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Showing posts from December, 2017

Stone Hail to the Hop Thief Double IPA

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I have a newfound affinity for DIPAs, and I have an old love of Stone, so this should really be a fantastic beer for me. Well, I say for me, but I'm really meaning that this should be a good beer for Stone, as most of them are. But, I'm really kind of self-centered on my blog.

The blissfully calm amber-gold beer has a very nice and sticky head that leaves lacing like a good IPA should. The aroma has a lot more malty biscuit in it than I would have expected, but it is offset swiftly by the bitterness of the hops bringing their pine scent to the whole thing.

First sip is bold and carbonation-heavy. Tropical fruits, pine, and the sweet bready malt all hit pretty hard right in the middle of the mouth and explode out with the effect of a more dour brown liquor or something like it. It's a bit intimidating, and I'm not one to be intimidated by a beer. Trouble is - this is only a sip. And I have to go deeper.

Tip-in is moderate carbonation burn with an unexpected toffee and f…

New Heights Navel Gazer Imperial Stout

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When it comes to stouts, my undying love is pretty well known. While I have certainly said that a well made porter is about the best thing ever, frequent visitors to this blog (and people who have heard my explanation of how you should properly quaff a Guinness) may find that I can enjoy a stout exactly as much as I enjoy a good porter.

It's as black as the starless night of some misbegotten, overcast nightmare land. It's just black and impervious to light. The tan head dissipates to a very light ring around the sides of the glass. The aroma is a rich landscape of chocolate, vanilla, wood, and toasted malt. It's all very inviting, I have to say.

First sip is exceedingly smooth. Yes, there is a hiccough right at the end with a kind of bitter, woody twinge, but the meat of the beer is smooth. I wouldn't say that it is milky like a Guinness or a Dragon's Milk, but it's easy going with an earthiness and dark fruits that is very unassumingly welcoming.

Tip-in is swe…

Founders Doom Bourbon Barrel IPA

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Founders is a company that knows how to make an excellent beer. Therefore, I had no compunction about grabbing another creation of theirs, even though they called it "Doom." Fact is, I remember when the original Doom video game came out, and I loved that thing. So, maybe this will follow the same path.

The deep amber beer has a head that sticks around a bit to see if anything interesting will happen. It's blotchy but not sticky, so I don't get the usual lacing on the sides. That makes me a bit sad, but lacing doesn't make the beer. The aroma is WAY more malty than I would expect, and I smell the bourbon, but I also get a bready malt that is just fine by me.

First sip is a confusing flash of different things biting at me like a pack of feral raccoons in a cage, barely held back by the tiny bars. The bourbon is right up front with it's sharp teeth, but then a swipe of maple-soaked bread malt slashes with a paw. Just as it seems like it's over, the resin com…

Marble-Odell-Stone Megawheat Double IPA

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I think I did this one before, but I couldn't find it on this site. I must not have done it, as this is a Google site, and their search engine is obviously top notch. Still, this is a beer done as an agreement between three small breweries, but one of them is Stone, and they are very picky about what awesome beers they produce. Wait! I found it! But it's not this one.

The beautiful coppery beer has a sticky, sticky head that is seriously exactly what I want to see. The aroma is floury malt and a bit of citrusy hops, but the hops are taking a back seat to the malt. Either way, this beer is looking at me with those bedroom eyes that I can't resist. I'm going in.

First sip is notable for its dankness that is prevailing over the citrus hops and that floury malt, but the hops are definitely not satisfied in the back seat, so they are making a loud noise and demanding attention like an angry toddler who wasn't allowed to take her iPad in the minivan this time, and it tur…

Perennial 17 Mint Chocolate Stout

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Mint chocolate in a stout? I mean, chocolate has been proven to be excellent in the right beer, but mint is questionable. I figure this beer is supposed to be a dessert beer, but even those are probably better off not trying to add mint to the mixture. Well, these are artisan brewers (which I usually assume means hipster) so they must have had a plan going in.

The very, very, very, very dark brown beer has just a regular dark brown head. It's possibly one of the darkest heads that I've seen atop one of these dark stouts, and I'm intrigued. The aroma is muted mint with more vibrant chocolate - which is the right way to go, if the taste follows the nose. The pour was pretty unusual to me, as I really think this pours almost like a slightly runny syrup.

First sip is a heap of flavors all together. I taste the chocolate, but I don't really taste the mint. It's sweet like candy for a good portion of the beer, and I can definitely taste coffee and oak; it's not what …

450 North Dank Candy Gummy Haze Double IPA

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I've only had one beer that claimed to be "dank" and it was very, very good. So, will this follow the same fate? Well, it's not a Mantra beverage, and I never heard of this brewery before, but I've had a few DIPAs before, and I have very much liked them in general.

The hazy bronze beer has a good head that boils away to a few bubbles in a pad on top with a ring around the glass, so nothing extraordinary so far. The aroma is a very light citrus with maybe a crackery crust. It's very light, but my current mood means it is still pretty damn mouth watering.

First sip is like sucking on a grapefruit peel. It has no sweetness, lots of bitterness, a certain kind of tang that leaves the mouth feeling dryer than it started off as, and that citrus as a structure. It's not great for sipping, but there is entirely a possibility that gulping this will improve matters. It has happened before, I'm not just a drunk.

Tip-in is crusty bread, tart citrus, and a bit of c…

Bearded Iris Pipsqueak Tiny IPA

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The beauty of Bearded Iris is that their beers are unfiltered, and that raw, delicious beer can do what it wants with the taste buds. What they usually want to do is delight and amaze, but you're leaving yourself open to them doing pretty much what they want. These local guys are trying their best, and I'm all for it.

The grapefruit juice-like beer has pretty much no head, but scattered bubbles rising to the surface belie the carbonation lurking within. The aroma of heavy citrus makes me think that the "Tiny" in the name may not actually translate to the taste. There is some spice adding to the orange, tangerine, and grapefruit citrus, tantalizing the taste buds from afar.

First sip is more pepper than I expected. I thought there were only light spices, but this is packing some serious flavor outside of the expected citrus. The malt is also a lot more forward than I expected with a dank and woody sweetness to compliment the tangy fruits.

Tip-in is sweet and orange wi…

Dogfish Head Oak-Aged Vanilla World Wide Stout

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This says it is oak-aged, but not aged in a barrel that used to have some kind of whiskey or other heavy liquor in it. One of the even more curious things is that this doesn't say anywhere on the bottle what the ABV is. I had to go to the Dogfish Head site to find it, and there I found a range. I picked the top end of 17.5% (it was only 1.5% different, anyway).

The deep brown-until-black beer sports a thin, chocolate brown head that doesn't really want to be here, and it scurries away pretty quickly as the beer sits. The aroma is heavy on the oak, as you might expect. It definitely has the vanilla peeking through and even a bit of chocolate, but oak is winning the day.

First sip is a solid smack in the taste buds. It hits with the force of a baseball bat to the knee with more sweetness than you can shake a stick at and a heavy, liquor-laden oak that has no right to be in a beer. The vanilla and barley are waving "Hi!" in the background, but they are shunned by the lo…