Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Monday, December 24, 2007
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Saving one of the best for last, this one pours a nice ruby/brown with two fingers of head which left a beautiful web of lace in the glass. The nose was of caramel sweet malts banana and vanilla bean with a nice balance of piny hops. The taste was mostly sweet carmel, vanilla and a hint of hazelnut. The finish was dry and and had a nice piny bite. They list this as an IPA but I can easily see this being a "Strong" or "Spice" ale. Either way, it’s an awesome beer. It dials in at 6.8% abv and you'd never know it. Available state-wide. Cheers.
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Pours a dark ruby-brown with a moderate tan head. The nose is huge with roasted malt and coffee, a light toffee sweetness is also notable . Taste starts with a good dose of roasted malts. Dark cocoa notes come next providing a minor sweetness. The end is cappachino-esque. The finish is similar, with some residual hop bitterness. This is a nice, medium-bodied porter. That satisfies in cold or warm weather. Kings Peak Porter is available year round at most grocery and convenient stores in and around Utah.
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Pores a slightly hazy dark amber color with a solid head that dissipates into a thin cap of foam. The nose is of toasty malts with a boozy perfume of peach, prune, nutmeg and clove.
The tastes starts sweet with honey, dates and nutmeg. Oak and vanilla finish it out, with burnt cherry and cinnamon notes carry you into the finish. Smooth, sweet malt body with just enough of a hint of hop bitterness to keep it from becoming cloying. A very nice holiday brew that goes down as well as any high ABV Belgian brew. The 10% abv is well hidden, opening the door for the pink elephants to sneak-up and molest you with they're trunks before you even know what's happening. So stay on your bar stool and beware.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
One of the most highly kept secrets about Santa is his love of beers. You don't hear many songs about the jolly ol' elf tossing back his favorite dram of ale . Or about his home brew sessions with the Heat Miser. That would throw Utah neo-cons into hissy of biblical proportions. Go ahead, take your chances. Leave him milk and cookies, but be warned your just screwing yourself in the long run.
To be assured of getting your G.I. Joe with the kung-fu grip, or that blow-up doll you've had your eye on. Place a bottle of the Eighth Beer of Xmas on your table and you'll be golden in his eyes.
Pours a copper/red color with a nice pillowy two finger head. The nose is very hoppy. A perfume of Pine and florals assault your sniffer The taste starts with a slightly malty flavor, then a very strong hops prescience comes through. Piney and roasted grain flavors are present also with a nice bitter finish. This beer is huge on hops and is probably the reason Santa’s nose is red. A very good pale ale for the holidays.
And if your worried about Santa drinking and driving, don't. The reindeer do all the driving.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Poured a very dark chocolate brown with a thick tan head. The nose was full of roasted malt, dark fruits with a pleasant nuttiness. The taste starts with a deep roasted malt taste, then a dark nuttiness with minor raspberry notes beneath. The end was nicely balanced with an easy piny hop bite at the end. If I had not been told this was a Bock I would have thought it was a schwartz beer or a Stout. Which is not a bad thing at all. Actually Bocks are a fine alternative to the traditional winter warmer crowd. This is an awesome, tasty beer. Even if it’s "Bockness" isn't textbook. I really love this stuff and with a ABV of 4.0 I could drink it all night. And maybe I will Damn-it!!!
Monday, December 17, 2007
One of the best beers to come out of Utah in years(from in fact the west) is here and you'd better snag one now because it's in very limited production. Since 2003 the crew at RedRock have been experimenting with recipes to come up with the perfect Barrel-aged, Belgian-style tripple. It's been a long hit-and-miss process. Over the past four years we've gotten a chance to sample various stages of the development of this brew from local area beer festivals. At one time; I believe it was aged in a Bourbon barrel and the result was, well.... unique. Well never fear, experimentation and diligence has paid off with a spectacular interpretation on a centuries old classic.
This has been RedRocks' year. Garnering awards left and right, it's seems they can do no wrong. And it looks like they've saved the best of '07 for last. So for the Sixth Beer of Xmas, I highly recommend Red Rock's Rêve.
Poured into a Chimay goblet a light golden honey color with with a moderate fluffy white head that dissipated to a very thin froth. The nose is a little boozy with banana, cloves malt and ripe mango. The taste is very much the same starting with candied sugar and cloves that transitions into toasted malt and banana. The end is sweet and oaky. The alcohol is warming and welcomed, masked well by Rêve's full body. It adds a whole new dimension to the beer You really get a good sense of the oak in the finish. It's barrel aged for one year. Don't get me wrong it's got a kick. It's 10.2% abv is more than enough to warm your inner beer geek.
RedRock Rêve is more proof that that Utah beers are much more than just 4.0% anomalies . Earning the bronze medal at the '06 Great American Beer Festival and the silver medal in '07, Kevin Templin and his team are proving big things can come in small packages.
RedRock Rêve is available in limited quantities at RedRock's SLC location and it's Park City Pub as well as The Bayou and Fiddler's Elbow! The special edition trippel is available in a commemorative 750mL corked bottles, so snatch 'em up while you can. Cheers!
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Poured a rich reddish-brown color producing a 1/2 inch thick head of rapidly dissipating foam. The aroma is incredible, fresh, dark roasted malts with a hint of cocoa. The taste started with rich roasted malts, hazelnut and a hint of molasses. Hops come next nicely balancing the malt sweetness carrying it through to the end. A subtle sting of espresso in the finish leaves you with the perfect mixture of sweet and bitterness. Don't let the photo fool you this is a creamy, light-medium bodied lager. When they coined the term liquid bread this is the style I'm sure they were referring to.
Drinking Ayinger is a no-brainer. They craft they're beers in the finest of German traditions. This isn't a holiday beer but it serves the season well. It's pleasant and sufficiently complex for any beer palate. ABV 5.0%. Available in Utah year-round.
Friday, December 14, 2007
Pours a hazy light orange with an off white head that dissipates quickly. The nose is slightly spicy with nutmeg and grassy hops. The flavor starts relatively light with ginger and and other Holiday spices and transitions to a decent amount of grassy hoppiness. The finish is light and dry. As far as Holiday beers go this is pretty subdued. Not as in your face as the previous three. And it's 4.0% abv will help keep you from hitting on your cousin. Yeah, we were all watching. Your sick dude, get a girlfriend for Christ sake.
Believe it or not there are a few good television programs out there devoted to the art of beverage concoction. Off the top of my head; there's Three Sheets on Mojo, The Thirsty Traveler on The Fine Living Network and the cancelled Beer Nuts, Also on Mojo. These are all great programs and I recommend you check them out. Especially Three Sheets. (only available in HD) Zane Lamprey is riot. With the exception of Beer Nuts(only available in HD) there isn't really anything out there devoted to solely to beer. Beer Nuts Had the makings of a good show but didn't have the range of topics to make it watchable on a regular basis.
Now comes word Utah's Own Jennifer Talley of Squatter's Pub Brewery is shooting a pilot for a new program that reportedly is devoted to beer. She was apparently recruited by producer Peter Holmes who saw Talley in a video she did for her brewery and thought she’d be a good host, making the show about brewers, brewing and pairings. Things Jenny is eminently qualified to discuss. The Food Network or similar cable channel would be the likely home for a show like this.
Info provided from The Brookston Beer Bulletin has Jenny interviewing Shaun O’Sullivan at his 21st Amendment Brewery & Restaurant. Then O’Sullivan and Talley visited Magnolia and sat down to talk with owner Dave McLean over some food and beer. Then on Tuesday they filmed at Russian River Brewing in Santa Rosa. They filmed at both the new production brewery nearby and at the brewpub. Later Bruce Paton, the beer chef, cooked some food and he sat down with Talley and Russian River owners Vinnie and Natalie Cilurzo to talk about the pairings while they enjoyed both the food and beer.
I hope this bird flies, it would be great to have a program out there devoted to beer by people who know and love it.
As I mentioned in earlier post I'm a Videographer by trade. Coincidentally I did a two-part feature on Jenny in '04 along With my colleague Sandy Riesgraf. The Story was called The Queen of Beers. And, if I can toot my own horn; we won the Beer Journalism Award for it at the '05 Great American Beer Festival. I'm not saying, that why got you the job Jenny, But... Your welcome. All kidding aside, Good luck with this project Jenny. Salt Lake has your back. Thanks to Jay Brooks from Brookston Beer Bulletin for the photo and the legwork.
Here is The Queen of Beers.
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Pours a dark maraschino brown with a nice bulging cap of foam. The nose is very pleasant with citrus rind, toasted malt, caramel and allspice. The flavor starts spicy with orange and clove. Toffee and a hint of chocolate round out the middle complement the spiciness. The end is all hops with sturdy grapefruit and pine notes. The finish is a little boozy; which is surprising because the label lists it at 6.5% abv.
This is one of those ales that had me raising an eye brow at the first swig, but by the fourth, I was hooked. This is yet another outstanding winter warmer that is far more than just malt and hops. Wassail is one of Full Sail's best beers and should be a no-brainer this holiday season.
It's a good thing we're spreading out our little "experiment" over twelve days. I suspect most of us would be tits-up on the Berber by day eight. Cheers.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Winter Solstice pours a beautiful reddish-brown color with a creamy, fluffy head. The aroma is mildly hoppy with delicate malt sweetness. Vanilla bean is dominant with orange peel for balance. There also seemed to be a hint of nutmeg. The Taste was of roasted malt, vanilla and carameled apple. The bitterness was mild which allowed the vanilla to finish slightly above the hops. Sweet and slightly spicy, The higher alcohol (6.9% ABV) added a nice warming affect. The balanced was perfect from start to finish. I love this beer so much I buy up all that I can, as to enjoy it year round. I find it very drinkable and I’m eagerly looking forward to this years fresh batch.
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
The first beer of Xmas that my barkeep gave to me is Uinta's XIV Anniversary Barley Wine. This Local heavy weight pores of dark chestnut/orange hue with a luscious foamy tan cap. The nose is of burnt oranges, warm caramel malts, heavy toasted breads with pungent hops that produce pine and citrusy overtones. Earthy notes cinder behind most of the hop twinge in the nose. The taste started with hops up front, bittering with pine and dark citrusy stuff of orange and highly ripe peaches, malts play second fiddle with burnt caramel and toffee, crispy biscuit toasty edging, touches of chocolate, brown sugar, and then turns back to a hoppy finish of pine and citrus orange. The bottle says it’s at 10.3% abv but it doesn’t burn like it. I have a six pack of the no. X that I’ve lay'd down to age. It's incredible! just hope I can make it last another year. This is without a doubt one of the best barley wines that I’ve ever had. Home team bias aside.
Thursday, December 06, 2007
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Legal liquor began flowing again in Utah in 1935 when the first state liquor stores in Salt Lake City and Ogden opened their doors. Business was brisk at the new stores as Utahns eagerly bought-up the once forbidden libations; in the first fifteen days of operation receipts totaled $54,866.