BC Gin Round 2 – Wallflower (Champ) VS Seraph (Challenger)

Here’s the 2nd round of the BC Gin battle. We have the winner from last round, Wallflower Gin up against a now discontinued bottle of Seraph Gin. Central City has replaced the latter  with Queensborough Gin, which will be battling in a later round. Let’s get to it!


1) Wallflower Gin – Odd Society Spirits, 44% ABV – 750ml., Vancouver, BC, ~$50 CAD @Distillery

  • batch #, year, hand labeled
  • real wood cork top, synthetic rubber plug
  • hefty bottle, unique shape – ++ great. Sticker label – hand numbered and year
  • maceration AND vapour extraction used to obtain flavour
  • 100% BC grown barley, west coast and international botanicals

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[VS]

2) Seraph Gin – Central City Brewers & Distillers – 40% ABV – 750ml., Surrey, BC, $35 CAD (10/2015) @ BCLiquor

  • no longer sold (5/2017), info referenced from thespiritofbc.com
  • glass + rubber stopper = unique
  • 100% BC malted barley, 2x distilled, 1st time through column, 2nd in a copper pot with “hanging basket” method of botanical flavour infusion

Criteria:

Nose: Starting out with Wallflower (WF), it gives me a gentle creaminess with soapy banana and juniper, followed by sweet ethyl alcohol, just a bit of agitated nasal tingliness and coming out rather clean at the finish. Seraph has an interesting jackfruit-guyabano nose, but is slightly intruded upon by a harsher alcoholic backdrop. WF = brighter, soapy | Seraph = darker, jackfruit. Winner = Wallflower, it’s more inviting.

Taste & Texture: WF comes out with bright soapy juniper, cinnamon bark, and some spiciness in the backend. Seraph feels much thicker in the mouth, and gives an almost salty-savour impression. It’s somewhat coconut plasticky but in an okay kind of way, mild juniper in the mids, finishing with harsher alcohol. Soap VS plastic, take your pick. I choose soapy WF, bright beats dull.

Final Notes:

  • Wallflower Gin exhibits notes of soapy juniper and slight floral brightness
  • Seraph Gin is darker and has flavours of plasticky banana.

Winner of RD1 and RD2 = Wallflower Gin by Odd Society Spirits

Detective Saison – Central City Brewing (Surrey, BC, Canada)

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Detective Saison – Central City Brewing, 6.0% ABV, 650ml., (Surrey, BC, Canada) (*local craft beer*)

Ingredients: water, malted barley, malted wheat, hops, pink peppercorns,
yeast.

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  • Style: (pink peppercorn) Spiced Saison
  • Taste: Dry banana wheat malt fizzy bloated
  • Where I got it : BC Liquor Stores
  • How much: $5.20 – 650ml., March 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: no, not interesting enough

Visual: Pours light golden yellow with a large bubbly head, a nice layer of retention, thick lacing, clusters upon clusters of fast activity.

Nose: sour-acidic white wine, a bit of puke-barnyard. (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: off-dry fizzy tingly

Mid-palate: light tangy, (lvl-4)-sweetness, (MAIN) lemon citrus, banana wheat malt, barley malt, yeast

Finish: dry wheat malt, banana exhale, bloated burpy, light sour bitter finish.

Summary: Very carbonated to the point where you feel bloated, mostly wheat malt flavour, simple and straight. It seems overly carbonated and the sour-bitter finish didn’t really jive with me. The added pink peppercorns didn’t come through at all.

Central City/Parallel 49 2014 Calendar Day #8 – Red Racer Pale Ale

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Central City/Parallel 49 2014 Calendar Day #8

Red Racer Pale Ale – Central City Brewing, 5% ABV – 341ml., (Surrey, BC, Canada)

on the back label:

“Handcrafted using Maris Otter barley from England and hops from Washington’s Yakima Valley. This big, bold pale ale has a citrus aroma and a full malt body, giving it a distinctive character designed to inspire the beer connoisseur in all of us.”

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  • Style: (American-style) Pale Ale
  • Taste: Creamy sour yellow grapefruit caramel malt bitter peel hops
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: no

Visual: Pours clear copper orange with a decent small creamy head, a small layer of retention, only a few streams, several loose and one tight-fast, sticky lacing.

Nose: grapefruit tangerine hops (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: incoming hopped bitterness, orange oil

Mid-palate: tart, (lvl-3)-sweetness, fizzy-creamy mouthfeel, (MAIN) yellow grapefruit, toffee malts, bitter peel hops

Finish: light sour, grapefruit peel bitter hops, fruity citrus malt.

Summary: Bitter peel hops throughout, not a whole lot of carry or length.

Central City/Parallel 49 2014 Calendar Day #4 – Red Racer Belgian-Style Wheat Ale

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Central City/Parallel 49 2014 Calendar Day #4

Red Racer Belgian-Style Wheat Ale – Central City Brewing, 5% ABV – 341ml., (Surrey, BC, Canada)

on the back label:

“Traditionally opaque, this Belgian Style Wheat Ale is brewed with coriander seed and dried orange peel producing a beer light in body with a refreshing citrus and spice aroma.”

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  • Style: (spiced wheat ale) Belgian White / Witbier
  • Taste: Crisp dry banana wheat malt light citrus almost-barnyard
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: not terribly exciting

Visual: Pours unfiltered cloudy pale orange with a huge creamy head, nice retention, some sticky lacing, many clusters of fast activity, sediment at the bottom of the bottle.

Nose: bright citrusy banana wheat malts, hints of barnyard. (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: very crisp, fizzy tingly

Mid-palate: (lvl-2)-sweetness, (MAIN) wheat malt, banana, light lemon

Finish: coriander, ultra-subtle hopped bitterness, banana malt DRY finish.

Summary: Decent and drinkable, but it just doesn’t leave a lasting impression. Overall it’s too dry for me.

Central City/Parallel 49 2014 Calendar Day #1 – Schwarzwald Chocolate Cherry Ale

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Central City/Parallel 49 2014 Calendar Day #1

Schwarzwald Chocolate Cherry Ale – Central City Brewing & Parallel 49 Brewing Collaboration, 9.0% ABV – 341ml., (Surrey & Vancouver, BC, Canada)

on the front-left label:

“The Black Forest region of Germany is known for its clocks, cakes and tales of Hansel and Gretel, giving a witch her just desserts. Here in East Van, Graham and Gary have teamed up to bring you this cake inspired brew filled with cocoa nibs and cherries. While you may not end up living happily ever after, it’s still a pretty sweet ending.”

Ingredients: pale, munich, crystal, caramunich, pale chocolate, chocolate and black malts, German magnum hops, cocoa nibs, dark sweet cherries, water & yeast.

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  • Style: (cocoa nibs, cherry) flavoured imperial stout
  • Taste: Sour chocolate malt light cherry alcoholic
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: it’s decent

Visual: Pours super dark brown with minimal dissipating head, very thin ringed retention, several very slow yet steady streams at the perimeter.

Nose: dark fruity roasted malt chocolate coffee, excellent. (lvl-10)-pungency

Attack: crisp, thick-slick viscosity

Mid-palate: (MAIN) thick syrupy malts, sour cherries, chocolate -> (lvl-7)-thick sweetness

Finish: residual sour-tangy, hidden hops, bittersweet roasted malt finish.

Summary: Quite sour for an imperial stout, but with enough body and sweetness to back it up. The flavour of cherries and chocolate are muddled in the malts though, but it’s still decent. It doesn’t quite have that black forest taste, but rather a sour malt profile.

Christmas Countdown Beer Calendars (x3)

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‘Tis the season of holiday spending and gift giving, but in this case (pun-alert), giving to myself! Today I present (ppppppun) to you three different 24-unique bottle calendars, one for each day leading up to Christmas. Since there’s no way I can drink one from each calendar for 24 days, I’ll just be doing them sequentially until I finish them all. A tip for you readers, this week the BeerAdvent Calendar went on sale from $140 -> $126, so if there happens to be any left in the new year, you can most certainly get them for CHEAP. Just do a countdown for January 25.

1) Phillips Snowcase 2014 – Phillips Brewing Company (Victoria, BC, Canada)

  • $70 – BC Liquor Stores

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2) Mystery Gift Holiday Countdown 2014 – Central City Brewing & Parallel 49 Collaboration (Surrey & Vancouver)

  • $75 – BC Liquor Stores

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3) The Craft BeerAdvent Calendar 2014 – 24 Breweries/17 Countries

  • $133 (after 5% off) – Liquor Barn (Hastings, Burnaby)

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Cheers and Happy Holidays!!!