Cascade Kriek Ale 2014 – Cascade Brewing (Portland, OR, USA)

Kriek Ale 2014 Project – “Ale Aged in Oak Barrels with Cherries” – Cascade Brewing, 8.5% ABV, 1 pt. 9.4 fl.oz., (Portland, Oregon, USA)

on the front-left label:

“This NW style sour ale is a blend of Red ales that were aged in oak barrels with cherries for up to 14 months.”


  • Style: (cherry, oak barrel aged) Sour/Wild Ale
  • Taste: HUGE puckery sour wet oak pukey-woody tart cherry-apple cider vinegar jammy barley malt cherry juice raspberry-pomegranate exhale
  • Where I got it : High Point / Vancouver
  • How much: $43.70 CAD (after 20% off) – 1 pt. 9.4 fl.oz., October 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: price:enjoyment ratio, no

Visual: 2014 Vintage, Hefty bottle, twisty wire cap and composite cork with their name stamp. Bottle-conditioned. Pours clear cherry wood reddish brown without much of head, thin ring with a couple of islands, clusters of micro active streams.

Nose: pukey caramelized brown sugar, tangy red wine vinegar, sour cherry-apple (lvl-6)-pungency

Attack: crisp-big SOUR and big TARTNESS

Mid-palate: background pervasive wet woodiness, cherry & apple cider vinegar, ACIDIC-tangy, jammy (lvl-5-sweetness), puckery sour red cherry juice, caramelized barley malt

Finish: unsettling in the stomach, sour raspberry-pomegranate juice fruity exhale

Summary: The 2nd Cascade offering I’ve had the pleasure to try, the 1st being their Apricot [C+]. Yes, complex but again, so puckery sour this has to be minutely sipped. I’m liking the wet oaked woodiness and the dark fruity notes are nice, but I can’t fully endorse it as it just doesn’t hit the proper notes for me. Too vinegary acidic sour, not bright nor refreshing enough.

Strawberry Rhubarb Wine – Rossignol Estate Winery (PEI, Canada)

  • My Rating: [B]

Strawberry Rhubarb – Rossignol Estate Winery, 12% ABV – 750 ml., (Murray River, Prince Edward Island, Canada)

  • Style: (Strawberry, Rhubarb) Fruit Wine
  • Taste: Tangy dense caramelized strawberry jam subtle tart vanilla raspberry
  • Where I got it : ordered from their website/phone
  • How much: $21 CAD (after S&H) – 750 ml., March 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: might put in another later
  • Would I recommend this to fruit wine aficionados: sure

Visual: Non-vintage, cellared for 3 years. Pours clear golden marmalade orange with a few micro bubbles settled at the bottom of the glass.

Nose: tangy sweet strawberry jam, hints of vanilla. (lvl-7)-intensity

Attack: incoming big fruity sweetness-

Mid-palate: half-cloying (lvl-8-sweetness), tangy strawberry jam, subtle rhubarb tart, caramelized fruit sugar

Finish: light alcohol heat, hints of vanilla, raspberry exhale, mild watery viscosity

Summary: Super fruity, a bit cloying but lots of likeable strawberry-raspberry character with just a bit of spice and tartness. Very sippable, quite delicious.

Royal Jamaican Alcoholic Ginger Beer – Big City Brewing (Kingston, Jamaica)

Royal Jamaican Alcoholic Ginger Beer – Big City Brewing Company, 5% ABV, 330ml., (Kingston, Jamaica)

info from

“Brewed using the finest Jamaican Ginger, considered to be the finest in the world. Other ingredients include Cascade hops, Jamaican cane sugar, and Royal Jamaican new crop rum.”

  • Style: (flavoured – Jamaican ginger, cane sugar, rum)
  • Taste: Cane sugary sweet BIG throat heat-warmth soft ginger
  • Where I got it : ??? / Vancouver
  • How much: ~$4 CAD – 330ml., ???
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: no

Visual: Cheap label. Pours pale straw white wine yellow with no head and barely any carbonation.

Nose: ginger beer soda – cane sugar and ginger overtones. (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: light syrupy thicker, low CO2

Mid-palate: big (lvl-9-sweetness), med-high throat HEAT, mellow ginger flavour, cane sugar

Finish: lingering throat warmth, subtle diluted rum caramels

Summary: This drinks like an aggressively sweetened cooler but at least there’s the big ginger throat heat that keeps it interesting texturally. The barley malt is nowhere in sight.

Five AM Red Ale – Brewdog (Ellon, Scotland)

Five AM Red Ale (aka 5 A.M. Saint) – Brewdog, 5% ABV, 330ml., (Ellon, Scotland)

description from

“5am Saint is The Holy Grail of red ales. We live in a world of disposable deities. Someone, somehow has managed to press that big, flashing moronic override button and we’re hard wired straight into the pockets of false idols trying to make a quick buck. Sadly, for a lot of people the same mentality applies to beer. But who’s to know what’s worth worshiping when monolithic advertising budgets have you sucked down the rabbit hole in the blink of an eye? At BrewDog we are on a mission to open as many people’s eyes as possible. Cast away any aspersions and let the crook of BrewDog be your guide in a whirlwind of conformity and mediocrity. Once this ruby liquid forms a foamy halo around your glass, you’ll never want to look back. Malts: Maris Otter, Caramalt, Munich Malt, Crystal and Dark Crystal Malts Hops:Cascade, Amarillo, Nelson Sauvin, Simcoe, Ahtanum, Centennial Twist: Loads of late hops and bucket-loads of dry hops

  • Style: Amber Ale
  • Taste: Toasty brown sugar barley malt berry/red grape subtle hops
  • Where I got it : Legacy Liquor / Vancouver
  • How much: $4.25 CAD (after 5% off) – 330ml., November 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: good, but not memorable

Visual: Pours opaque reddish brown without much of a head, thin ringed retention with a hazy island, clusters of steady streams.

Nose: brown sugar, date, sweet toasted barley malt. (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: crisp, half-flat CO2

Mid-palate: background stealth grassiness, (lvl-4-sweetness), red berries/red grape, brown sugar toasted barley malt

Finish: residual barley malt sweetness, subtle bitterness

Summary: This has a dull, medium deepness which I find isn’t too impressive compared to their other fab brews. Good drinkability and flavour, but not quite rounded and bold enough to be great.

Boulevard Smokestack Series: Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale – Boulevard Brewing Co. (Kansas city, MO, USA)

Boulevard Smokestack Series: Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale – Boulevard Brewing Company, 8.5% ABV, 355 ml., (Kansas city, Missouri, USA)

  • Style: Saison
  • Taste: Grain alcohol soapy banana wheat malt lemony unbalanced
  • Where I got it : Bottle Jockey / N. Bby
  • How much: $5.20 (after 5% off) – 355 ml., February 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: nah

Visual: Slow gusher. Pours cloudy marmalade orange with a largish foamy head, sticky lacing, 3mm retention, clusters of fast active streams.

Nose: very fruity muscat-banana wheat malt. (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: lively-fizzy-tingly crisp-airy

Mid-palate: background alcoholic, soapy banana wheat malt, (lvl-5-sweetness), lemony grain alcohol

Finish: yeasty gag reflex, boozy, lingering wheat malt.

Summary: The initial first sips are bold and explosive with big banana wheat malt flavour and a huge fizz-foamy carbonation. Subsequent sips reveal a coarse alcoholic body that persists until the finish. Okay banana wheat malt flavour but too soapy and astringent to fully enjoy. Good appearance and nose but falls flat in balance.

Even Keel Session IPA – Ballast Point Brewing Co. (San Diego, CA, USA)

Even Keel Session IPA – Ballast Point Brewing Company, 3.8% ABV, 12 fl.oz., (San Diego, California, USA)

  • Style: India Session Ale / ISA
  • Taste: Super sessionable light-full smooth tangerine tangy resin barley malt soft bitter hops
  • Where I got it : Legacy Liquor / Vancouver
  • How much: $3.40 (after 5% off) – 12 fl.oz., November 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: nah

Visual: Pours golden copper orange without much of a head, a very thin fine hazy layer of retention, suspended nano-sediment, lots of slow singular streams.

Nose: hints of tangerine-mango hopped barley malt. (lvl-3)-pungency

Attack: full smooth CO2 mouthfeel, crisp bite

Mid-palate: (lvl-3)-sweetness, tangerine-orange, metallic-resiny barley malt

Finish: residual tangy-tingly, grapefruit exhale, soft bittersweet hops

Summary: Smooth, fine, and full mouthfeel accompanied by a good malt backbone and vibrant citrus hops – another great quality brew along the lines of their Sculpin. Only just a touch of thinness but actually quite nice for only 3.8%.

Wolf Vine Wet Hopped Pale Ale – Hoyne Brewing Co. (Victoria, BC, Canada)

Wolf Vine Wet Hopped Pale Ale – Hoyne Brewing Company, 5.3% ABV, 650 ml., (Victoria, BC, Canada) (*local BC craft beer*)info

  • Style: Wet Hop Pale Ale
  • Taste: Lawn grassy cucumber chamomile floral barley malt rough aftertaste
  • Where I got it : Liquor Barn / Vancouver
  • How much: $7.25 CAD (after 10% off) – 650 ml., December 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: nahhhhh

Visual: Pours mostly clear deep copper with minute bits of sediment, 1cm head and 1mm retention, singular slow streams.

Nose: grassy lawn, light honey. (lvl-2)-intensity

Attack: thin crisp, soft CO2

Mid-palate: background cucumber-mint grassy-plastic hop oils, (lvl-3-sweetness), bright metallic honey barley malt

Finish: chamomile-osmanthus herbal tea rough aftertaste

Summary: Quite a big grassy-floral flavour; it reminds me of chamomile tea – somewhat incongruent with their barley malt base. The overall impression isn’t that good, especially considering I had the [A] rated Driftwood Sartori Wet Hop IPA yesterday.