New Belgium 1554

New Belgium 1554 Black (Euro Dark) Lager is 5.6 ABV and pours dark with red highlights.  The nose and flavor are mild roasted malts with some fruit and nuts finishing lightly bitter.  Overall mouthfeel is moderate and smooth.  1554 is decent and drinkable even if not outstanding.  According to the site the recipe was lost in a flood in 1997 sending the brewers to Belgium to rediscover a recipe for the style.  Recommended as with any New Belgium.

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Wisconsin Dells Rustic Red

Wisconsin Dells Rustic (Amber) Red is 5 ABV and pours amber red with no head or lacing.  The nose is toffee sweet leading into the taste, sweet caramel and toffee finishing without much bitterness.  Their is a very strong buttery diacetyl effect on the palate that becomes a bit of a detriment.  I’ve liked Wisconsin Dells for their simple but surprisingly good flavors, however, Rustic Red turns to the negative.  Maybe just suggestive but this one isn’t for me.

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New Glarus Moon Man

New Glarus Moon Man is a 5 ABV 38(ish) IBU APA.  The appearance is golden orange and the nose fresh citrus hop.  The flavor is perfectly balanced sweet malt and fresh citrus hop bitterness.  Overall mouthfeel is well rounded and refreshing but sacrifices nothing for depth of character.  It’s a superb example of the style  and given the just within sessionable ABV I could see this being a solid go-to if it’s within your distribution.  New Glarus continues to impress.

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New Belgium Trippel

New Belgium Trippel is 7.8 ABV and pours light orange with a thin head.  The nose and flavor are funky Belgian yeast, coriander spice, fruity (especially lemon), finishing with a bitter bite.  Overall mouthfeel is smooth with some effervescence.  Maybe this Tripel didn’t blow me away but it’s very good, and absolutely hides all that alcohol content.  I’d recommend anything from New Belgium and hope to try as many as possible before leaving the distribution area.

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Pearl Street Brewery Me Myself and IPA

Pearl Street Brewery Me Myself and (A)IPA is 6.5 ABV and pours amber orange with a sweet bitter nose.  The flavor is sweet malt and pine bitter hop and for some odd reason both seem overpowering.  Overall mouthfeel is moderate and a bit creamy.  It’s an alright AIPA but the flavors get a bit unrestrained.  I’m assuming the brewery is pretty small and only distributes locally so if I had a sample of this on site I’d probably say oh that’s decent, but an entire bottle is a bit much.  Not too bad but can’t rave about this at all.

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New Belgium Hoptober

New Belgium Hoptober is a 6 ABV 40 IBU American Blonde Ale.  The appearance is golden and the nose malt and bitter hop.  The flavor and mouthfeel are deep and complex for the style given the Centennial, Cascade, Sterling, Glacier and Willamette hops and Pale, Rye, Oats, C-80 and Wheat malts.  Hoptober is supremely drinkable but has serious character.  Absolutely one I’d recommend and a great standby for keeping around all season.

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Ale Asylum Ambergeddon

Ale Asylum Ambergeddon is a 6.9 ABV American Amber / Red.  The appearance is dark red and the nose sweet caramel malt and boozy.  The flavor follows, sweet caramel, bready, finishing with a bittersweet hop bite. The mouthfeel is a bit thick in the mouth and the sweetness heavy but it’s still a solid B+ beer.  Cool bottle art and naming for sure.  Really good for a one and done.

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Alltech Lexington Brewing Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Stout

Alltech Lexington Brewing Kentucky Bourbon Barrel (ADI) Stout is 8 ABV and pours an opaque black with a boozy roasted nose and  little head or lacing.  The palate is your basic coffee / chocolate and vanilla stout without much of that Bourbon Barrel and some unfortunate phenols.  I have buyer’s remorse after getting a sixer of these, this should be a one and done.   I’m always excited to see anything labeled a KBS, which was probably the point.  I have a feeling I’m going to be bringing this to a party, having one and leaving the rest.

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New Glarus Staghorn Oktoberfest

New Glarus Staghorn (Marzen) / Oktoberfest is 6.25 ABV and pours translucent golden orange.  The nose is bready and fruity apple which leads into the taste, bready malts, green apple, finishing with a quick bitter bite.  The overall mouthfeel is light and crisp but sacrifices nothing for character.  It’s a solid to very good example of the style and while I was glad to be able to try it I won’t be pining for it again.

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Wisconsin Dells Hazel’s Nut House

Wisconsin Dells Hazel’s Nut House is a 6.2 ABV American Brown Ale.  The appearance is opaque brown with no head or lacing and the nose sweet hazelnut.  The flavor is malty sweet and just dominated by that hazelnut finishing bittersweet.  Given the lack of any head I thought this might be a mediocre one with a much better name than taste.  With this and the Honey Ale I was pleasantly surprised.  6.2 isn’t very high but it drinks like a 5 with a nice moderate mouthfeel and slight stickiness complimenting the sweet nutty flavor.  Above all it’s interesting, which can be more enticing than your standard solid beer.

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