Oak Aged Bretta – Logsdon Farmhouse Ales (Hood River, OR, USA)

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  • My Rating: B

Oak Aged Bretta – Logsdon Farmhouse Ales, 8.0% ABV – 1 pint 9.4 fl.oz., (Hood River, Oregon, USA)

on the back label:

“Our organic Oak Aged Brett is made with our Seizoen Bretta that is aged for a period of time to develop the wood aged character in the beer. Oak Tannins, vanilla notes and subtle smoky spiciness soften and mellow this beer over time. The aged unfiltered beer is refermented and carbonated in the bottle with select yeast strains to provide added dryness and complexity, then sealed with beeswax for additional aging.”

  • Style: (oak) Barrel-aged Sour Ale
  • Taste: Balanced sour lemon stonefruit citrus hopped light oak /w metallic
  • Where I got it : Legacy Liquor Store
  • How much: $13 (after 10% off) – 1 pint 9.4 fl.oz., December 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: yes

Visual: Warning! Super gusher for a minute or two, have a glass ready to catch the 99% head. Pours cloudy orange-brown with a ridiculously large ultra foamy head, lots of sticky lacing, several slow streams.

Nose: sour barnyard, minor tangerine/orange citrus (lvl-5)-pungency.

Attack: foamy head, fizzy-tingly mouthfeel, incoming sweetness

Mid-palate: balanced (lvl-6)-sweetness, medium sourness/tang, brightness, (MAIN) (lvl-3) non-invasive barnyard, lemon, seltzer, apricot, stonefruit malts

Finish: bitter hops, oak exhale.

Summary: Initial sips had a metallic flavour from the bottle cap but subsequent sips were clean. Extremely balanced sweet-sour-tang-flavour profile, with sweetness tipping the balance slightly. Great structure with the only minus being the metallic off-taste.

Seven Swans a Swimming – Buckerfield’s Brewery (Victoria, BC, Canada)

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  • My Rating: C+

Seven Swans a Swimming – Buckerfield’s Brewery, 7% ABV – 650ml., (Victoria, BC, Canada)

  • Style: (Raisins, spices) Spiced Saison
  • Taste: Sweet alcoholic prune Sprite raisin bitter hops
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek
  • How much: $5 (after 10% off) –650ml., January 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: not fully

Visual: Pours hazy golden orange-brown with a smallish creamy head, a thin layer of retention, lots of steady streams.

Nose: fruity apple and white grape juice. (lvl-4)-pungency.

Attack: super crisp, incoming sweetness

Mid-palate: immediate alcohol detection, light-medium sour, (lvl-8)-sweetness, (MAIN) prune, Sprite (lemon/lime soda), toffee malts,

Finish: raisin, mild bitter hopped tingly sweet finish.

Summary: This one is a little too aggressively sweet on my palate, but does have interesting flavours. Overall I enjoyed the textures and flavours but not the sugary/booze hit.

Vanilla Porter – Mill St. Brewery (Toronto, ON, Canada)

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  • My Rating: C-

Vanilla Porter – Mill St. Brewery, 5% ABV – 440ml., (Toronto, ON, Canada)

on the back of the can:

“A cult favourite from our Toronto Brewpub, Vanilla Porter is an extra-smooth Nitrogen-charged English-style dark ale brewed with pure vanilla extract. Chocolate flavours dominate the beer with an underlying tone of dried fruit and a butle finish that leaves you wanting more!”

  • Style: (Vanilla) Flavoured Porter
  • Taste: Flat vanilla coffee chocolate malt
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek
  • How much: $3 (after 10% off) –440ml., October 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: no

Visual: Warning! This one is a gusher. Pours silky smooth light coffee brown with an ultry foamy decent sized nitrogenated head, a thick layer of retention, some lacing, just a few very slow streams.

Nose: vanilla chocolate caramel, quite delightful. (lvl-7)-pungency.

Attack: Nitrogen-flat mouthfeel

Mid-palate: almost tingly-crisp, (lvl-4)-sweetness, thin-mouthfeel, (MAIN) vanilla, coffee, malt, chocolate

Finish: light roast coffee, flat mouthfeel, caramel malt finish.

Summary: Decent flavour and aroma but still has that unacceptable flat mouthfeel. Better mouthfeel than the only other nitrogenated beer I had, Parallel 49 N2 Milk Stout.

La Rulles Triple – Brasserie Artisanale de Rulles (Rulles, Belgium)

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  • My Rating: B+

La Rulles Triple – Brasserie Artisanale de Rulles, 8.4% ABV – 75cl., (Rulles, Belgium)

  • Style: Abbey Tripel
  • Taste: Apricot honey malt coriander soft bitter hopped
  • Where I got it : Firefly
  • How much: $9 (after 10% off) – 75cl., September 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: yes
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: yes

Visual: Pours golden marmalade orange with a smallish creamy head, a creamy thin layer of retention, lacing, lots of steady streams.

Nose: apricot honey malts. (lvl-5)-pungency.

Attack: creamy-crisp-fizzy mouthfeel

Mid-palate: incoming hops, (lvl-6)-sweetness, (MAIN) honey, malts, apricot, toffee, light yeasty

Finish: soft/gentle bitter hops, coriander numbness, bitter alcohol, hopped finish.

Summary: Very drinkable at a great price. Great body, texture, flavours and structure.

 

Berried Alive Raspberry Ale – Longwood Brewery (Nanaimo, BC, Canada)

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  • My Rating: C

Berried Alive Raspberry Ale – Longwood Brewery, 5% ABV –568ml., (Nanaimo, BC, Canada)

on the back of the can:

“Dive into the palate pleasing punch of Longwood Brewery’s signature raspberry ale. Crafted from whole British Columbia raspberries refermented with our lightly hopped blonde ale, Berried Alive is uniquely refreshing, the perfect balance between tart and tasty.”

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  • Style: (Raspberry) Fruit Ale
  • Taste: Sour tangy raspberry malt hopped bitter
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek
  • How much: $4 (after 10% off) – 568ml., October 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: no

Visual: Tall aluminum can, surprisingly non-standard and taller than the 500ml! Pours pale brown-red with a small dissipating head, a very thin layer of retention, some lacing, several steady spaced-apart streams.

Nose: nothing but authentic fruit-tangy raspberries. Excellent. (lvl-7)-pungency.

Attack: fizzy crisp

Mid-palate: fruity medium sour, (lvl-5)-sweetness, (MAIN) fruity raspberry, malts

Finish: tartness, mild funk, soft subtle bitter hopped fruity finish, but thin-bodied and somewhat jagged.

Summary: The raspberry flavour is good but the hopped/almost caramel finish doesn’t quite blend in so well. Good initial and mid-palate, didn’t really like the finish.

Going Dutch Jenever Barrel Aged Imperial Porter – Brouwerij De Molen (Bodegraven, Netherlands)

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  • My Rating: C-

Going Dutch Jenever Barrel Aged Imperial Porter – Brouwerij De Molen, 9.5% ABV – 75cl., (Bodegraven, Netherlands)

Ingredients: water, pale, caramel, chocolate and roasted b arley malts, premiant and saaz hops, katjes drop, yeast (top fermenting). Unpasteurized.

  • Style: (Jenever) Barrel Aged Imperial Porter
  • Taste: Barnyard sour roasted malts
  • Where I got it : W. 16th Liquor Store
  • How much: $20 (after 10% off) – 33cl., June 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: certainly not for everyone, it’s pretty funky; at your own peril

Notes: A beer made for Sherbrooke Liquor store and Keg n Cork Liquor store, both of which I’ve frequently visited in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. I’d say Sherbrooke has the best selection of beers in the city and if you buy enough they should hook you up with a 10% discount. By the looks of the reviews this beer is only available in AB and BC. Pretty special considering De Molen is a world-class craft brewery IMO and Edmonton is a pretty… plain city of about 1.1 million people.

Visual: Pours jet black with a large lasting foamy head, extreme lacing, a thick layer of retention, some streams if you look closely.

Nose: pukey sour, light smoky malts. (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: incoming gueze sourness

Mid-palate: high yet manageable sourness, (lvl-5)-sweetness, (MAIN) pukey barnyard, roasted malts, mild oak

Finish: lingering sour roasted malts

Summary: Initial sip = this is f*ckin’ weird! Quite interesting, certainly and idiosyncratic brew. Barely any alcohol detection. This drinks like if you mixed a geuze and porter = sour porter. I’m not getting much of the juniper from the barrel aging but just a bit of oak and the malt. Last sip = this is still f*ckin’ weird! My least favourite De Molen brew so far; it’s pretty hard to finish alone.

#100 – Nøgne Ø (Grimstad, Norway)

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  • My Rating: B

#100 (Batch 100) – Nøgne Ø (Nogne O), 10% ABV – 0.5L., (Grimstad, Norway)

on the front side label:

“#100 from Nøgne Ø was brewed originally to celebrate our 100th batch, but commercial demand <forced> us to continue production. It is a big, dark and hoppy ale that commands your attention. Enjoy #100 at about 10°C.”

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  • Style: Imperial Brown Ale
  • Taste: Caramel brown sugar choco malts with bold bitter hops
  • Where I got it : W. 16h Liquor Store
  • How much: $9 (after 10% off) – 0.5L., September 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: yes

Visual: Pours very dark brown with a smallish dissipating head, a very thin layer of retention, some lacing, lots of streams only visible near the surface. Lots of sediment in the last pour.

Nose: sweet caramel malts. (lvl-6)-pungency

Attack: deep sweet malts, bitter hops

Mid-palate: (lvl-7)-sweetness, (MAIN) thick caramel malts, brown sugar, chocolate, mild fig/date

Finish: bold bitter hops, bittersweet mild-roast malty finish

Summary: Very bold, heavy and well-hopped; it does attain and keep your attention, as advertised. A good showcase of caramel malts with hops.