Last Week’s Craft Beer Tasting Notes— Apr 3–9 (26 beers)

I was planning a quiet week this week, but it looks like I managed to clock in another 26 beers.

Enjoy this week’s tasting notes!


Bottles and cans

Kool Koala by Twin Sails Brewing

This double IPA was dry-hopped with huge amounts of Australian and New Zealand hops and had a thick tropical fruit and citrus nose. On the palate it had pineapple, watermelon, grapefruit, and candy with a background of sweet caramel malt. This is a big beer and will end your night!

Winter Warmer (Terminus Series No 1) by Blindman Brewing / Steel & Oak

This one took me back to the old country (England). It had tons of dark malt, molasses, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, and a touch of rye. It was perfect to get me through these last rainy days.

Scottish Heavy Scotch Style Ale by Big Rock Brewery

Caramel, toffee, vanilla, and a big hit of peat. I actually like peated ales, but many don’t. It wasn’t a terrible Scottish Ale, but it wasn’t great. The balance was a bit of and it felt like there was something missing.

Moralité by Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

This was a gorgeous IPA with tons of Citra hop notes of orange peel, pineapple, and grapefruit with a satisfying bitter finish. It had an almost North East IPA level of juiciness.

Belle Royale (2017) by Driftwood Brewery

I wanted to love this beer. I really did. I’ve had the previous versions many times and they were always good. I tried a taster last week when I had a bad cold and it was decent. However, once my cold passed, I learned the horrible truth. I don’t want to slam this too much, but if you didn’t like Venatrix, you won’t like this.

Brews Brothers Gettin It by Parallel 49 Brewing Company

This farmhouse ale had mild yeast character, with a touch of spice, citrus, and pear. It was decent, but like most of this year’s Brews Brothers pack, I found it a little lacking.

Solstice d’Hiver (2016) by Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

Wow! That’s was a real barley wine! It had a malt-forward flavour profile with notes of toffee, caramel, and plums; just a touch of earthy and floral hops. It was more like an English barley wine than an American one.

Seas Between Us Red IPA by Twa Dogs

This first seasonal from Twa Dogs had a nice malt-forward body with caramel, toffee, and a touch of dark fruit. The hops brout floral, pine, citrus, and tropical fruit notes.

Barrel Aged Root Beer Milk Stout by Russell Brewing Company

I did not like the original version of this root beer stout, but here the sassafras really comes out and plays really well against the bourbon and oak notes. a vast improvement!

Western Promises by Russell Brewing Company

This pilser had a little bit of citrus and pine from the American hops, which was a nice difference from the the spicy, earthy noble hops. However, I found the hop presence to be a little too subtle.

Algerine Collaboration No. 2 by Gladstone Brewing Company / Townsite

This was light and gently tart with lots of citrus, mostly lemon and white grapefruit. The nose was a little odd and abrasiveness, but it tasted great.

Kama Citra Ale by Off The Rail Brewing

This was a light session ale with some nice lemon rind and orange peel from the Citra hop. It had a moderate amount of bitterness from the Magnum hops.

Raj Mahal India Ale by Off The Rail Brewing

I Don’t think it is gold medal worthy, but was interesting. It had a biscuit malt backbone with a touch of citrus aroma/flavour, but mainly it was herbal and vegetal with a touch of grass/onion.

The Big One IPA by Longwood Brewery

The nose was herbs, grass, pine, and vegetable—an interesting combo. It had a biscuit malt backbone that was overpowered a bit by the hops. I was expecting the finish to be a lot more bitter.

Winding Road For 7km by Sawdust City Brewing Co

This was a nice winter saison with lots of clove and cinnamon. The spice took prominence over the fruit and the body was a touch more full than a standard saison.

Wild Brett Wasp Sour // Coolship Collaboration Series 02/04 by Field House Brewing Co. / Brassneck

The floral, herbal, and pollen notes combined with tingling acidity of the Brett and wild yeast almost made this taste like a wasp sting. Crazy!

Lazy D’haze IPA by Powell Street Craft Brewery

This East Coast-style IPA had notes of tropical fruit, grapefruit, melon, berries, and bready pale malt. Fitting the style, it was smooth with low perceived bitterness. Strangely, it had none of the NE haze you’d expect from a beer called Lazy D’Haze.

Spring Fever Gruit Ale by Salt Spring Island Ales

Really herbal and floral with a very different bitterness. I gothints of ginger, cinnamon, lavender, and heather. An interesting change. Full review.

Valis Imperial IPA by Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks 

This imperial IPA had a big malty body with a nose of tropical fruits like pineapple and mango, and a touch of dankness.

On tap at Hanks

Popinjay Sour by Strange Fellows Brewing

This sour had slightly tart lactic and citric acidity with big tropical fruit notes. Tastes quite a lot like Jolly Rancher candy.

Ancho Stout by Strange Fellows Brewing 

this one-off cask was brewed specially for Hanks and had big roasted malt notes of chocolate and caramel complemented by sweet chili. What was great is that it had lots of pepper aroma and flavour without the heat.

On tap at Smiths

Slam Dank by Twin Sails Brewing 

This was batch #2 on tap at Smiths. Somehow they managed to make it even more dank and resinous than batch #1. It was like delicious bong water! (don’t drink bong water)

Cobblestone Stout by Mill Street Brewery

This was a OK stout, but not all that remarkable. It had a touch of coffee and the regular notes.

Incredible Pulp by Boneyard Beer Company

The blood orange was really well represented in this pale ale and played well with the tropical fruit hop notes. It had a bready malt backbone with a bit of toffee. It was pretty great, but Tone Def from Twin Sails and Boombox is my favourite example of the style.

Amoeba Brett IPA by Mikkeller Brewing San Diego

This one had a touch of barnyard funk with some peach and mango and was mildly tart. It wasn’t as funky as Mikkeller’s Farmhouse Invasion Brett IPA; however, it was on tap, so not bottle conditioned, which may have been a factor.

Phillips tasting

Scythe Matters by Phillips Brewing Company

The taster I had seemed decent. It had standard hefe banana, bubble gum, and cloves notes with a bit of perfumey alcohol and extra warmth.