Sunday, December 31, 2017

Deep Ellum IPA

A co-worker told me Dallas' Deep Ellum Brewing has made significant strides since she was in college. Simultaneously, like they were sharing one brain, another co-worker sent me some Deep Ellum beers including Deep Ellum IPA. This is their "year 'round ode to the Pacific Northwest Hop." The can design is either genius or that of a 3rd grade art class. This particular can has a bunch of birds on it. 7% alcohol. 70 IBU.

Sweet orange and tangerine aroma, juicy and delicious. Fruity orange flavors, tropical, nicely sweet at the start. Citrus and pine bitterness balance the beer and take it to its expected bitter profile. Very good flavors and totally yum!

Saturday, December 30, 2017

The Salty Lady

A friend in Texas recently sent me a box of local beers. Martin House The Salty Lady, a tart and refreshing Gose, was one of the first cans I grabbed. Made in Texas by Texans (in Fort Worth). There is a lady made of salt on the can. She probably looked back at Sodom and Gomorrah or something like that! 5.2% alcohol.

Super cloudy appearance, like a thick morning juice with pulp. Salty and tart grapefruit aroma. And this has a huge grapefruit flavor. Salty, nicely tart and lemony flavors, a tiny bit spicy. Has some body and texture which most gose don't. I liked it though maybe a little too thick texture-wise which subtracted from refreshment.

But seriously, this is the flavor profile that Corona tries to have you create with salt and citrus to kill the flavor of Corona. Nicely done!

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Rome City IPA

Brew Hub in Lakeland, FL brews some of their own beers besides contract brewing for some pretty awesome breweries. A few months ago, the store manager of my local haunt suggested their Rome City IPA, a new edition to their shelves. I checked it out then but was also in the same store when a guy had the staff grab a ladder so he could take an extra case of the stuff home with him!

Anyway, the can tells a story how Lakeland was almost named Rome City but nobody really knows why. Sounds like a wiki story, but it's how this beer was named. 5.8% alcohol.

Citrus aroma, candied orange rind, nice and juicy. Bright citrus flavors come first, sharp tangerine rinds, nicely bitter with just enough juicy sweet balance. Lightly tangy.

Dry throughout with a light astringency. Long lingering orange flavors left behind. Was good though I wanted a little more sweet balance. Check it out.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Arabicadabra Coffee Milk Stout

Arabicadabra? That is a WIN name, very clever! This is Bell's new Coffee Milk Stout which of course I decided to check out. A little story explains brewers' magic, coffee, and what the magician is doing on the label. 5.5% alcohol. PKG 10/17/2017

Excellent coffee and roasty aroma with chocolate. Super creamy. Plenty of roast and char, hint of smoke. Chalky texture.

Coffee is rich and delicious. Caramel and touch of cocoa are welcome additions. Good body. Nice beer! Check it out!

Monday, December 25, 2017

Star Trek The Next Generation Captain's Holiday

There's a Star Trek Beer? Yep! Shmaltz Star Trek The Next Generation Captain's Holiday hit shelves recently. They are celebrating 30 years of the series. 4.8% alcohol, says my bottle (their website says 5.5%). My guess after tasting is that this is a pale ale.

Fruity aroma with ripe mango, juicy, sweet, tangerine citrus. Similar flavors, very fruity and juicy, especially the loads of tangerine citrus.

A little spicy, hoppy bitterness does show through nicely. Dry at the finish. Very good beer with lots of flavor. Check it out!

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Ommegang Smoked Porter

Ommegang Smoked Porter is the brewery's newest limited edition beer. The bottle tells a little story-feel free to read it below in a font size bigger than the bottle offered. The label features a pipe and bottle merging in representation of what they hope to accomplish with this beer. 7.6% alcohol.

Nice chocolate and caramel aroma with hints of butterscotch, sweet and rich. Chocolate flavors come first with the smoke really shining through. Some burnt sugars flavors show through too. Sweet caramel, a little pruney flavor in the background.

Well balanced. Smokey flavors linger on the palate after each sip. Tasty beer!

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Mighty Things Imperial IPA

Inspired by a Teddy Roosevelt speech, Victory Brewing's Mighty Things Imperial IPA is what I'm checking out today. Enjoy By 15APR2018. 8.3% alcohol.

Very nice aroma full of orange citrus, very juicy, super fresh hops. Juicy orange sweet flavors are met immediately by an excellent citrus and bitterness. Spicy! Some pine creeps in but it's a citrus-forward beer, tangy, tangerines and oranges.

Good body, glad it wasn't too sweet like some DIPA. YUM, very tasty! One tip is to let it warm up a little out of the fridge when the flavors will pop more!

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

White Marlin Wit

Sailfish Brewing's White Marlin Wit recently appeared in a can on my local liquor store shelves. Sailfish is a Ft. Pierce, FL brewery that I visited two summers ago, got to meet the head brewer and a local city official day drinking with us! Nice label art on the can. 5.0% alcohol. 13 IBU

Lots of wheat with orange citrus on the nose. Wheaty, chewy texture. Orange citrus does break up the texture somewhat. Coriander and pepper show in the finish of each sip. Not bad, but the texture took away some refreshment. I'm pretty sure the beer was better at the brewery! Go visit!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Liquid Truth Serum IPA

"You Can Handle the Truth!" Well at least Dogfish Head thinks you guys can with their Liquid Truth Serum IPA. The label was done by artist Marq Spusta as part of the brewery's Off-Centered Art Series. And yeah, I have asked Dogfish for some unused labels to have Marq sign for another cool contest!

The art depicts some magic show or circus featuring dancing hops. 6.8% alcohol. Bottled On 09/27/17. "Truthfully Hoppy Without Being Deceptively Bitter."

Fruity aroma, very tame yet pleasant, citrus with maybe a hint of peach. Fruity flavors too, a little orange and citrus to start. A touch of pine, a little spicy, floral too.

Not overly bitter, a very balanced IPA. Dry with some light astringency at the finish. A little boring, mostly muted flavors. I prefer a bold stand in one category at least with an IPA: fruity, hoppy, bitter, some platform that takes a stand!

Monday, December 18, 2017

Barrel of Monks Three Fates Tripel

Barrel of Monks recently started distributing their Three Fates Tripel here locally. I'm sure you remember my visit to the brewery, right? I tried the beer that day but wanted a "home alone" chance to check it out. 9% alcohol and a story on the label to set your expectations.

Very pleasant aroma, sweet, fruity, very bright orange and some yeast. Similar flavors to start. Fruity, candy, honey sweetness. There is definitely a hoppy balance though. Dry.

The alcohol shows and really carries the wave of orange flavors. Yeasty character. Totally delicious! Lingering fruity finish.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Bushka Stout

Today I'm checking out Hollywood Brewing's Bushka Stout. Yes, Hollywood, FLORIDA, duh! This comes in a pounder can, nicely decorated with one of those Russian dolls. I checked the internets and best I can do with Bushka is "cute face," which makes sense. Urban dictionary has a few more takes, LOL.

"Brewed locally near the ocean, sand and seashells of the Sunshine State." 9.4% alcohol #HollywoodBeer

Light chocolate aroma, not that big. Flavors are a little fuller, rich chocolate and cocoa, caramel, some Publix cola and hints of dark fruit. There is a little spicy character. I convinced myself it has a cinnamon quality though I don't think that's an ingredient.

A little roasty, tiny char, noticeable alcohol, some kick. Was an OK beer! Check it out on the Hollywood Broadwalk!

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Yard House Sawgrass Mills Grand Opening

After a series of week-long special event parties, Yard House opened its Sawgrass Mills location to the public last Saturday 12/9 at 8pm! I was fortunate enough to be invited to check out the new place in the last party before that happened.

I was expecting a smallish gathering, and while my perfect record of on-time attendance showed that might be the case, it was clear later on this was a big gathering. I didn't know anyone but the staff made me feel like I was friends with everyone!

A few beers, passed hors d'oeuvres (the wings were the best of the night, juicy and spicy) to check out a lot of what Yard House offers, super friendly and knowledgeable staff, what more could I ask for? Except more beers?!?

Now... I've tried almost every beer on the menu, but there were some I was aiming for. And the Yard House staff had no problem offering little tastes to see if you wanted to go "all-in" on a particular beer. Funniest moment: bartender can't find Bud Light tap and manager can't either (for whatever poor sap was asking for that crap)!!!

The first thing I asked for was a taste of their Anniversary Tripel, brewed in Belgium with Brasserie de Silly, then aged in cognac barrels. Yeah, right? Duh! I took a sip then immediately ordered a full glass! Sweet but super awesome!

Besides that, I am in love with Civil Society's Fresh IPA. My wife was like "I've never tasted a beer that I think is more your style." We bonded after that perfection. I almost proposed all over again!

One Green Flash beer was kicked from the prior parties, a few beers on the menu still didn't arrive since Keg Day, but Yard House is a sweet addition to the brutality which is Sawgrass Mills shopping. Wives should drop their husbands off here, with gift card in hand, of course!

One last comment: this was the best service I have ever received at any bar ever! I've been to some really awesome events, private at The Biltmore, etc., and damn these guys and gals crushed that aspect. If they keep that up, everyone will always stop by! The end.

Crusted Salmon, might have been second favorite

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Budweiser 1933 Repeal Reserve Amber Lager

All of you have seen Bud's TV push on their Budweiser 1933 Repeal Reserve Amber Lager on commercials. It should be awesome, right? They rolled out their old label and bottle and some stuff about repealing prohibition, but this is just Bud right?

Nope. This is Bud 6.1% which I tasted out of my "Bud Product Pint Glass." Grainy, caramel, toasty aroma. The flavors are similar, full of sweet grain, caramel, some nuttiness. Herbal with a hint of alcohol.

Screams MACRO! Off-putting sweetness and generally corny flavors, metallic finish, bad aftertaste.

Sorry I was hoping for better but was screwed!

Monday, December 4, 2017

Enjoy By 12.25.17 Unfiltered IPA

Stone Brewing released another "Enjoy By" beer recently, this time an unfiltered IPA due by 12.25.17, an Enjoy By Christmas beer! This can is "Joyously Fresh," canned on 11/19/2017. 9.4% alcohol.

Stone Enjoy By 12.25.17 Unfiltered IPA has a beautiful color and a bright sweet tangerine aroma. Flavors start out juicy, tropical, fresh, with tangerines and a hint of mango.

Spicy and sharp next, prickly carbonation. Excellent bitterness counters the initial sweet fruitiness. Alcohol provides a noticeable kick. Fantastic, as usual.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Gulden Draak 9000 Quadruple

Quad Day 2017 (#QuadDay) was FANTASTIC! It started with a bottle of this awesome Quad and progressed into a party at my house celebrating my birthday and our new backyard featuring a travertine patio with a beautiful pergola! How did you celebrate this event?

Gulden Draak 9000 has a sweet candi, caramel and raisin aroma, while not hiding the booziness of the beer! Flavors are similar and then some! Caramel, raisins, bread, boozy. And then you get a huge hit of toffee! 10.7% alcohol.

Big body, rich, spicy with a touch of citrus. Delicious, sweet, yum!

Monday, November 27, 2017

A Visit to NightLife Brewing Company

NightLife Brewing Company had their grand opening October 7, 2017. That's approximately 2 years after last night's bartender started growing his epic beard! NightLife is located under one of Marlins Park's parking garages, pretty sweet location.

But out of season, there wasn't much action, except for the Miami Brew Bus crowd. They were on a tour of the brewing area when we got there, but definitely made a presence in the Tap Room afterward!

My wife and our friends did a flight of all 7 NightLife beers so we could decide which beers to grab a full pour. Next Thursday Pale Ale, 90 Mile Pale Ale, and Flight to Freedom Golden Strong Ale were the winners. NightLife also had a nice selection of guest taps available.

The beers were excellent! You should definitely support these guys out of season because I know this place is going to kick ass when baseball starts  up again! Great location and brews!

1588 NW 7th St, Miami FL, 33125
Tuesday - Thursday: 4pm - 11pm
Friday: 4pm - Late
Saturday: 1pm - Late
Sunday: 1pm - 9pm
PHONE 786-787-BEER

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Last Days of Summer Fruited Sour Ale

Tampa Bay Brewing's local rep Dan Von Husen was pouring some Last Days of Summer Fruited Sour Ale last month at Grovetoberfest! I was sipping some Reef Donkey, but Dan was having a ball with the thousands of attendees!

Anyway, a day later, I grabbed a can of Last Days to check out for myself. "Crafted For The Florida Lifestyle" 16 oz pounder can. This is a sour ale brewed with mango and peach. Can art depicts a hazy SW Florida sunset.

Tons of mangoes in the aroma with a hint of tartness. Flavors start with a giant, juicy dose of ripe mangoes. Some prickly light sour tartness follows, adds a little balance.

Peaches are secondary for sure. Last Days has a sweet and sour candy type taste, sugary yet tart at the same time. Refreshing. Check it out!

Friday, November 24, 2017

WHOOPS! Florida Weisse

Coppertail Brewing recently added WHOOPS! to its Florida Weisse Series, this time including Cranberry and Hibiscus into the Berliner Weisse base. The label art is as always very fun, and includes Cr and Hb Periodic Table entries for this beers additions. 3.5% alcohol. Best By 01/23/18.

Thanksgiving cranberry jam aroma with a light brininess. Nicely tart flavors to start with a tangy zip. Cranberries start sweet but then play to the tartness which the hibiscus adds an initial floral hint in the background.

Kool-Aid kind of feel, sweet background with a tart twang. Hint of saltiness at the finish. Very good though I preferred the earlier entries in this Florida Weisse Series. Check it out!

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Proof Brewing Mango Wit

Tallahassee's Proof Brewing Mango Wit hit Miami liquor shelves fairly recently, so I grabbed a can to check out. On the back of the can, an unexplained Gorilla lets you know this has 5.7% alcohol and 18 IBU. Yes, I know the website says 5.2% alcohol--feel free to take up the discrepancy with the brewery--I double-checked my can. A little story on the can also sets your expectations.

Super ripe mango aroma, I liked that! Juicy mangoes first, nicely sweet. Belgian yeast is very noticeable while the wheat adds some texture and tang. Nice flavors, though I wanted more crispness and more bitter balance for refreshment.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Guinness 200th Anniversary Draught Stout

Guinness is celebrating their 200th Anniversary of their first export to America, releasing a special edition of their Draught Stout. You will probably see cans like these pictures in your local mega mart featuring "Guinness-Over-Rushmore" artwork from the 1950's. Is that a fleet of Toucans delivering pints of Guinness? This 14.9 oz can features a widget to get your beer nitrogen ready!

Nice chocolate and roast aroma, cocoa. Super creamy and full of chocolate, cocoa powder and roasty goodness. Pretty thin, as usual! Hey, it's Guiness Draught, just with a fun anniversary and art!

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Wild Night Honey Cream Ale

Today I'm checking out Swamp Head Wild Night Honey Cream Ale: "Inherently Floridian." The scene on the can depicts some swamp fishing, and the story on the back tells the story of proud bees, happy to have their honey featured in this beer! 5.0% alcohol.

Soft apple and sweet honey aroma. Nice honey flavors also start things off. Fruity apple nuances also very pleasant. Simple but tasty. Excellent prickly carbonation also enhances the flavors and a nice bitter balance. "12 pack in one beach day" beer (even if you don't like the beach)!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Black Forest Cake Stout with Cherry

Victory Brewing recently introduced their Blackboard Series Release No. 07: Black Forest Cake Stout with Cherry. This is a 2017 release. 7.5% alcohol.

Aroma full of sweet chocolate, mocha, coffee and Christmas, but just a faint hint of cherries. Cherries, however, steal the flavor show! Super juicy and nicely tart cherries. Sweet chocolate does add some balance but remains a secondary flavor. A little coffee and roast.

Beer has a dessert quality, rich, good flavors, but the cherries got to be a little much by the end of the bottle. Wanted a lot more Chocolate CAKE!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Noble Prize Imperial Pilsner

I hadn't seen Boulevard's Noble Prize Imperial Pilsner locally in Miami... except in a mixed 8 pack featuring pairs of four different Smokestack Series beers. So I grabbed that, not just for the new pair but because the other three Smokestack options in the pack are great! 7.5% alcohol. 32 IBU. Best By Smudge, 2018 so I'm good since I drank last month.

Sweet grain, apple aroma. Similar flavors, bready to start. Sweet apples and honey, a nice fruity touch. Flavors are enhanced by a noticeable alcohol kick. Prickly carbonation and a good hoppy bitter balance lead into a dry finish. I liked it!

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Sorcha O'Sullivan India Pale Ale

Just finished checking out Coppertail Brewing's Sorcha O'Sullivan India Pale Ale. Now someone please enlighten me on who Sorcha O'Sullivan is. I thought Evan B Harris' label art depicting a bunch of drunken animals capturing a woman in a net might give me a clue, but that just confused the hell out of Google!

This beer is part of Coppertail's Alpha Hunt Series and features Medusa and Idaho 7 hop varieties. 6.3% alcohol. Best By 01/17/18

Very interesting aroma full of bright, sharp lemons, tangy and maybe leafy. Similar flavors follow. Sharp lemon and candied citrus rind. Dry, some astringency. A little peppery and spicy. Makes the taste buds water for sure. Bitter but 'different' bitter and not overly so. I liked it! Check it out!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Biscayne Gold

I ran into the Gravity Brewlab guys at Grovetoberfest last month. These guys are still looking for a place to call their own, but have an arrangement and currently are brewing their own beer at Hollywood Brewing.

Biscayne Gold is a beer they are also canning and distributing locally. The art depicts a woman picking hop cones and placing them in her basket. 6.2% alcohol. I saw online this is listed as an IPA.

Sweet honey, apple aroma, didn't strike me as an IPA. Sweet and juicy, again with apples and honey, Tangy and a little spicy with some bitter kick takes this to the finish. Decent bitterness. Not sure I call this an IPA but the flavors were pretty good.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Big Nose India Pale Ale

Gainesville's Swamp Head Brewery recently started distributing a few of their beer to South Florida. Big Nose India Pale Ale was the first one I grabbed. The can depicts a swamp scene with a local Okefenokee Swamp resident emerging from the water and showing off his big nose.

"Inherently Floridian" and the story on the back of the can suggests this is a "mystical nectar," ending with "BEER ME!" 7.3% alcohol. 

Orange and citrus aroma is there, but not a BIG NOSE, not even close. Flavors are a little more explosive and very nice. Juicy tangerines and citrus jump on your taste buds right from the start. Nicely bitter, a little spicy, hints of pine. Very good flavors, highly enjoyable!