Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Ninth Meeting

We're convening for our ninth meeting at Tom and Derek's house in Golden Valley. This week, we're sampling Belgian Tripels. They were selected by Brother Tom, as it is the style of his favorite beer.

Our first beer tonight is Affligem Tripel. This is a gin-u-wine Belgian tripel that comes in at 9.5%. The smell seems a litle earthier than the tripels I'm used to, and it pours the standard tripel color, which is a cloudy hef-like color. Notes of citrus and Belgian candi sugar coat the tongue.

BPA: 3.41

The next beer is Unibroue La Fin du Monde, which is my personal favorite beer. It pours a slightly lighter color, and it smells floral and wonderful. It's very carbonated, citrusy, and candied. Joe: "This stuff is just a treat." Colin thinks this club is just about free-flowing discussion about beer, after we attacked Belfry for thinking the first one is better than this one. On to the ratings

BPA: 3.71

Third up is Big Sky Buckin Monk, brought to us (obviously) by Brother Derek. This one is a delicious 10.5% ABV. "There is some serious chunking in this one," and "It looks like my door being screw-drived" are such comments coming from the group. It's pretty chunky nums. It's tasty, and it gets hotter the longer it stays on the tongue. Pretty dang tasty. As soon as it warms up, it sucks, says Joe.

BPA: 2.61

Batting cleanup is Maredsous Tripel, which is another true Belgian. It's a darker pour than most of the other tripels. Everyone agrees it has a smooth, balanced taste. I've never had this before, and it's quite impressive. Brent's diggin' this a lot.

BPA: 3.43

Next up is Kasteel Tripel. Friar Belf brought this one to us. It smells just like the Maredsous and Unibroue beers. It tastes just like it smells. DELICIOUS! Once again, conversation is veering off the road. We're making grand plans of wearing Dri-Fit tuxedo shirts to ABR. Next!

BPA: 3.40

Our second to last pour is Bell's Sparkling Ale. A few of us first tasted this at the food and wine festival the last couple of years, and I remember it being delicious. Keep in mind this was after 5 hours of eating random cheeses and drinking skanky beers and wines. This one pours the color of lager. It's a very smooth taste, but you can taste the candi sugars at the end.

BPA: 3.63

Last up: Gouden Carolus Tripel. It smells a little bit more floral than the last few. It's a light, carbonated beer that's pretty delicious. This last segment has gotten off-topic, as we've shown Check it Out! with Dr. Steve Brule. I recommend it if you'd like to learn about foods.

BPA: 3.29

And we're done. That was a pretty tasty theme tonight, and it may have garnered some of the highest ratings. But that is for scientists to decide. Cat Scraps!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Eighth Meeting

Tonight is the first of the Belgian tastings to which we've all been looking forward. For we thirst for Quads! A quadrupel is a dark, strong Belgian ale that also happens to be the style of the #1 beer on BA. Since none of us have taken a trip to the Belgian plains lately, we've been unable to obtain it. We're settling for five lesser, yet high quality brews.

Tonight, we're joined by Brothers Colin, Tom, and Brent, and Noobs Tom J and Mike. Our side-sippin' beers include Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter and Surly Coffee Bender.

First up: Urthel Samaranth. This one is corked and caged, as is any good Belgian. This one's 11% ABV and pours a dark reddish brown. It smells sweet with a slight hint of booze. It tastes smoother than Wally Sczerbiak's J, and wetter than his hair gel. One can tell there's booze in it, but it doesn't negatively affect the taste at all. Brent says he's already drunk from his first 3 ounces, but that's because he showed up with a new haircut. Most of us feel it tastes like a strong ale.

BPA: 2.94

Next up is the St. Bernardus Abt 12, nicknamed "Nard Dawg." It's #26 on BA, and one of the top quads. I've had this enough at the Bulldog NE to know this is an A. It pours much darker than the last one. "Oh God, it's so carbonated and dark fruity mmmm!" -Me. Colin just threw Bailey a pretzel and it bounced out of her mouth and back into the pretzel bowl so we don't know which one it is OMG grossss! Mouthfeel: It fills Mike's whole mouth. Tastes like pop rocks to Tom J.

BPA: 3.66

Our next flavor option is Ommegang's Three Philosophers. It's a Belgian-style ale brewed in Cooperstown, NY. This pours a dark mahogany, much like the smell of my classic book collection. This one is a hair fruitier than the other two. Brent and I agree that it's more candied than the first one, but still uncarbonated enough to be a strong ale.

BA: 3.46

Next we have Unibroue La Terrible. This is my personal favorite brewery. I've tasted this one before, but not in years. It's a Belgian-style brewery out of Montreal and this hot dog comes in at 10.5%. It pours a dark black. Darker than Ruben Sierra. And it tastes figgier than figgy pudding. It doesn't have a strong smell, but it goes from a stout like smoothness into figs and candi sugar.

BPA: 3.46

Finally, we have one that none of us have tried. It's called Lozen Boer, and it's a product of the Proefbrouwerij. It pours a dark brown and it smells just like the Nard Dawg. The mouthfeel is a little thinner than the Bernardus, but basically the same taste. Pretty tasty stuff, says all of us.

BPA: 3.54

There you have it. Not too drunk of an affair, but everyone has yet to stand up. Next week we'll have Tripels. Boner!

Here's a picture of an empty bottle of Westvleteren 12