Shiner Birthday Beer #107

Shiner Birthday Beer #107 Hoppy (German) Pilsner is 5 ABV.  Appearance is clear golden and bubbly with a grassy earthy nose.  The flavor follows, it’s your standard German pils, with that earthy grain malt and quick bitter finish.  I suppose there is some decent hop presence on the finish, but nothing I would have described as a “hoppy pilsner” myself.  Mouthfeel is clean and crisp and easily drinkable.  Not too bad to have Shiner’s “Birthday Beer” on my actual birthday.

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Josef Belgian Blonde Ale

Josef Belgian Blonde (Pale) Ale is 6 ABV and brewed by Brouwerij Martens for Trader Joe’s.  Appearance is clear gold with big bubbles and nose mild Belgian yeast.  Flavor is bready hay with malty sweetness and Belgian yeast funk finishing very lightly bitter.  Mouthfeel is clean and crisp.  It’s an okay beer but it’s unremarkable, and has a bit of a metallic quality throughout.  Nothing here to really recommend.

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Brooklyn Brewery Quintaceratops

Brooklyn Quintaceratops is an 11 ABV Quad aged in bourbon barrels.  The appearance is cola black with a big head and the nose rum and spice.  The palate is sweet candi malt, boozy rum, oaky, vanilla and spice.  Mouthfeel is smooth but sticky and a bit cloying.  This is an interesting one and worth trying but not my favorite of the big barrel aged brews.  I didn’t buy this and thank you T-bone for sharing but from what I’ve seen it’s quite expensive.  Either way worth a shot just know it’s not cheap.

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Good Nature Blonde Ale

Good Nature (American) Blonde Ale is 4.5 ABV and pours hazy orange.  The nose and palate are  lightly grassy and herbal finishing with only mild bitterness.  Overall mouthfeel, carbonation and palate are moderate and easily drinkable and at this ABV sessionable.  This is a really good example of a style that’s known for smooth easy drinking.  Definitely recommended for what it is, and a special mention for Good Nature Brewing in Hamilton, NY, a wonderful little brewery to visit.

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Anderson Valley Wild Turkey Bourbon Barrel Stout

Anderson Valley Wild Turkey Bourbon Barrel (American) Stout is 6.9 ABV and pours virtually black.  The nose and palate are roasted chocolate and coffee stout notes, vanilla, oak and sweet booze from the barrel aging.  Mouthfeel is a bit thicker than moderate but quite drinkable given the relatively low ABV.  This is a solid barrel age beer in its own right even if it has to contend with some very heavy hitters.  Pretty good find in a restaurant not really known for beer, served with the bottle and a pilsner style glass.

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Lawson’s Sip of Sunshine

Lawson’s Finest Liquids (VT) Sip of Sunshine is an 8 ABV, 80 (est) IBU ADIIPA and brewed in the Stratford, CT facility.  the appearance is golden orange and the nose fresh tropical citrus hop.  The flavor follows, very well balanced sweet malt and  pungent pineapple citrus hop.  The overall mouthfeel and body are moderate and drinkable and wonderfully fresh.  This is another hard to get elite level IPA that I had the pleasure and honor of being able to try.  Obvious recommendation, thanks again Larry.

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Goose Island Bourbon County Brand Stout

Goose Island Bourbon County Brand (ADI) Stout is 14.3 ABV and 60 IBU.  The appearance is thick black and the nose coffee, chocolate, fruity and boozy.  The flavor has those similar roasted stout notes, plenty of boozy dark fruits, hints of vanilla and oaky bourbon.  Mouthfeel is viscous and warming.  This is a damn near perfect barrel aged stout and one of the best beers I’ve ever had.  Thanks so much Larry you did good.

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The Alchemist Heady Topper

Heady Topper from The Alchemist is an 8 ABV 120 IBU ADIIPA.  Appearance is hazy yellow with a big fresh citrus nose.  Flavor follows, sweet malt with that big citrus bitterness.  This is it, the white whale so to speak, and somehow it lives up to the hype.  You could have Heady Topper everyday, nothing about it challenges the palate like a Dog 120 might, all that wonderfulness is kept within a smooth and drinkable range, it’s really a perfect ADIIPA.  Thanks Larry.

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Ommegang Lovely, Dark & Deep

Ommegang Lovely, Dark & Deep is a 5.3 ABV Oatmeal Stout in obvious reference to the Frost poem.  Appearance is near black with a sweet, roasty and nutty nose and taste with the expected Belgian yeast.  Mouthfeel is moderate and smooth showcasing those oats but staying of utmost drinkability.  At first glance this is decent if not forgettable but the more I have the more the subtleties and nuances of the flavor and texture begin to shine.  Much like the snow laden woods of central New York this invites you to wander in and lose yourself.  Get a 4 pack and enjoy all of them.

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