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Friday, December 28, 2012

New Beer Friday 12/28/12

There's one new beer today. It's local & made with rye. Your gunna love it! 

Bohemian's Keller Rye: This is Bohemian’s latest seasonal. Keller Rye is an unfiltered rye lager.  Brewed with Köln and Munich malts it pours an orange, copper color and has a smooth sweet malt character up front with hints of spicy rye in the back end. German Hallertau Hersbrucker hops dry out the finish to bring crisp balance to this very drinkable lager.

Returning Favorite. 

Epic's Santa Cruz: This "Brown IPA" is an interpret of the recent Black IPA trend. The Santa Cruz Brown Ale is a true hybrid. For this beer Epic combined the rich malty backbone and color of an American brown ale with piney, resinous American hops, creating a completely new and unique type of beer. Easily one of my favorite Epic beers. 

Uinta's Sea Legs Baltic Porter is finally available for sale as well. @ Uinta's Bottleshop


Monday, December 24, 2012

The Twelfth Beer o' Xmas 2012: Kona Koko Brown

Well we made it, beer number twelve. It seems like it was only a dozen days ago we started this inebriating adventure together. How time flies. To reward you for coming back and giving a shit we have a nice sweet & malty brown ale for you; or to leave for Santa with some of those special brownies you got from uncle Tim. So for the last damn time.....

For the Twelfth Beer o' Xmas that the.... oh fuck it. Kona's Koko Brown Ale!

Pours a clear redish/mahogany color with a finger of off white head quickly dissipates leaving only some trace foam on top The nose of toasted coconut sweet roasty malts.The taste starts with toasted coconut and a dominating sweet malt character, then fades to sweet toffee notes at the end. The finish has a barely noticeable hint of piney hops. It's somewhat thin, which in this case does the beer many favors, a moderate mouthfeel would have made this a sweet mess. Try it with some roasted meat or a Holiday pie.

Cheers & Happy "Whatever it is That Floats Your Boat".

Sunday, December 23, 2012

The Eleventh Beer o' Xmas 2012: Widmer Rotator IPA

The Eleventh Beer o' Xmas that the BeerGnerd pushed on thee is Widmer's Rotator IPA!

These are a fairly new entry into the market, and have shot close to the top of favorite IPAs.
The Rotator Series "rotate" the beer's hop bill every quarter, giving each IPA it's own distinct flavor profile. The first Rotator IPA we recieved was called Shaddock and was made with grapefruit peel. The current Roator is called Falconer. It's crafted with a proprietary hop blend called Falconer’s Flight.™

Pours a clear bronze coloror with one finger of slightly off-white head. The nose is pretty complex almost muddled with some caramel balanced by tropical/grapefruit hops. The taste is hop forward, more grapefruit than mango, decent malt backbone. Mouthfeel is medium. Hard to identify the hop profile, might benefit in future if blended with something a bit more spicy/piney, but not a bad single hop IPA.


Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Tenth Beer o' Xmas 2012: Lagunitas Little Sumpin' Sumpin'

Damn! Almost forgot to post the beer number ten. That would have been a shame it's quite a nice change of pace from what's normally out there. So the Tenth Beer o' Xmas that the Beer Gnerd pushed on thee...  Lagunitas Little Sumpin' Sumpin'.

Pours a lovely light, golden color with a nice one finger of head. The nose is like a Christmas tree has a three-way, hook-up with with a grapefruit and a piece of caramel, then popped out a Little Sumpin' Sumpin' beer. The taste is even better than the nose. Solid wheat flavor, followed by a strong pine hoppiness, then the grapefruit citrus and finally the soft sweetness of the caramel with subtle molasses. Really nice!

This beer is a fantastic beer and a dry enough after-taste to make you want to drink more! The 7.5% ABV is just potent enough to keep you happy and in check.


Friday, December 21, 2012

New Beer Friday: End of the World Edition

 As of the time of this publication, the world is still spinning. Weather you fear asteroids, alien invasions, global catastrophe or the DABC we have a way to make sure you go out looking good, while having a happy tongue.

We'll start with New Beer Friday and move on from there.

I was only able to find one new beer this week, Full Sail's Nut Brown Ale. I haven't had a chance to try it yet. Others describe it as "a little buttery. Lots of the nutty roasted barley taste. There is a pleasant bitter tanginess. Warmly dark with a malty base". @ Liquor Stores

If you fear the world's end today? We have a special beer for you. If your just looking forward to the Winter Solstice? We have something for you as well. Let's start with the "Doomsdayers" shall we?

There could be no more appropriate beer for you guys & gals than Unibroue's La Fin Du Monde (The End of the World). This brilliant Canadian classic pours a hazy golden color with a towering white head. The nose is of fruity esters with notes of banana, clove, bubblegum, and a bit of spicy alcohol. The taste begins with a good deal of fruitiness (nectarine, pear, peach, mango, and white grape) and flowery honey blended with peppery clove. Next comes some powdery yeasts and a bit of bready malt followed by a touch of drying alcohol in the finish.  A great beer to "kiss your ass g'bye".  @ Liquor Stores

For you Pagans, Witches & Realists we have Anderson Valley's Winter Solstice. This fine Winter Warmer pours a beautiful reddish-brown color with a creamy, fluffy head. The nose 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. @ Liquor Stores

We have a returning champ as well. Now, as far as I'm concerned there's only one number you should be thinking of today. Not 122112 but 529.

Squatters' 529 is an Oud Bruin style ale. If your not familiar with this Belgian style,  they are light to medium-bodied, deep copper to brown in color. They are extremely varied, characterized by a slight vinegar or lactic sourness and spiciness to smooth and sweet. A fruity-estery character is usually apparent with no hop flavor or aroma. Low to medium bitterness. 529 refers to the number of days spent in the barrels (18 months).

529 Pours a deeper amberish color with a small sized off white head. The nose is of of cherries, dust and some spiciness. The taste starts with notes of cherry tartness, caramel and brown sugar. Tobacco notes come next as well as lemon peel and sour grapes. The finish is tart, woody and dry. @ Squatters & The Beer Store.

And finally... For the Ninth Beer o' Xmas that the Beer Gnerd pushed on thee... It's RedRock's Secale!

This beer is a bock at it's base, but has the addition of rye malt and is aged in High West Rye Whiskey barrels. Secale pours a dark ruby color with a moderate two fingers of off-white head. The nose has a dry roasted malt aroma along with a light rye spiciness. It's rounded out with a mild caramel malt and vanilla aroma. The taste starts with Caramel malts and toffee. Chocolate covered raisins come next come next with a dry rye spiciness. Hints of vanilla and whiskey come next in the end, as well as a subdued hop bitterness that balances the malty sweetness in the finish. The body is full and the whiskey notes become a bit more pronounced as it warms. The 8.5% abv is well hidden but sneaks up you quickly.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Sea Legs Baltic Porter

There's a new addition to Uinta's Crooked Line of beers; a Baltic Porter with a hint of something extra, Rye Whiskey.

These porters were traditionally made to be stronger, more robust versions of regular porters, they were to be shipped across the North Sea, hence the name "Baltic Porter". In general, the style’s dark brown color covered up cloudiness and the smoky/roasted brown malts and bitter tastes masked brewing imperfections. The addition of stale ale also lent a pleasant acidic flavor to the style, which made it quite popular. These issues were quite important given that most breweries were getting away from pub brewing and opening up breweries that could ship beer across the world.

Sea Legs pours a very murky, dark brown, almost black color with a small tan head. The nose is brilliant! full of toffee with some chocolate biscotti, a hint of Bourbon and espresso. The taste starts with sweet chocolate with some biscuity malt flavors. A bit of dark fruits with vanilla and subtle whiskey come next with a bit of dark chocolate and toffee in the finish. The alcohol is well hidden in this 8% beer. 

The mouthfeel is medium bodied and the drinkability is very high. What a great Porter! A perfect addition to Uinta's Crooked line. For sale in Utah in the coming days. Some markets on the east coast are already selling it but Utah's DABC has yet to approve it. We'll let you know when it goes on sale.

That's not all! For the Eighth Beer o' Xmas that the Beer Gnerd pushed on thee, we have another winter warmer. Deschutes Jubelale.
Pours a chocolatey brown color with a decent size off white head with better than average lacing. 

The nose is spicy, but not overdone with caramel, dark fruits, chocolate and some nice citrusy notes. The taste starts with caramel and Chocolate notes. Dark dehydrated raisins and currents come next with spicy and earthy hops rounding out the finish. VERY tasty, a good quality beer.

Drink this one warmer rather than cold to get the most out of it. This one is going very fast may not be around after the holidays. @ Liquor Stores & "Better Beer Bars"


Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Seventh Beer o' Xmas 2012: Epic's Copper Cone Pale Ale

If the beer gods ever create a "winter" pale ale category, the seventh Beer o' Xmas will be found as the textbook example of what it should be. A delicious, but dank pale that is full of Holiday-esque character. So, for the Seventh Beer o' Xmas that the Beer Gnerd pushed on thee... Epic's Copper Cone Pale Ale. 

Pours a hazy dark copper color with a thick, one finger of sticky head. The nose is fruity with citrus, pine, a mild malt backbone and floral bouquet. The taste starts with mild pine resin, and sweet caramel. Next comes an earthy citrus character with a mild spiciness. It all culminates in a nice balance that makes for a very enjoyable pale ale. 

Available state wide at most liquor stores. 


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Back for the Holidays: Wasatch Christmas Ale

When you've been bumping around the local beer scene as long as I have you tend to see a lot of beers come and go. Some are not missed while others very much so. One of those missed beers for me is Wasatch's Christmas Ale. While it has for the most part always been available around the Holidays it's no longer being bottled and offered in it's signature 12 pack - pine crates.

This Holiday staple is back right now, in a limited run and it's only available at the Wasatch Brew Pub in Park City or at the Beer Store (for growler fills) in Salt Lake City.

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 no ball buster, but it doesn't need to be. It's a pleasant ale that should be part of you Holiday tradition.


The Sixth Beer o' Xmas 2012: Firestone Walkers Robust Porter

We're at the midway point of the Twelve Beers o' Xmas, I hope your finding it a welcome distraction from all the B.S. that accompanies the Holidays. So, for the Sixth Beer o' Xmas that the Beer Gnerd pushed on thee? Firestone Walkers Robust Porter!

Pours a deep brownish-black with reddish hues and an inch of thick, creamy, off-white head, great head retention. The nose is of plums, other dark fruits, roastiness, and some chocolate. The taste starts with coffee notes and some chocolate. There is an earthiness in the middle, with some molasses as well. The finish has a nice piney bitterness with hints of oak. 

I've never had a bad Firestone Walker beer, this one is no exception. FW's Robust Porter is available at most liquor stores around the state.


Monday, December 17, 2012

The Fifth Beer o' Xmas 2012: Bohemian's Czech Pilsner

The fifth Beer o' Xmas that the Beer Gnerd pushed on thee? A brilliant Czech style Pilsner, courtesy of Bohemian Brewing. 

Pours a hazy straw color with a nice, sturdy two fingers of foam. The nose is crisp and clean with nice spicy Saaz hop aromas. Toasted malts are also strong in the background. The taste is pleasantly crisp with a firm Pilsner malt body that lets the spicy hop notes shine in the finish. Well balanced. There are some peppery notes that hang in there for a short time but then leaves the palate clean. Light to medium body, but it does possess a sturdy mouthfeel. It's gentle carbonation makes it feel almost creamy.


Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Third Beer o' Xmas 2012: Red as Hell Ale

For the Fourth Beer o' Xmas that the Beer Gnerd pushed on thee, we have Radio From Hell's Red as Hell Ale. Can't have a Xmas themed "anything" without something red, right? And this English style red will do nicely.

Pours a deep clear amber color with a short finger of tan foamy head. The nose is of caramel and a bit nutty. The taste starts with caramel and toffee with an earthy/grainy, nuttiness rounding out the middle. A mild floral/earthy hop presence brings up the end, balancing things off really well. This is an nice English style ale with just a hint of American influence. Quite tasty!


Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Third Beer o' Xmas 2012: Johnny's IPA

For the Third Beer o' Xmas that the Beer Gnerd pushed on thee, we have Johnny's IPA from Moab Brewing. 

After two big chewy beers you'll need something on the lighter side to prove to you tongue that your still friends. Johnny's pours a hazy dark golden color with white head. The nose is of biscuit malts and some citrusy hops. The taste starts with light malt toasy grains next comes a nice citrusy and grassy bitterness that balances nicely. The finish is crisp and moderatly bitter. Light to medium body. More of an American Pale than an IPA but it found a perminent place in my fridge. 


Friday, December 14, 2012

The Second Beer o' Xmas 2012: Wasatch Winterfest

For the second Beer o' Xmas that the Beer Gnerd pushed on thee, it's Wasatch Winterfest!

This annual favorite pours a clear ruby color with a moderate fluffy off-white cap of foam. The nose is bright with citrus and pine with subtle spicy caramel malt beneath. The flavor starts out with grapefruity hops and a bit of orange zest. Next comes a faint hint of gingerbread then transitions to a rich maltiness. I think there may be a little roastiness in there as well. Very nicely balanced with a well hidden 7.1% abv.


New Beer Friday!!! 12/14/12

Sierra Nevada Narwhal: This Imperial Stout pours dense black with about half a finger of espresso colored head. The nose is a rich blend of strong, dark roasted coffee, unsweetened chocolate, and roasted barley. There is also some earthy hops making its way into the mix. The taste begins with a big shot of strong coffee along with unsweetened chocolate and roasted barley. The end is full of bold, earthy hops and spicy hops. Full bodied with some noticeable alcohol. A very nice Impy Stout. @ Beerhive - DABC

Full Sail Session Fest: Pours a nice shiny copper color with just a bit of haze. Little bit of eggshell colored head makes a brief appearance. The nose is of toasted grain, slight caramel & floral hops in the background.  The taste starts with biscuits and toast alongside some caramel malty goodness make for a nice refreshing brew. Hops add just a bit to florals to balance things out. Mouthfeel is light, crisp, and refreshing. Flavors don't exactly 'wow' you but it's still got enough going on to keep it interesting. @ Beerhive - DABC

Pelican Bad Santa:  Pours a very dark redish brown color with a large, tight khaki head. The nose is hoppy with earthy spices, a bit of citrus and some sweet malt. The taste starts with dark, toasty malt and a blast of spicy & citrusy hops. A nice, coffee like astringency and lingering, bitterness round out the finish that flashes a hint of alcohol. Sorta has a cascadian dark ale feel to it. Quite nice. @ Beerhive

Fresh Cask Friday - This is the Pilsener: Today Donovan has an unfilteted version of his Bohemian-stye pils, one cask with loads of Belma hops and the other cask with a blend of Amarillo and Czech Saaz. Servered in imperial pint dimple steins at $2.50. Starts 5pm @ Hoppers.

Returning Champs
Desert Edge Raspberry Stout @ Desert Edge
Uinta Yard Sale @ everywhere


Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Twelve Beers of Xmas 2012

Way back in '07, in an attempt to create a little levity while trying to get people to try or revisit something new, we created The Utah Beer Twelve Beers o' Xmas. Whereas, we selected a variety of local, national or internationals for you to try in the twelve days leading up to Xmas. The Twelve Beers o' Xmas has been absent since '08, so maybe it's time to give it one more try. The beers selected should be available state wide. If not? I apologize. Let's begin!

Sing with me... For the first beer of Xmas that the beer nerd pushed on thee... We have Uinta's Dubhe!
Yes, a favorite amongst many. This Imperial Black IPA is rich, warming and a powerful way to start the Twelve Days.

Pours a dark mahogany color with nice mocha head. The nose is of sweet dark fruit, caramel, dark roasted malts as well as a big dose of pine and booziness. The taste starts sweet with dark chocolate, toffee and a hint of licorice. Pine resin and slight citrus fruit balance nicely. The end is earthy and boozy with a leathery spiciness. The finish is sharp with hop bitterness. Well balanced with a warmth in the finish that makes this complex delicious beer extremely drinkable.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Jack Mormon Brewing Company

A quick update for you this morning before I get to the title story. All Star Brewing (formerly Tracks Brewing) has done something that we've all been hoping for, no... the brewery is still not open, but they have officially changed their name to something with more of a local feel. Bonneville Brewing. And why not, it's practically on the front door of the Bonneville Salt Flats and it does technically reside on the extinct Lake Bonneville's real estate. It's a good fit and a great name. Now they just have to get the damn place open.

Cruser Rowland, owner of Jack Mormon Coffee Co., along with local home brewer Chris Detrick will soon be resurrecting Jack Mormon Coffee Stout. The original was brewed a couple years back by Detrick & Epic Brewing. That relationship dissolved but the stout would not die and will soon be added to the list beverages you can purchase at  Jack Mormon Coffee Co. or as it will soon be known  Jack Mormon Brewing Co. 

This will be Utah's fourth brewery/brewpub planned for 2013 ( Avenues Proper and Publick House, Vernal Brewing, Bonneville Brewing & Jack Mormon Brewing ). Rowland is still in the early stages of planning and will not be limiting himself to coffee beers. Until the project gets off the ground, fans can purchase Jack Mormon Coffee Stout t-shirts at the coffee shop located at 82  E.Street in Salt Lake City.


Friday, December 07, 2012

New Beer Friday 12/7/12

Many new beers today, most are seasonal for the holidays but there are a few surprises as well. Let's begin.

Gordon Biersch Winter Bock: Poured a reddish brown with a nice lasting tan head. The nose initially was heavy on roasted malts, becoming sweeter as it warms. Taste is heavy on roasted malts and finishes somewhat sweet. Mouthfeel is pretty good as it is medium bodied, decently carbonated, and fairly smooth across the palate. Overall drinkability is pretty good. @DABC

Samuel Adams Winter Lager: Pours a clear brown/copper color with a moderate head. The nose is mostly of malt with some hops a touch of toffee. Taste is about the same, mostly malty with toasty notes. Toffee comes next with some slight floral hops at the end. Not exciting, but solid. @DABC 

Crispin Hard Cider: Is described as an unfiltered apple wine, fermented from fresh pressed apple juice and smoothed with novel organic natural sugars, such as honey or maple syrup. @DABC

RedRock Forbidden Peach:
This new seasonal offering is a Belgian style witbier at it's base and is brewed with peach, rose hips and is dry hopped. @RedRock

Roosters Höpfner: This one is quite different. It seems to be a light ale at it's base but the taste is mostly of oregano, basil, bready malts, spice, yeast.. The result is beer that tastes like a pizza. This is a beer that will do better with a meal rather than a stand alone quencher. I'd recommend trying it with cheesy bread sticks. @Roosters-Beerhive

Firestone Walker Velvet Merlin:
The nose is of  coffee, roasted malt and some milk chocolate. The taste starts with roasted malt, espresso, with a semi-sweet chocolate finish. Pretty consistent flavor from sip to sip. Some nice bready notes in the finish, with some mild dark fruit up front with the husky roasted malt and coffee flavors. A very nice oatmeal stout. @Beerhive

Firestone Walker XVI Anniversary: Pours a deep ruby-black-brown topped by a finger of dark khaki foam. The nose comprises roasted malts, whiskey, dry oak, toasted caramel, a hint of coffee, light dark greens, and a hint of pine. The taste starts off with a mix of dark caramel malts, vanilla, tequila, dark fruits, and some toasted coconut. Through the middle, there's oak, Bourbon, Brandy, chocolate, roasted malts, brown sugar, and bit of citrus hop. The finish is a mix of dark caramel malts, dark fruit, oak, vanilla, toasted coconuts, Bourbon, Brandy, Tequila, chocolate, molasses, and booze. Feels smooth with a sweet and warming finish. A very drinkable. Amazing blend of flavors. Very complex but still has a great deal of smoothness. @Beerhive

Deschutes Chasin' Freshies: Pours a rather light, clear golden yellow with about three fingers of fluffy white head. The nose is complex with hoppy notes of peach, apricot, slight citrus rind (grapefruit), flowers, and mint The taste follows the nose with notes of pale pilsner malts, stone fruits, mint, and green herbal hops. The finish has that touch of citrus rind, and the aftertaste is bready, herbal and spicy. Good flavor combination. Has a drying finish, and soft carbonation. Drinks very well. A well done IPA. Great balance between hops and malt, with a unique hop profile and tons of flavor. Smooth and easy to drink. @Beerhive

Returning Favorites

Lagunitas Cappuccino Stout: Much more coffee forward than previous releases. The nose is of dark coffee with cream similar to a cappuccino but with a hint of malt and hops. The taste follows the nose with coffee and a nice roasted malt. it's lacking the creaminess of previous releases. I feel like the creaminess should be more balenced with a stronger coffee flavor. It's a good coffee stout but your going to gave to really dig to find the cappuccino in there. @Beerhive

Anchor Our Special Ale 2012 (Anchor Christmas Ale):  Poured a deep roasted chestnut brown with ruby hues, very little head to speak of. The nose has graham cracker and ginger with some oak. The tastes has a good amount of roasted malts with some nutmeg and a bit of ginger. Cocoa, brown sugar, and toasted bread come next with a small amount of dark fruits rounding out the end. Finishes fairly dry. It not too different than years past, still worth checking out because it's unique. @Beerhive - DABC


Thursday, December 06, 2012

Let's All Get Untapped

In an attempt to bring us all closer together as a beer community, I'm always looking at various social media options to see what may be the most beneficial app for we Utah beer lovers.

After test driving about a half dozen social beer apps I think I've found one that combines a good beer database with  location, photo & rating capabilities. It's called Untapped.

Untapped is basically Facebook for beer lovers. It allows users to share what their drinking - where & when in real time . It also has the ability (when enabled) to locate nearby Untapped friends via GPS for hook-ups or to just see what's being enjoyed nearby.

This is one of those Apps that really works best when it's got a good community behind it. I know a few of us are already on Untapped and have found it useful. Especially when trying to find the new beers that have just hit the market.

Untapped is free and is available for Apple & Droid devices. My user name is Utahbeer.


Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Today Utah Helped End Prohibition

On December 5, 1933,Utah was the final state to repeal Prohibition, putting the ratification of the 21st Amendment into place. Even though Prohibition didn't officially end today many still revere this as a holy day, that helped propel the United States out of the Great Depression.

You may find it interesting to know that it was never illegal to drink during Prohibition. The 18th Amendment and the Volstead Act, the legal measure that included the instructions for enforcing Prohibition, never barred the consumption of alcohol–just making it, selling it, and shipping it for mass production (and consumption).

Please grab glass of whatever you hold dear and hoist one for the proponents of the 21st Amendment.


Monday, December 03, 2012

Fifth Element is Back

For the second time in 2012 Utah's beer lovers have been gifted another release of Squatters Fifth Element, one of the best wild ales made in the world. If your familiar with it I guess there's no need for you to read on. If you've never tried it your in  for quite a treat. Fifth Element's base beer is a Saison, it's then blended and aged in oak barrels inoculated with Brettanomyces, a yeast that imparts a sour/tart - funkiness the result is a brilliant tasting sour ale.

Pours a cloudy apricot/straw color with a fizzy white head that reduced to a thin froth. The nose has a bit a of barnyard funkiness to it with hints of lemon. The tastes starts with light citrus notes then transitions into tart green apples. Next comes a dry oakiness that compliments the tartness well. The finish is a combination a champagne like dryness and bitter florals. Light and dry but highly drinkable. Fifth Element is done in small batches, only 900 bottles on average. Get some before Kent buys them all.

On Sale today today at Squatters. Please call before making the trip.