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Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Hop Ottin' IPA

Anderson Valley Brewing Hop Ottin' IPA

90 BA score and 100 Bros score on Beer Advocate. 97 overall and 96 style score on RateBeer. PBR has an overall of 2 on RateBeer. So suck it PBR fans.

Another recent purchase from Savor Market. $8.99 for the 6 pack.

Hops.  They are the cornerstone of India Pale Ales around the world, and our Hop Ottin’ IPA is no exception.  Handcrafted with copious amounts of Columbus and Cascade, this beer is a showcase of bright citrusy aromas, bold grapefruit and pine-like flavors, and the resiny bitterness that hop heads crave.  With a brilliant, deep amber color and solid malt backbone, hints of citron, roses, and bergamot climax with a dry, herbal finish in this well balanced interpretation of a West Coast IPA.




7% ABV and 78 IBU. 78 IBU means this actually has taste. No, drinking this with sloppy joes will not make them taste better. They'll actually drag the beer down. You know eating sloppy joes leads down the path of damnation. First sloppy joes, then drinking PBR and then listening to Pantera. Probably leads to Nickelback as well. Listening to Pantera is officially placed in the 7th circle of hell.

Sloppy joes also leads to trips to the Blue Oyster.


First pour came out like this. Houston, we have a foamer. About half the can poured into the glass.

2nd pour was barely better. At least most of the can made it into the glass this time. Pours an amberish color with waaaaayyyyy too much head. Plenty of lacing. Aroma is hoppy, citrusy and malty. Piney hops and grapefruit citrus. Some malt helps tame the other smells. Floral as well. Taste is very interesting. Plenty of pine from the hops. Grapefruit is there but isn't overpowering. Much more of a hop lovers beer. Malt breadiness helps with the bitterness. Rated this a 4 out of 5. Would have rated higher if it wasn't a foamer. Warning for the goat urine beer drinkers, this is not for you. Hop Ottin' actually has taste and plenty of it.

Suggested listening;
The Cars first album. The Cars actually have ties to Ohio. Bassist and sometimes lead vocalist Ben Orr is from Lakewood, Ohio. Orr moved to Columbus, where he and Ric Ocasek started playing together. Eventually both went to Boston and the Cars took off. Ben Orr succumbed to cancer in 2000, so there could never be a full reunion.

Ben Orr's grave in Saint Patrick Cemetery, Thompson Ohio.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Lagunitas Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale

Lagunitas Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale

A recent purchase from Giant Eagle. Don't even remember what I paid for it.

We brewed this especially bitter ale in remembrance of the 2005 St Patrick’s Day Massacre and in commemoration of our 20-day suspension that followed. The ABC conducted an undercover investigation of our brewery, finding us guilty of operating a “Disorderly House.” We did the crime. We did the time. We got the bragging rights.”



Here is an article from 2006 explaining the name:
http://drugnewsvault.blogspot.com/2006/05/great-lagunitas-marijuana-bust-and.html

The 2014 release of the beer has 9.7% ABV and 66.6 IBU.

It has a 91 BA score on Beer Advocate. 98 overall and 94 style score on RateBeer.

First thing I thought when I saw the name was "That's a mouthfull."


Pours amber with a decent head. Some lacing, have seen worse. Aroma is bit caramel like. Some citrus as well. Bit boozey as to be expected with a high alcohol content. Citrus seems to be of orange and pineapple. Taste starts off sweet and citrusy. Taste leans a bit towards orange with a touch of pineapple. Caramel like malts come in. Definite alcohol bite to it. Finishes a tad dry but isn't unpleasant. The IBU seems to be a little lower than the 66.6. For an American Strong Ale it does live up to the style. A bit sweet for my liking but did rate it a 4 out of 5. Worth trying at least once. Since it is a limited release, better find this one quick.

Suggested reading:

Topsy: The Startling Story of the Crooked Tailed Elephant, P.T. Barnum, and the American Wizard, Thomas Edison

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Founders Centennial IPA

Founders Centennial IPA

Another recent purchase from Savor Market.

7.2% ABV and 65 IBU.


$10.99 for a 6 pack. Founders for some reason I tend to ignore. Maybe because I see their stuff almost everywhere and I know I can pick it up whenever. It's not like they produce bad beer. The ones I've tried have been pretty good at the worst and really good at the best.

93 BA score and 99 bros score on Beer Advocate. 99 overall and style score on RateBeer.

Get ready to bask in the glory of the frothy head’s floral bouquet. Relish the citrus accents from the abundance of dry hopping. This one’s sweet, yet balanced. Malty undertones shake hands with the hop character for a finish that never turns too bitter.



IPA beers are for the actual beer drinkers. No, IPA beers are not fancy ones. What would make them fancy? The taste? Just because it has taste unlike Miller Lite or Bud Light does not make them fancy. All beer should not taste like goat urine. Is it the price? Does paying a few extra bucks for a quality beer count? Nope. Just because a 6 pack could be had for $4 and taste goat urine doesn't mean it should exist.

I poured this beer into a Stone IPA glass. What? One brand of beer poured into another company's glass?


In the words of Miley Cyrus - I can't be tamed.

Pours a dark copper bordering on amber color. About a half inch of head with plenty of lacing. Aroma has some citrus to it, mainly orange. Some malt is detectable. Malt is a little on the biscuit side. Taste is of citrusy orange zest along with the malt. The orange zest is a little prominent in the aftertaste. Some biscuit like malt is towards the front/middle. Bitterness is pleasant, but I wish it was much more. Decent IPA. Not the best one I've ever had but is still decent. Rated this 3.5 out of 5.

Suggested reading:
All The Great Prizes: The Life Of John Hay, From Lincoln To Roosevelt.

John Milton Hay started out as one of Lincoln's secretaries. He was a journalist, diplomat and Secretary of State. His monument in Lake View cemetery in Cleveland was designed by famed sculptor James Earle Fraser.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Flying Monkeys The Matador Version 2.0 El Toro Bravo

Flying Monkeys The Matador Version 2.0 El Toro Bravo Imperial Dark Rye Ale Aged On Spanish Cedar


Don't know if Flying Monkeys could come up with a longer name for this beer. It appears version 1 of the beer is a cedar aged IPA. Never have seen the first version.

Picked up a 750 ml bottle today at Savor Market for $11.99. It's basically a fifth. It is just barely under a fifth but is close enough. 750 ml is 25.3605 ounces, a little over two beers.Wine bottles are normally 750 ml bottles.



Do like the artwork on the box. Bright colors added with the almost impressionist bull painting. Actually have liked all of Flying Monkeys packaging.



Have had Flying Monkeys Smashbomb Atomic IPA and it was a very decent beer. Have seen their Stereo Vision beer but have yet to pick any up.




10.1% ABV and 33 IBU. Yes, I know the IBU is quite low for my standards but sometimes variety is the spice of life. Since it is a rye beer, I was expecting quite a bit of peppery notes from the rye.

Poured into a tulip. Nice brownish color with an off white head. No lacing. First thing I smelled was the cedar. It was almost like walking into one of those walk in cigar humidors at a tobacco shop. I used to be really into smoking cigars. I'll go to look at cigars at one of the local cigar shops, but don't usually buy any. Used to get cigars quite a bit at a shop at the Continent when there was a tobacco shop there. Would even buy Cigar Aficianado magazine to keep up on what was out. Maduro cigars were my favorite, didn't matter what brand. Te Amo and La Unica were my go to cigars because they were good quality for the slightly lower price point. Got turned on to La Unica by a guy I worked with at Kroger. He noticed I would buy the crappy cigars they bought there and was explaining about much better cigars. We would sometimes go to a cigar store to get stuff. Then I started going on my own and we would trade tips about whatever brand we may have discovered.

Anyway back to the beer. Cedar is prominent along with the spicy pepper of rye. Tastes follows the nose very closely. Very much like cedar which is a good thing. I've normally had beer aged in oak, so beer with cedar is a welcome change of pace. Add in the spicy rye. Both add up to a very pleasant tasting beer. Some sweetness from the malt helps balance out the other flavors. I rated this 4 out of 5. At $11.99, it's not an everyday drinking beer. Worth checking out.