Know Smithwicks quite well ....
Know Smithwicks quite well ....
Class V, oh how I love you.
mmm Delirium Noel. slutty err I mean silty but good even after a year.
Had Russian River Suplication today for the first time ever on tap. Not everyone is into sours, but have to say it is one of my favorites. For a change of pace, some time this week I will be opening a bottle of the Rogue Voodoo Doughnut Maple Bacon Ale. Right now I think I have almost as much beer selection as the local BevMo.
Finally popped open my bottle of KRBC Pumpkin Ale. Seriously one of the better pumpkin beers I've ever had. Very balanced, smooth, and subtle. Most beers of this style tend to over do the spices but this is so well balanced between spices and pumpkin that it goes goes down very smoothly with a short finish. Gonna have to wait a while for another bottle, I suppose.
Again I am visiting the Hangar 24 Columbus IPA. Probably my favorite available IPA as of now. I don't know if i'm lucking out on always hitting it fresh, or if its just seriously this good. Beer Advocate ranks it low, but that is typical because it is a young brewery and little hype. It kicks the **** out of most IPAs except Ballast Point's Big Eye which is consistently fabulous. Hangar 24's barrel aged Russian Imperial Stout Pugachev's Cobra at 16.5% ABV was pretty damn good too. Definitely excited to see where this small project ends up!
Two things from last night. Lagunitas Sucks is quite good. The first time I had it I was dealing with a small head cold and I'm pretty sure my tastebuds were off. But having multiple bottles last night....it's quite excellent.
Rogue Voodoo Doughnut Bacon Maple Ale. Unique brew. Smells like breakfast liquified. You get the subtle smokiness of the bacon and essence of maple syrup on pancakes (or doughnuts). Doesn't taste a whole heck of a lot like a beer, but it was enjoyable. Pretty sweet, though, so I might come down with the diabetus soon.
I picked up 3 bottles of this pre-Christmas and had the self control, miraculously, to not imbibe when I had visitors. They only made 400 cases of this angel of a brew. I'm normally a big share my beer kinda guy, but having had last year's Black Xantus, this was one that I kept all for myself.
I just opened the first bottle after having let the bottle sit out of the fridge for the last 30 minutes - so that it's not so cold as to suppress all the aroma and flavor. I should preface this by saying that Russian Imperial Stout is probably my favorite beer style. Having already had my share of Old Rasputin the last month or so along with that bottle of bourbon barrel aged Old Rasputin I had a week or so ago, I was prepared to possibly have a slight let down from my memories of last year's Black Xantus. That is not the case at all. In fact, my mind has been blown, ONCE AGAIN, by the team at Firestone. All I can say to you fellow beer travellers - go and get as many bottles of this are you can get your hopppy hands on. This beer easily makes my (ever changing) Top 5 list of best beers I have ever had/in the world.
I'm having a "**** yea" moment drinking this, thanking my lucky stars to be living smack dab in the GOLDEN AGE of brewing right here in California. It is beers like Black Xantus that bring me to my knees in awe. There is SOOOOOO much going on in this. The aroma is coffee, chocolate, a slight, slight hint of bourbon. 3 magical things on their own - but put together here - it's like unicorns, rainbows, and pots of gold all rolled up into one beautiful ball. Brilliantly perfect. The mouth-feel is just velvety. Like drinking the darkest summer sky you can imagine. The taste is like the nose - coffee, chocolate, vanilla, dark roasted malt, another small hint of bourbon. Ahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!! I'm in heaven right now folks.
I know I'll be cracking a second bottle of this tonight. At 11% ABV, that's probably not a smart thing to do what with the kids starting school tomorrow! But what the hell? This is transcendent. This is beer meant to be celebrated, used in religious ceremonies, fit for a king, to cheer the end of wars. If I were some sort of weirdo, I'd seriously believe that this beer is making love to me. OK, I think this beer is making love to me (keep it clean you filthy minded punters!). But I'm not a weirdo - ok, maybe just a little.....
Highly, highly recommended. A 9.7, because I can't give a 10 to anything and I fully expect something to come along that will blow my mind even more. I'm still waiting for the beer equivalent of the first time I heard When Doves Cry. This is close, but more along the lines of the first time I heard Paranoid Android.
a good read. hehe (someone's been whining)
Sam Calagione Gives Beer Geeks An Earful. And It’s Awesome. | Beer Street Journal
He raises a good point, but a lot of hype that leads to bashing or being over critical is often due to marketing techniques. Sometimes I am glad to know that a beer has received a plethora of negative reviews if it saves me money. I took that approach with the Lost Abbey until word was out that their beers had carbonation again. I see no harm in that.