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Author Topic: Beer Blog  (Read 29696 times)

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Offline Imogen

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #50 on: July 15, 2010, 04:55:30 PM »
My husband approves of this blog! He likes to recommend Grolsch, Koninck and seconds/thirds the Hoegaarden nomination for a tasty summer ale!

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #51 on: July 15, 2010, 08:02:21 PM »
Good news everybody! I applied to and was accepted by an online newspaper, so I will be paid to publish these beer blogs. I'll still do them here, of course, and the Elliquiy versions will probably be better because I won't have to censor myself and can write in the 1st person, but I'm happy about getting paid to do two things I love to do anyway-- drink and write (granted, it'll only be about $4 an article, so I'll definitely be splitting them up into one beer per review for that site. If anyone wants to help me out, just give me permission to PM you with the link to the site. Each click earns me a little money, as does the length of time spent on the page).

Imogen- Damnit, I saw and had the chance to pick up a Grolsch just three hours ago! Instead, I picked up the following:

-Becks German Pilsener
-Bass Bass Pale Ale (thanks to Kurzyk for the recommendation for both Bass and Becks)
-La Fin Du Monde (a critically-acclaimed Tripel from Canada)
-Erdinger Hefeweizen (thanks to Arhys for convincing me to buy one)
-Sapporo Draft (A Japanese Rice Lager)
-Bohemia (Another German Pilsener...from Mexico; sorry Lord Mayerling, but I promise that Negra Modelo is on the top of my list of beers to pick up!)

So that's Germany, England, Canada, Japan, and Mexico; I decided to go multicultural with today's six pack.

Aiden-- Answered you in PM.

Imogen and Neroon- Honestly y'all, I couldn't find a single one of those beers at my local specialty store aside from the Samuel Smiths; however, a fellow BeerAdvocate just informed me of another specialty store in the city next door, so I will definitely investigate that one as well.



Alright, I know I said that I would take the next few days off, but I wasn't lying in the first post about being an inveterate imbiber, so I bring you a bonus beer for the week!

Tonight's offering is Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend by Brewery Ommegang.


Brewed by:
Brewery Ommegang
New York, United States
Style- Quadrupel
ABV- 9.8%

There are a subset of Belgian Strong Ales that go in a particular order based on ABV and flavor (and, of course, amount and ratio of ingredients), all of which were and still are inspired by and based on the old Trappist ales mentioned earlier in this blog. Those styles are Dubbel, Tripel, and Quadrupel. Give yourself a pat on the back if you figured that Quadrupel was the strongest. Quadrupels generally have the highest alcohol by volume and the strongest flavor of dark fruit  and sweet malt. This particular Quadrupel is unique in that it is, according to the label, 98% Belgian Ale and 2% Ale with cherries. It's an unusual notion, but because most Belgian ales have fruit-flavors and fruity esters to begin with, I suppose it makes sense to compliment the dark fruit flavors of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale/ Quadrupel with a dark fruit ale.

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter. No freshness date provided, but this kind of brew could easily age for a year or two.

Appearance- 4 out of 5. The deep ruby color is somewhat cloudy in the first glass and very cloudy in the second due to the yeast from the bottom being poured into the glass. It is very reminiscent of cherry skin held up to a light, which I suspect is a sign of things to come. The off-white head was two fingers tall and medium in body but left wonderful lacing all around the glass.

Smell- 4 out of 5. Dark fruit, light malt, and cherries dominate the nose of this beer. A deeper whiff brings hints of alcohol and hops, but the overall scent is sweet.

Taste- 4 out of 5. Sweet and smooth. The cherry ale may only embody 2% of the overall volume, but it definitely dominates the taste. Creamy yeast flows along the tongue, bringing tastes of sweet malt and a bit of brown sugar. Gentle hops tingle on the back of the tongue before giving way to a long-lasting sweet aftertaste. There's a reason that the word "sweet" is in five of the six sentences of this part of the review; that aspect best characterizes the taste. It's not bad at all, but it should be avoided if you don't have a taste for beers on the sweeter side of the fermented spectrum.

Mouthfeel- 4 out of 5. Medium and creamy, not at all crisp but pleasant on the tongue. The alcohol is warming but otherwise unnoticeable.

Drinkability- 4 out of 5. This is an interesting change of pace from typical quadrupels, but it's only for those who can handle a burst of sweetness that's almost like a bunch of gang-banging cherries orgasmically exploding in your mouth. I could down easily down the whole 750ml bottle, but this beer deserves to at least be sipped frequently instead of outright chugged.

Overall, a B. It's a novel idea, and I appreciate it, but the next Quadrupel to appear in this blog will be the iconic, true Quadrupel, St. Bernardus Abt 12


Will- Sorry bud, but this beer is not meant for your deep, brooding taste-buds.



Offline Will

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #52 on: July 15, 2010, 08:45:56 PM »
Yeah, I think I'll pass on the drunken clusterfuck of cherries.  You make it sound delicious though, as usual.

Offline Arhys

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #53 on: July 15, 2010, 11:55:05 PM »
Great to hear you picked up an Erdinger :)  I've been told it is important to pour them properly, and near the end of pouring rest the bottle sideways on the counter and roll it around to pick up the last bits of sediment.

Congratulations on finding paid writing work!  If you pm me the link I'll gladly click through and send it out on fb, my brother has a lot of friends from the beer brewing community so he can send it on too.

Offline Ramster

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #54 on: July 16, 2010, 05:16:30 AM »
Congratulations on becoming a semi-professional beer drinker! The oral cherry popping gangbang mouthfeel does sound well worth a try, it makes me feel like drinking a nice Kriek over the weekend. I second Imogen's husband's recommendation of Grolsch and especially Koninck as light summer beers. Koninck is one of the best lagers out there in my opinion. As for Weihenstephaner, I recommend the original, but only because I'm much more familiar with it than the Hefe Weissbier. Weihenstephaner original is pretty intense as it is, but very enjoyable.

Feel free to pm me that link to the site! I'm sure it's worth a look, and I'm quite willing to leave it open in a browser tab for extended periods of time ;)

Offline Lithos

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #55 on: July 16, 2010, 06:39:50 AM »
To promote more dark beer that should be both affordable enough and available in most countries, one of my all time favourites is:

Plzensky Prazdroj Velkopopovicky Kozel Dark

It has full featured aroma, is made from excellent malts, and still it is decently easily drinkable. I have had great success in converting lager men to the dark side with this one!

It lacks some oomph compared to some other dark beers but the aroma is still good and rich, and perhaps that tiny lack of kick is what it takes to make this type of beer more popular. Beautiful taste either way.

Offline Mithlomwen

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #56 on: July 16, 2010, 08:49:21 AM »
I love this blog Para.  I'm not much of a beer drinker as I usually don't like the taste of most of it, but you are seriously making me want to try some of these and see if they taste as good as you make them sound. 

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #57 on: July 16, 2010, 09:10:43 AM »
Thanks Mith!

Lithos- Is this the one you mean? http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/448/16273 If not, send me a link to a picture of it since I probably won't be able to pronounce it properly at the beer store itself.

Ramster- The Grolsch bottle and label reminded me too much of Heineken, so I decided to avoid it. Serves me right for basing my impression on the bottle alone (though to be fair, I couldn't reasonably crack it open in the middle of the store to prove myself wrong).

Arhys- Pouring properly is always important, but it's especially so for bottle-conditioned beers precisely because of that sediment you mentioned. Some people are fine with pouring it into the glass; others prefer keeping it separate.

If it seems like I'm slow in responding to posts in here, it's simply because I'm trying to avoid making posts without a review in them. I'm fine with you guys posting in here, so keep it up, but if I responded to every one individually, things would get really cluttered. In an effort to reduce such clutter, I have put a Beer Index at the top of the first post of this blog, so if you ever want to go back and reference a review without digging through the pages, just go to the first post and click on the link to it from there.

I've done 20 beers (not including the facetious Natural Light review) since I started this thing 12 days ago. Here's what's been done so far:

-Troegenator Double Bock
-Samuel Adams Imperial Double Bock
-Gordon Biersch Blonde Bock

-Delirium Tremens
-Delirium Nocturnum

-Duvel Golden Belgian Ale
-Sierra Nevada Pale Ale

-Dogfish Head Raison D'Etre
-Stone's Arrogant Bastard Ale

-Monty Python Holy Grail Ale
-Flying Dog Raging Bitch

-Natural Light
-Orval Trappist Ale
-Magic Hat's Blind Faith
-Terrapin's Gamma Ray
-Magic Hat's #9
-Magic Hat's Wacko

-Guinness Extra Stout
-Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout
-Victory Storm King Imperial Stout

-Brewery Ommegang's Three Philosophers Belgian Style Blend

I'll probably post a running list every three pages or so, just in case anyone's missed one.


Offline Lithos

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #58 on: July 16, 2010, 10:07:50 AM »
The beer you linked is right Para. Basically what it is is very good beer, that is still reasonably affordable. I find it to be a lot better than most reviews give it credit for, and I doubt part of it is that people assume that price tag is the only sign of quality.

I would not call it very best in any area, but it is good or very good in everything, and that is something very rare and more than many people who drink beer never get to experience. I am not sure if it is different in your part of the world but here the price really is not that much higher compared to usual beer you can find at supermarkets, but taste is in whole different class.

Offline Noelle

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #59 on: July 16, 2010, 01:01:37 PM »
I've got a few more... Killian's Irish Red, Smithwick's, Boddington's Pub Ale, and my sleeper favorite, Rolling Rock.

Offline Will

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #60 on: July 16, 2010, 02:41:26 PM »
Stella Artois isn't bad for a good summertime beer.  It's got a skunky nose, but I kinda like that. >.>

Offline Oreo

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #61 on: July 18, 2010, 04:51:12 AM »
I can't drink anymore, but this is an excellent Blog, Paradox. It really made me want to go out and try a few. I was partial to Guinness Stout, but the Sam Adams brews sound very tempting.

Offline auroraChloe

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #62 on: July 18, 2010, 07:56:31 AM »
Good news everybody! I applied to and was accepted by an online newspaper, so I will be paid to publish these beer blogs. I'll still do them here, of course, and the Elliquiy versions will probably be better because I won't have to censor myself and can write in the 1st person, but I'm happy about getting paid to do two things I love to do anyway-- drink and write (granted, it'll only be about $4 an article, so I'll definitely be splitting them up into one beer per review for that site. If anyone wants to help me out, just give me permission to PM you with the link to the site. Each click earns me a little money, as does the length of time spent on the page).

awesome !  *yays for Paradox*

send me the link too.

Offline Ramster

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #63 on: July 18, 2010, 09:08:14 AM »
Yeah, you still haven't sent me that link either Para, and that's costing you for every review there I don't read! Maybe you should put it in your signature?

Offline Dreamweaver

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #64 on: July 18, 2010, 01:52:53 PM »
Para,

I don't know of the availability of it back in your neck of the woods, but I'd love to see your take on one of our local breweries, Deschutes River Brewery in Bend, Oregon.  I think they're big enough that you might be able to find one of their selections at a well-stocked spirits house.

http://www.deschutesbrewery.com/splash/default.aspx

They've got a great variety of beers from pale to stout, IPA's, an outstanding porter and a few I have yet to try.  I really have yet to find one of their brews that I don't like.

Offline Blitzy

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #65 on: July 19, 2010, 11:03:50 AM »
You better PM me with that link, Para.

I'll pass it around as well. Mebbe even link it in my sig. :) Always happy to help getcha some good money!

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #66 on: July 19, 2010, 07:42:30 PM »
Thanks everyone who asked for the link! Anyone else, please feel free to do so as well. Unfortunately, I probably cannot post it here or put it in my signature because it contains both my real name and a picture of me, and you know how the Admins are about that kind of thing floating around the public portion of the site.

Noelle- Added to my ever-expanding list!

Blitzy-- Sent. Feel free to pass it on to your friends and/or hit Subscribe at the top of the page so I won't pester you with PMs every time I post a new one.

Dreamweaver-- Thanks man, but I cannot seem to locate any of their brews in the area. I will, however, keep an eager eye out for them.



Today's beer is Sapporo Premium Beer, which is apparently one of Japan's most popular brews.



Brewed by:
Sapporo Breweries Ltd.
Tokyo, Japan
Style: Japanese Rice Lager
ABV: 5%

Sapporo is technically known as a "rice lager". Rice is not a traditional ingredient in most beers; however, given the need by commercial manufacturers to mass-produce beer on a large scale, inexpensive fermentable materials (known as "adjuncts") such as unmalted rice and corn were used to replace less widely-available, more costly traditional malt materials such as malted barley and wheat. Considered by many to be the hallmark of cheap, poor-quality industrial beers, rice lightens both the flavor and color of a beer; furthermore, it can reduce the alcohol content and often ruin the hop flavors in a beer.

However, brewers do use rice for reasons other than simply saving money; in some cases, especially in Japan and more recently in California, brewers use rice to impart a subtle tropical flavor that is crisp and fruity. Depending on the type used, rice can also lend a nutty flavor to darker beers (though it is used sparingly in such cases so as not to lighten the overall brew). Keep in mind, of course, that brewers who use rice to better achieve a specific style are in the minority and that most consider rice to simply be an inexpensive filler. From what I have heard of Sapporo, it is the Japanese equivalent of a mass-produced American beer like Coors; still, imports deserve investigation if only to inform oneself on the nuances of another culture.

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a standard glass; no freshness date provided.

Appearance- 3.5 out of 5. Sapporo pours a bright color of pale golden straw with a similarly bright white head that is surprisingly creamy for a beer this light. It leaves a fair bit of lacing as carbonation rockets through the glass.

Smell- 3 out of 5. Rice and corn adjuncts dominate the nose along with some other grainy hints. At first whiff, this smells for all the world like a typical American mass-produced pilsner, yet subsequent sniffs bring sweet malt and slightly citrusy hops to the surface.

Taste- 3 out of 5. At first, this beer is fairly tasteless aside from being reminiscent of rice with a metallic twang, almost like licking a metal spoon after serving rice with it. There is less corn than American macrobrews of a similar style, but the overall effect is the same; however, once the beer has been breathing in the glass for a few minutes and has been allowed to warm a little, more flavors develop-- not complex flavors by any means, but they're still a little different than the standard rice/corn combination. Citrus hops struggle to bring a bitter sensation to the back of the tongue, but they ultimately fail and are washed away by the bubbling carbonation. One interesting note is a slight hint of coconut in the finish.

Mouthfeel- 3 out of 5. Overall, this beer is light and dry. The carbonation adds an amusing bit of tingle to the feeling, but it goes down easily.

Drinkability- 4 out of 5. As with most beers on the light end of the spectrum, Sapporo's drinkability is its highlight. It is a bit more balanced and more drinkable than things like Miller High Life or Pabst Blue Ribbon, but it is also a little more expensive considering the fact that it has been imported; moreover, it's hardly a "Premium" beer as the label wistfully wishes for you to believe. If you're an rabid anime fan or Japanophile, this is an ideal beer to prove how obsessed you are; othewise, I suggest opting for a domestic equivalent. On the other hand, taking its Japanese origins into account, it's light and subtle enough to compliment fairly delicate foods like sushi without overpowering the flavors as stronger, more blatantly-flavored beers might.

Overall, a C.

The only other major Japenese beer style is known as Happoshu, which is essentially an ever cheaper, low-alcohol sparkling beer that is made from unconventional yet still somewhat fermentable materials. Imagine a rural Japanese farmer desperately throwing random bits and pieces of organic matter into a pot in the midst of a moist rice field, and you have an idea of what Happoshu is like. It may or may not appear in this periodical, depending on its local availability in the near future.

Tomorrow's tasting (and my tasting, I mean fully imbibing the bottle; none of that pansy-assed 4oz nonsense) will involve Bohemia and two other yet-to-be-determined beers, though I'm leaning toward La Fin du Monde and maybe that Erdinger.

Offline Will

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #67 on: July 19, 2010, 09:06:10 PM »
I don't think I could stomach raw fish AND alcohol, to be honest. :-[  Make it one or the other, and I'm all over it.

Offline Caeli

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #68 on: July 20, 2010, 04:10:48 AM »
I don't think I could stomach raw fish AND alcohol, to be honest. :-[  Make it one or the other, and I'm all over it.

Sushi + sake is delicious. Or its Korean counterpart, anything + soju. Absolute deliciousness.

Paradox, you have a lot of beers here that obviously have very distinct flavors. Is there any specific recommendation you might make to someone who is open to the idea of drinking beer, but hasn't found them to taste in the past?

Offline Lord Mayerling

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #69 on: July 20, 2010, 07:58:58 AM »
Of the Japanese beers, I actually think Kir'in is the superior brew to Sapporo. My brother-in-law, another avid beer drinker and chef, prefers Sapporo. Both are made with rice, and both are a good introduction to beer if you generally don't care for it much. It's light and not bitter. While Para only gave it a C, newcomers to beer will find it very non-threatening, easy to drink, refreshing, and especially with food, hard to get intoxicated from.

I'm not a fan of sushi, but the Japanese beers pair wonderfully with lighter Japanese dishes, especially as they are served in the United States. I also often drink it paired with Korean food as well. Try one the next time you go out for Japanese food. 

Offline Imogen

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #70 on: July 20, 2010, 12:53:59 PM »
Or, to stay on the Eastern topic:  Kingfisher beer to go with spicy Indian food.... a match made in heaven.

Offline Torch

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #71 on: July 20, 2010, 01:08:13 PM »
Mexican beers: My personal favorite is Dos Equis (Dos Equis actually has German origins due to a large German migration to Mexico and Texas back in the late 1800's), but I have a fondness for Tecate, Modela Especial, Carta Blanca and Sol. One of the benefits of living in San Antonio, TX for seven years was exposure to a lot of good Mexican beer.

Mr. Torch likes Negra Modelo and Bohemia, both dark beers, but he's a Guinness man.


Offline Imogen

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #72 on: July 20, 2010, 01:33:38 PM »
I haven't received the link yet, Paradox. Could you toss me a PM? I've already warmed up some friends who are eager to read!

To stay on topic, sorta, I wanna promote Dutch beers again and recommend:

- Amstel 1870
- Korenwolf (by Gulpener Brewery)

I'd also recommend the Texels Skuumkoppe, it's delicious on a summer day, but I very much doubt it will be available even in a specialty store.

For those who like beers that hit a bit harder, there's "Het Kanon", with over 11% one of the heavier beers to enjoy slooooowly.

Offline Blitzy

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #73 on: July 20, 2010, 01:35:55 PM »
Paradox, you have a lot of beers here that obviously have very distinct flavors. Is there any specific recommendation you might make to someone who is open to the idea of drinking beer, but hasn't found them to taste in the past?

I want to second this. I've tried various beers in my past and just... I can't get past the near brutal assault on my poor tastebuds. :( I'd love a recommendation to get me started. I'm the same way with wine. I'd love to drink it with dinner but I can't find the right wine that doesn't taste so... alcohol-y.

Offline Will

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #74 on: July 20, 2010, 01:42:45 PM »
I'm not an expert on wine by any means, but you'll probably want to avoid dry wines.  They tend to have that strong alcohol sensation.  I don't much care for it either. >.>