Saturday, February 20, 2010

Rogue Chatoe Rogue First Growth Dirtoir Black Lager

Rogue- a brewery of greatness and of letdown. The price tags on the bottles never seem to be worth what is inside. For bottle collectors like ourselves, Rogue would seem like the perfect brewery for us to have all their neat artwork against our wall. But who seriously wants to pay twelve dollars for a 22 oz bomber of an imperial ESB that weighs in at 7.2% ABV? Rogue, you seem to have gone astray, please let your decently priced Dirtoir Black Lager win us back.

RCRFGDBL (seriously?) pours jet black with a carmel head and smells like a chocolate stout or porter. It has a light to medium body that leaves your tongue much like a porter but with a slight chalky fuzziness. It hits your pallete like a sweet stout with no traces of alcohol. The finish is just okay- it's not missing too much but there could be more on the back end. We wish there was a little more warmth to the beer. Not all beers need to be imperial, this one just begs for a bit more bite.
We are impressed by how delicious this lager is. There is no idication, other than what is written on the bottle, that this is a lager. It is very comperable to a sweeter low alcohol stout and it would battle up there with the better of those styles. We are very pessimistic towards the word LAGER, but these guys found some strange ale yeast that fermented on the bottom for some reason. Wherever these guys found this magic yeast, let's hope they can utilize it in other bombers that costs less than 10-16 dollars.

Oz Scale: 7.3
Mike Scale: 7.4

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Dogfish Head Fort

The worlds strongest fruit beer. It's a claim that only Dogfish Head can make with their 18% ABV brew, Fort. When brewed, they use over a ton of pureed raspberries in a Belgian-style base which is then fermented similar to the DFH's other 18% beers, 120 Minute IPA and World Wide Stout. Being a fan of Dogfish Head, alcohol and World Wide Stout (we have yet to get our hands on a 120,) Mike did not hesitate dropping the serious cash to get this single bottle. Once again, silly Ohio laws prevent such beverages from entering their borders, so he had to pick this one up in Pennsylvania.

Fort pours surprisingly smooth, and smells of fruit and spices- almost like a Riesling. Amber and slightly cloudy in color, the taste hits on the side of the tongue with a sweet and almost tart spiciness followed by some fruit flavors. The raspberries are in the latter half of flavor to hit the palette followed by an alcohol warmth. Being so high in alcohol, one would not believe that a brew like this could drink so smooth, but smooth it is. It's medium bodied and does not taste like it packs as much punch as it does.

Rating this beer is difficult. Do you rate by style? In that case, it would would be rated extremely high? Do you rate by taste? Originality? We are just going to rate how we normally do- how much we like it. The beer has some outstanding qualities and it's flaws are limited. It is NOT a session beer. Oz says: "It isn't a style that I would normally go for but the alcohol makes this yummy!" Dogfish Head keeps coming up with original beers and we will keep buying them. They could find a way to make ancient elephant excrement taste delicious or at least interesting.

Oz Scale: 8.7
Mike Scale: 8.5

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Erie Brewing Company Ol' Red Cease & Desist Wee Heavy Ale

Erie Brewing Company is the closest brewery to us that bottles and sells its own brew at other establishments other than its own. It's only 45 mile from the house of beer blog. It's sad that we live in such a small town that their is nothing closer to us that bottles but at least it's not Wyoming (for you Nick.)

We have tried Erie Brewing Company's beers before and have never been too impressed. Railbender Ale is okay and Misery Bay IPA is decent. There is nothing original nor anything special that makes you want to pick up another six pack of their brews.

At U-Pick-6 in Erie PA, Mike noticed a beer in their fridge that he had never seen before- Ol' Red. It looked interesting and carries a nice punch at 10.1% ABV. Could this beer save our perceptions of EBC?

Ever have first impressions that stuck? This beer is one of them. It has a good beginning with a nice malt taste, much unlike most red or wee ales. Everything goes down hill from there- it completely lacks in body. This beer is like "It" from the Addams Family. The alcohol does not seem to be too prevalent given the ABV but there doesn't seem to be any redeeming factors to it.

Erie Brewing Company- how you have let us down. Our three closest bottling brewers besides you, Great Lakes, Southern Tier & Thirsty Dog (sorry Buckeye Brewing, you don't quite have distribution to make the list) have put you to shame. They should Cease & Desist from creating beer. Keep with the brew pub for a while and let us know when you come up with something better. This beer should have been called Ol' Yeller instad of Ol' Red.

Oz Scale: 5.5
Mike Scale: 5.1

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Flying Dog Raging Bitch

With a beer named Raging Bitch, we could go on all day with bad puns and run-on jokes like in the past. However, we are going to do our best of keeping this one clean as possible.
Flying Dog has always presented us with some average to very good brews. Subpar performances include K-9 Cruiser, Dogtoberfest and Tire Bite. Their best selections include Double Dog & Gonzo Imperial Porter. Even if their beer sucks, you have at least some interesting Ralph Steadman artwork and a Hunter S. Thompson quote on the bottom to help you forget how awesomely mediocre that brew was.

Enter Raging Bitch: a feisty Belgian style IPA with a biting 8.3% ABV. If you are not familiar with the Belgian style IPA, then you will be soon. From Stone to Victory to New Belgium, it seems this style is gaining popularity. A Belgian style IPA is basically an IPA with a Belgian yeast strain. More or less, it's an IPA with a yeast infection.

The brew smells like a citrusy Belgian ale- the hops aren't too overpowering but it let's you know they are there. The color is a light amber reminiscent of most IPAs. When the Bitch hits the tongue, it tastes like what it promises- a Begian style IPA. However, this Bitch doesn't bite quite like we thought. The body is a little weak for the DIPA style. For being a 20th anniversary beer, maybe the Raging Bitch turned into that old dog that just puts it's head up when you walk in the door. It might growl, bark and it sure does look mean- but it just lays there thinking you aren't worth it's energy to get up.

I might have barked up the wrong tree on that run-on paragraph. It IS a good beer, it just doesn't taste like an 8.3% beer, it tastes like a session beer. Not that a session beer is bad, the Raging Bitch just didn't live up to expectations. It should have been called Angry Girlfriend Because You Forgot To Call On Time Belgian Style IPA.

Oz Scale: 6.9
Mike Scale: 6.9

*Editor's note: I failed on the bad puns and run-on jokes. I apologize.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Jolly Pumpkin La Roja

It's been one hot minute since we last posted, my friends. No, we weren't hiding under a bridge or road trippin' to the Dani California nor to the other side of Michigan. We just recorded some tunes and decided that we can't stop the blog. We have to take this to a higher ground. So we present to you, the first blog of the year- Jolly Pumpkin's La Roja.

La Roja is an amber farmhouse ale aged in oak barrels for two to ten months. It smells and looks like cider. This bomber won't get you bombed, weighing in at 7.2%, but it'll get you started. Upon entry of the beer receptacle, you will instantly recognize the Jolly Pumpkin yeast strain. Much like its brothers in brew- it is sweet, however, there is a spiciness to it with warm alcohol feel left on the tongue.

Considering all things Jolly Pumpkin, this is our second favorite next to Ordo de Calbaza. It's got instant recognition just like Anthony Keidis' voice and packs a nice punch just like his heroin habit,... well, maybe not that big of a punch. While very good, it IS incredibly Jolly Pumpkin like- more or less being in a parallel universe... of beer.
Oz Scale: 7.5
Mike Scale: 7.7