Hopped Apricot – Salt Spring Wild Cider House (Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada)

Hopped Apricot – Salt Spring Wild Cider House, 6.8% ABV, 750 ml., (Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada) (*local BC cider*)


-The 2nd Salt Spring Wild bottled tasting, 1st being their Plum Cider [C].


on the front-left label and a pic of an Italian prune plum:

“We’ve blended cascade hops, apricots, and organic apples together to create an aromatic cider that challenges conceptions of what cider can be. Both cider lovers and beer lovers will find a perfect union in this flavourful hefeweizen-esque all season cider.”

(left)


  • Style: (flavoured – apricot, cascade hops) Apple Cider
  • Taste: Crisp tangy tart dry apple grapefruit hopped subtle apricot
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek / Vancouver
  • How much: $16.15 CAD (after 10% off) – 750ml., March 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: yes

Visual: Bailer-top resealable cap. Pours clear apple juice yellow, no head, very slow and steady countable spread out micro streams.

Nose: muscat, filtered apple juice, slight perfumey apricot. (lvl-4)-pungency

Attack: firm crisp, bright fruity impression

Mid-palate: micro-tingly, (lvl-2-sweetness), background tangy-soft tart, dry apple juice, juicy grapefruit hopped exhale

Finish: lingering apricot, residual fruity dry apple

Summary: I really appreciate that you can ACTUALLY taste hops and apricots. Good integration and balance of flavours, very nice transitions. Solid stuff, and better than their plum cider.

Isastegi Sagardo Naturala – Sidreria Isastegi Sagardotegia (Tolosa, Spain)


Isastegi Sagardo Naturala – Sidreria Isastegi Sagardotegia, 6% ABV, 750 ml., (Tolosa, Spain)


  • Style: (barrel aged) Apple Cider
  • Taste: Puckery sour soft tart pukey woody apple cider vinegar
  • Where I got it : High Point / Vancouver
  • How much: $12.45 (after 20% off) – 750 ml., February 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: no

Visual: (cellared for 1 year). Plastic wrapped top, real cork. Pours clear pale yellow with no head, large bubbles along the glass wall, bubbles sporadically surfacing. Large sediment settled in the bottle.

Nose: tangy woody apple cider vinegar (lvl-9)-pungency

Attack: virtually flat CO2, very subtle tingly, sour-acidic impression

Mid-palate: (lvl-2-sweetness), huge wet woodiness, apple cider vinegar, big puckery sour pukey funk, subtle green apple

Finish: tart dryish, lingering woody apple juice exhale

Summary: Another traditional cider from Spain, the first Sidra Bere which I reviewed here [B]. This one is too aggressive pukey sour and is lacking in firm crispness in the entry. Too much vinegar and not enough apple coming through.

 

Black Sam Licorice Stout – Lighthouse Brewing Co. (Victoria, BC, Canada)

Black Sam Licorice Stout – Lighthouse Brewing, 7.2% ABV, 650 ml., (Victoria, BC, Canada) (*local BC Craft beer*)


on the front-right label:

“With an aroma of roasted malt and nighttime, this pitch black stout has flavours of rich maltiness, molasses sweetness, dark chocolate, and a delicate note of Licorice.”

(right)


  • Style: (flavoured – Licorice) Stout
  • Taste: Sweet molasses light roast barley malt mild coffee dark chocolate licorice
  • Where I got it : Liquor Barn / N. Bby
  • How much: $8 (after 10% off) – 650ml., December 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: 50/50

Visual: (cellared for 1.5 years). Pours coffee black with no head, almost no retention, scatter micro bubbles surfacing.

Nose: caramelized barley malt, cocoa, slight roast (lvl-8)-pungency

Attack: crisp, sweet dark barley malt impression

Mid-palate: (lvl-6-sweetness), molasses, medium roasted barley, coffee,

Finish: dark chocolate, licorice, sweet roasted barley malt exhale

Summary: Overall clean and well-bodied. It lacks creaminess but makes for up for it with a crisp bite up front. Smooth transitions of flavours from start to finish.

Melville’s Strawberry Craft Lager – Innis & Gunn (Edinburgh, Scotland)

Melville’s Strawberry Craft Lager – Innis & Gunn, 4.1% ABV, 275 ml., (Edinburgh, Scotland)


on the back label:

We have captured the mouth-watering flavours of Scottish Jubilee Strawberries by blending real fruit juice with our craft-brew lager. The resulting beer is full flavoured and deliciously refreshing. Purity of flavour is so important to us we never use juice from concentrate.”


  • Style: (strawberry) Fruit Beer
  • Taste: Strawberry puree mixed with a simple lager
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek / Vancouver
  • How much: $11 CAD (after 10% off) – 275 ml. x 4, September 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: nope

Visual: (cellared for 3.5 years). Pours reddish-brown with a micro bits of suspended strawberry sediment, no head, a half ring retention, scattered mix of spread out slow and steady loose streams.

Nose: strawberry puree, jam-like (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: tingly-soft crisp bite, strawberry fruity sweet impression

Mid-palate: bright (lvl-5-sweetness), slightly jammy-mostly authentic strawberry, conflicting subtle hop bitterness, barley malt background

Finish: artificial sweetener-like palate roughness

Summary: Decent bright fruity flavour but its severely lacking in any strawberry tanginess. It’s okay as a casual sipper to go along with a meal or a chill beer at the beach, but it lacks any real depth beyond mixing strawberry puree into a glass of lager.

Aftermath Pale Ale – Black Market Brewing Co. (Temecula, CA, USA)

Aftermath Pale Ale – Black Market Brewing Company, 5.8% ABV, 1 pt. 6 fl.oz., (Temecula, California, USA)


on the front-right label:

We created ‘Aftermath’ as an extremely drinkable Pale Ale that wasn’t just a reproduction of everyone else’s Pale Ale. Our unique blend of multiple hop varieties adds HUGE hop aroma and flavor, with none of the overwhelming bitterness of an IPA

(right)


  • Style: American Pale Ale (APA)
  • Taste: Smooth balanced bitter hop-metallic barley malt
  • Where I got it : High Point / Vancouver
  • How much: $9.10 CAD (after 20% off) – 1 pt. 6 fl.oz., October 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: not memorable

Visual: Pours clear dark mahogany brown without a significant head, ringed retention with a large island, very steady micro streams

Nose: fragrant 50/50 citrus hops-sweet barley malt (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: crisp, soft-creamy, bitter hopped malt impression

Mid-palate: (lvl-3-sweetness), citrusy stealth sharp bitter hops, metallic barley malt,

Finish: dry grass hoppy bitter

Summary: A very smooth sippable brew of sharp bitter hops that linger until the finish that is accompanied by a healthy dose of barley malt forming a robust body of drinkable pleasure. Can’t say I’ll remember this, but it was a good go.

Bock Bock – Shmaltz Brewing Co. (Clifton Park, MY, USA)

Bock Bock (Imperial American bock lager aged in bourbon barrels) (Batch #001/1269, 4/24/2015 bottling) – Shmaltz Brewing Company, 9.2% ABV, 1 pt. 6 fl.oz., (Clifton Park, NY, USA)


info from ratebeer.com:

Imperial American Bock
Shmaltz Bock Bock has spent months in a blend of bourbon barrels, including Jim Beam, Heaven Hill, and Buffalo Trace.

Barrel-aged Bock Bock gains its toasty, rich malt body and nutty caramel flavor from distinctive European malts, such as Vienna, Munich and Crystal, to make a traditional bock base.”

(back)

 


  • Style: (barrel aged – Bourbon) Doppelbock
  • Taste: Tangy sour alcoholic heavy raisin barley malt mild bourbon edge
  • Where I got it : Legacy Liquor / Vancouver
  • How much: $15.35 CAD (after 10% off) – 1 pt. 6 fl.oz., November 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: pretty good

Visual: (cellared for 1.5 years). Pours clear dark mahogany brown without a significant head, ringed retention with a large island, very steady micro streams

Nose: super toffee barley malt forward, notes of bourbon barrel (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: crisp, micro-tingly, thicker viscosity, heavy malt impression

Mid-palate: alcohol detection, tangy heavy (lvl-8-sweetness), raisin toffee barley malt, bourbon edge, wet woody zingy-sour

Finish: residual heavy sugars, bourbon-laced malty exhale

Summary: Great body and depth, solid execution. The dark fruitiness balances the bourbon malt nicely. Hits decently hard yet still sippable, although somewhat heavy halfway through the bottle.

Cold Brew IPA – Rogue Ales (Newport, OR, USA)

Cold Brew IPA – Rogue Ales, 7.5% ABV, 1 pt. 6 fl.oz., (Newport, Oregon, USA)


on the front right:

“Dedicated to two of our favorite things

Rogue Cold Brew IPA is a hoppy IPA blended with 200 gallons of Stumptown Coffee Roasters‘ famous Cold Brew Coffee in every batch. Brewed to awaken your senses, Cold Brew IPA opens with a huge hit of coffee aroma that is balanced by a not-so-subtle hop punch.

Brewed using 14 ingredients:

2-Row, Rogue Farms Dare & Risk, C-40, White Wheat, Rolled Oats and Kiln Coffee Malts; Rogue Farms Liberty, Rebel, and Freedom Hops, and Simcoe Hops; Stumptown Cold Brew Coffee, Free Range Coastal Water & Pacman Yeast.”

(right)


  • Style: (flavoured – cold brew coffee) India Pale Ale
  • Taste: Bursting hazelnutty cocoa nib cold brew coffee barley malt lingering roast coffee integrated bitter hops
  • Where I got it : High Point / Vancouver
  • How much: $9.10 (after 20% off) – 1 pt. 6 fl.oz., October 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: 100%

Visual: Pours clear dark copper brown with a spotty layer of 1mm fine retention, loose clusters of active fast streams.

Nose: nutty cocoa nib, hazelnut soft roasted coffee bean (lvl-4)-pungency

Attack: crisp, soft smooth-creamy, bursting sweet nutty malt flavour

Mid-palate: intermixed background bitter hops, (lvl-4-sweetness), cocoa nib, hazelnutty short bitter roasted cold brew coffee, sweet barley malt

Finish: lingering roasted coffee, residual hopped sharp bitter

Summary: Wow, wicked flawless integration of bitterness of IPA with the nutty notes of cold brew coffee. Bursting with flavour from the get go, I’m impressed by the fluidy of flavours and the balance of all the components. Awesome attack of that grabs your attention right away.