Oskar Blues Ten Fidy

Oskar Blues Ten Fidy is a 10.5 ABV 98 IBU Imperial Russian Stout.  The appearance is almost black with a roasty alcohol malt nose.  The palate starts with roasted malts finishing bittersweet and boozy.  Notes of dark fruits, chocolate and coffee are present throughout.  This is a big bad stout with a thick and creamy mouthfeel and boozy character.  Definitely one of the best I’ve had so far this year and a must try.

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Thirsty Dog Hoppus Maximus

Thirsty Dog Hoppus Maximus is a 5.9 ABV 43 IBU American Amber / Red.  The appearance is bubbly orange amber with a massive head, foam actually spilled out of the top on opening.  The nose is really strong pine hop leading into the taste, sweet bready malt and a hop profile that seems larger than it’s 43 IBU.  This one is peculiar, it’s a hop bomb for an amber and the finish has a big carbonated bite.  It’s worth trying but one will be enough for me.

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Chimay Première

Chimay Première (Red bottle) is a 7 ABV dubbel.  The appearance is brownish copper and the nose boozy plums and dates.  The warm alcohol and boozy dark fruits are present on the palate finishing bitter, dry and clean.  The mouthfeel and carbonation are moderate.  This is a classic dubbel though perhaps not as good as the Chimay blue.  But very worth trying.

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Saranac Chocolate Orange

Saranac Chocolate Orange is a 9 ABV Baltic Porter, a variety historically of a higher ABV suitable to be shipped across the North Sea.  The appearance is almost black with a large dark head and the nose boozy roasted cocoa.  The flavor is sweet cocoa nib with raw alcohol and a very subtle orange citrus note.  The mouthfeel is big and sticky but clean enough.  It’s a very nice one from Saranac’s High Peaks series and I was glad to find it.  If you see it grab one.

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Shipyard Gingerbread Head

Shipyard Gingerbread Head is a 4.6 ABV herb / spiced beer.  Appearance is amber brown and the nose sweet caramel toffee and spice.  The flavor follows, really sweet, toffee, spice, and definitely gingerbread.  Mouthfeel is fairly moderate but has a thick sweetness stopping short of cloying.  It’s interesting, and better once you’ve embraced it as a specialty type herb/spice beer novelty.  It’s worth trying even if I wouldn’t need to have it again.

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Ballast Point Grapefruit Sculpin

Ballast Point Grapefruit Sculpin is 7 ABV and 70 (A)IBU.  The appearance is orange amber with a large head and the nose pine hop and fresh grapefruit.  The palate is sweet malt and bitter pine citrus hop in perfect balance.  That addition of grapefruit well compliments the hops and lends a bright fresh fruit note.  The big west coast hop profile and grapefruit could have been a hop bomb but it’s quite refrained.  The mouthfeel is creamy but ultimately drinkable.  This is top notch.

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Ommegang Fleur De Houblon

Ommegang Fleur De Houblon is 6.8 ABV and pours a hazy golden yellow.  The nose is all Belgian yeast and spice with subtle lemon peel.  The taste follows, Belgian yeast, bread, with apple fruit and subtle citrus.  The mouthfeel is moderate but fairly well carbonated.  Ommegang can really knock out a Belgian ale and this is no exception.  This might not be exceptional but it’s well made and up to Ommegang caliber.

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Shipyard XXXX IPA

Shipyard (ADI)IPA is 9.25 ABV and 70 IBU.  Appearance is orange amber and the nose sweet boozy malt and pine hop.  The flavor is big IPA but leans more toward the sweet malt than pine hop in the overall balance.  The texture is moderate edging on heavy.  This is an interesting one, the boozy sweet malts dominate those hops.  This one is going to be really subjective.  I’m into it but I have no need to pick it up again.

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Lagunitas A Little Sumpin’ Wild

A Little Sumpin’ Wild from Lagunitas is an 8.8 ABV Belgian IPA.  The appearance is orange yellow with a Belgian yeast and citrus hop nose.  The palate is super well balanced with the sweet malt, Belgian yeast and west coast hop.  The alcohol content is pleasant and warming and the mouthfeel moderate.  This is my third from the Little Sumpin’ lineup and each is just fantastic.  Definitely recommended.

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