Monday, December 28, 2015

Huyghe Brewery Deliruim Nocturnum

Belgians brew some of the best tasting beers in the world. I love them very much. I have yet to any Delirium beers, which is brewed by the Huyghe Brewery in Melle/Ghent Belgium. This is a family brewery that has been brewing beer since 1654. Delirium Nocturnum, 8.5% ABV is highly popular strong dark Belgian Ale and usually has pink elephants on the blue label. What the mean behind the pink elephant is not known by me, but maybe you start to see the pink elephant all over the place after to many of this beer. Nocturnum pour a dark brown color with a two and a half beige, light brown color that big and stays for a little while before settling into great looking lacing around the edges of the goblet. The aroma is of figs, raisins with nice candied sugars and hints of alcohol. Taste is strong but none to overwhelming with nice raisin slight fig with a light subtle sweetness, but as this ale warms the alcohol become more dominate. I think that Nocturnum pairs well a meat dish such as prime rib, lamb, veil or steak. The mouth feel is full yet rich with a nice faint creamy texture. Nocturnum has a little bit of an alcoholic finish with bits of fig and hits of a sweetness that will lead into an after taste of more figs, raisins and faint toffee. The after taste sticks around for a moment. I really enjoyed Delirium Nocturnum. I give this ale A+. You should try this one! I still think Chimay Blue is the best of the strong dark Belgian ale style, but this Delirium Nocturnum is right up there. Cheers! Happy New Year! Please enjoy responsibly!     

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Left Hand Brewing Company Sawtooth Ale

I’m growing a liking to the ESB (Extra Special Bitter) style of beer, but I haven’t had a lot of this style. This is a more aggressive and more balanced bitter. ESBs aren’t really that bitter. The key is balance. This ESB is left Hand Brewing Company Sawtooth Ale, 5.3% ABV. Left Hand is located in Longmont Colorado on the banks of the St. Vrain River. This is yet another beer that come to me via Brewpublik ( Sawtooth pours a copper color with a big fluffy three finger head that slowly dissipates into a white halo with some nice quick dissolving lace left behind. The aroma is of faint malts with touches of a creamy scent. Smells like a real ESB from England so far. There is a tiny bit of hops there with hints of a faint cracker note. I don’t know why that faint crack is there; you’d find that more on a lager than an ESB. Anyhow the taste is a bit creamy upfront with malty flavors with hints of faint hops. The mouth feel is light with a slight hoppy finish and a creamy hop aftertaste that become a tiny bit malty as it fades away. I found this beer to be come slightly hoppier as it warms up but nothing like an IPA though. This Sawtooth Ale is good but not the best. I have had better and yet to have one as good as ESBs in the pubs in England. The little hoppy bite on the end holds this ESP back just a tiny amount. I give this a B-. I found the balance to be good but the finish to be a little off, but not so bad. Yes I would have this again maybe soon. I recommend try Left Hand Brewing Company Sawtooth Ale for yourself. Cheers! Happy Holidays!! Please enjoy responsibly!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Rogue Dead Guy Ale

I know it’s a little late in the year for Rogue Dead Guy Ale, 6.5% ABV, in Newport Oregon, which is a German Maibock. This ale is brewed with their very own Pacman Yeast, and eight other ingredients such as 2-row, C-15, Munich Rogue Farms Dare & Risk Malts; Rogue Farms Revaluation and Independent hops and Free Range Coastal Water. Maibock is usually had during the month of May. Yeah, this not May here, but I still drank it. Dead Guy pours a deep reddish Amber hue with a faint orange tint, with a one and a half finger of bright pearly white head that fades into a thick halo with minimal lacing left behind. The aroma is malty but not overwhelming with malts making Dead Guy smell like a malt bomb and nothing else. Dead guy has a malty taste that is at first light, then as it washes over your tongue and becomes a bit stronger, just enough for your taste buds to become familiar with these malts. I found there also to be a bit over a slight fruity sweetness that comes in says hello then goodbye. The mouthfeel is just barely full bodied with a nice subtle sweet malt fruit finish with a lingering aftertaste of the same. I rather enjoyed Rogue Dead Guy Ale. I say this a B+. It’s a good American take on a German-styled Maibock with American ingredients that turn out nicely. But the Germans do this style better in my opinion and I would not choose this over a German made German Maibock, but that is not to say this Rogue is terrible, which it isn’t. It’s an easy drinking Maibock, which is fine by me. You should try Rogue Dead Guy Ale for yourself. It’s easy! Cheers! Happy Holidays! Please Drink responsibly! 

Monday, December 21, 2015

Foothills Brewing Jade IPA

Well here is yet another IPA surprise! Yes there are probably a lot of IPA reviews on here since I’ve started The Best Beer Blog IPAs have grown on me, and I enjoy them more than I used to. Here is a foothills IPA, and no it isn’t the IPA of the Month, spoiler alert that is coming real soon. Anyhow this foothills IPA in question is Jade IPA, 7.4% ABV with 86 IBU (International Bittering Unit). Jade is named after the Jade hop which is found in the orient, is that name still used these days, well Jade hops are in the Pacific area of the globe and have striking tropical fruit notes. That makes sence for a Pacific hop. Foothills also dry hops additions of Chinook and Citra hops. Jade IPA pores a beautiful golden color with a two finger white head that sticks around for a bit fore fizzing away. The aroma is yes tropical with pineapple, mango with earthy notes and bits of orange from the Citra hops. The taste is hoppy with tropical notes of pineapple, mango orange with earthy hope notes and a slight bitter kiwi that is faint at best. Jade IPA is strongly hoppy but still easy drinking. You have to see past the bold hoppy bitter flavor and really taste the fruity elements to this IPA. Well you should drink any or most IPAs that way to enjoy them. The mouth feel is on the higher side of light barely hitting a medium mouth feel, and has a nice bitter tropical peppery finish that gives way to a bigger bitter hop after taste with some orange and less of a topical fruitiness. This is a hit in my book, YES! I give this an A. The big hoppieness that Jade has is complemented by the tropical and citrus flavor that mingle well together to give way to a great IPA that has a big IBU but drinks like it doesn’t. I think that you should try Foothills Jade IPA! Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly! Happy Holidays!  

Sycamore Brewing The Salty Coconut Red Ale (Rum Barrel Aged)

I have never gone to a brewery only beer release before, but now I can say that I have. This past weekend I went down to the Sycamore Brewing here in Charlotte, NC and picked up a few bottles of The Salty Coconut Red Ale, 6.8% ABV. This is aged in rum barrels from Nicaragua and Barbados and brewed with a hundred pounds of coconut. For how long this beer resides in the rum barrel is beyond me and I don’t know what rum or rums were in these barrels prior to sycamore using them. This is a small batch brew, which means only a small number will be brewed, 1000 to be exact. The brewer has hand written the barrel caretaker’s name and the bottle number on the bottle of the label. This bottle is 712/1000. Sycamore does brew this beer with out aging them in rum barrels. This is Sycamore first ever bottled beer. The Salty Coconut Red Ale pours a deep red color with a thin white halo head that fades as quickly as it can. The aroma of coconut hits you as soon as you pour it. I also found a light rum scent there that with the coconut is how I imagine coconut rum to be, as I have never had coconut rum yet. I am sure that is good. But anyway this isn’t a liquors blog! So the taste, well yes you do get a huge rush of coconut hitting your taste buds with nice light yet faint rum flavors round it with a dash of salt. Sycamore does say on the label to have a sip and think of turquoise water and your toes in the sand. No I didn’t think of that, instead I thought of a palm straw hut bar and tropical weather. Now you’re thinking this isn’t a beer for winter. But it is and it is okay for the unseasonable (warm) weather here in Charlotte, NC. The mouth feel is slightly medium with a nice rummy coconut finish with a little tiny alcoholic burn. After taste is in the name COCONUT. That is what I got and it sticks around with hint of salty rum for a bit. This is a good beer and I would like to try the un-aged version of it. I give Sycamore brewing The Salty Coconut Red Ale a B. I think this goes to show you that a tropical tasting beer doesn’t have to be pilsner, lager, wheat, or even radler colored. The rum barrel aging adds even more of Caribbean taste and flavor to it that is great.  I really like the idea behind this as well. I recommend trying this if there are still any of the 1000 bottles left. Cheers! Please enjoy responsibly! Happy Holidays!