Beer 234/365 – Hoppin Frog Turbo Shandy

hoppin frog turbo shandy

Style: Fruit / Vegetable beer

ABV: 7.0%

Purchased at: Vintage Estate – Boardman Ohio

What makes this beer different: Very refreshing citrusy summer drink. Its like mellow yellow meets wheat beer.

Will I be drinking this again: Probably yes. Especially on a hot summer day.

Grade: B

6/30/2010: Hoppin Frog brewery is known for their big beers; Doris, Boris, Triple IPA etc. Apparently head brewer Fred Karm’s wife isn’t a fan of the aforementioned beers, so he told her he would make any style off beer she wanted. Rumor has it she suggested a light summery beer, and alas Turbo Shandy was born.

Turbo Shandy pours out like a lemon soda. Very carbonated to the point where the bubbles pop similar to how a fountain drink would. Smell is lemony and sugary. Has anyone ever tried Tequiza? The flavor reminds me a lot of this. Very lemony, and very very carbonated. The malts add a different depth to the beer, which I think makes it more drinkable than a typical soda. Although this is more on the soda end than it is on the beer end. I had this right after taking a jog, so I thought it was real refreshing. I’m sure purists will hate this, but it really hit the spot on a 90 degree day.

Picture of the day: Apparently beauty is more than skin deep.

Published in: on June 30, 2010 at 8:42 am  Leave a Comment  
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Beer 233/365 – Goose Island 312 Urban Wheat Ale

goose island 312 wheat

Style: American Pale Wheat Ale

ABV: 4.2%

Purchased at: Siciliano’s Market – Grand Rapids MI

What makes this beer different: Lots of honey for a Pale Wheat Ale, but little to no hops in the mix.

Will I be drinking this again: Yes I actually liked this one a lot.

Grade: B+

6/29/2010: In case you missed it, President Obama recently settled a World Cup bet with Prime Minister David Cameron of England. Each respective leader bet that their team would win in their recent world cup match. The game ended in a tie so they decided to still make a trade off. Obama gave the Prime Minister a “312 beer,” and David Cameron gave the President a bottle of Hobgoblin. Kind of disappointing that The President called it “312 Beer,” but still cool to see craft beer in the hands our commander in chief.

Similar to many other Pale Wheat Ales, there is not a lot of smell going on with 312 Wheat. Smells like a typical wheat beer, just very subdued. I might be crazy for thinking this, but the first non-wheat flavor I got was honey. I actually had my roommate taste it as well to be sure I wasn’t crazy, but he right off the bat without me suggesting it said he tasted honey. Weird because out of all the reviews I read on BeerAdvocate, no one mentions honey. Oh well I guess thats what makes beer tasting fun right? Very subjective. Anyways not a whole lot of other flavors going on here, a tiny bit of hop presence but not much. Its very light bodied, which is okay because I am drinking this right as I got home from my adult league soccer game. Very refreshing. Overall its a good beer, its just missing something.

Picture of the day: See Cara, this is why I won’t go watch twilight in the theaters with you. haha.

Published in: on June 29, 2010 at 8:08 am  Comments (3)  
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Beer 232/365 – Dark Horse Rod

dark horse rod

Style: Amber Ale

ABV: 7.2%

Purchased at: On Tap at Vintage Estate – Boardman, OH

What makes this beer different: The most herbal tasting beer ever.

Will I be drinking this again: Not sure if they are bottling it, but I would drink it again sure.

Grade: A-

6/28/2010: Dark Horse is hands down my favorite brewery for three main reasons. One, they brew awesome beer. I have tried almost a dozen different beers of theirs, and all were a B+ or better. Two, they turned down being in a Nickelback video (hate their music). Three, they don’t take themselves too seriously and have an good sense of humor when naming/describing their beer. For instance check out the sexual innuendo’s going on here in the description of the beer.

“Rod is a refreshing, medium bodied red ale brewed with aphrodisiac herbs for woman and men alike. Brewer Russ Beattie was working on his own version of Sex Panther, using passion flower, epimedium, damiana, and ginko to elevate the levels of spring time friskiness and brewmaster Aaron Morse decided that the best way to spread the love was via Rod.”

Rod smells toasty and herbal. The main event as far as flavors go, is no doubt some herbal funk. Can’t tell you what herbs exactly, but its herbal, almost like tea made with real tea leaves. A good bit of caramel malt going on, and finishes a little bit dry. Mouthfeel is a little heavy for an amber, but I think it needs the heaviness for the herbs to lay in. Very unique, but no it didn’t get me excited in that type of way hah.

Picture of the day: WOW, this girl has reached an entirely new level of stupidity.

Published in: on June 28, 2010 at 12:13 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Beer 231/365 – Gulden Draak

gulden draak

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

ABV: 10.5%

Purchased at: Sharp Edge – Pittsburgh PA

What makes this beer different: Very sweet and fruity, without being overdone.

Will I be drinking this again: I have a couple bottles in the cellar, so yes!

Grade: A-

6/27/2010: Craft beer geeks in Pittsburgh know there is only one place in Pittsburgh to go when you want a good variety of Belgians on tap, and thats Sharp Edge. They have a few locations around down, all with at least 25 Belgian Beers on tap. Only downfall is they are pricey as all hell. Just to give you an idea of their prices, a bottle of world wide stout to take home is $18 dollars. Thats what I paid for a 2006 vintage bottle.

It doesn’t come through in the picture (taken with cell phone) but this beer is a very nice dark shade of maroon. Smells very fruity, with some brown sugar mixed in there. I’m not going to act like I can pick out the difference between the flavor of dates/figs/prunes/plums, but there is a lot of dark sweet fruit flavor going on in this beer. What combination of the aforementioned fruits? Not real sure. Theres also this sweet rum like flavor going on. A lot of caramel/toffee flavor there to compliment the fruity rums flavors. Pretty heavy syrupy mouthfeel, but it works here. Alcohol peaks out just a little too much for me, but still a very solid belgian.

Picture of the day: I know all the guys out there have been through something like this.

Beer 230/365 – Central Waters Mudpuppy Porter

Central waters mudpuppy porter

Style: American Porter

ABV: 5.5%

Purchased at: Sent as an extra in a trade

What makes this beer different: One of the lightest bodied porters I have ever had

Will I be drinking this again: If only it was available in the area.

Grade: A-

6/26/2010: So apparently New Glarus, Tyranena, and Lakefront arent the only places that brew good beer in the great cheese state of Wisconsin. Add Central Waters to that list. Most of their beers on BeerAdvocate rate at a B or better, which is doesn’t happen very often.

Mudpuppy Porter has a pretty strong chocolate smell, and something a little nutty also? The flavor is very good for how light the body is. Chocolate, caramel malt, and hazelnut! Very unique to see that hazelnut flavor in a porter. The body is very very light, but still gets a bunch of flavor to the taste buds. Very drinkable.

Picture of the day: The futuristic world of 2010.

Published in: on June 26, 2010 at 10:51 am  Comments (5)  
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Beer 229/365 – Three Floyd’s Apocalype Cow

Three Floyds apocalypse cow

Style: Imperial IPA

ABV: 10.0%

Purchased at: Sent to me in a trade

What makes this beer different: Its an Imperial IPA that uses Lactose Milk Sugar (hence the cow on the label)

Will I be drinking this again: Won’t go out of my way for it, but it is unique like all the other Three Floyd’s brew’s.

Grade: B

6/25/2010: Not only does Three Floyd’s always some good beer, but they always have some really cool labeling on their beer. This is kind of what the picture looked like in my head when I heard what this beer was called (apocalypse cow). Are Three Floyd’s trying to say its a sign of the apocalypse that they are using an ingredient in an IPA that is traditionally used in a Stout? Thats the message I am getting.

This beer is probably the freshest off the line IPA I have had to date. It is released in early June, and I am drinking it only a few weeks after it came off the line. My nostrils are getting mauled by hop aroma. There are a lot of aggressive flavors going on here. Lots and lots of hops, a pretty even mix between citrus and pine flavors. A lot of malt, but man these hops are viscous. So bitter I can literally feel it in my chest. There is no way I would have known there was lactose in this unless you told me. Mouthfeel is a bit on the heavy side. I know most people love their IPA/DIPAs fresh, but the hops in this were just to pungent for me. I think if I were to drink this in August, I might have liked it a bit more.

Picture of the day: True example of fair play.

Published in: on June 25, 2010 at 3:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Beer 228/365 – New Belgium Ranger IPA

New Belgium Ranger IPA

Style: American IPA

ABV: 6.5%

Purchased at: I can’t even remember where I got this bottle from.

What makes this beer different: The whitest head I have ever seen on a beer. A little too bitter for me

Will I be drinking this again: Probably not, not balanced enough for my liking.

Grade: B-

6/24/2010: New Belgium is brewed in one of the best states for craft beer; Colorado. They are best known for their Amber Ale known as Fat Tire. Would love to get enough free time to make it back out there to visit my buddy Kevin, and drive all over the state visiting breweries. If only I had enough money to retire at the ripe old age of…27.

As I mentioned above, ranger has the cleanest whitest looking head I have ever seen on a beer. Almost like soap bubbles. It smells very tropical. The taste feature my arch enemy, pine flavored hops. This doesn’t always kill a beer completely for me, but its not my favorite flavor in the world thats for sure. Thankfully there’s a decent bit of tropical flavors going on, but not enough malt for all these hops to lay out. It’s very sticky and resinous. I am sure some hop-heads would like this beer, but its just too bitter for this guy.

Picture of the day: The only thing more annoying than Twilight.

Published in: on June 24, 2010 at 11:54 am  Leave a Comment  
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Beer 227/365 – Highland’s Black Mocha Stout

Style: American Stout

ABV: 5.6%

Purchased at: Sent as an extra in a trade.

What makes this beer different: Not too much, just a solid drinkable stout.

Will I be drinking this again: I still have two left, so at some point yes.

Grade: B+

6/23/2010: This is my first beer from the great state of North Carolina. Okay honestly I’m not sure if its a great state, because I have never been there other than driving through it. But I do know Sexual Chocolate Stout is made there, and I have a trade in the works to pick up a bottle. I am on a mission to try and get every imperial stout on the top 100 (within reason).

Black Mocha Stout smells as advertised; A good bit of coffee and a good bit of chocolate. Also I am getting some hops, which is odd because I usually am not able to pick hops in up stouts. This beer has a lot of flavor for a standard stout. Almost an even split between chocolate and roasted coffee, with some nice bitter hops to even it out. This is one of the first brews I have had that the smell almost matched the taste exactly. My taste buds are usually good at picking stuff up, but not so much on the nasal end of things. Medium bodied but a little low on the carbonation.

Picture of the day: Lazy or Awesome?

Beer 226/365 – Sweetwater Sch’weat Wheat Ale

Style: American Pale Wheat Ale

ABV: 4.7%

Purchased at: Sent to me as an extra

What makes this beer different: A really drinkable summer beer.

Will I be drinking this again: If it was available in this area I sure would.

Grade: B+

6/22/2010: Had this beer sent to me as an extra in a trade I did recently. Traded a growler of Monkey Boy from East End Brewery, for a Hunahpu. Been trying to trade for a Hunahpu for a long time now so I was pretty excited to fall into this trade. I also recently traded 3 2010 Dark Lords for a 2007 and a 2008 Dark Lord. Got real lucky to respond to that thread on BA before anyone else did.

Had no idea what to expect with this beer as I have never heard of it. It smells very lemony, and moderately hoppy. The taste is actually very unique, a lot of lemon flavor, some spiciness, and an average amount of hops. Its a very crisp and refreshing beer to be sure. Its very light bodied and carbonated beer, which makes it perfect for summer. Kind of surprised that this only rates a B- on Beer Advocate. Hey to each their own right?

Picture of the day: The most convincing argument for athiesm ever.

Beer 225/365 – Dogfish Head World Wide Stout

Style: Imperial Stout

ABV: 18.0%

Purchased at: Dogfish Head Brewpub – Rehoboth DE

What makes this beer different: So amazingly smooth for how strong it is.

Will I be drinking this again: Yes, I love a good strong beer that hides the alcohol well.

Grade: A+

6/21/2010: This bottle of World Wide Stout is a 2006 vintage. It cost me $18 bucks, which I guess isn’t terrible considering fresh bottles run $10-$11 around Pittsburgh. I have only sampled WWS once before, and it was a fresh bottle. So I am pretty pumped to try a bottle with a few years of age on it.

Smell is boozy as all hell, with a lot of roast malt, and maybe some dark fruit. I am completely expecting this first sip to be similar to when you pour a mix drink thats just a bit too strong, but thankfully I was wrong. The main three flavors are a lot of chocolate, coffee, and some raisins. Caramel and Molasses also jump out at me. It is really amazing how well the alcohol is hidden in this beer, and I am also amazed at how the body of this beer is not all that heavy. Its slightly on the heavy side of average, but not by much. How does Dogfish Head hide all this alcohol is such a mediumish bodied beer? This beer was worth every penny. It took me about 45 minutes to drink on an empty stomach, and right after I finished it I took a hour our nap. Well done Sam Calagione.

Picture of the day: Super Mario Bros meets BP.

Published in: on June 21, 2010 at 12:52 pm  Comments (3)  
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