Beer Reviews: Most Recent

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Sculpin IPA
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Sculpin IPA

Ballast Point Brewing Company
American IPA / 7.00% ABV

4.35/5  rDev -0.9% | rAvg: 4.39
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a very clear, coppery-amber color, with a decent, stable head.

Smells of biscuity malts, with a hoppiness featuring a grassy dankness as well as an orange ripeness. While the hops are beautifully well pronounced on the nose, they blend well into the malts with a note of lemon zest standing out from that mixture.

Drinks outstandingly soft, with a well integrated aqueous note, perfectly covered by pungent hops, creating a fantastic refreshment.

Begins with bready malts, together with a short appearing coppery note, integrated into the overall taste by sun-bathed, sweet oranges. They introduce an exuberant fruit note to the palate, covered by dry, bitter lemon, pushed by a slightly metallic carbonation. Finishes with luscious lemon rind, leafes, a sparkly burn and a dried orange.

Convinces by a world-class balance between sweeter malts and distinct hops, which blend marvelously well together. The hops provide an awesome flavor profile, around which the flavors are successfully build, exhibiting a great depth. (1,032 characters)

EOS Hefeweizen
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EOS Hefeweizen

Nebraska Brewing Company
Hefeweizen / 5.20% ABV

4.31/5  rDev +10.8% | rAvg: 3.89
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Hefeweizen is my thing and this is a good one. An excellent one I should say.

I love the flavor profile which leans heavy on sweetish banana's and vanilla notes but has just enough clove spiciness to keep it from being banana bread like.

Medium bodied...carbonation is about right...aroma really jumps out at you with all the phenols you'd expect.

I need to include this in a blind taster against Schell next time. They are both good and not similar in my opinion. (477 characters)

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Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
American Barleywine / 13.00% ABV

4.38/5  rDev +0.2% | rAvg: 4.37
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It pours a beautiful hazy amber with a thin white head that doesn't stuck around. The nose is quite impressive. Booze, whiskey, almond, vanilla, and some mild marmalade (might be from the hops). The taste is delicious. It's thick and sweet upfront, then some bitterness comes into play. The heat from the booze is always mildly present. There is a similar cola finish to the Stickee Monkee. This is really great beer. I'm glad I didn't share the bottle. (454 characters)

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Ithaca Beer Company
Kölsch / 7.00% ABV

3.36/5  rDev -7.9% | rAvg: 3.65
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bought a single bottle from Beers of the World, July 2015. Served at fridge temp in a Duvel Tulip.

L: Hazy apricot, fluffy white head, not much lacing.

S: faint whiff of sour, thick breadiness
T: tang, chewy wheat bread.
F: quality, solid
O: doesn't seem like a Kolsch, more like an APWA. Missing the delicate, fruitiness. (324 characters)

Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout
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Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout

Big Sky Brewing Company
Russian Imperial Stout / 9.50% ABV

3.98/5  rDev +0.3% | rAvg: 3.97
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Opaque black body, cream- coffee-colored dense head that turns soapy. Cool label/matte bottle.

S & T: Acidic coffee/chocolate, probably aided by a moderate hop bill. Bitter chocolate flavor, vanilla, roasted malt adds onto the tongue. Some sips taste like a chocolate milkshake.Pretty sure the pine/orange rind addition to this melange from the hops are what's detracting from this otherwise great flavor, albeit their presence is mild.

M: Nice oily quality, but broken up by some unwelcome sharp carbonation, which I think somehow brings out the hop quality more, although that is probably just my mental association.

O: Pretty cool chameleon-shifting beer. First the head was dense, then non-uniform. Acidity on the nose turned into warmer flavors on the palate. All in all a great stout, surprised it has kept such a low profile. (838 characters)

King Sue
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King Sue

Toppling Goliath Brewing Company
American Double / Imperial IPA / 8.00% ABV

4/5  rDev -13% | rAvg: 4.6
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one was billed as "the best DIPA ever" and "even better than Double Sunshine," so after nearly a year of searching, I was thrilled to be able to try it at a fair trade value.

And just to get this out of the way early, this beer is still light years away from being crowned worthy of either of those two aforementioned titles. It is not a bad beer, just one that does not belong in the discussion of "elite" or "Top 5" anything. It is an over-hyped and overrated beer. Plus, when you are expecting a Double Sunshine level brew in your glass and wind up tasting something inferior, the palate tends to be less forgiving.

In terms of how disappointing this beer actually was, I would say -as a point of reference- that there are at least ten Hill Farmstead IPA's that are better than King Sue, meaning that while it certainly does not measure up to an Abner or a Double Citra, it falls quite short of some of HF's smaller guns as well. With so much good beer out there to drink, this one can do doubt be skipped.

Overall, King Sue was "pretty good" but certainly not "great." It reminded me a lot of the hype surrounding King Julius and the disappointment that ensued following that release and subsequent tasting.

In conclusion, I am glad to have tried King Sue to satisfy my curiosity and to be able to hang on to a bottle with a T-Rex on it, although I wish my beer experience had been more favorable, given the relative whale status of this beer. (1,458 characters)

Kelso Brett Saison
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Kelso Brett Saison

Greenpoint Beerworks / Kelso of Brooklyn
American Wild Ale / 5.00% ABV

4.28/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 4.28
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle was poured into a large snifter. Saison aged in bourbon barrels with brett. Sounds awesome.

Appearance: A two finger head was poured that reduced to a puffy layer. It is a pale yellow color with great clarity and vision of tiny bubbles coming up through the center of the glass. Frothy lacing down the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Funky, oak, vanilla, coconut, earthy, bready, toasted, and dried fruit.

Taste: Got to love how well everything blended well together in the barrels flavor wise. You pick up a little of everything on the palate. Tart, funky, chewy, oak, vanilla, coconut, dried fruit, and earthy.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied, dry, medium to high carbonation, tart, funky, a little chewy, and oak.

Overall: Will have to say I'll look forward to finding more of their aged barrel series beers next time in Long Island. Pretty cool stuff and hope to find this one again. (914 characters)

(Take The) Causeway IPA
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(Take The) Causeway IPA

Fairhope Brewing Company
American IPA / 8.20% ABV

4.26/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 4.46
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - Pours a clear, medium golden body with large collar of slightly off-white foam with good retention and average lacing.

Smell - Strong floral bouquet with complex undertones of fruit, grain, pine resin. Malt aroma is minimal but present.

Taste - High hop bitterness with medium finish. Floral, pine, grapefruit flavors combine in bitterness. Alcohol taste is present. Sweetness from grainy malt character is low. Balance strong towards hops.

Mouthfeel - Medium-light body with medium carbonation. Smooth and crisp finish with slight warming from alcohol.

Overall - A complex aroma with well-balanced body and [seemingly] low on IBU's (for it's style), makes this a real treat of American IPA's. At 8.2% ABV, it really creeps up on you. For someone who is not fond of hoppy beers, this was quite a treat.

Poured from 12 oz bottle. Dating on label suggest this may be the first commercially bottled batch. (927 characters)

Bean Me Up Espresso Milk Stout
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Bean Me Up Espresso Milk Stout

Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks
Milk / Sweet Stout / 5.70% ABV

4.33/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 4.04
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 650ml bottle

L: Black creamy and a nice brown head that leaves a nice lacing.

S: Coffee, roasted malts, chocolate.

T: Burnt coffee, slight hop taste and a nice bitterness with a nice chocolate aftertaste.

F: Full body easy drinking

O: Super easy drinking and quite and enjoyable milk stout. (310 characters)

Hop Odyssey: Citra Session IPA
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Hop Odyssey: Citra Session IPA

Green Flash Brewing Co.
American IPA / 4.50% ABV

3.67/5  rDev -7.1% | rAvg: 3.95
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Poured into a Teku glass. Golden orange with a small amount of white head.

S - Not very aromatic, but light orange citrus.

T - Juicy orange with a bit of lemon citrus that is quickly overtaken by hop bitterness.

F - Medium bodied. Starts very refreshing, but finishes a bit dry, light, and watery.

O - The Citra flavors are its saving grace. A bit too light and watered down with not enough nose. (404 characters)

Nelson The Impaler
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Nelson The Impaler

Iron Fist Brewing Company
American Pale Ale (APA) / 5.50% ABV

3.77/5  rDev +0.3% | rAvg: 3.76
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This was an interesting APA to me as it tasted to me more like a lager or specifically a Pils. Maybe it was an off bottle, who knows. Poured a rather clear golden color, again, nearly a Pilsner. Not much in the smell from my two different glasses (got a 22oz bottle) but nothing off putting at all. Taste is crisp when it hits the tongue but runs smooth down the back and I'll tell you what I like it. Finishes well and light, not bitter or sweet, doesn't linger heavy but is always there. Overall I'd say this is almost a Pilsner APA hybrid of some sort and is very tasty, almost sessionable. Listed as an APA I'd like a little more body to it and a bit more hop presence. If it says all this on the bottle, I didn't read it ok, too lazy and I didn't want to use it as a guide, you can read that yourself. (806 characters)

The Bruiser
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The Bruiser

7 Hermits Brewing Company
American IPA / 6.50% ABV

3.69/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 3.69
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

i was told they make this one because if they drank paul all the time they would be waste cases. i can abide that, but this one didnt tickle me in quite the same spot. i mean, its a fine ipa, even quite good from the right vantage point, but for me it was a little samey and not anywhere near as compelling as the double they do. looks similar though, a shade lighter but equally clear and heady, and a nose of similar hop strains. the difference here is that the flavor isnt there, and the texture of the hops, which really made the paul awesome, isnt there in this one to near the same degree. now, its still leagues better than a whole host of india pales from around colorado, and i would chose it from a large crowd still, but i think the paul was unique enough and tasty enough hat whatever these guys came up with for a regular ipa was going to be short of the mark, sometimes your staple beer does you in, and thats the case here. good ipa, but a fraction of what their double is in every facet. (1,003 characters)

Rocket Bike American Lager
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Rocket Bike American Lager

Moab Brewery
American Amber / Red Lager / 4.00% ABV

3.48/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 3.31
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Decent lager. Thin and watery body; toasty sweet malts up front, and a slight bitter grassy hop in the aftertaste. No lace on glass; poured a 1 finger white foamy head; red color. Smells sweet, toasty, malty, and grainy. Reminds me of an Oktoberfest or Vienna Lager. (266 characters)

Alaskan Hopothermia
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Alaskan Hopothermia

Alaskan Brewing Co.
American Double / Imperial IPA / 8.50% ABV

4.29/5  rDev +10% | rAvg: 3.9
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed at Chepo's in Eagle River, Alaska. Poured from the tap into a 20 oz glass.

Very pretty dark copper color, clear.

Citrusy hop aroma.

This beer is a monster, more extreme than even most Imperial IPA's., maybe a bit too much for me.

Very heavy-full mouthfeel with nice lingering hop oil. (296 characters)

Michelob Ultra Fruit Lime Cactus
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Michelob Ultra Fruit Lime Cactus

Light Lager / 4.20% ABV

3.63/5  rDev +45.2% | rAvg: 2.5
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

one of the best lime beers, watery but still very good everone i know seems to like it. has a dry taste to it guess thats why its called cactus , I put this at the number 1 light beer girls love it. (198 characters)

Height Of Civilization
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Height Of Civilization

Wild Heaven Craft Beers
English Barleywine / 12.00% ABV

4.57/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 4.63
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Note: this is my first experience with a barleywine, although I have had other strong ales (mainly Belgian).

Appearance: medium brown. Is fairly carbonated, has a thin head, and phenomenal lacing.
Nose: powerful scent of cherries, along with cranberries, citrus, dates, and toasted almond.
Body: full, yet crisp.
Taste: first greeted by a mix of cranberry and cherry, gets lost in the middle with some roasted nut flavors and some citrus notes, then finishes with tequila and oak.
Finish: rich, long, warming as it goes down your throat.

Is this really 12%? Does not taste like it in the slightest. So smooth. In the end, while I enjoyed the taste highly, it wasn’t as complex as I was hoping for. Does change flavor with warming which is nice touch. (754 characters)

White Apron Ale
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White Apron Ale

Anderson Valley Brewing Company
Belgian Pale Ale / 5.10% ABV

4.31/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 4.31
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Got a chance to try this on my recent trip to California when I was in northern California. At least originally, this beer is brewed by Anderson Valley specifically and supposedly exclusively for The French Laundry restaurant Yountville, California, and the back label of the bottle I had even said as much, I've also know of reports of people being able to buy bottles of this in New York and having this on-tap in Los Angeles and in bottles in Berkley, so who knows? Anyways, this beer was poured from a bomber into a snifter glass, and it pours a clear, light golden color with lots of streams of little bubbles rising to the beer's surface along with a nice fluffy white head that is an inch thick when first poured. Very good head retention. Eventually settles to a medium sized ring lining the inside of the glass along with a nice big surface coating film layer of foam and excellent lacing to boot. Aromas of crisp, toasted malt, citrus, and some spice notes are present along with a grainy presence and some herbal hops. Has a slightly sweet, crisp, slightly toasted malt presence upfront that gives way to lemony citrus zest and hints of tangerine along with some spice notes. Hints of coriander and peppercorn to be sure. All rounded out with a nice hint of herbal and floral hops with a slight bit of bitterness. Very nice flavor profile, as there is a lot going on in my palate, and the different flavors mesh together quite nicely indeed. Everything is well balanced. Has a crisp, and also smooth and frothy, slightly prickly. medium to full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Has a clean, dry finish and is quite easy to drink the way good beer should be. Hope I get the chance to drink this again. Worth a try for sure if you can track it down.

Eric (1,791 characters)

Fairhope No. 51
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Fairhope No. 51

Fairhope Brewing Company
American Pale Ale (APA) / 5.80% ABV

3.72/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 3.71
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours a clear golden pale color with slightly off-white head with good retention.

Smell - Strong hop presence of citrus notes, pine, and floral. Faint hints of fruity esters.

Taste - High hop bitterness with medium finish. Hop character of floral and citrus, also a toasty character. Malt sweetness is present, but balance heavy towards hops (as expected).

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied,with smooth finish and medium carbonation.

Overall - Not an overly hoppy American PA, that seems more balanced and refined, albeit tough to standout in a saturated craft market of Pale Ale styles.

Poured from 12 oz bottle. Dating on label suggest this may be the first commercially bottled batch. (707 characters)

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Tree House Brewing Company
American IPA / 7.60% ABV

4.66/5  rDev +1.7% | rAvg: 4.58
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 2 liter growler filled on 7/23/15 and consumed with a buddy of mine on 7/25/15. Fantastic IPA. First couple of sips had a surprisingly bitter taste at the mid-palate and on the back end, but this bitterness almost completely disappeared just a couple of minutes later. Moving forward after the first couple of sips, just five minutes later this beer completely smoothed out almost entirely, and just became another great, crisp and smooth IPA from Tree House. Gives Julius a run for its money, no question about it... (535 characters)

Bell's Oberon Ale
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Bell's Oberon Ale

Bell's Brewery, Inc.
American Pale Wheat Ale / 5.80% ABV

3.57/5  rDev -7.3% | rAvg: 3.85
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bought a single bottle from Beers of the World, July 2015. Served at fridge temp in a Duvel Tulip.

L: Hazy apricot, thin white head, not much lacing.

S: faint whiff of sour atop bready malt
T: no banana, very faint tartness, thick chewy wheat bread
F: quality, solid
O: Not bad, but no real reason to seek it out either (322 characters)

Moosehead Light Lime
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Moosehead Light Lime

Moosehead Breweries Ltd.
Light Lager / 4.00% ABV

3.65/5  rDev +22.9% | rAvg: 2.97
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

nice lime beer not like a light beer much better then normal mooseheead . has a real crisp taste one of the best light beers much better then bud Lime or miller lime . (167 characters)

Line And Twine
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Line And Twine

Petaluma Hills Brewing Company
American IPA / 7.20% ABV

4.21/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 4.13
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

i can't recommend this beer more highly. This was quite the treat after travelling to visit Lagunitas Brewing and finding it to be closed (Monday and Tuesday). All of the beers were tasty and this one was especially to style. The smell was delicious and I'm still not sure how the low IBU can be possible in such a tasty beer. Well done! (337 characters)

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Tree House Brewing Company
American Double / Imperial IPA / 8.20% ABV

4.69/5  rDev +4% | rAvg: 4.51
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 2 liter growler poured at the brewery 4 days ago. This is one fantastic DIPA. Honestly I just haven't had a bad beer yet from these guys, but Haze is such. Well balanced DIPA. Very citrusy, fruit bomb full of flavor and smooth as hell, with a little bit of bitterness on the back end. But that's ok and too be expected from the style. I don't enjoy DIPAs that are too malt forward or too bitter, but this is neither. Just a great example of this style and a beer that I will come back to at every opportunity that I get. (540 characters)

Big House Blonde
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Big House Blonde

Petaluma Hills Brewing Company
Belgian Pale Ale / 6.33% ABV

3.85/5  rDev n/a | rAvg: 2.8
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This was quite the treat after travelling to visit Lagunitas Brewing and finding it to be closed (Monday and Tuesday). All of the beers were tasty and this one was especially to style. (184 characters)

Green 19
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Green 19

Titletown Brewing Company
American IPA / 6.42% ABV

4.24/5  rDev +3.9% | rAvg: 4.08
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wow this was a phenomenal beer. It poured a brilliant golden Amber color with a good amount of head. The scent was of a sweeter hops variety. Taste wise I could detect the hops but they mixed with a floral sweet citrus that kept things from becoming too bitter. This beer was exceptionally smooth and refreshing. (312 characters)

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