Thursday, August 19, 2010

Quick Sips: August 2010

Here is our first entry of Quick Sips, a super condensed and brief synopsis of some beers that we've had in the last few weeks. This one will include thoughts from the last few months.

  • Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA tastes amazing fresh (less than 2 1/2 weeks old)
  • Weyerbacher Tiny is incredibly delicious (on our fourth bomber)
  • Dogfish Head SahTea isn't as good as last years (not enough cinnamon, clove and ginger spices)
  • Southern Tier 2XIPA is amazing (but make sure it is fresh.) Blows away most IPAs.
  • Bell's Hopslam wasn't as good as last years. Like most IPA's- Make sure it's fresh.
  • Great Lakes Holy Moses was a great choice for a spring beer. Glad to see it back.
  • Thirsty Dog has come out with three new crap beers (Barktoberfest, Whippet Wheat and Twisted Kilt) and one decent one (Cerberus)
  • Some batches of Founders Devil Dancer taste like a THC producing plant.
  • Heavy Seas Below Decks Cabernet Barrel Aged is probably the best fresh barleywine out there.
  • Goose Island Green Line Pale Ale (Pub Exclusive) is just plain gross.
  • Heavy Seas Smoke on the Water wasn't as generic as it's name. Worth the buy.
  • Lagunitas A Little Sumpin' Sumpin' Ale is a refreshing summer IPA.
  • Great Divide Brewing has some great beers out there (Colette, 16th Anniversary, Titan, Yeti.) We're excited to try more
  • Dark Horse has yet to come out with a beer I thought was above average (Crooked Tree, Sapient Trip, Scotty Karate)
  • Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster was great fresh but had a tinge too much alcohol flavor.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Sierra Nevada 30th Anniversary - Charlie, Fred & Ken's Bock

Sierra Nevada is the second largest micro-brewery next to Boston Beer Co. (Samual Adams.) Both breweries are solid and are typically make beverages for session drinking. With the exception of Sierra Nevada's Bigfoot and Sam Adams Utopias, up until a year ago both breweries stayed out of the ever-growing-in-popularity "big" beer game. Sam Adams then came out with their Imperial line and Sierra Nevada has been coming out with some one-offs to compete in this ever expanding market.

Sierra Nevada's second 30th Anniversary beer is brewed with the of home-brew heroes, Charlie Papazian (author of "Joy of Brewing") and Fred Eckhardt (author of A Treatise of Lagers: How to Make Good Beers at Home) and Sierra Nevada founder Ken Grossman. Charlie, Fred & Ken's bock is an imperial helles bock with a surprising 8.3% ABV.

CFKB pour an amber color with a well carbonated white head and a smell much like a Diet 7-Up with a beer overtone. The taste is traditional for the style but with a light hop bitterness to it. This medium bodied brew is well balanced between malts and hops but it flows down easily given the helfy ABV.

Sierra Nevada proves once again that while they are one of the oldest ones out there, they can still come out with their own Chronic 2001 (Detox, please don't suck.) While they aren't entering a new territory with this beer, they are celebrating the style with something delicious and drinkable. After Ken & Fritz Ale and Life and Limb, we are anticipating any future Sierra Nevada collaboration. Sometimes those collaborations do not work so whatever you do, Sierra Nevada, please don't come out with a liquid version of Chris Cornell's Scream (or even Audioslave for that matter.) Stick to Bowie and Queen or Snoop and Dre. Ain't nothing but a beer thing, baby.

Oz Scale: 7.7
Mike Scale: 7.9

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Voodoo Brewing Co. Wynona's Big Brown Ale

Do we like beer? Yes. Do we love music? Yes. Do we like it when breweries reference bands that we enjoy? Oh yeah. Do we love hairy vaginas? Umm... doesn't everyone? Enter Wynona's Big Brown Ale- from Voodoo Brewing Co. in Meadville, PA. This brewery's distribution is so incredibly limited that you can not grab your hands around a bottle if you live in Ohio (a mere 20 minutes away) or outside Erie or Pittsburgh. When searching for a bomber in its home town, all Mike came up with was a case of it for 76 dollars. However, our previous experiences with the company (Pilzilla, Gran Met & Big Black Voodoo Daddy) have all been incredibly delicious so when we saw a beer referencing a tasty Primus song, we couldn't resist.

Wynona's Big Brown Ale is a very strong American brown ale weighing in at a boastful 7.3% ABV. It pours a dark brown with a hint ruby with a frothy white head. It smells of chocolate, nuts, malt and a strong alcohol smell. When the beer enters the consumption canal you do not even taste the alcohol. This beer is incredibly smooth and well balanced. It has everything you'd expect from a brown ale (a nutty taste hanging on the tongue) and even more (chocolate and carmel.) The nose throws the whole thing off but once it is out of the equation, you have one of the best examples of an American brown ale.

It is hard to find much wrong with this brew. Voodoo Brewing Co. has entered our innards by penetrating through our brown beards to our mouths and going deep down our throats to our stomachs. This is one brown beaver that we'd show off to all our friends. We hope this beaver never tries to leave us. This is the anti-pop and we thank Voodoo for all the bad Primus references.

Oz Scale: 8.7
Mike Scale: 8.6