backed by a diagonal line design. Reminds me of one of those "smart kid" tests where they want you to find something hidden in the pattern. Anyway, gold and brown blend into each other in a very drab way. Let's hope the beer is awesome, which is what really matters.

Very bready malty aroma, with light orange fruit and a hint of spice.  Heavy sweet malty beginning. Tons of bread and candy and tropical fruit flavors. A little syrupy and definitely way way way too sweet. Some spicy black pepper and pine flavors try to thin out the thickness, but they are no match for the overt sweet flavors here.

The alcohol is noticeable yet nicely masked. A bit under-carbonated makes for an even less desirable experience. It is smooth, but not very enjoyable. Average at best and there are literally dozens of beers in this style that I would choose before this one. Sorry to break that to you. Gonna have a Sierra Nevada Torpedo Extra IPA now. Take that as a recommendation.

Rorschach: The Inkblot Party Game

The Mensa Genius Quiz-a-day Book

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Titan IPA

I'm on my way to Disney right now, assuming you're reading this within a few hours of it's publication time. I have most of the week scheduled for your reading delight, but may throw in a bonus post here and there, depending on what I find to drink in Orlando. And I will be paying attention to all comments while gone, so let me know what you think.

Today I'm drinking Titan IPA brewed by Great Divide Brewing company in Denver, Colorado. I remember reviewing this once before, but apparently it's a beer I review every thirteen months. First in March, 2009; then April, 2010; and now, June, 2011. See you next July-ish, too, I guess. One of the suggested food pairings is grilled halibut, which I wish I had available. Bottled on January 22, 2011.

Piney hops with caramel and a spicy black pepper aroma.  Lemon and orange citrus flavors open up the store, quite hoppy. Also, the 7.1% alcohol is biting and burning right from the very start, and plays nicely with a nippy spicy black pepper. Next, some bready malt comes in to tone down the initial bitterness and burn.

Actually, by the end of the glass, that malty sweetness turned the initial bitterness upside down, and the bitterness was almost completely washed away. Carbonation is good and really grabs at your palate. Well balanced overall, though I wish that ending sweetness didn't swing the pendulum quite so far. Nice flavors and an enjoyable beer. Check it out for sure.

Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr.

Canari Cyclewear Men's Arrogant Bastard Jersey

Kindle, Wi-Fi, Graphite, 6" Display with New E Ink Pearl Technology - includes Special Offers & Sponsored Screensavers

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Samuel Adams Light

Today I'm drinking Samuel Adams Light brewed by The Boston Beer Company in Boston, Cincinnati or Breinigsville, Pennsylvania. I used my Sam Adams pint glass, of course. This label is another where the brewery uses giant lettering to brand the name and buries what seems to be a beautiful lighthouse on the ocean scene behind it. Since it's a light, you get the full lab analysis too. Per 12 ounces: calories 119; carbohydrates 9.6g; protein 1.0g; fat 0.0g. Enjoy before September, 2011.

Malty sweet aroma, not too powerful. Well, I don't want to shock you, but this tastes like a light Boston Lager. The beer has the same malty sweetness and herbal tea-like qualities, but the depth of flavor leans much more to the bland side. Much more watery and lighter body. There is a nice hoppy character which provides a welcome bitterness and balance. The aftertaste is the only negative I have to say, just a little off. Your carbonation is prickly and adds to the beer's refreshment. A good light beer, if that's your thing. Personally, I have no problem with it being part of the Summer Styles 12 pack. Go for it.

Fenway Beer Soap- Made with Sam Adams Boston Lager

Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass Set of 2

Friday, June 24, 2011

Big Shot Espresso Stout

Today I'm drinking Big Shot Espresso Stout brewed by Twisted Pine Brewing Company in Boulder, Colorado. This beer is part of their Timberline Series. The label shows a hot mug of joe with some steam coming off of it. There is a little story on the side, which you can read below, and they note this is a winner of GABF Silver Medal in 2008.

WONDERFUL coffee aroma, reminds me when my wife's Cuban friend comes over and makes that coffee. MUCH thinner than I was expecting from such a rich and luscious aroma. Flavors do revolve around coffee, but they are very much departed from the coffee aroma. Malty old coffee flavors, flat and stale. Not sweet in the slightest. Rather, this beer is on the bitter and even salty side.

There are no burnt flavors, which is a profile I don't dig, so that was cool. Roasted and nutty make a short guest appearance. Smooth texture, but the stale coffee was enough that I didn't even finish half of Big 22. The End. Get something else. Let me know if you need a recommendation.

500 Beers: The Only Beer Compendium You'll Ever Need (Sellers Publishing)

Big Shot -- Billy Joel MP3

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Calabaza Blanca

Today I'm drinking Calabaza Blanca, an artisan white ale brewed with spices by Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales in Dexter, Michigan. The label depicts a young girl in a dress watching a brightly moonlit sailboat in the crashing waves. The label says this beer is barrel aged and bottle conditioned. A sticker on the back says Batch 777 Bottled 4-20-2011. Finally, there is a story on the side that perfectly sets your expectations for the beer. Too bad I didn't read it until after I was already done with the wine bottle!

Big billowing fluffy head. Wheat and lemon aroma with some spice as well. Quite a tart lemony citrus flavor start, big yet not obnoxious. A large dose of wheat comes in to douse away all of that sour, literally burying it in flavor and texture. A little hint of sourness does reappear right at the end inviting you to take another sip. Now, when I say carbonation, you say... carbonation. This guy's got big bubbly goin' on.

Orange and coriander flavors are persistent throughout and ride the carbonation all around your mouth. A super dry finish leaves your palate almost completely clean. Time to repeat. Refreshing despite the big texture. An easy drinker. Wine bottle gone. Check it out!

SaltShaker Spanish-English-Spanish Food & Wine Dictionary - Second Edition

Simply Organic Coriander Seed Ground Certified Organic, 2.29-Ounces Containers (Pack of 3)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Dernière Volonté

Today I'm drinking Dernière Volonté brewed by Microbrasserie Dieu du Ciel in St-Jerome, Quebec, Canada. I thoroughly enjoyed their Péché Mortel just a few days ago. As was the case with that beer, the illustration for this bottle was done by The name for this beer translates to "Last Will" and the illustration appears to show one girl holding another that is dying. 11.5 ounce bottle and none of the numbers are notched on the side.

Yeast, fruity apple and faint spice aroma. Not so much going on. Light fruity sweetness to start, but that rapidly turns to a grassy bitter which lasts throughout. This beer has quite the peppery spicy undertone to it as well. You will not have any trouble finding a yeasty twangy kind of flavor, either. You finish with a lemony and hoppy bitter combined with a touch of the 6.5% alcohol dryness. A light funk is left behind which I didn't really dig. I didn't do a very good job keeping the yeast out of my glass, so that could have contributed to that. Not a bad beer.

Adams Prepare A Last Will and Testament Software, CD Version includes e-Book (ALC602)

Apple iPod touch 32 GB (4th Generation) NEWEST MODEL

Kindle, Wi-Fi, Graphite, 6" Display with New E Ink Pearl Technology - includes Special Offers & Sponsored Screensavers

Monday, June 20, 2011

May 2011 Top Five

May was a busy month. Sierra Nevada started selling their Best of Beer Camp mixed 12 pack, which contained four different beers. In order of enjoyment, I drank and reviewed the Weizenbock, California Common, Double IPA and Juniper Black Ale.

No sooner did that end than Samuel Adams released their Latitude 48 Deconstructed mixed 12 pack, containing six different pairs of beers. Five pairs represented a single hop used in the making of the final product, which was also included. I drank the first two in May, Simcoe and East Kent Goldings, and since I drank them all by now, let me suggest passing them by, unless you really just want to learn what profile each hop variety offers. They aren't very appealing alone, as a generalization.

Chalie from The Mug of Saint Arnold did a guest post of Avery's Maharaja, and I did the same for his blog.  In between all of those, I tackled a bunch of others including (popular among beer snobs) Shock Top Raspberry Wheat, Beach Bum Blonde Ale and Bohemia Clásica.

But in the end, these were your winners, May's Top Five.

May 2011 Top Five

1. Colette Farmhouse Ale

2. Ommegang BPA Belgian-style Pale Ale

3. Best of Beer Camp #37 Weizenbock
4. Heavy Seas Peg Leg Imperial Stout
5. Ovila Dubbel

Here is the Master List of Top Five Lists to add to your summer reading list! And here is a full list of all the beers from May. Thanks for reading! If you enjoyed reading this, I have a really good idea. You could be enjoying it each morning when you open your inbox. Yes, it really is that simple. Oh, and tell your friends. They will thank you!

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Libbey 12-Piece International Beer Glasses Set