Saturday, August 13, 2011

20,000 Leagues of delicious.

Brewery: Diamond Knot Brewing Co.
Location: Mukilteo, WA
Name: Industrial India Pale Ale
Type: IPA
ABV: 7.9%
I did it again. I bought a beer based on the label. I have a thing for brass diving helmets and someday wish to own one. BioShock is one of my favorite video games of all time and this label screams Big Daddy. I could've cared less about what this beer tasted has a badass, old timey diver on it's label. Luckily, I didn't have to chug through a bomber of bad swill. This IPA represents the style nicely with a honey gold colour (seriously, I don't intentionally get English on purpose. In fact, I could just delete the 'u' but I feel these little asides make it OK) tinged with orange. A vanilla pudding-esque colored head thinly lingers. The bouquet was astounding! There was an obvious sticky smell to it. Higher alcohol, super malts, and a scent forest think with hops of all scents (but mostly pine and floral) fill my nose with a zen like calm. Yes, my nose was full of zen. The best way to describe how this IPA tasted was lush and full. I was not at all surprised to bask in the pine flavor of a hop assault. There was a hint of earthiness which added a layer of grassy flavors that complimented the malt nicely. This beer is an unapologetic, full on, IPA. Hop heads rejoice. And I still think brass diving helmets are awesome so you should definitely find this beer. The best news? There were several other types of Diamond Knot brews that I look forward to diving into. OHMYGODPUNINTENDED!

Well slap me around and call me Ahab!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Domo Arigato, Mr. Ro-beer-to.

Brewery: Yoho Brewing Co.
Location: Nagano, Japan
Name: Tokyo Black
Type: Porter
ABV: 5.0%

First of all, I found it a trifle unnecessary to see the crack in the sumo's bottom (on the can). With that out of the way...
Imagine the best iced coffee you’ve ever had. Now, imagine that coffee tasting a million times better. And I’m talking black coffee, not some frilly flavored coffee. Yoho Tokyo Black is hands down the best iced coffee you will ever have. Even better, it has alcohol in it! Granted it’s not a massive amount of booze but it’s a plus. I had forgotten how pure things can taste when you remove the high levels of alcohol from them. Don’t worry imperial beers, I still love you. It’s just that this can of black as tar porter is so clean and perfect that it cannot be missed. To quote Tessa: “This smells like something you would like,” she said without a hint of being condescending. The nose is more complex that I expected. There are multiple layers that include roasted malt that comes off slightly bitter and sweet. Burnt sugar notes fondly present aromas of toffee and caramel. Now most people would look at this and thing it weighs a ton. Untrue. Tokyo Black is super crisp and refreshing. The slightest bit of sweetness is quickly bullied away by roasted malt tinged bitterness. A mild tart acidity lingers like you would expect something with this level of roast would have. It's nothing like the bitterness and acidity that you get from certain IPAs...this is classic and unadulterated porter. Throw your Guinness away. Do it. I implore you to track down this black can of Japanese beer greatness.

I would like a Venti, please.

He's a Commissioner, you know.

Brewery: Oskar Blues Brewery
Location: Lyons, CO
Name: Gordon (AKA: G'Knight)
Type: Imperial Red Ale
ABV: 8.7%

No bones, everything Oskar Blues puts in a can is delicious. My first experience with Gordon was a good one. This imperial red ale came out thick, almost viscous looking. It was the color of a rich cup of tea laced with honey and nearly glowing with a touch of amber. The full head was light and fluffy with a crisp white color and it eventually faded into the glass leaving behind a good bit of lacing. I do enjoy a beer that laces well and leaves behind “rest rings.” You can almost taste the beer as you smell it. There is a massive amount of malt in this beer and the bouquet doesn’t try to hide the fact. Once you break through the malt there are light notes of piney hops waiting in the wings, ready to bring some bitter to the party. You can go ahead and sacrifice your taste buds. The malt in Gordon commands  your tongue to bow to it. The velvety smooth mouthfeel delivers an abundance of flavor sweet with sugary malt and is fortified pleasantly with bitter hops. At the very end there is a hint of roastedness (just made that up, feel free to use it) that helps this beer finish strong. Gordon is a full on ale that should not be taken lightly. That being said, it’s not a light beer at all. I wouldn’t recommend drinking this on a full stomach and do give yourself some time to get through it, best not to rush this one!

Enjoy this during a dark (k)night!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Happy IPA day!

Happy IPA day, everyone! I hope you fine folks are taking a few minutes out of your day to enjoy your favorite (or perhaps a new) India Pale Ale.

Let me know what you're drinking today!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Put your camels to bed.

Brewery: Tallgrass Brewing Co.
Location: Manhattan, KS
Type: Imperial IPA
Name: Oasis
ABV: 7.2%
At one point (initially forgot the "o") I used to overlook IPAs for something else. Nothing else in particular, just not an IPA. I've discussed this before and for every moment I look back on my IPA transgressions I know that I did myself a terrible injustice. That being said, I don't intentionally mean to review so many IPAs, it just sort of works that way. And besides, Tessa made me buy this one. Let's get it out of the way, it's a pint-sized can. And I don't mean pint-sized in the 1940s "Hey, look at that pint-sized squirt!" It's an actual pint in a car, not unlike a Guinness. It's an appealing shade of medium auburn that produces a massive frothy light tan head. The bouquet is mouthwatering. Huge hops of the floral and pine variety and sticky malt let you know that this beer means to harm you in sweet, sweet ways. Notes of toffee and chewy bread play second fiddle to the prominent hops. First introduction to the taste buds was well received. The medium body mouthfeel delivered flavors of citrus-ly zesty hops which quickly danced its way to a warm, alcohol-tinged sweet malt, with a dry bitterness acting as Oasis' backbone. I expected a tongue altering hoppiness but was still pleasantly surprised to find that the beer was not dominated by the hop. Instead, it is complimented in its glory. It's definitely thicker than something like Brew Free! Or Die but not as slick as something like DFH 120minute. I strongly recommend this IPA to someone who is looking to expand their IPA knowledge and trying to get into something a little more aggressive on the ABV end. In all actuality, this is pretty damn tasty. This was my first run in with Tallgrass Brewing Company and look forward to indulging in their other offerings.

The best thing to come out of Kansas since ruby slippers.