Monday, February 24, 2014

Wells Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale

You shouldn’t always believe in what you hear, read and/or see, because sometimes the way some things really are can get lost in the hype, and just aren't true. The same can be said about beers. I have been seen on the Internet and various social media sites a new Wells beer. (Wells or Wells and Young is an English brewer from Bedford, UK, famous for their Banana Bread Ale) Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale, 5.0% ABV has been showing up frequently with some fan fair. This ale is based on the Great British pudding according to the bottle. Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale is a seasonal beer, released around Christmas time each year. Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale Pours a deep copper/brown color with a one finger beige head that quickly bubbles away leaving behind no traces of lacing. I could not see any light through this, but I did find the littlest amount of carbonation. The aroma is sweet form a generous amount of sticky toffee. The aroma was reminiscent of sweet soda. The taste on Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale is a little more carbonated for this ale with sweet toffee flavors and hints of caramel. I thought that Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale was like a light version of a cream soda and not much like ale. The mouth feel is light to barely medium and has a sweet carbonated finish and the after taste filled caramel toffee and that light cream soda flavor that kind of lingers on your tongue. I really don’t see the hype of this beer. I find it to be just plain and just not as good its made out to be. Wells does a wonderful job with their very tasty Banana Bread Beer, but I think they missed on Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale. Once I got close to finishing a bottle I felt like I wasn’t really drinking a beer, and that I need to have a something that was way more like a beer. So I think Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale get a D-. The idea for Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale sounds good on paper but doesn’t translate to a good tasting beer. I don’t recommend this Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale if you’re looking for a sweeter beer, but if you like cream soda sure you could try it. It’s a good thing this comes only once a year. I think Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale could handle being around for the rest of the year, it would get lonely sitting on the shelf. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Red Brick Brewing Co. Sacred Cow Chi Tea Milk Stout

Milk Stouts can be a bit confusing to understand. They do not use actual milk in brewing this type of stout. What is used is the lactose sugar that is found in most milk, that sugar gives the stout its sweetness as well as most milk. Here is a slight variation on the Milk Stout, Red Brick Brewing Co. (Atlanta Georgia) Sacred Cow Chai Tea Milk Stout. This has Chai Tea spices in it as well. Sacred Cow pours a black color with a tan beige one-finger head that quickly disappears. I found there to be no light coming through with tiny amounts of carbonation.  The aroma on Sacred Cow is slightly spiced with a little roasted note. Sacred Cow’s taste is very spiced from the Chai Tea, and I found the tiniest sweetness, but the spices overpower its sweetness. The spices are almost bittering in a way. The flavor on this Sacred Cow is like a root beer barrel candy. There is a slight faint note roasted there. The mouth feel is medium to full. Sacred Cow has a big unpleasant spiced finish that leads you to a bitter like after taste. I would say this beer is a D-. I did finish this but I really wanted to get to the bottom of the glass rather quick. I don’t think the Chai Tea should be in milk stout in my opinion. I did not like Sacred Cow Chai Tea Milk Stout, and I don’t recommend this one either. So please don’t go out and try Red Brick Brewing’s Sacred Cow Chai Tea Milk Stout. It’s will make you scared to try another. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Abita Mardi Gras Bock

It’s getting closer and closer to springtime, even though it may not look like it outside for most of us. But on the shelves of hour local stores we’re already seeing the spring seasonal beer. Here we have one from Abita out of Abita Springs Louisiana, this is their Mardi Gras Bock, 6.5& ABV. Mardi Gras Bock is brewed with pale, pilsner, and caramel malts and German Parle Hops. Mardi Gras Bock is similar to German maibock. Maibocks are just spring bocks. Mardi Gras Bock pours a cooper color with a semi tan two and a half finger bubbly head. There is some light coming through the glass and lost carbonation on this. The aroma is nice with hints of malts characteristics and a slight breaded note that might be from the pilsner malts. Mardi Gras Bock’s taste is a little breaded from the tasty pilsner malts, and there is a slight yet faint sweetness to this beer but nothing overwhelming. I did get the faintest taste of those Perle hops, and I found it pleasurable. I also found the taste on this beer to be on the smoother side and yet drinkable. The mouth feel is medium to full, and Mardi Gras Bock has a nice smooth finish with hints of those pale, pilsner and caramel malts. The after taste is not around for long, but what is there is a nice malted character not unlike the finish or the taste. Overall Mardi Gras Bock is not a bad beer; I think this maibock deserves a B+. Mardi Gras Bock is a good drinkable bock with nice ABV level (6.5%). I found all the taste and flavor of Mardi Gras Bock going well with one another, and nothing clashing for a bad flavor or taste. Mardi Gras Bock is a good beer choice during Carnival season in New Orleans or where ever you’re celebrating. So go out and try Abita Mardi Gras Bock and see what you think of it. Cheers! Please enjoy responsible!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Chestnut Brown Ale Homebrew

Thanks to former president Jimmy Carter who legalized home brewing, now anyone can make beer in their own home for their own consumption. It’s not really that hard to do in opinion. Home brewing is like cooking. I recently brewed Chestnut Brown Ale. It’s a Brooklyn Brew shop kit, and come at to 6.0% ABV. This beer takes two weeks to ferment and two week living in the bottle before enjoyment. My Chestnut Brown Ale pours a murky brown color with a huge five-finger pillow of beige like head. The head stuck around for a while. This beer came out very carbonated; as I opened the bottle it rocketed its way out shooting from the top. I think that too much honey (which was used to give it carbonation while sitting out in the bottles) was used and made high levels of carbonation. I found very little amounts of light streaming thought the glass, and found high levels of carbonation bubble racing ever so quickly from the bottom to the top. The aroma on my Chestnut Brown Ale is slightly nutty and sweet from the roasted chestnuts, and I get a little faint malted scent around nice but light dark fruit aroma that is not unlike a raisin. The taste is sweet up front followed by a nice light nuttiness that has a dark fruit taste latched onto it  (that is a raisin like flavor). The mouth feel is medium but the beer is nice and drinkable. My Chestnut Brown Ale finishes nice easy with a nice lightly malted sweet flavor that leads in to a sweet and nutty after taste that sticks around just long enough for you to enjoy it. So my first home-brew, Chestnut Brown Ale turned out good, so it gets an A here. I just think that too much honey was used giving it a little to much carbonation, so next time I brew less honey should be used. I love the fact that this Chestnut Brown Ale is an easy drinker and not overly down with the sweetness or the fact that it is too malty. This turned out to be a successful home-brew. I am pound of this Chestnut Brown Ale turned out as well as all, and myself involved in the process. Cheers! Please enjoy, and home-brew responsibly!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

The Orkney Brewery Red MacGregor

There is one thing that I really like about beer, is having a pint with a lower ABV percentage. That makes it easy to have a whole pint and not be so cautious about drink that wonderful pint of beer. I find that some pints of beers have an average ABV, while a lot tend to have a higher ABV, and some seven hundred milliliter beers tend to be to high for person to drink all of the liquid contents and not get near drunk. Here is a beer from The Orkney Brewery, which is located in Quoyloo, Stromness. This is their Red MacGregor, a Scottish Ale 4.0% ABV. This is a good ABV for 1 pint 0.9 ounces.  Red MacGregor pours a deep ruby red color with an off white three and a half finger of off white rocky head that’s slow to dissipate. I found low amounts of light coming through with decent carbonation bubbles. The aroma on Red MacGregor is of slight floral and fruity scent, with nice notes of some cherry, faint toffee caramel with slight hints of a hoppy grass notes. The taste is similar to the aroma or nose, with nice juiciness of both toasted and biscuit like malt flavors with a spicy hoppy flavor towards the end. The mouth feel is medium and has a bitter finish that leads you down to a hoppy spicy after taste that has hints of bitter fruit with touches of a faint grassy yet piney after flavor. This is not a bad brew, so I am giving this a B-. The fact that the ABV is 4.0% for 1 pint 0.9 ounces helps Red MacGregor gain a B-. I did not find this beer to overly hoppy/bitter nor did I find it to be over malty. It had just the right balance of each. Red MacGregor has good but interesting flavors and is somewhat easy to drink and enjoyable too. The Orkney Brewer’s Red MacGregor doesn’t need much to make it perfect; just a little less of a hoppy finish and after taste and it’s there. I did enjoy this Red MacGregor Scottish Ale. So go out and try The Orkney Brewer’s Red MacGregor Scottish Ale and see what you think of it! Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!