Tuesday, March 29, 2011
We've got a nice gathering of folks for this 37th meeting of the Wild Turkey Beer Club. We gather here at Joe's house for session ales. It's not necessarily a style, but we've narrowed it down to beers that are less than 5% ABV. Joe, Derek, Turnbull, Lampe, Mike, Colin, Brent, Woodpond, and I are here this evening.
First up, Joe has Victory Headwaters Pale Ale. This is technically an American Pale Ale. Joe started the night off by violating his own style rules and bringing a beer that's 5.1%. It's a pretty light smell- tastes and looks like a Pils. It's real light tasting... some hops, but thin. Most of the conversation is centered around recalling Firkin Fest right now.
Next up, Derek brings us New Glarus Unplugged Apple Ale, which comes in at 4%. It's considered a Fruit beer, and if there's one thing NG is known for, it's fruit beers. It smells like a cinnamony, spicy cider. It pretty much tastes like an apple cider with a cinnamon kick at the end. That's about all I can write about this one.
Turnbull brings us Fuller's London Pride, which is an English Pale Ale that boasts 4.7% alcohol. Described to us by Turnbull as a classic pub ale, this one pours a golden amber with small foam presence. This smells sweet and spicy- not what I expected. It certainly has a caramelly kick for a pale ale. Pretty good stuff.
Next we have Warsteiner Premium Verum, brought to us by Lampe. This German Pilsener is 4.8%. I don't believe I've seen this one before. It smells sweet and Pils-y. It's malty and fairly bitter- a pretty flavorful lager.
Our next beer is our first wheat of the night- Hoegaarden. Everyone's had this one before. It's surprisingly tasty for a macro-ish European beer. It pours a cloudy golden color. It's drinkable with a light wheaty, yeasty flavor with some lemon tartness.
This week marks the first week Stone distributes to MN, and Colin brings to us Levitation Ale. It looks and smells like a red, but it's pretty bitter and lacks some malt. However, it's surprising that it's 4.4%. It starts off bitter but ends pretty light. Mixed reviews on this one.
Brent brings us 21st Amendment Bitter American, which is an American Pale Ale. This has a nice balance between the hops and malts for a beer of 4.4%. It's pretty tasty and going down easy. Too bad this isn't the same price as Bud Light otherwise it would be my softball beer of choice.
Goose Island 312 Wheat aka Budweiser 312 Wheat is next. This one smells of wheat, lemon, and yeast and that's exactly how it tastes. It's probably GI's top selling beer and one of the main reasons Anheuser Busch just bought Goose Island yesterday. It's a pretty drinkable, light wheat beer. It's considered an American Pale Wheat Ale.
Bell Oarsman is up next. I've seen this around the liquor stores for some time and I've always enjoyed the picture on the bottle. It's classified as an American Pale Wheat Ale, but it's definitely more sour than that. It definitely tastes like a Berlinerweiss, because it's light and sour. Lemongrass notes are pretty even throughout the flavor.
Last up is Deception by Fitgers. BONUS BEER!! This is an extreme derivation from tonight's theme. This is an Imperial Stout with Cherries and Lacto added, which gives it a sour taste. It's boozy, but pretty dang tasty. Derek brought us a growler down from Duluth.
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Meeting #36! Here we are at Dan Turnbull's home for the latest installment of beer club. He's going from noob to brother right before our eyes. He chose a style we haven't done yet- Maibocks. It's just a little bit early so not all of the breweries have released their version yet, but we have enough to field a solid beer club.
First up we have a German version of this beer brought to you by Aktien-Braureri Kaufbeuren Heller Belli Bock! Abv = 6.9%. It pours a really clear, thin looking gold color. It has little to no head on it. It's thin and wet at the beginning but ends up with a sweetish, caramelly spicy kick. Some similar notes as an Oktoberfest.
Secondly we have Smuttynose Maibock, which is described as A Robust Seasonal Lager. No duh, this thing comes in at 8.7% LOL! This one pours much cloudier than the last, but it smells the same. It's pretty strong tasting- here's an accurate formula. This beer:Last beer::Double IPA:IPA. We have just found out this is the highest rated beer of the night and second highest Maibock on BA. Let's rate
Next up we have another German beer. The name of the brewery is too long to type but the beer is called Wohn's Heller Bock. This one is also surprisingly strong- 7.2%. This pours similar to the last German one- a little more clear than the American one. However, this is pretty smooth, yet it has a nice lager kick. So far all three beers have had very similar flavors. Tastes like May.
Tom J brings us not a bonus beer, but bonus quantity! Somehow, somewhere he came upon a growler of Rogue Dead Guy Ale. Which doesn't make a ton of sense, considering Maibocks are lagers. This one also pours a cloudier like the other American one. It smells sweet and scrumptious. This is quite an interesting tasting cup of liquid. This is definitely the hoppiest one we've had yet- but it's a smooth hoppy.
Schell's Maifest is our next beer. This is the first American Maifest that looks like a German one. It smells spicy and sweet, as is the wont of the style. This one definitely has a big kick at the end and I can't tell if it's alcohol or hops or the sweetness of the malts. This is another sneaky 7.2%. Our first MN beer in quite a while, I think.
We decided to switch up the order a bit so we can pit the two locals in a head to head matchup.... presenting Summit Maibock at 6.7%. This is another clear pour with a slight sticky head. Wow- this has quite a different smell than the last several. Malts malts malts, all I taste is malts. It tastes like crackers or bread- really malty with just a slight tinge of the Maibock taste we've seen with every previous offering.
Capital Brewery's Maibock is up next @ 6.2%. 6.2%?? We haven't had anything this low in over a month. Another crispy, clear pour... perhaps it's not a continental thing, but rather a high alcohol trend. This is yet another malty, bready offering. Although, this one is a little smoother than the last.
I believe this is our last Maibock of the night before BONUS BEER! We have Sierra Nevada Glissade Golden Bock. It looks, pours, and smells the same as the original few. There is a nice malty presence with this guy. Well the beer club has become more involved with Tosh.0, once again, so let's move on.
BONUS BEER TIME! Derek brings to us Green Flash Imperial IPA. Daddy, this one is 9.4%. It pours a slightly cloudy orange. Oh boy- that's pretty tasty. Citrus, tons of hops... good stuff. This beer is eliciting howls from the gallery. It's just a strong flavor- lots of hops, malts, and alcohol. Let's rate
Last beer of the night is another BONUS BEER. We have a beer that was literally released today. Odell Friek is a lambic with cherries added, then raspberries were added later in the process. It was later aged in Woodcut barrels for 2 years. It's pour looks like raspberry juice. It smells slightly tart- similar to Supplication. Wow this stuff is really really dank. To all the readers of this blog that aren't in the club (Dan Carroll), I would recommend buying or trading for this beer if you're into sours. It's not quite as sour as a standard sour, but it still has a brett kick that works with the tart cherries. I somewhat regret sharing this with the rest of beer club.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Here we are at Mike's house for the 35th meeting of beer club. Tonight we're tasting double IPAs for the second time. The first time was a drunken disaster. We'll see how this round goes with slightly less samples. We have a promising list of beers that we haven't had before, including our first beer from the American Southeast. There are merely 5 brothers here tonight: Mike, Tom B, Turnbull, Colin, and Belfry, but that has nary stopped us from having a good time! Bring forth the grog!
First we have a top-notch double IPA from a top-notch brewery. Three Floyd's Dreadnaught comes in at 9.5%. It pours a dark gold color that is surprisingly transparent. It smells of flowers and grapefruit. It has some nice bittering hops, but then... wouldn't you know, tropical fruits drop ordnance on my tongue! It's Turnbull's bday today, so there is no doubt about him catching a hot buzz.
Next we have a beer nobody north of the Mason-Dixon has tried before. Olde Hickory Death By Hops. The beginning of the name screams "old," but the end screams "2012 is coming." Turnbull poses "should we drink this...?" This one comes from North Carolina at a mere 7%. It pours a pretty cloudy golden color. The label looks like it was printed out on one's personal computer. This one tastes hoppy, but it seems like it doesn't have a lot of malt to mix with it. Ehh.
Third up is the first of Turnbull's offerings: Double Bubble which is 9.2% and comes at us from just over the border in River Falls. This one is more of a light golden color with a nice foam head. If that last one was overly hoppy, this one is overly malty. This is definitely pretty smooth, and at this ABV, this could be a steal of a deal if you're looking to catch a yeoman's buzz on a nice summer afternoon.
Turnbull's second beer is Moylan's Moylander. There can be only one Moylander (which should be their slogan). 8.5%, I've been told. This one is fairly balanced and tasty. Yikes, on to the next already.
Belfry's offering is Lagunitas Maximus. This one comes in at 8.2%. This one pours an extremely transparent color. It smells fruity and hoppy. This is a nice, balanced beer. It's smooth and the hops come on towards the end. It has a nice blend of fruit, malts, and hops. Belfry has terrible taste in beers! I had no idea.
Next we have Port's 4th Anniversary Double IPA. This one comes in at an even 10%. We've reached double digits! It pours a cloudy golden color- which is what I expect ouf of this style. It smells really fruity with a hoppy nosekick sandwich. Boy, that is a mango taste. Almost as mango-y as Mango Mama. This one is going over with the gallery. Citrus bomb, hop backbone, with enough malts to make it bearable.
Colin's beer is Southern Tier's Oak-Aged Unearthly. This one is going to bring a hop presence to our mouth holes. This one is 11%. Special note: we're doing this side-by-side with a regular Unearthly. An unprecedented experiment funded exclusively by the WTBC. Innovation happens here (TM). They pour a similar color. Time for smellz. The smell of the oak is pretty subdued and it tastes very smooth. Colin sez "I noob slurz." The oak aged version is definitely smoother, but both are delicious. Things are flying off topic. Let's rate!
Note: Due to crappy internet connections, the last two reviews weren't saved and were lost forever in space and time. See below.
Troeg's Nugget Nectar
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Inside this beer picture I've carefully hidden a cast member of Real World Las Vegas. Look closely. Can you find her??
Here we are at my house on Dubbel night. We haven't tried this delicious style yet and we're long overdue. Tonight, in attendence is Joe, Lampe, Brent, Derek, Belfry, Colin, and Tom B, with Casey and Bob here for moral support.
Colin's here. Let's get this party staaaaarted!!
First, we have St. Bernardus Prior 8. The Nard Dog generally brews a strong beer, but when I buy his craft I normally reach for the quad. This one rolls in at 8%. It pours a dark red/maroon color. It smells strongly of dark fruit- a similar smell to Bernardus quad. Adjectives being thrown at me, "earthy," "esters," "raspberry snuffy." I find this quite flavorul and its a lot sweeter and lighter than the quad. Quite good and I can't wait to see how this lines up against the others.
Next we have an American offering. Goose Island has recently gotten into Belgian styles and they seem to be a lot better than their regular line. Colin brought Pere Jacques which is another 8%er. This one is a similar color but pours a lot lighter. It smells a little fruity but a lot hoppier than the last one. Joe said "OOOF, mouthfeel.com." Yes, definitely hoppy. Suspended sea monkeys! They're suspended in the liquid much like Project Alice. This is way different than the last one.
Trappistes Rochefort 6 is our next beer. I'm really excited for it and I'm not sure if I've ever had it. It's a 7.5%er, which seems to be the norm for the style. This smells like more biscuits and triscuits than sweet candi sugar. Definitely full of malt and it ends with a kick of Belgian candi. There couldn't be three more beers of the same style that are more different.
Derek brings to us Ommegang Abbey Ale. This one is 8.5% and garners an A+ rating from the Bros. This pours a darker maroon color. This one smells of intense fruit, a lot like the first one. It starts with the same fruits as the Bernardus, but then a really malty, roasty flavor kicks in. Another beer that tastes quite different, but still delicious.
Lampe says corked and caged. He brings to us La Trappe dubble, which is by Koenigshoeven. 7%, this ale is. Boy it smells goooood. It probably pours the darkest and thickest of them all. It's basically a quad with less alcohol. Most people agree this is the best one of the night. Dark fruits and caramel is evident. Let's rate.
Up next, we have Trappist Achel 8 Bruin. I don't know what most of that title means. Except for the 8, because this is 8%. This one has plenty of fruit, but is followed up by hops. This one is fruity, and SURPRISE!... Joe brought it.
Last, Brent brings us Affligem Dubbel. 7%, yarrrr! Standard dark maroon, caramelly, dark fruity. This might be the average of all the flavors. I think people are more interested in Tosh.0 than the beers at hand. Whoa I'm pumped for the bonus beer.
Last! Bonus beer! And it's a good'un. We have Central Waters Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout. It's coming in at ???? This is one beer that doesn't advertise its ABV. It smells mostly of coffee and chocolate. Where's the cherry? Only time will tell. Oh boy, that's tasty. There's bourbon, chocolate, coffee, and finally cherry. Time for the puppy bowl!!!
That was an extremely tasty beer club, where almost every beer fell within a small range.