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Author Topic: Beer Blog  (Read 29706 times)

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Offline Ramster

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #75 on: July 20, 2010, 01:53:45 PM »
Blitzy, a nice semi dry white or not too dry red with a good meal should get you hooked. Try a good Chilean or Argentinean Médoc with pasta in tomato sauce, beef, lamb or other tasty meats, or a Californian Sauvignon Blanc with some good cheese, pasta in white sauce, chicken breast or fish.

As for beer, I always recommend Guinness or Hoegaarden to ladies over here who want to find a beer they like. I wouldn't have a clue what you can get hold of over there though, but that Terrapin Wheat Wine does sound worth a try!

Offline Will

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #76 on: July 20, 2010, 01:59:08 PM »
I actually know several girls that really like Blue Moon.

Offline Torch

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #77 on: July 20, 2010, 02:01:16 PM »
I actually know several girls that really like Blue Moon.

+1

Offline Blitzy

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #78 on: July 20, 2010, 02:25:32 PM »
Thank you guys (and Torch!). :) I'll tentatively look and see if the liquor store here has something when I have a bit of cash. >_>

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #79 on: July 20, 2010, 03:51:06 PM »
Mayerling is right; Sapporo is not a bad beer by any means, and it's gentle enough for beginners to imbibe easily. That's why I said its drinkability is its highlight. I believe that my local store has Kir'in, so I'll try to check it out sometime.

I already PMed Caeli with some rather expensive recommendations, but, as been said already, Hoegaarden and Blue Moon are both relatively inexpensive and widely-available brews that are subtle enough to easily be enjoyed. If you don't quite like the taste of Blue Moon, add a lemon or an orange. If you want to enjoy its intended subtleties untainted, forgo the fruit and sip it on its own. I wouldn't recommend Guinness to someone just starting to suckle on beer's wide bosom. Save that for once you've found a few that you enjoy and can bring yourself to try the darker varieties. Then again, Belgian Dark Ales are wonderful even for beginners (see Delirium Nocturnum, Raison D'Etre, Gulden Draak).

Imogen- Sorry! I'm trying to figure out who all wanted the link. I'll probably put it in my signature here soon enough. I'll send it to you now though.



Today's first beer is the Erdinger Hefeweizen that Arhys recommended:
 

Brewed by:
Erdinger Weissbräu
Erding, Germany
Style- Hefeweizen
ABV- 5.3%

*Note that the Erdinger labels with Hefe-weizen are simply an American alias for the Erdinger Weissbier found in Europe. It's the same beer, just labeled differently.

Hefeweizen, roughly translated, means “wheat with yeast”, which is a fairly accurate profile of the beer considering that its malt is composed of at least, and often more than, 50% wheat (70% is usually the upper end of the scale). If ever you see the word “weizen” in a beer name, that simply means that wheat is a major part of its malt profile; however, it’s actually the yeast that gives Hefeweizens their unique flavor. Although the specific strain of yeast used varies by brewer, all impart an interesting flavor that is reminiscent of banana and cloves; sometimes, they have a bubble gum-like flavor as well. The undertone flavors generally tend to be rather dry and somewhat phenolic (essentially, reminiscent of sanitizer, plastic, and band-aids; it’s a desired part of the flavor profile for this type of beer, but is often frowned upon in other types as a result of contamination). The unfiltered “hefe” (“With yeast”) part of the beer lends a cloudy appearance. Hefeweizens usually have between 4% to 7% alcohol by volume.

Poured from a 12oz bottle with Best Before 08-2010 on the back label.

Appearance- 3.5 out of 5. Pours a cloudy yellow color with orange tinting in the interior and a two finger white head that is extremely fizzy; strangely, the head retention is rather short compared to most wheat beers. It leaves a little clumpy lacing around the sides of the glass and a thin layer on top of the beer itself. Even through the cloudy golden sea, carbonation bubbles can be seen happily swimming their way to the top.

Smell- 3.5 out of 5. The smell of wheat is surprisingly light but definitely evident, as are the spicy hops. I smell more cloves than bananas in this particular brew, but the banana scent is still present. An undertone of green grapes seems to hover on the edge of the nose as well. It smells alright. Pretty mellow overall.

Taste- 4 out of 5. I'm normally not a fan of Hefeweizens, but this one has broken the mold for me. The wheat initially mixes with the sweet malt then gives way to a mellow fruity flavor that is like cloves and grapes intermingling. Next is a subtle flavor that I swear is almost like banana cream, quickly replaced by subdued hops that finish out the swallow. The aftertaste is of wheat and yeast; interestingly, the phenolic undertones are noticeably absent.

Mouthfeel- 4 out of 5. The body is fairly light and more wet than most Hefeweizens I've had. It is crisp, smooth, and sippable.

Drinkability-
4 out of 5. This is a pretty damned good Hefeweizen. It's not strong or particularly remarkable as far as the style itself goes, but if you're in the mood for something drinkable that doesn't slap you with spicy banana-wheat, go for an Erdinger or three.
 
Overall, a B.

The iconic example of Hefeweizen beer is Weihenstephaner Hefeweissbier, so I intend to make it a priority to obtain that beer and review it as soon as possible.

Next up is Bohemia Clásica:


Brewed by:
Cervecería Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma, S.A. de C.V.
Monterrey (Nuevo León), Mexico
Style- German Pilsner
ABV- 5.3%

This beer has an interesting history. Although it is technically brewed in Mexico, a lot about the style screams German. It is a Pilsner, which is a very popular type of beer in Germany; in fact, Bohemia was the German town where this style got it start. Apparently, a significant number of Germans migrated to Mexico in the 1800's. Either they couldn't get used to the incessant siestas, or wild, tequila-driven donkey riding just didn't appeal to them, so they mostly went back home. In their wake, however, they left an indelible mark on Mexico's brewing industry that has led to the likes of Bohemia (a German Pilsner) and Dos Equis (a Vienna Lager), both brewed by the same company started in 1890. The company itself, Cervecería Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma, was started by a Mexican by the name of José Calderón, but he had instruction in the brewing style from a number of German benefactors.

Appearance- 3.5 out of 5. Light, transparent straw yellow that is a lot like a clear version of the foil wrapped around the neck of the bottle. The one-finger white head was disappointingly short-lived but did leave a bit of sticky lacing around the sides. Plump carbonation bubbles amble up from the bottom.

Smell- 3.5 out of 5. Don't allow this beer to warm up too much. At first, it opens up the flavors, but it ends up smelling like an old, rickety Mexican outhouse that Señora Sanchez forgot to clean for the past seventeen years; still, Bohemia smells great when it's cool. Sweet grainy malt and floral hops mingle with a bit of yeast.

Taste- 4 out of 5. Sweet, bready malt initially hits the tongue, followed by a strange but pleasant menagerie of citrus and grain. The most remarkable part of this beer is the gentle undertone of vanilla and peach. It wasn't at all what I was expecting, but it's good nonetheless. Although the usual mild hop bitterness is there, the Saaz hops also contribute a slightly corn-like taste that would go well with tortillas.

Mouthfeel- 4 out of 5. This beer is somewhat creamy but still thin overall. It's not nearly as watery as the Mexican piss-water known as Corona or its illegitimate half-brother, Sol.

Drinkability-
4 out of 5. Better than most Mexican beers out there. I definitely recommend it if you're at a local Mexican joint and want a cerveza to accompany your meal, especially because it is balanced enough to compliment a plate full of spicy food. It's full enough to have with a meal, yet light enough to drink quite a few of. Skip the Sols and Tecates and Coronas, and have a Bohemia instead.

Overall, a B.

Last up is Gordon Biersch Hefeweizen:


Brewed by:
Gordon Biersch Brewery
San Jose, California, United States
Style- Hefeweizen
ABV- 5.16%

This is not my first experience with this beer. I did not like it before, but having had a European Hefeweizen against which to compare it, I figured it deserved another shot. According to the back label, "In Bavaria, a unique strain of wheat beer yeast produces an array of distinct flavor qualities typical of a true Hefeweizen: citrus, bubble gum, clove, and banana. Our Bavarian-style Hefeweizen is fermented with this exceptional strain. In accordance with the German purity law, this superior beer is brewed with a minimum of 50% malted wheat". One note about Gordon Biersch; they tend to have brewery-restaurants scattered across the United States, so each individual brewer might make the beer a slightly different way. The California branch might do it differently than the Ohio brewery, which may in turn do it differently than the Virginia Beach brewery-restaurant. This review concerns the bottled Hefeweizen that is produced at their primary commercial brewery and bottling plant in San Jose, California.

Poured from a 12oz bottle, no freshness date provided, but there is a Born On date.

Appearance- 3.5 out of 5. Very thickly-clouded, almost opaque orange with yellow around the edges. Pours with a decent one and a half-finger white head that dissipates fairly quickly and leaves a similarly decent bit of lacing around the sides and on top.

Smell- 2.5 out of 5. This beer smells odd. It has all of the typical Hefeweizen scents of banana, clove, and bubblegum, yet it also has an oddly sour note. This is my fourth bottle of this beer this year, so it's definitely not an isolated incident or a case of tainted beer.

Taste- 1.5 out of 5. That strangely sour note returns in the taste. It's almost as if someone squirted honey mustard into a sweaty jock-strap and let it stew in a hot locker room for a week. It really makes it difficult to enjoy the rest of the beer's flavors. Aside from that, there is a hint of sweet malt, fermented yeast, beer bread, and spicy rotten bananas. The hops are noticeably absent from the overall flavor profile.

Mouthfeel- 3.5 out of 5. Rather heavy for a Hefeweizen. Carbonation is noticeable but not strong.

Drinkability- 2 out of 5. This is the third time I've poured this beer down the sink drain. I'm a rather open-minded imbiber, but this beer is just terrible. Gordon Biersch needs to redesign the recipe for its Hefeweizen before I'll consider approaching it again. I recommend avoiding this beer.

Overall, a D.

« Last Edit: July 20, 2010, 03:54:13 PM by Paradox »

Offline Lord Mayerling

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #80 on: July 20, 2010, 06:41:33 PM »
Another fantastic review, I must say. I absolutely love this blog.

Pilsner does indeed originate from Bohemia, but Bohemia is a region (actually a Kingdom for most of its history), not a town, and isn't actually in Germany. The modern nation of Czech Republic comprises the former Kingdom of Bohemia. Bohemia is probably the most famous beer producing region outside Germany primarily because of the success and spreading popularity of the Pilsner style in the nineteenth century. While Bavaria became known for its wheat beers (weitzen), Bohemia became known for the refreshing Pilsner style.

Pilsner is also an excellent style to start with for someone just starting to explore beer. It's perfect in summer with its crisp, refreshing taste, with very little bitterness or aftertaste at all. It is versitile with various foods, particularly grilled meats. In fact, my personal favorite beer is a pilsner called Radeburger. Ironically, this beer isn't from Bohemia, but rather brewed by the Royal Brewery of Saxony in the German city of Dresden, which happens to be quite close to the border with the Czech Republic, and thus Bohemia.

Para, I hope you take an opportunity to try one. They're delicious.

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #81 on: July 20, 2010, 06:49:08 PM »
...damn. I was a little inebriated at the time and must have misread my research. The line I read was "The Pilsner beer was first brewed in Bohemia, a German-speaking province in the old Austrian Empire". I think I misread it as "town" instead of "province". Thanks for catching that and clarifying! I'll keep an eye out for Radeburger.

Offline Lord Mayerling

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #82 on: July 20, 2010, 07:00:02 PM »
...damn. I was a little inebriated at the time and must have misread my research. The line I read was "The Pilsner beer was first brewed in Bohemia, a German-speaking province in the old Austrian Empire". I think I misread it as "town" instead of "province". Thanks for catching that and clarifying! I'll keep an eye out for Radeburger.

Don't sweat it. You've forgotten more about beer than I've learned, and write an extremely informative and educational blog on the most important foodstuff in history. 

Offline Ramster

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #83 on: July 20, 2010, 09:15:56 PM »
Pilsener is named after the Polish town of Plzen.

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #84 on: July 21, 2010, 08:39:02 PM »
Pilsener is named after the Polish town of Plzen.

I think it's Czech, not Polish.

Interesting fact: An ancestral branch of my family tree, the Janka family, lived for a long time in and right outside of Plzeň, back in the Principality of Bohemia. Methinks we drank Pilsners quite often.

Another interesting fact: During Prohibition, my mother's side of the family ran an underground distillery/still and is loaded with alcoholics. Unfortunately, part of my father's side (the Watts from Scotland) of the family immigrated to Queens, New York in 1906, soon before Prohibition. Another part came over from Zubrohlava in Austria-Hungary right before it disbanded, right before Prohibition.

But hey, this is a blog about beer, not my family tree (we can trace the damned thing back over 500 years, so I have to spout off lineage from time to time), so let's get to it!

In honor of my Scottish ancestors, today's beer is Belhaven Scottish Ale.


Brewed by:
Belhaven Brewery Company Ltd.
Dunbar, Scotland
Style- Scottish Ale
ABV- 5.2%

Anyone familiar with Scotch whisky will have a basic idea about the flavors commonly found in Scottish Ales. Traditionally, the malt in these ales was dried and roasted over peat-fueled fires, which imparts earthy, slightly smokey flavor to the beer. Scottish Ale also goes through a lengthy kettle-boiling process to caramelize the sugars, which gives the beer a rich, coppery-brown color and a similarly rich mouthfeel from the unfermentable sugars. The hop levels in Scottish Ales tend to be low and mostly herbal in flavor, while the majority of the taste and scent tends to come from the malt.

Long ago, the Scottish government established a system of classifying beers based on taxation that has led to the styles still seen today. The taxation was based on the amount of alcohol in the beer; for instance, Light Scottish ales were 60 schilling ales, Heavy ales were 70 schilling ales, Export ales are 80 schilling ales, and Wee Heavy ales are 90 schilling ales all the way up to true Scotch Ales at 160 shillings.

Belhaven would technically be classified as an Export ale, though its alcohol content is on the low end of that category; still, it is traditional in terms of its caramel color and toasted caramel malt flavor along with moderate hints of smokiness. That traditional character likely comes from the facy that the Belhaven Brewery has been in operation since 1719, making it one of the oldest surviving breweries in Scotland.

Poured from a 12oz bottle with no freshness date provided.

Appearance- 4 out of 5. This beer is a clear medium brown with a pronounced reddish tint when held up to the light. A creamy white two finger head leaves a decent layer of lacing all around the beer into which multiple streams of carbonation bubbles slowly rise from the bottom, like the gas bubbles in Scottish peat swamps of days gone by.

Smell- 4 out of 5. Semi-sweet caramel malt mixes with a darker nutty flavor in the nose with undertones of peppery hops, smokiness, and a slight smell of sulfur. It's a lot like freshly-baked beer bread.

Taste- 4 out of 5. This is the kind of beer that makes me want to shout "GET IN MY BELLY!" in my best Fat Bastard voice. It begins with a bit of caramel malt that soon fills the whole mouth like biting into a thick toasted hunk of bread slathered in honey and butterscotch (from the diacetyl compounds); later, the malt deepens to a smokey, woody character. The smokiness isn't strong; it's more like looking into the woods at dusk and seeing the smokey traces of a distant fire rising above the darkening trees. The hops hardly have any bitterness at all and instead impart a somewhat peppery taste.

Mouthfeel- 4 out of 5. A cunning combination of creamy and crisp. For all its complex flavors, it's a surprisingly smooth beer.

Drinkability- 4 out of 5. Belhaven Scottish Ale looks good, smells good, tastes good, and feels good enough to drink all night. Not much else needs to be said except "Lang may yer lum reek!" (which is apparently a Scottish phrase meant to wish prosperity and long life; I think it literally translates to "long may your chimney smoke).

Overall, a B.


One additional note- I wrote a local commentary piece on Pabst Blue Ribbon being reinvented in China. I can't post the link here for obvious reasons, but if you click the blue link in my signature that says "Click here to read my published articles" and click on the second one down ("Local favorite Pabst Blue Ribbon reinvented in China"), you can read it. I'll keep y'all updated about any articles that don't really belong on Elliquiy but may still interest some of you.

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #85 on: July 22, 2010, 08:47:34 AM »
This is what happens when brewers dip into their own stock once too often.

They brew 55% ABV beer and bottle it in a fucking squirrel.

It's called The End of History. Read about it here: http://brewdog.com/blog-article.php?id=341

« Last Edit: July 22, 2010, 09:14:59 AM by Paradox »

Offline Oniya

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #86 on: July 22, 2010, 09:46:53 AM »
Never has your signature quote been more appropriate.


Offline Torch

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #87 on: July 22, 2010, 09:53:18 AM »
They brew 55% ABV beer and bottle it in a fucking squirrel.


And thus ends my search for the perfect Father's Day gift for Mr. Torch.

Offline Oniya

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #88 on: July 22, 2010, 09:56:03 AM »
According to the article, they only made 12 bottles, so you'd better act fast.  Oh, and there's this:

Quote
The End of History - Stoat       £500.00    Add to basket
The End of History - Grey Squirrel       £700.00    Add to basket

Offline Torch

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #89 on: July 22, 2010, 10:09:58 AM »
According to the article, they only made 12 bottles, so you'd better act fast.  Oh, and there's this:

Heh, I'm not up on my Euro to dollar exchange rate, but if I'm blowing that kind of cash, he better damn well appreciate it!  ;D

Besides, he spent $400 on a golf club once.

Not a set of clubs.

One. club.

Yeah. *rollie eyes*

Offline Will

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #90 on: July 22, 2010, 10:56:22 AM »
Packaged in a squirrel?  That is nuts.

I have doubts about how that stuff would taste, but I badly want to try it.

Offline Torch

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #91 on: July 22, 2010, 10:59:11 AM »
Packaged in a squirrel?  That is nuts.


*rimshot*

Online Lithos

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #92 on: July 24, 2010, 12:00:04 PM »
One can only ponder how long and tedious session of sampling it took to arrive to that decision in regards to packaging....

Offline sartracker

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #93 on: July 25, 2010, 11:13:29 AM »
Lord Mayerling, Hello and good morning.
Please tell me about your Avatar, He looks Like a German Naval Officer?

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #94 on: July 25, 2010, 11:24:26 AM »
Sartracker- Please find Lord Mayerling in one of the Forum Games/Socializing threads or somewhere else on the site. This thread is devoted to beer and talking about beer, not avatars and casual conversation.

Oh, and welcome to Elliquiy.

Offline sartracker

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #95 on: July 25, 2010, 11:34:18 AM »
My Appologies!

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #96 on: July 25, 2010, 01:40:26 PM »
BrewDog, the company responsible for the aforementioned 55%, squirrel-bottled End of History and the oft-mentioned 32% Tactical Nuclear Penguin, has come up with a ton of interesting beers lately. A lot of people dislike them because their beers don't conform to traditional standards, but I respect the brewery for doing whatever the hell they want and not worrying about tradition. They're having fun and doing what they love, and that's really all that matters. Most of their ideas are tongue-in-cheek to begin with, and they don't take themselves nearly as seriously as most beer geeks seem to.

Blitzy- I think I finally found a decent spot to take a picture of my beers. Today's picture is my own, so let me know what you think. The same goes for the rest of you. It was taken by my cell phone.

Today's beer is La Fin Du Monde ("The End of the World") by Unibroue.



Brewed by:
Unibroue
Quebec, Canada
Style- Tripel/ Belgian Pale Ale
ABV- 9%

Belgian-style beers tend to be some of the most simultaneously complex and delicious beers in the world. They are made even better by the fact that they balance those two facets. Some beers are downright delicious but lack much in the way of depth, while others flay your tastebuds with wave upon wave of complex flavor without actually managing to make that flavor taste good (extremely hop-heavy double-IPAs are a prime example). Managing to balance the two is an admirable feat and the mark of a conscientious brewer (excluding, of course, the brewers whose goal is to achieve an unusual brew that favors one or the other).

Technically, La Fin Du Monde is a Belgian Pale Ale; however, it is also classified as a Tripel because of the brewing process. As mentioned in a previous post, Belgians are generally classified as Simple, Dubbel, Tripel, Quadrupel, all the way up to Sixtel based on how much malt is used. A Tripel uses three times as much malt as a Simple. Tripels are usually a cloudy golden color that is a few hues darker than a traditional Pilsner. Their heads are huge and frothy; their scents are spicy and somewhat phenolic; and their tastes carry that spiciness and add fruity esters and strong-bodied yeast. Given the huge interplay of complex flavors in this type of beer, the traditional malt/hop/yeast notes are hard to notice. As is typical with most Belgian ales, Tripels usually use Belgian candy sugar in the fermentation process and a bit of spice; also, as with most Belgian ales, the alcohol is notoriously hard to notice.

One note about the brewer of this beer, Unibroue. It was actually purchased by Sapporo Breweries Ltd., a Japanese company that produces this previously-reviewed beer, back in 2006; however, to Sapporo's credit, it has largely been left to its own devices and has continued to produce the same quality beer as it had before the buy-out. All things considered, Unibroue is one of the most prolific producers of good craft brews in Canada today.

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter. Best Before September 24th, 2012 on the back label, which also suggests suitable glassware. The picture on the front label is of Quebec, which explains the name of the beer: Newfoundland was long considered the literal "end of the world" by explorers.

Appearance- 4.5 out of 5. This beer looks great. It pours with an elegant cloudy yellow-gold color and a thick, frothy 3 finger head which remains for most of the drinking experience and occasionally sticks to the side of the glass. The most remarkable part of the appearance is the activity of the carbonation bubbles as countless streams of them fly up through the beer. It's the largest amount of bubbles I've ever seen in a beer, especially considering its cloudy color.

Smell- 4 out of 5. Strongly-scented, La Fin du Monde is redolent of nectarines, cloves, peppery spice, and yeast upfront, with a phenolic undertone and hints of warm alcoholic esters.

Taste- 4.5 out of 5. It's a little disconcerting at first, but it grew on me after a few more sips. My first impression was "3.5", but it went up an entire point by the end of the beer. That spicy clove flavor initially hits the tongue, followed quickly by the warming alcoholic esters right behind it. That nectarine scent shifts to less tangy light fruit flavors. The phenolic flavor is present but fades in the wash of other highlights. Of the traditional beer flavors, yeast is the most evident because of the bottle-conditioning (a process that involves allowing yeast to remain in the bottle for further fermentation). The malt contributes a bit of sweetness but mostly fills out the mouthfeel more than the flavor, while the hops leave a mere ghost of a bitter flavor on the back of the tongue. Although candy sugar was used in the brewing process, this isn't a very sweet beer. The aftertaste is of spice and solvent alcohol, which isn't surprising considering the 9% ABV; however, the aftertaste is really the only time that the alcohol taste is noticeable.

Mouthfeel- 4 out of 5. Medium to full-bodied with a creamily smooth texture and bubbly carbonation.

Drinkability- 4.5 out of 5. This is a beer for a night when you really want to take your time and enjoy yourself. Don't expect to chug it or take huge gulps; this is a beer that should be sipped and savored to fully appreciate its complexity. It does a great job of balancing complexity, flavor, and alcohol content (the last of which is rather hard to notice).

Overall, an A.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2010, 04:35:50 PM by Paradox »

Offline Will

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #97 on: July 25, 2010, 02:01:29 PM »
*laughs* I almost bought that yesterday.  Anything named "The End of the World" has to be good, I thought.  Another excellent review. :D

Offline Blitzy

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Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #98 on: July 25, 2010, 04:08:56 PM »
I like the picture, Para! :) And the review. I think that's a damned good spot for the picture and a good cellphone pic. *Nod.*

Offline ParadoxTopic starter

Re: Beer Blog
« Reply #99 on: July 27, 2010, 04:00:12 PM »
Will- That's precisely the reason I purchased it!

Blitzy- Thanks. It works best when it's sunny outside, so today's picture is a little more muted.



Thanks to Kurzyk and others for the recommendation of today's beer, which is Bass Pale Ale.



Brewed by:
Bass Brewers Ltd.
Burton-Upon-Trent, England
Style- English Pale Ale
ABV- 5%

English Pale Ales differ from other styles of Pale Ale in that they are typically more bitter and earthy, yet they still retain the fruity overtones (and a bit of buttery flavor, depending on the brewer). They are somewhat similar to English Bitters, but they tend to be more hop-heavy and have slightly higher amounts of alcohol. Ostensibly, the style originated in the city of Burton-upon-Trent in the Victorian era. That city's source of hard, rich water enhanced the bitter nature of the hops. English folk enjoyed that enhanced taste, and it led to the development of the style itself. English Pale Ales are also typically darker than most other Pale Ales, being more golden and sometimes almost amber thanks to the abundance of hops. Alcohol content is generally on the lower end of the scale, between 4% to 6%.

Today's Pale Ale from Bass was brewed in the aforementioned city of Burton-Upon-Trent in Staffordshire and consequently uses the same water that originally inspired the style.

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle with the famous red triangle on the label. That red triangle was England's first registered trademark. According to Bass' history, the United Kingdom's 1875 Trade Mark Registration Act came into effect January 1st, 1876. An employee of Bass Brewery waited outside the registrar's office on the night of New Year's Eve in order to be first in line to receive a trademark the next morning (Bass also received a second trademark for a red diamond with which to label their strong ale that same morning).

Appearance- 3.5 out of 5. Bass pours with a rather lackluster white head. Its color is a fairly transparent medium orange-brown with very few carbonation bubbles. The fact that it has hardly any head at all is disappointing, but the color is good, and there is a bit of lacing that sticks to the sides.

Smell- 4 out of 5. This stuff smells better than it looks! There are upfront scents of caramel malt and buttery diacetyl, followed by fainter herbal hints from the Noble hops and a bit of freshly-baked bread. It's a solid, sensible combination of scents.

Taste-
4 out of 5. The primary flavor comes from the mild sweetness of the caramel malt, which is surprising Pale Ales tend to focus on hops more than malt; however, the Noble hops definitely lend a bitter bite at the back of the tongue late in the taste. Between the malt and hops are hints of buttered bread, red grapes, and a mineral taste that likely results from the waters of Burton-Upon-Trent.

Mouthfeel- 4.5 out of 5. This is a rich, creamy beer that goes down smooth and dry. There is a slightly astringent quality that gives your mouth a slight pucker, but it's pleasant all the same.

Drinkability- 4 out of 5. This beer is a great example of the English Pale Ale style. It's hardly a profound, earth-shaking beer, but Bass is delicious, balanced, and moderate enough that one could easily drink a six pack or knock back quite a few at the bar, assuming one didn't have to drive that night. The fact that many bars offer this alongside a mostly macrobrew-based selection makes it an enticing choice when you're out on the town. I'm slightly sad because I only bought one to review and really want another now!

Overall, a B.

Two more things!
For members who don't frequent Elliquiy U, check out this topic: Craft Beer Is Good For Bone Health
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