Archive for October, 2011

Upright…Again?!

I took my friends to Upright Brewing earlier this week, curious to see what they would make of saisons/farmhouse ales, which most people do not have very much exposure to. They thought I was being super nerdy when I took them to the place, partially because you have to be looking for it to find it, and that it was located in the basement of a bank building. They also enjoyed the fact that while Upright could have been a super hipster and unenjoyable place to be, it wasn’t. It was just a place for beer lovers to gather and sample some eccentric beers.

Two glasses of blended Stout of Monte Fisto and one glass of Seven

I’m really not in the mood to do a review right now, but I’ve already reviewed Seven, so if you want to look back a couple/many posts, you can find it. As for Stout of Monte Fisto, it’s good. Really good. I’m wonder what the barrel aged unblended version will taste like. Just gotta wait until my next tasting to find out I guess.

Grade for Blended Stout of Monte Fisto: A-

MIA

Hey guys, I just moved into a new apartment, so that means no internet until next week. Don’t worry, I’ll will return with a vengeance once I have access to the interwebs!!!

Feeling a Little Hoppy

I felt like a hoppy beer today, and I picked up a great IPA that I was eager to try again and actually do a serious review for. So here goes!

Description: Titan IPA is a big, aggressively hopped IPA brewed for hop disciples. It starts out with piney hop aromas and citrus hop flavors and finishes with a nice rich, malty sweetness that is balanced with crisp hop bitterness.

Beer: Titan IPA

Brewery: Great Divide Brewing

Style: IPA

ABV: 7%

Location: Denver, CO

Appearance: Deep amber with a little bit of head, but it doesn’t stick around for long.

Aroma: Hops and malt, with some citrus somewhere in the mix.

Taste: Floral hops with some malt and bitterness on the follow through. Pretty one-dimensional, but very tasty. I remember this beer being better though.

Mouthfeel: Light with moderate carbonation. Feels crisp and dry as well.

Drinkability: This is a great beer to have split a  6-pack with someone, even better if football is involved

Beer Advocate Grade: A-

My Grade: B+ (the beer was 3 months old since bottling, so the hops have faded a bit. If this beer was fresh, I can totally see an A- coming out of this beer.)

Ferme de la Demons Release

I went to the Block 15 release at Belmont Station. I expected to see a few beer geeks that I knew when I got there, but to my surprise, I knew no one! Turns out that some people recognized me but didn’t want to introduce themselves because they only knew me as “that asian beer nerd”. I was the only asian at the release, so I guess their fear of being called a racist was legitimate. Whatever, I was there to drink beer, and here are the beers that I tasted!

Strawberry fields is a golden ale I think…..whatever starter beer it was it was then soured, barrel aged, and had 200lbs of fresh strawberries shoved down its throat. It’s not that sweet, but very refreshing with a healthy dose of funk and sourness. This beer smells like strawberries though….really, really strongly of strawberries.

So this is the beer that all the beer geeks were getting excited about. Ferme de la Demons. It started as a saison, but was barrel aged with two different strains of Brettomyces. It was much darker than I anticipated, but was still delicious. Unfortunately for me, Strawberry fields destroyed the vast majority of my tastebuds, so I missed out on a lot of the subtleties of this beer, but I still liked the funk and barrel flavors that came with this beer. I’ll make sure to do a proper review when I open one of my two bottles.

I Forgot to Review a Beer. Crap.

I drink this beer literally all the time. It’s my favorite for the style, and I just always thought that I had already reviewed it. Turns out that I’m flat out wrong.

This beer is also known as The Darkness. It will devour your soul…and your liver.

Beer: Black Butte XXIII

Brewery: Deschutes

Style: Porter

ABV: 11%

Location: Bend, OR

Appearance: Deep mocha, with half a finger of white head.

Aroma: Smells like dark chocolate, coffee, some wood

Taste: Dark chocolate, oak, some burnt notes, coffee, and some heat from the peppers in the beer on the finish. Really complex. This is a beer you think about while drinking it.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with high carbonation for the style. Very smooth and slippery though.

Drinkability: Easy to drink, but I would still move on after abomber

Beer Advocate Grade: A-

My Grade: A (A+ if you just compare among other porters. This is the best porter. Period.)

The King of Pumpkin Beers

I’ve been craving this beer for months now. It was released on the east coast some time ago and all my friends over there were rubbing it into my face while I was making them feel bad with delicious fresh hop beers. Well, my friends back east no longer have ammo to make fun of me with. Southern Tier Pumking has arrived in Portland!!!!!! If I don’t post any review for the next few days it’s because I’ve been pounding Pumking after Pumking.

Sorry the photo’s a little fuzzy, I was too excited

Description: I don’t care what the description is, something about pagan spirits and being told to drink this beer responsibly I bet. Whatever.

Beer: Pumking

Brewery: Southern Tier

Style: Pumpkin Ale

ABV: 8.6%

Location: Lakewood, NY

Appearance: Really, really orange. This beer actually glows orange, if you turned out the lights, I wouldn’t be surprised if it lit the room with an nice orange glow. Bubbles form from the sides of the glass, but there is no head or lacing.

Aroma: Pumpkin pie bomb! Pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and some breadiness. No malts to speak of, but I don’t miss it. I literally shoved my face into this beer to get a better whiff of the smell. One of the best smelling beers out there.

Taste: Read above. Note: Fucking delicious, drink more in future.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, light carbonation, very smooth. I would definitely have this beer with a heavy dinner sometime. I’ll get back to stouts some other time.

Drinkability: I got six bottles from Belmont Station. Their life expectancy can be measured in single digit days. You tell me how drinkable this beer is.

Beer Advocate Grade: A-

My Grade: A+ (It gets an A on a normal scale, but I’m giving it an A+ here because it the the beer to beat for this style. It is also fucking delicious.)

Next Beer

Here’s the next beer from my time at Belmont Station….

Description: This is Ninkasi’s famous Tricerahops DIPA hopped using fresh amarillo hops. Amarillo hops are incredibly difficult to get fresh, and the only other fresh amarillo hop beer I’ve had is Fresh Hop Twilight, which is basically a hop revolution in a glass. This beer has some serious shoes to fill.

Beer: Fresh Hop Tricerahops

Brewery: Ninkasi

Style: DIPA

ABV: No idea, not listed on Beer Advocate

Location: Eugene, OR

Appearance: Dark orange, with a finger and a half of head that lingers for a while.

Aroma: Amarillo hops, and that’s it.

Taste: This beer is delicious. Really pronounced floral, citrus, and pine notes that only amarillo hops can provide. The hops are nicely balanced out by the malt backbone of the beer. Delicious.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with light carbonation. Very smooth but leaves a little bit of a film in the mouth, which I’m perfectly okay with.

Drinkability: If only Belmont Station filled growlers…..I would have filled two.

Beer Advocate Grade: N/A

My Grade: A

A Night at Belmont Station

I’m currently in the process of accumulating amazing beer for an epic tasting once I’ve finally moved into my new apartment. I’m not quite up to where I would like to be at the moment, so I went over to Belmont Station to buy a few beers as well as enjoy a brew or two in the process.

Very pretty head, and a creep gnome dude on my glass.

Description: Basically a saison hopped with 100lbs of Magnum fresh hops.

Beer: Hits from the Vine

Brewery: Upright Brewing

Style: Saison

ABV: 6.5%

Location: Portland, OR

Appearance: Orange/yellow, with 3 fingers of pearly white head with big bubbles. Left some nice lacing too.

Aroma: Dry, hoppy, with some grass and earthiness.

Taste: A little bitter, with citrus and spices following up. Hops come in towards the end, and I was surprised at how subtle the hops were in this beer. I expect a fresh hop beer to punch me in the face with those citrus and floral notes.

Mouthfeel: Light with medium carbonation. Super duper dry though. Almost as dry as reading a bad book, but much more pleasant!

Drinkability: Very sessionable, you could have this sucker with dinner, dessert, and for a nightcap as well.

Beer Advocate Grade: A-

My Grade: B+

Back to Reviews!

Sorry about not reviewing over the last few days, I got sidetracked by stuff like trivia night and other stuff like friends. Gawd, I hate friends sometime haha.

Lots of weird bubbles sticking to the side of the glass, they went away though.

Description: When we made the Toronado’s 20th Anniversary Ale, we had no idea that it would turn out to be one of our favorite barrel aged beers we would ever make. With that said, we have always wanted to make a dark barrel aged beer using 100% cabernet barrels, but, we never were inspired. That is, until we blended five different beersto make the Toronado beer, the tobacco character¬† from the dark malts blended nicely with the fruit character that developed in blending. So, with Consecration we set out to make a barrel beer using all Cabernet barrels. Now, we are not saying this is a replica of the T-rooms anniversary beer, after all, a beer like that can never be duplicated, and, there was no fruit added to the beer as there was with this one. All we are saying is that it gave us great inspiration to brew Consecration.

Beer: Consecration

Brewery: Russian River

Style: Wild Ale

ABV: 10%

Location: Santa Rosa, CA

Appearance: Dark dark red, with no head or lacing. If this beer was a little more maroon, it could pass for wine, especially if you’re drinking out of stemmed glassware.

Aroma: Cherries, plums, lots of oak, and some funkiness. Horse blanket maybe…

Taste: Wow, this beer is tart, but pleasantly so. Cherries, and sweet plums follow initial tartness. The aftertaste is dominated by earthiness, but I think I can taste some spices too. Very tasty beer, but I remember this beer being better the last time I had it. Oh well, I probably just spend too much time at the Barrel House drinking delicious sours.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with really sharp carbonation. It’s not heavily carbonated, it’s just that the bubbles are kind of prickly.

Drinkability: Supremely easy, don’t share this little bottle with anyone. It’s yours.

Beer Advocate Grade: A

My Grade: A

Beer Release Incoming!

Block 15 is going to be releasing La Ferme de De’mons on the 26th at Belmont Station from 6-8PM. This beer is a dark farmhouse ale that has been soured and put into tons of different barrels. I will be there and you should be there too!

On a side note, a special beer called Strawberry Fields will be tapped as well. It’s a blend of golden ales aged in Pinot Noir barrels for 16 months and then fed 200lbs of strawberries. I’m curious, and suddenly very thirsty.

 

This is the bottle design: