My Liver is Starting to Hurt

Friday, December 16, 2005

Good God. Week after week, beer after beer. While I love all the practice I'm getting tasting and rating beers for the Beer Judge exam.....I think it's taking its toll. The good news is the brewer's yeast keeps me.....regular. The bad news is that my body may soon completely reject plain water. It's tough to stay hydrated solely on beer.

At any rate....what's in my fridge this week?

1) Brouwerij Corsendonk Pater Abbey Brown Ale. This is a Belgian Dubbel/Abbey brown ale. It pours nutty brown with hints of red, and such a huge and active head (about 5 inches) that I couldn't get a 12oz. bottle in a 16oz. glass on the first pour! Smells of toasted malt and burnt hops. Strong taste; big hops immediately followed by a powerful nutty taste, mellowed by...apples? Tasty, smooth, medium-bodied beer. 7/10.

2) Stone Imperial Russian Stout. Oh. My. God. Just f-ing try this beer. Shut up. Don't ask questions. Shhh.. Pours as thick as motor oil, but is soooooooo complex. Currants, raisins. Dark, bitter baker's chocolate. Sweet hops. Warm alcohol finish. Over 9% abv, by the way. If this beer was a woman, I'd....well, I don't want to be crude. 10/10. 10/10. 10/10. Fuck.

Screw Guinness. I found my new Gold Standard of beer. Stone Imperial Russian Stout. You heard it here, folks. I am dumping Guinness for a new girlfriend. Oh, me and Guinness can still be fuck-friends, but I found my new soul-mate of beer.

3) Stone Arrogant Bastard Ale. Pours amber red with little champagne-like bubbles. The back of the bottles says right-off that you're not worthy to drink this beer. Pretty much, yeah. Oily hops, piney, mixed with peaches. Tasted about the same, with bready yeast. Bitter hops linger on the tongue. Another amazing selection from Stone. 8/10.

4) Bell's Expedition Stout. This is another Russian Imperial Stout style beer. As good as Stone's? Not quite (especially since me and Stone RIS are now dating), but a close second so far. Espresso, vanilla, molasses. Tastes pretty much the same, but finish with a coffee residual and a hint of raisin. It'd be better with just a bot more carbonation,. but a damn fine full-bodied beer. 8/10.

5) Sapporo Premium Beer. Meh. It's okay. A step-up from Bud/Miller, which isn't saying much, but it's clean. Very little hops presence; none really. Cereal-like taste, like corn flakes, with some corn husk grassiness still in it. Fizzy. Yellow. 6/10.

6) Delirium Noel. Ah! A Christmas beer! And it is indeed CHristmas in a bottle. Sweet nose, literally like baking sugar cookies. Tasted spicy, like mulling spices were used (you know...like mulled cider). Fruity, like cherries...sweet fruit, like a Christmas fruitcake. It's a good feeling, happy memories brew. 8/10, for being interesting and warm. Awwww....

7) Great Lakes Brewing Company Christmas Ale. A Christmas Beer theme! Much like Delirium Noel, just slightly ever so less refined. Same sugar cookie scent, thugh this is a little more on the caramel side. Big huge sweet maltiness with little hops character; almost none, just a hint. Any more would be to get in the way of the mulling-spice taste and thick feeling you get in your mouth, like drinking sweet syrup. A "winter warmer" indeed. 7/10.

8) Victory Brewing Company HopDevil Ale. Pours rusty orange and hazy, perfectly as an American Pale should, with a slight orange head. Sweet hops nose, sort of like honeysuckle. Earthy hops right up front, big bite, mellowed pretty quickly with caramel. Very refined, and very very strong. Hops stays on the tongue, but is definitely not over-hopped like some smaller micros do it (like they just discovered hops for the first time). Dry and crisp. This is simply a perfectly-done APA. 9/10.

9) Rogue Brewery Shakespeare Stout. This is a massively-hoppy stout, with less nuttiness and toastiness as many stouts, especially Imperials. It certainly sets it apart from the crowd, relying more on hops for big taste, like pale ales do. Chocolate and nuts up front on the taste, which is tempered immediately with a dry hoppy finish, which is the opposite of what you'd expect. 8/10 for uniqueness.

10) Ommegang Brewery Abbey Ale. Dark borwn wit a decent head. Great lacing on the glass. Fruit and flowers on the nose; a perfect blend of the two. Big roasted taste up front, with some sweet cherry fruit and roses on the laste, with a lingering hop finish. Active carbonation, but a surprisingly smooth and mellow brew. Great belgian abbey ale, brewed in New York. 7.5/10.

3 comments:

red, white and brew 12:27 PM  

Huh, been gone for awhile and what do I find? My liberal friend who knows so little about the ways of the world and politics that he (or she) has given up on the politics part of the beer analogy and now writes solely about beer.

Considering how clueless you are about your own liberal ideology, I doubt you can be trusted to know the difference between a lager and a porter.

red, white and brew 1:18 PM  

Chocolate beer? Coffee beer? Now that’s snobbery. How about a beer that quenches my thirst and tastes like…er, beer.

Smitty 1:55 PM  

All beer tastes like beer, and most of it is good, even the macro-brewed stuff. Beer's a great drink, and there's so much more of it out there to try and appreciate. I guess I'd expect expect someone with as limited of a world view as you to have the same limitations on what you're willing to try and enjoy.

For the record, thus displaying your own cluelessness, a porter IS a lager.

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