PD’s own dissect beer. Leave the pretentiousness on the curb.
I was lucky enough to come across Highland Brewing Company‘s Black Mocha Stout on a recent trip through Asheville. Sadly, I didn’t spend much time in the city, but I did manage to get through the giant Biltmore Estate, sample a few wines, and grab some dinner.
I don’t know about you, but I like delicious things. I also like beer. So, when I heard that Equinox Brewing was taking their already tasty Mr. Delicious Oatmeal Stout and turning it into a limited edition 10 gallon batch to create a Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Stout, I freaked, and for good reason. I made it down to the brewery just in time (by the time I finished my one and only pint, it was gone).
ABV 8.5% IBU 23 SRM 30
Chances are unless you have been to Germany you might not have had a traditional Weihnachts Bier. Pronounce veye-nuchts-beer, the name comes from the German word for Christmas, Weihnachten. This beer is traditionally seen during the advent, or 4 weeks before Christmas in Germany and is gaining popularity in the US. The huge malt bill creates a high ABV, great for warming up on those cold winter nights.
Lost in the shuffle in the more recent trends of sours, black IPAs, saisons, and old world recipes has been the foregone marriage of chocolate and coffee. Sure a few classic coffee beers are still hanging around shelves, or pop up infrequently from start up microbreweries, such as Renegade’s Sunday Morning. But it seems like those coffee flavored brews have lost some of the hype. New Belgium’s Imperial Coffee Stout definitely restores that swag.
Some buddies and I have started a weekly jam session dubbed “Jam and Bomb”. We get together, drink bombers, and noodle around on our instruments. Usually the beer takes a back seat to the rock but this week the beer offered some pleasant surprises.
Pump the breaks on that spell checker, Stone’s Lukcy Basartd needs no correction. After initially noticing the devious yet iconic demonic image on the front, beer purveyors need flip the bomber over to notice a hefty description about Lukcy Basartd’s origins. Oh and it should be noted that the entire description is also written in that same disjointed misspelled jargon.
Image provided by Lauren Hoff of Napa of Beer
ABV: 5.5% IBUs: 65
Telluride Brewing Company took me by surprise. While visiting that oh-so-gorgeous mountain town, my friend and I stopped for dinner at Brown Dog Pizza after a long day of driving and hiking. Naturally, we decided a few beers were in order. We dove into their draft selection from Telluride Brewing Co. and never looked back. The Bridal Veil Rye Pale Ale is your link to the mountains we all dream of living in.
When I saw my next beer showcase was due the day after Thanksgiving, and I found out we were going to Battle Creek, Michigan for the holiday, I knew I had to do a review on a beverage from Arcadia Ales. I could’ve chosen Dark Horse or Bells, but I’ve been going to Arcadia since before I could legally drink because in addition to their great beers, they also have some awesome brick oven pizza. So, on our way out of town today, we stopped. I had the Loch Down Scotch Ale, and my brother had their IPA. We also ordered two pepperoni pies. But what I was looking most forward to was one of the beers I brought home, their Cocoa Loco.
Being a native of North-Eastern Ohio, the Christmas season is an exciting time for me. Possibly one of the only things Cleveland is recognized positively for nation-wide is our Great Lakes Christmas Ale. While this is one of my favorite beers, I would like to take some time to appreciate a delicious ale brought to us by our neighbors in Akron, Ohio.
Ultimate Frisbee and drinking goes hand in hand. Last month during a Halloween tournament, Tristan and I went to New Belgium Brewing and got some beers. The nice thing about dressing up (in tights!) and going to New Belgium is getting some free beer. The beer I got was Imperial Berliner Weiss.
Background: This year at GABF Funkwerks really hit it out of the park. Not only did they win small brewery of the year, they also won 2 gold medals for Sasion and Belgian-Style Strong Specialty Ale. The later was won by Deceit, a strong belgian golden ale. Deceit is a beer that does a very good job at hiding its 9.4%abv. This has been normally a taproom only release but a small amount of bottles have been released in the Colorado market.
There isn’t much that I like about winter. The days get dark earlier, the weather gets colder, up until this year, I wasn’t really into skiing or snowboarding, so my weekend social life was pretty dismal, and it was more often cloudy and dreary especially when I lived in the midwest. The only real positives were college basketball, holidays that revolved around eating, and dark, winter warmer beers.
During the week of the Great American Beer Festival, Epic Brewing out of Salt Lake City, Utah made a splash by announcing that they would likely be opening up a second brewery in Denver.
ABV – 5.6%
“Never judge a book by its cover.” -every mother ever.
We’ve all heard it time and time again, the bit of maternal guidance that we take into account every time something new comes along. If heeded, it can open doors you didn’t even know existed. And beer is no exception. New Belgium’s 1554 was my eye-opening beer that, after diving into a deep, black, creamy pint of it, and despite not being a “dark beer person”, opened the door of infinite beer possibility. All you have to do is drink the neck; within those first few sips 1554 shows its complexity and body, as well as its smooth, softer side. A perfect warm up while reading next to the fire place in the upcoming inevitable Colorado snow storms (please!?!).
The very first beer I ever tried when moving to Fort Collins in November of 2009, was Odell Brewing Company’s winter seasonal, Isolation Ale. I couldn’t have asked for a better welcome to one of the most prolific craft beer towns in the world.
“Hey will you grab me that beer with the little troll wearing a sailor’s outfit in front of the unicorn attacking what it looks to be Princess Peach on it?” said no one ever until after I wrote this post. Three Floyds Broo Doo hop harvest ale lures it’s prospective drinkers in with its trippy bottle and captures them with it’s just as unique flavor.
For a long time now I have considered Bitches Brew one of my favorite beers ever. Its dark rich maltiness has a cappuccino-like bitterness that reminds me of both dark chocolate and toffee. Heavy-bodied goodness, I pair this gem with a band called Starfucker and their song “Rawnald Gregory Erickson The Second.” Think of this: windows down, hand out in the breeze, gazing at the changing aspens in the mountains on a sunny day off; this is a beer that pairs well with the feeling that it’s fall now, so camping is out of the question but a heavy autumn brew might satisfy.
I’m a sucker for anything barrel-aged and I’m an even bigger sucker for trying beers from young breweries. There is nothing more fun than discovering a brewery in their fledgling stages and tasting their beers as they grow and improve. Its like following the way an artist, musician or author develops their style throughout their career. With both boxes checked, picking up Signal De Botrange on the shelf of my local liquor store was as natural for me as breathing.
If there is one issue our nation can come together on, it might just be the right to drink great beer. Avery Brewing Company has resurrected their Presidential Pale Ale from 2008 to commemorate this year’s heated race. This drink pours a regal golden color and tasters are hit with that initial hop bite. But that bitterness quickly mellows to a sweeter malty light finish.