Sunday, April 27, 2014

Foothills Brewing IPA of the Month 2014 April

I haven’t found to many IPAs that I really enjoy or that I found good. But I do like some but not as a whole style. I find that as a style IPA is not the best, but they are okay. Most average beer drinkers don’t like IPAs due to the bitter hoppy taste. But they are a large number of people that do and some are called hopheads. IPAs have been popular with discerning craft beer drinkers. I am not a hophead. But here we have an IPA for foothills Brewing from here in Winston-Salem North Carolina which is part of what is called the foothills of North Carolina. This IPA is part of a yearlong series that profiles a different flavor of IPA each month. This is called IPA of the Month 2014. Each month the bottle will have a different pinup girl drawn on it. Here we have IPA of the Month April (April Showers), 604% ABV and 82 IBU. This month is made with Simcoe, dry hopped with Amarillo and Centennial. April pours a very nice medium copper and slight burnt orange color with big four finger white fluffy bubbly head that slowly dissipates into nice white whips of lacing. I found this beer clearer than most IPA; I could see more light than usual coming through the glass with nice carbonation bubbles racing from the bottom. The aroma on this IPA is like fresh a mown lawn, big and grassy. The taste of April is grass and hoppy up front with touches of a pine like note, then you get a big citrusy grapefruit flavor. This IPA isn’t strongly bitter, but just bitter enough. As April warms up the hoppy flavor become slightly stinger. April has nice gradual fade of a hoppy finish that leaves a slow linger of a hoppy flavor over your taste buds. This IPA of the Month was very surprising for me. I didn’t think I was going to like this as much as I did. So Foothills Brewing IPA of the Month April gets an A. At no point while I was drinking this did I find it the slightest bit enenjoyable. I do however recommend you try this IPA. So go out and try Foothills Brewing IPA of the Month April or any of their up coming month for 2014. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!   

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Smuttynose Brewing Co. Big A IPA

IPAs (India Pale Ale) are all very popular with most craft beer drinkers, and IPAs come in various different styles. But today I’m focusing on double or imperial IPAs. This is a bigger style than a regular IPA. Double/imperial IPA’s have bigger hop flavors and higher ABVs. Here we have an example from Smuttynose Brewing company in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Big A IPA 9.7% ABV & 120 IBU (International Bittering Unit). Big A pours a copper orange color with a three finger white head that stick around for a few minutes, and leaves behind some sticky white lacing. I found there to be very little light coming through with and very little carbonation due to the deep murky like color. The aroma on Big A IPA is big with hops/hop oils, grassy earth notes and a dank resin aroma. The taste has a big slap of hoppy bitterness that washes over your taste buds and leaves a little bitter stickiness in your mouth. There are some earthy grass/piney notes with nice pineapple and a little faint citrus orange note. The mouth feel is big and hoppy and has a sticky grassy hoppy bitter finish that leaves an earthy, piney, hop bitter, citrus after taste that lingers around for a while. I do not recommend that you have this first before having other beers, Big A IPA really gives you taste buds a big wallop, make other beer taste a bit off. But I am not say that you shouldn’t drink Smuttynose Big A IPA, unless you don not like IPAs at all. Anyhow, I would say that Smuttynose Big A IPA is a B- beer. I am not the biggest hop/IPA fan, but I did enjoy Smuttynose Big A IPA. It wasn’t SO over the top hop forward and bitter, it was just enjoy letting you know, ‘hey I am a double IPA and I am HOPPY’. This beer has good flavor that all work well together and making this a balanced double IPA. I think this could have used a pinch more malt to make it into a higher grade.  If you like hops that sure I would recommend Smuttynose Big A IPA, but if you don’t then I don’t recommend this at all.  So go out and try Smuttynose Big A IPA and see what you think of it. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Scuttlebutt Brewing Company Golden Mariner Pale Ale

 Some breweries throughout the world usually have a theme to there brewing company wither it may be with the style of beer they brew or it may have something to with the brew master and/or owner, or it may even have to with the part of the world that they are located. Here we have Scuttlebutt Brewing Company from Everett, Washington, they have a Maritime theme to their brewery, like this one, Golden Mariner Pale Ale, 7.1% ABV. Some of their beers have sailors, pirates, seahorses, mariner, and mermaids on the label. Golden Mariner pours a murky, hazy deep orange color with a three finger rocky white head that left behind thick lacing. There was the tiniest amount of light streaming though the glass with an average level of carbonation. The aroma on Golden Mariner was malty with hints of a bread flavor scent with faint earth notes and a touch of hops. The taste is a big malty orangey powerhouse at first, then as it pass though you mouth it get less malt and slight more earthy as it get to the back of you tongue. There is a touch of hops almost towards the back. The mouth feel is somewhat medium with a little hop bitterness in the finish. The after taste is earthy with an orange flavor that has a very faint malt flavor to it, but the after taste is mostly an earthiness with a little hop bitterness. Overall Scuttlebutt Golden Mariner is not a bad beer, so I would say Golden Mariner gets a C. It isn’t a good or great beer, just average. I did find the label to be the best part of the beer. But that isn’t what I am really reviewing here, so I suppose that doesn’t matter as much as how the beer taste. Would I have this again? Not anytime soon I wouldn’t. It’s just not that good, just average. The malts and the hops weren’t as balance with one another as they should have been. Golden Mariner did have some amount of balance between them but not enough to get it any higher than a C rating. I also found the hoppy flavors to be a just little off for what they should be for Pale Ale. But it wasn’t so bad, it was drinkable but not the best Pale Ale I’ve ever had. So go out and try Scuttlebutt Brewing Company Golden Mariner Pale ale for yourself and see what you think. Cheer! Please enjoy responsibly!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Sabeco Saigon Export

Every country in the world produces at least one beer for the population to enjoy and some of those beers are exported to other countries. In some Asian countries they brew beer with rice instead of malt. Generally these are lagers and they tend to be called rice lagers. But when you see a rice lager in the U.S.A we generally called adjunct lager. Any ingredients such as rice or corn are an adjunct. But not all-Asian beer that is imported to the U.S.A has rice. Some change the recipe for America taste.  This is Sabeco Saigon Export, 4.9% ABV, from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Saigon Export is one Asian beer in the U.S. brewed with rice. Saigon Export pours a clear, crisp golden color with a three finger bubbly white head that fades at a normal rate and leaves behind tiny whips of lacing that didn’t really stick around. I found there to be tons of light streaming through the glass and there is a large amount of carbonation bubbles racing towards the top. The aroma is much like any adjunct lager would be. There is a slight biscuit note there with a very faint apple like scent that was a bit different. Saigon Export has a nice crisp taste that is clean and somewhat refreshing. I found a nice biscuit flavor there with a very faint apple note as well. The mouth feel is light and refreshing with a nice very faintly sweet finish and an after taste that of biscuit malts and a faint touch of sweetness. Overall this is an average beer. I would say this gets a C. I found there to be nothing to complain about or nothing worth telling the world about. I think that Saigon Export is drinkable, crisp, clean, and refreshing. So go out and try Sabeco Saigon Export and see what you think of it. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!

Friday, April 18, 2014


Single hop IPA’s are brewed to showcase a particular type of hop and tend to have a lower International Bittering Unit or IBU than non-single hop IPA’s Mikkeller is a gypsy brewery (they don’t have a brewery of they’re own) they brew their beers in a different brewery for each of beers. Mikkeller an example of a single hop IPA that showcases the Tettnang hop. The Tettnang hop is an aroma-type cultivar, which originated in the Tettnang hop growing area of Germany as a race-land hop. It is grown in t U.S.A. in Oregon and Washington State. The original noble hope from the Tettnang region of Germany, ideal for your finest lagers and wheat beers. This limited availability hop has a fine pure aroma, that is not present in the United States grown Tettnanger. Here we have Mikkeller Tettnanger an American style India Pale Ale, 6.8% ABV and with an IBU of 38. Tettnanger is brewed and bottled by Mikkeller at De Proef Brouwerij, in Lochristi-Hufte, Belgium. Tettnanger pours a deep copper/amber-deep orange color with a thick four finger off white head that sticks around of all twelve ounces, and leaves behind big whips of thick lacing. I found tiny amounts of light though the glass, and tiny amounts of carbonation bubbles, that was do to the color, clarity and the fact that found sizeable pieces of sediment there in my glass. The aroma on Tettnanger is big with a light orange Popsicle scent and a few faint grassy like notes. The taste I got was slightly citrusy with a bit of a spice to it. And a slight tinge of bitterness, but not to strong or bitter. The mouth feel is light to medium with a spiced citrus like hop finish. The after taste is much the same as the finish but with pinch more spiced citrus orange. This only my second Mikkeller beer that I’ve had and both have been an IPA. I am not really a huge fan of IPA’s in general, I like some IPAs, but I don’t absolutely love the style. So Mikkeller Tettnanger gets a D+ from me. I found Tettnanger to have more non-IPA qualities that wouldn’t be in an IPA, and the IPA qualities that I did find weren’t so great. They just fell short. Overall Mikkeller Tettnanger just fell out on my taste buds and wasn’t so good or enjoyable. Maybe if I like IPA’s more than I do then maybe Mikkeller Tettnanger would get a slightly higher rating. But it still is a D+ beer in my opinion. So go out and see what you think of Mikkeller Tettnanger. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly!