Beer Reviews: Most Recent

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Mono Black - Vanilla
Mono Black - Vanilla

Black Horizon Brewing Company
American Double / Imperial Stout / 10.30% ABV

3.55/5  rDev 0% | Score: 3.55
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Taste: roasted vanilla bean, burnt chocolate, coffee, dark molasses malty notes. Same with the nose. Black/brown, mostly opaque, with smaller tan head and some lace in taster glass. Medium/full body. 25 IBU

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Crasher In The Rye 2017
Crasher In The Rye 2017

Clown Shoes
Oatmeal Stout / 11.50% ABV

4.3/5  rDev +0.7% | Score: 4.27
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Not much to look at.
Smell is best feature-notes of barrel, roasty malt, coffee, molasses, faint chocolate.
Taste is roasty malt, mild sweet syrup, slight barrel notes.
Feel is smooth with light boozy background, well balanced, nothing too overpowering.
Thought it had an astringency when cold that made me worry about infection (had this with a previous Clown Shoes), but as it warmed, it developed into a smooth sipper. Pretty good.

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Chai Yeti
Chai Yeti

Great Divide Brewing Company
American Double / Imperial Stout / 9.50% ABV

3.95/5  rDev -2.2% | Score: 4.04
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

**
02/17/2018

Bottle to tulip glass while preparing a belated Valentines Day dinner.

LOOK: Like all Yeti, this is thick black with a gorgeous 2"-3" light brown head. Head diminishes to a quarter inch, but remains frothy. Head imparts "legs" on the sides of the glass when josling.
AROMA: Some light chai spices, but more baking soda.
TASTE: a little more of the chai spice flavors here. milk chocolate,
LOOK: Smooth sipping and thick. Light carbonation, right for the style.

**

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Manta Ray Double India Pale Ale
Manta Ray Double India Pale Ale

Ballast Point Brewing Company
American Double / Imperial IPA / 8.50% ABV

3.9/5  rDev -5.1% | Score: 4.11
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

it's expensive, powerful juicy, different and probably good for just 1.
a) Completely hazed golden body sports a thin head that fades almost as if it had fruit juice in it, but solid lacing.
s) Grapefruit predominates, too much so, over a light crackery malt back with sun-baked grass. Coastal.
t) Follows the smell but bigger, light, bright, with more fruit flavors mango, pineapple, peach, but most dominant is the grapefruit. Sweet honey like front see saws into bitter peppery finish with big ABV. Big like a Manta Ray.
f) medium-bodied, peppery crisp, clean finish with edgy carbonation. Frisky.
o) Not up to Ballast standards, or the expense, but worth a try.

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Fool Me Once Peach Milkshake
Fool Me Once Peach Milkshake

Black Horizon Brewing Company
American Pale Ale (APA) / 6.30% ABV

3.65/5  rDev 0% | Score: 3.65
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Taste: creamy milky mouthfeel, semi sweet and yet tropical fruit from hops with big peach taste in the mix with vanilla bean in background. Bold mango/ peach aroma with citrus hop to the nose. Honey color hue, mostly unfiltered with some foam head and ringed lattice. Medium body to med/light. Unique and fresh. 45 IBUS

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077-10990 (Chinook)
077-10990 (Chinook)

Carton Brewing Company
American Double / Imperial IPA / 7.80% ABV

4.13/5  rDev +0.7% | Score: 4.1
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Canned 1/26/2018. Poured into a Spiegelau IPA glass. It pours a hazy, golden-honey color with more than a finger of fluffy, bright-white head and long-lasting, soapy lacing. A somewhat subdued aroma of lemon, grapefruit, pine, malt, and floral hops. It's dank and very bitter with loads of pine needles and biting Chinook hops. In fact, I think it may be the most bitter of the Dubviants. At three weeks old it's very hoppy but I can also taste a strong malt presence. While there's a hint of citrus, this is not a fruity DIPA. I wish I had this fresh and I'll try to do so the next time it's released. Overall, like all Dubviants it's an excellent DIPA but I prefer some of the others especially Mosaic, Apollo, and Nelson.

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Onesie Single Hop (Centennial)
Onesie Single Hop (Centennial)

Lone Pine Brewing Company
American IPA

4.1/5  rDev 0% | Score: 4.1
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, slightly darkish orange with a one finger bone white silky head that settles quickly to a film.

Aroma has strong notes of citrus, pine and a touch of something tropical like pineapple.

The taste has strong hop flavor matching the aroma but with the addition of an almost nutty flavor that rounds it off well. Malt is subtle and gets out of the way. It finishes with a bright and bitter citrus flavor.

Feel is slightly soft but clean, not sticky on the lips. There is a healthy bitterness here that stays to the finish.

This is really a great hop flavor that stands well against a weak malt backdrop. The bitterness gives it a bit of bite too.

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For Pete's Sake Imperial Chocolate Peanut Butter Porter
For Pete's Sake Imperial Chocolate Peanut Butter Porter

DuClaw Brewing Company
American Porter / 9.00% ABV

4.14/5  rDev +5.1% | Score: 3.94
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

For Pete's Sake, indeed! This is my new favorite porter...

Full disclosure - I am a DuClaw fan. Most of their stuff I love, the majority I really, really like, and there's one of two that were underwhelming. But this offering I really, really love. Black liquid in the glass with a thin tan foam, decent staying power. The smell is everything it's advertised to be: Chocolate, peanut butter, strong taste of roasted malts, and just a hint of booziness. Mouthfeel was forward-carbonated, but it did tamp down as it warmed. This released the creamy texture that such a brew should exude and it did it well. A strong chocolate-forward taste, I really couldn't pull out the peanut butter, but the booziness at 9% ABV did not get in the way (though you definitely feel it after a while.) An outstanding beer, my new favorite porter...

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Black IPA (Flipside series)
Black IPA (Flipside series)

Upstreet Craft Brewing
American Black Ale / 6.70% ABV

3.68/5  rDev 0% | Score: 3.68
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Coal black with a strong head with lacing. Pine and citrus hops on the nose. Fine so far. Super smooth chocolate malt body. Very malty finish, not so hoppy. Tasty but not to style. I would call it an American Stout.

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Society & Solitude #6
Society & Solitude #6

Hill Farmstead Brewery
American Double / Imperial IPA / 8.10% ABV

4.49/5  rDev -0.7% | Score: 4.52
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Yellow hazy with big fluffy white head. Has medium low carbonation.
Smell: Blueberry, onion, papaya, earthy resin, and pine.
Taste: Dank, Blueberry, onion, papaya, and earthy resin.
Mouthfeel: A little thin, well balanced.
Mouthfeel: Its not susan, but still a good IPA.

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Comfy Pants
Comfy Pants

Black Horizon Brewing Company
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) / 5.20% ABV

3.22/5  rDev 0% | Score: 3.22
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Taste: slight nutty, caramel malt, mellow clean finish. very mild almost earthy flower nose. Amber, mostly clear, white delicate head. medium light body. Mild and close to style. 32 IBUs

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First Cut IPA
First Cut IPA

Tröegs Brewing Company
American IPA / 6.20% ABV

3.85/5  rDev +2.7% | Score: 3.75
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle "freshest by 05-29-18" into pint glass. Pours a slightly hazy dark amber with a medium-coarse light-amber head. Initial impression is muted pine and citrus, with grassy, earthy hops predominating. Mouthfeel is medium, as is carbonation. Finish is a little stronger on the citrus notes, but still very muted. Underwhelming.

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Fleeting: Galaxy
Fleeting: Galaxy

Triptych Brewing
American IPA

4.75/5  rDev +7% | Score: 4.44
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

It pours straight up orange juice. Has a two-finger, white, bubbly head that Fades fairly quickly.
Smells of dank Citrus hops with some onion and garlic smell.
Pace follows the nose with presents of much dank. The Citrus is wonderful in Candide. Lots of melon mango and orange. Slight onion and garlic peeking through.
Wonderfully smooth mouthfeel with a little hop resonating up the nose.
This place is becoming one of my favorite breweries. Just visit them this weekend and had a great time

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Csar
Csar

Tin Man Brewing Company
Russian Imperial Stout / 12.00% ABV

4.03/5  rDev -1.5% | Score: 4.09
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Near black color. Beige head with good beige, blanketing lace.

Unusual smell for an Imperial Stout, I get plenty of milk (lactose?) and cardboard. Secondarily, I get chocolate and black patent malts.

The flavor is very strong compared to the smell. The semisweet chocolate is in your face with lighter alcohol and coffee are present but subtle. The carbonation is soft, but body is also a little thinner than expected. It works. The finish is warming with a long mocha aftertaste.

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Prayer Group
Prayer Group

Tired Hands Brewing Company
German Pilsener / 4.30% ABV

4/5  rDev +2.6% | Score: 3.9
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Slightly hazy yellow little head
Smell strong citrus notes slightly malty
Taste light refreshing and delicate with lemon finish and slightly sweet white grape notes
Light refreshing feel in mouth
Overall not a bad lager. I think this would be best while sitting on a porch swing enjoying the sun setting.

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Mountain IPA
Mountain IPA

The Shed Brewery
American IPA / 6.60% ABV

3.76/5  rDev -6.7% | Score: 4.03
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

16 oz. Can

A very lively appearance with only a slight haze within the orange and golden color. A white foam cap dissipates pretty quick leaving some thin suds and a solid ring around the edge.

The aroma has a very distinct maple syrup (perfect for a Vermont beer) sweetness to the malt, a bit of toffee with evergreen pine, citrus and tangy fruit blend from the hops.

The mouthfeel and taste is very crispy and jazzy due to the seriously lively yeast. The sweetly tinged malt is very tasty with hints of maple and honey but still crisp. The hop flavor brings in pine resin, black pepper and citrus, both fruity and a bit earthy. The body remains light and crisp throughout.

This IPA is pushing the border line of "New England style" it has many aspects of it, but some others that fall short. The hop complexity and overall body also falls a bit short of some of the more mentionable versions available right now. This has a much more easy and relaxed vibe. Enjoyable for sure but not nearly as intense asvsome of the top rated versions.

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100 (Centennial - Single Hop)
100 (Centennial - Single Hop)

Rising Tide Brewing Company
American Pale Ale (APA)

3.79/5  rDev 0% | Score: 3.79
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

10 oz. on draft at the brewery.

Appearance: A hazy straw with a big foaming white head.

Aroma: Orange, grapefruit. Hop forward.

Taste: Follows nose. Happier than I expected. Some grass and an herbal note. Fairly fruity and citrusy.

Mouthfeel: Very drinkable.

Overall: Nice little pale ale. Strikes me as an almost-IPA or a hoppy APA.

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Diliner Weiss
Diliner Weiss

Marz Community Brewing
Berliner Weissbier / 4.00% ABV

4.27/5  rDev +11.8% | Score: 3.82
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Another big thanks out to Joe for this one. He must know I'm a fan of Dill. That may have come out wrong...

Diliner Weiss pours solid and opaque. You can hear the snapping of the bubbles, but they leave no presence on top, nor on the glass, but do manage to surface endlessly through the dense yellow body.

Thank God, it smells as advertised. Tart and sopping with dill. There is a light mannered funk smell coming through from behind, but this thing is filled with the wonderful herb.

Surprisingly, it's not nearly as dominant in the flavor. Oh it's absolutely there, so if you're not a fan, don't bother. Luckily for me, I am a huge fan. A tart and almost salty brine like flavor follows with just pinches of freshly cracked wheat. That funk mentioned above, like wet hay, establishes itself in the lingering after taste along with crushed red pepper spice that is very subdued.

Despite its appearance, this is lively with bubbly carbonation. Tart and crisp, then light and even slightly spicy.

This is one of the most interesting beers I've ever had, and quite honestly, I am in love. I wouldn't say I could drink this regularly, but there is no doubt that I could enjoy it frequently. If you're a fan of the obscure or the road less traveled, seek this out. I can't imagine a new trend in pickle flavored beers being all the buzz, but I'd line up for this.

Thanks again Joe! Cheers.

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Deca-Dank
Deca-Dank

O'so Brewing Company & Tap House
American Amber / Red Ale / 10.00% ABV

4.02/5  rDev -0.5% | Score: 4.04
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into glass. 'PKGD 08NOV17 12:58pm'.
Label notes: "Irrational, Preposterous, Bonkers, Maniacal, Unreasonable, Supreme, Outlandish". "10lbs hops/bbl, 3X dry hop".
Murky, medium amber colored body. One finger white head settles to creamy cap. A few spots of lacing.
Aroma is piney, dank hops, some citrus hops, sweet light roasted malt.
Taste expresses the high ABV level. Piney hops, with some biting citrus hops. Also quite sweet, with caramel. Dank but bitter.
Medium mouth feel, some tongue numbing going on, and a little hop burn in the throat.
An IPA that is heavily hopped, rather rough on the senses, but I think that is the intention.

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Oldest Viscosity
Oldest Viscosity

The Lost Abbey
American Strong Ale

4.42/5  rDev +7.3% | Score: 4.12
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm rating the 4.3.2015 version.

Typical stout look -- beige head, near black liquid, and better than typical lacing.

Beautiful, soft darker chocolate. Absolutely no harsh bitter overtones. Think dark chocolate bundt cake.

Soft and subtle yet full of amazingly rich flavor. Chocolate dominates but there's alcohol, cherry and mocha in the taste as well. The finish starts to find some coffee roots. Smooth body. This is like a string quartet to the usual Strong Ales being a full in-your-face orchestra. Delicate and big.

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Hazy Jane
Hazy Jane

BrewDog USA
American IPA / 7.20% ABV

4.07/5  rDev -0.2% | Score: 4.08
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big citrus aroma, heavy on oranges. Pours an opaque orangish-amber with a full white head. Bright tropical fruit and citrus notes in the flavor, with a mild bitter finish. Very full mouthfeel, and an overall solid NE IPA.

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Oude Bae
Oude Bae

Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Flanders Oud Bruin / 6.50% ABV

3.8/5  rDev -4.3% | Score: 3.97
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours between amber and ruby with minimal lacing but moderate head that leaves lingering foam. Smells of sour fruit, but really faint. Taste is sour, fermented fruit, malt. Taste is similar with pronounced sourness. Feels somewhat refreshing. Not exceptional but well done.

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Experimental Hop Pilsner
Experimental Hop Pilsner

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
German Pilsener / 5.50% ABV

3.84/5  rDev -0.5% | Score: 3.86
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz can, packaged 1/8/18, poured into a pint glass. A clear fizzy yellow gold, with a two finger white head that recedes slowly. Initial whiff of dank that burns off, replaced by grains , pine and faint flowers. The taste is bread, mild spice, and maybe some lemon? The mouthfeel is light, but not overly so, with a medium amount or carbonation. The mix works, more so than some other hoppy pilsners I have had that seems to be too citrusy.

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Maniacs Summer
Maniacs Summer

Maniacs Brewing Co.
American Pale Ale (APA) / 4.70% ABV

3.53/5  rDev 0% | Score: 3.53
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Golden color with a thin head with short retention.
Aroma with notes of passion fruit, mango, biscuit and pine.
Flavor with predominant notes of floral and citrus hops (orange-lemon), mango, a bit of passion fruit, some pine, distant rye spiciness (not sure I would capture this not knowing ahead) and dough. Dry aftertaste with a medium bitterness.
Bordering light body with appropriate carbonation.
Easy to drink APA with pleasant hop notes. A bit of citrus, floral, tropical and pine made this enjoyable. Delivered what was proposed, but don’t expect an explosion of flavors and aroma.

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Big Heaven
Big Heaven

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
American Double / Imperial Stout / 9.40% ABV

4.46/5  rDev 0% | Score: 4.46
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is a blend of Sierra Nevada's Big Foot and Avery's Hog Heaven. Also known as Big Hog or Hog Foot. Brewed for the 2018 Extreme Beer festival in Boston.

Amber colored and clear. Modest but lasting head. Excellent blanket lacing.

Creamy aroma with a mild and lightly sweet caramel touch. Floral and very inviting.

Rich with lots of alcohol warmth and caramel. The carbonation is strong enough to prevent the beer from becoming cloy. Strongly hopped for the style but that makes the balance superb. The aftertaste is very bitter which means this beer transitions through the entire beer tasting palate. In a word, superb.

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