Last Week’s Craft Beer Tasting Notes—Oct 2–8

What a week. We’re in full harvest mode right now, with tons of fresh hop and pumpkin beers in the mix!

Bottles and CansIMG_20171005_175254

Surround by Stillwater Artisanal

This imperial wheat stout had the aroma of cognac. The palate brought caramel, dark chocolate, molasses, smoke, and oak. It was full-bodied and chewy with a very dry finish.

Ryujin by Lighthouse Brewing Company

The plum comes through surprisingly well in this tripel and complements the citrusy esters and peppery phenols from the yeast. It had a slightly drying finish, which offset the sweetness of the fruit.

Chrono Wet Hop IPA (2017) by Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks

This fresh-hoped IPA had notes of pine, grass, earth, and dankness, with a touch of citrus. It was very fresh and didn’t finish bitter.

Alpha Dog (Fresh Hop Pale Ale) (2017) by Yellow Dog Brewing CoIMG_20171007_202330

This fresh hop pale ale was hoppier than most of this year’s fresh hop IPAs. It had notes of tropical fruit, citrus, and earthy dankness over a bready malt base. It was rather fantastic!

Juicy AF by Boombox Brewing Company at Smiths Pub

The name is not false advertising! This NE IPA is like a juicy tropical fruit explosion in your mouth.

Beach Week by Twin Sails Brewing

Smooth NE IPA with juicy tropical fruit notes of pineapple, mango, along with pear, stonefruits, and watermelon.

Mocha Porter by Persephone Brewing Company

Rich and roasty with big notes of coffee and hints of dark chocolate. Smooth mouthfeel with a bitter-sweet finish.

Parting Kiss Bourbon Barrel Ale by Twa Dogs Brewery20171007_224009

I found this barrel-aged amber ale to be very sweet and sickly with thin notes of vanilla and caramel. There was little bourbon or oak quality.

Thaddeus by Townsite Brewing

This oud brune was mildly tart with a touch of funk and notes of dark cherries and a balsamic.

GroundSwell by Lighthouse Brewing Company

This fresh-hopped lager had a malty body with spicy hop bitterness and citrus and grapefruit notes. It was light-bodied with a crisp finish.

Smoked Imperial Pumpkin Ale (2017) by Howe Sound Brewing

This was really rich, smokey, and spicy, with more subdued pumpkin notes than the regular pumpkineater. I think this might be my favourite pumpkin beer so far this year.

Volcano King by Twin Sails Brewing20171005_221851

This NE IPA is getting a little old, but still had tons of pineapple and coconut flavour—just like a piña colada. So smooth and the alcohol is hidden well.

Day Blink Simcoe Pale Ale by Twin Sails Brewing

This pale ale had notes of tropical fruit and stone fruits with a touch of resin. It was hazy, juicy, and smooth.

Fresh Hop Wild IPA by Powell Brewery

This fresh-hopped wild IPA was grassy, piney, and citrusy with a touch of tartness and funk.

Drouthy Neibor IPA by Twa Dogs Brewery

This was a pretty standard West Coast IPA with hoppy notes of citrus, tropical fruits, stone fruits, and pine over a biscuity malt profile. It is pretty dry with low bitterness. Decent, but a bit boring.

Cash Only by Twin Sails Brewing20171006_221917

This double IPA was juicy, hazy, and smooth with notes of orange peel, melon, and pine. It hides its 10.3% well!

Kicking In Speakers by Twin Sails Brewing

This NE-style DIPA had notes of pineapple, mango, papaya, and nectarine. It was smooth with a juicy, with a creamy mouthfeel and low perceived bitterness. The hops have faded and gone a bit grassy at this point, but this is still an amazing IPA!

Like This by Strathcona Beer Company & Superflux Beer Company

This was a nicely balance east-meets-west IPA with hoppy tropical fruit notes and hints of citrus. It had a crisp and smooth body but no haze. Pretty good blend of the styles of both breweries.

Voodoo Ranger IPA by New Belgium Brewing Company20171006_193116

Well balanced IPA with tropical fruit and citrus hop notes over a caramel malt base. This bottle was a little old, but still tasted fresh.

Lost Souls by Parallel 49 Brewing Company

Probably one of my favourite pumpkin beers. The pumpkin is subtle, but the spices really complement the roasty malt and chocolate notes.

Salty Scot by Parallel 49 Brewing Company

Tons of caramel and toffee flavour, but not enough salt this year, which made it come off a little sweet.

On tap

379 Wet N Wild Smash by Faculty Brewing—at Smiths Pub20171009_014045

Light grassy, piney, and citrus hop notes with a touch of acidity and funk.

Fresh Coast Farmhouse Ale by Luppolo Brewing Company—at Smiths Pub

Floral and citrusy nose with a spicy and citrusy body. The fresh hops add a touch of earthiness to the mix.

No 11 Sea To Sky Series Belgian Ipa by Howe Sound Brewing—at Smiths Pub

Spicy with notes of pineapple, guava and lemon. Juicy body with low bitterness.

 

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Last Week’s Craft Beer Tasting Notes—Sept 18–24 ( 23 Uniques)

20170924_232114Well, it looks like I didn’t go out for beers once this week. I just drank lots of beer at home and shared a few with my wonderful girlfriend when she came over.

Old Embalmer (2012) by Widmer Brothers Brewing

I aged this barleywine for five years! It had had rich malty notes of caramel, toffee, raisins, and molasses. It was rather complex and brought to mind port and sherry. It fished with a little grassy hop bitterness.

Rad Seeker by Boombox Brewing Company

This NE-style IPA had big tropical fruit hop aromas and flavours of mango, guava, and papaya. It had a smooth and juicy body with low bitterness. Watch out Superflux, these guys are giving you a run for your money!

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Bloom by Four Winds Brewing

This farmhouse ale aged on cherry blossoms had an amazing floral aroma. The palate brought cherry, almonds, citrus, and a touch of Brett funk. It was mildly tart with a smooth and silky mouthfeel.

Kicking In Speakers by Twin Sails Brewing & Boombox Brewing

This NE-style DIPA had notes of pineapple, mango, papaya, and nectarine. It was smooth with a juicy, with a creamy mouthfeel and low perceived bitterness.

Corvus by Ravens Brewing Company

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This lingonberry and lime gose had puckering tartness with notes of lingonberries and lime accompanied by a touch of saltiness. It was very refreshing and thirst-quenching.

Fresh-Hopped Saison (2017) by Category 12 Brewing

This was a nicely rounded saison with an extra kick of spice from the

Ultra hops and a touch of fresh floral aroma on the nose. Possibly my favourite fresh-hopped beer of the season.

Readymade : Vacuum by Stillwater Artisanal

This smoked black IPA had a very complex combo of roasted malt, dank and fruity hops, and moderate smokiness. This wass an intriguing beer with a lot going on

Stillwater Is Nothing Big Bunny Is Everything by Stillwater Artisanal & Arizona Wilderness

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This chocolate milk stout was rich and chocolatey with hints of coffee and nuts. The mouthfeel was smooth and silky and it finished sweet and boozy.

Nu-tropic by Stillwater Artisanal

This mango and passionfruit IPA was juicy and thirst-quenching with notes of mango, passionfruit, and guava. It had a smooth mouthfeel with low bitterness.

Insetto by Stillwater Artisanal

This dry-hopped sour with Italian plum had just the right level of tartness with pronounced plum notes, complemented by fruity hop notes and crackery malt. It was smooth and refreshing.

Hermannator (2017) by Vancouver Island Brewing

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This eisbock was a huge malt bomb with notes of Caramel, toffee, chocolate, coffee, raisins, molasses, liquorice, and bread. It started sweet, but finished dry and boozy.

Like This by Strathcona Beer Company & Superflux Beer Company

This was a nicely balance east-meets-west IPA with hoppy tropical fruit notes and hints of citrus. It had a crisp and smooth body but no haze. Pretty good blend of the styles of both breweries.

Burton Ale by Vancouver Island Brewing

Herbal and spicy hop notes with a hint of orange peel. Rich malt base with some mild roastiness. Full bodied with a lingering bitter finish.

Timewarp by Townsite Brewing

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This fresh-hopped pale ale had a floral and piney nose. The body was quite malty and chewy with very subtle fresh hop notes of pine, wood, and a touch of fruitiness.

Huge Citrus Pale Ale by Moody Ales

This hazy pale ale had strong notes of orange, grapefruit, tropical fruit, and stone fruits, with a touch of funk. It was juicy and light-bodied with subdued bitterness.

St-Feuillien Brune by Brasserie St-Feuillien

The dubble was rich with toasty malt notes of toffee, caramel, brown sugar, and liquorice. It also had hints of fruity esters. It was full-bodied with some hoppy bitterness.

Gowden Locks Amber Ale by Twa Dogs Brewery

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This was a malty amber with notes of caramel, toffee, and a hint of coffee. It was moderately sweet.

Fuzzy Wuzzy Peach IPA by The Parkside Brewery

This was better in an older can than on draft. The peach was more pronounced and the “greenness” of the hops had dropped off a bit.

Colour & Shape by Superflux Beer Company

I’ve had a lot of cans of this. It’s so juicy and smooth, with notes of guava, papaya, and mango.  none of the other Superflux beers surpass this original.

Day Blink Simcoe Pale Ale by Twin Sails BrewingIMG_20170922_234319

The pale ale had notes of tropical fruit and stone fruits with a touch of resin. It was hazy, juicy, and smooth.

#Blessed by Twin Sails Brewing

A gorgeous pale ale with hoppy notes of melon, mango, and orange peel over a light biscuity malt base.

That New Trapp by Hearthstone Brewery & Stillwater Artisinal

This hazy trappist ale had a big nose of tropical fruit, citrus, and berries with a touch of Brett funk and a big juicy and hazy body.

Pumpkin Ale by Swans Brewery

Really spicy with notes of nutmeg, allspice, ginger, and cinnamon. Not a huge amount of pumpkin flavour, as it has a naturally mild taste.

 

Last Week’s Craft Beer Tasting Notes—Sept 11–17 (39 Uniques)

20170914_000514Sorry I skipped the previous week. The GCBF madness prohibited me from taking notes.

This was a pretty bit week, but several were shared with my girlfriend, so it’s not as bad as it looks.

Sorry, there’s a couple of pumpkin beers in here.

Assemblage Numéro 6 by Brasserie Dunham

Tart and fruity with rich notes of raspberry, cherry, and a touch of funk from the wild yeast. Effervescent and refreshing.

Nuclear Hop Assault by Mikkeller

Grassy and fruity nose with lemon rind and grapefruit peel on the palate over a rich caramel malt base. So fresh and delicious!

On Fleek by Stillwater Artisanal

Rich roasted malt notes with chocolate, toffee, vanilla, raisins, tobacco, and leather. Sweet, sticky, and boozy. This was fantastic for an imperial stout in a can. You’d think it was barrel-aged.

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Tamarindo Gose by Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

Fruity nose with a slightly sour, salty, and wheaty body. The tamarind brings notes of figs and prunes.

New Crustacean Barleywineish Imperial IPA Sorta by Rogue Ales & Spirits

Gimmicky name. It’s just a NA barleywine, which is really just a triple IPA. Grass, pine, citrus, and tropical with a doughy malt body.

#Blessed by Twin Sails Brewing

A gorgeous pale ale with hoppy notes of melon, mango, and orange peel over a light biscuity malt base.

That New Trapp by Hearthstone Brewery & Stillwater Artisinal

Big nose of tropical fruit, citrus, and berries with a touch of Brett funk. The body was juicy and hazy.

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ZRA 2 by Category 12 Brewing

Floral and spicy nose with notes of banana, orange, pear, clove, and coriander over a rich caramel malt base.

Commander Imperial Stout (2017) by Dead Frog Brewery

Aged several months. Notes of liquorice, vanilla, molasses, raisins, and oak. Whisky on the nose, but not body. Smooth and mellow.

Pumpkin Ale by Steamworks Brewing Company

Light pumpkin notes with subtle cinnamon and nutmeg over a bready malt base. Not as bland as some pumpkin ales.

Crooked Tooth Pumpkin Ale by Phillips Brewing Company

This used to be better. Not enough pumpkin cinnamon, nutmeg, or anything. Just bland and watery.

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Crookeder Tooth (2017) by Phillips Brewing Company

Very slightly better than “bland tooth.” It had hints of vanilla and oak, but no bourbon. If this saw a barrel, it was for a very short time

Kiwami Plum Sour by Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks

Moderate tartness with a sweet body and very gentle plum notes. The plum was under-expressed.

Super Fearless Imperial IPA by Dead Frog Brewery

Hop-forward aromas of tropical fruits, grapefruit, and pine. The body was mostly caramel malt with a bit too much much grassy hop biterness.

Haters Gonna Hate by Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company

Floral nose with a crisp crackery malt body with hints of tropical fruits and moderate spicy hop bitterness in the finish. Well hidden booze

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Orval by Brasserie d’Orval

An undefinable classic. Banana and clove from the primary fermentation. Funk from Brett secondary. Earthy hops from the dry hop. Super dry and a tad tart.

Cathedral Grove Common by White Sails Brewing

Lightly toasted malt notes with a touch of caramel and mild fruitiness. Dry and crisp finish.

Sunrise Gose by Coal Harbour Brewing Company

Mildly tart and slightly salty with a wheaty body and a refreshing dry finish.

Cry Me a River by Driftwood Brewery

Slightly tart, salty, wheaty, dry. Refreshing. Like the Gatorade of beer.

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Con Leche by Twin Sails Brewing

Rich and roasty malt notes of coffee and dark chocolate with a touch of vanilla and cinnamon. Smooth mouthfeel and sweet finish from the lactose.

Simple Things by Steel & Oak Brewing Co.

Crisp, clean, and refreshing with a floral nose. Notes of honey and biscuit on the palate, with spicy noble hop bitterness in the finish.

Trappist Tripel by Trading Post Brewing

Spicy pepper and clove notes, with a touch of fruity esters, followed by a strange herbal aftertaste. Rich and Sweet.
Charleston by Townsite Brewing

This bottle has aged over a year. It had lots of clove and pepper, but little fruitiness. The finish was rather bitter and lingered.

20170916_225351Cool Hand Cuke by Hearthstone Brewery

Interesting, like a slightly tart and boozy cucumber water. Not much more to say.

Longest Night by Yukon Brewing

Dark roasty malt with hints of chocolate and coffee. The hops were grassy and a little too bitter for the style.

Broadside IPA by Torchlight Brewing Company

I’m not sure if the bottle was old, but this was just bitter, earthy, piney, and grassy.

Saison by Funkwerks

Notes of orange, lemon, ginger, passion fruit, and pepper. Dry finish with lingering bitterness.

Kyritzer Mord Und Totschlag by Klosterbrauerei Neuzelle

Rich and roasty dark malts with coffee, cola, treacle, and caramel. Earthy and grassy hop bitterness.

20170908_220701Barrel Aged Old Rasputin XVIII Aged In Rye Whiskey by North Coast Brewing Company

Dark roasted malts with notes of dark fruit, caramel, vanilla, spicy rye, coffee, and hints of oak. Rich and smooth with a drying finish.

BOB by Moon Under Water Pub & Brewery at Moon Under Water Pub & Brewery

Rich notes of blood orange with puckering lactic acidity and a touch of Brett funk. Fruity but dry and refreshing.

Sprucey Fruit by Moon Under Water Pub & Brewery

Gentle pine notes with puckering lactic acid tartness.

Juice Bigalow by Parallel 49 Brewing Company—at Garrick’s Head Pub

Smooth and juicy. Decent first attempt at a NE style but it is too heavy on the grapefruit notes. It needs more tropical and gentle citrus.

Drop Art by Modern Times Beer—at Smiths PubIMG_20170916_220236

Mildly tart with mango, orange zest, and a touch of peppery spice.

Or Xata by The Bruery—at Smiths Pub

This tasted like apple pie! Notes of cinnamon and vanilla with a creamy and rich mouthfeel from the lactose.

Zwarte Wheat by Townsite Brewing—at Smiths Pub

Grainy and bready roasted pale malt with dusty wheat. Spicy yeast phenols. A touch of fruity esters. Grassy hop bitterness.

Smash With Guanabana by Andina Brewing Company—at Smiths Pub

The guanabana brings notes of banana, pineapple, and papaya that takes this Smash to another level. Also, it’s nice and hazy.

Tart Saison With Orange by Andina Brewing Company—at Smiths Pub20170910_225317

Mildly tart with subtle citrus notes and a touch of saison yeast spice.

Smash by Andina Brewing Company at Smiths Pub—at Smiths Pub

Decent tropical fruit and citrus hop character over a light crackery malt base.

Bambuco by Andina Brewing Company at Smiths Pub—at Smiths Pub

Nice and light, but I felt myself wanting more Belgian yeast spice and hop presence.

Last Week’s Craft Beer Tasting Notes—Aug 28–Sept 3 (30 Uniques)

Here’s last week’s notes! They’re a little brief this week as I’ve been busy with GCBF stuff. I might have to skip next week because I’m about to drink a large amount of beers!

Bottles & Cans

20170828_223540Le Quench Du Soif by Brasserie Dunham & Twin Sails Brewing

A rich and complex wild IPA with pineapple, papaya, guava, orange peel, grapefruit rind. Moderate tartness with heady barnyard funk.

Con Leche by Twin Sails Brewing

Big aromas and flavours of coffee and dark chocolate with a touch of vanilla and a cinnamon. Smooth mouthfeel and sweet finish from the lactose.

#Blessed by Twin Sails Brewing

A gorgeous pale ale with hoppy notes of melon, mango, and orange peel over a light biscuity malt base.

Raised By Wolves (2017) by Driftwood Brewery20170902_221344

Slightly tart with notes of melon, berries, orange peel, lime, papaya, pine, and fresh peppers. I wish they made this year round!

Buenos Dias by Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company

A refreshing summery ale with notes of lime and orange, a touch of salt, and hints of coriander. Finishes clean and dry.

Full Time I.P.A. by Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company

Aromas of tropical fruit, orange peel, and pine resin with a bready malt base. Well balanced with lingeing fruit notes and bitterness.

Dangerously Close To Stupid by To Øl

Best triple IPA I’ve ever had. Rich caramel malt body with aromas of floral and citrus from the Centennial and Citra. Dangerously crushable.

Lug Tread Lagered Ale by Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company

Bready and grainy with light floral notes and a hint of fruit. Light-bodied and crisp with some lingering grassy bitterness.

Clayburn Smoked Scotch Ale by Ravens Brewing Company20170905_000856

Malty-rich body with notes of caramel and toffee and overtones of smoke. Smooth and decadent.

One In the Chamber by Phillips Brewing Company & Doan’s Craft Brewing

Notes of pineapple, citrus, pine, and spice over a light two-row malt base. Moderate bitterness.

Hop Shop Imperial IPA by Red Arrow Brewing Company

Big hoppy notes of guava, citrus peel, pine, and spice. Lingering bitter finish.

Whole in the Head by Gigantic Brewing Company

A big West Coast hop bomb with notes of orange peel, grapefruit rind, and pine over a caramel malt base. Lingering grassy bitterness.

Survival Stout by Hopworks Urban BreweryIMG_20170830_232910

A hardy stout with bold coffee aroma and flavour over a rich dark malt base that adds notes of chocolate and molasses.

Noir de Dottignies by Brouwerij De Ranke

Rich dark malt notes of chocolate, molasses, brown sugar, and dark fruits, complemented by spicy pepper and coriander notes from the yeast.

Impeachment by Red Collar Brewing Co.

Wheaty, but neither tart, nor particularly peachy. Had the aroma of cheap beers I drank as a teen.

Longest Night by Yukon Brewing

Dark roasty malt with hints of chocolate and coffee. The hops were grassy and a little too bitter for the style.

On Tap

20170828_201906Ice Tea Pale Ale by Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub at Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub & Guesthouses

The bergamot from the Earl Grey adds an interesting earthy and herbal quality, which is subdued by the fruitiness of the lemon.

Guite Plum Lager by Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub at Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub & Guesthouses

Light biscuity malt body with some subtle stone fruit notes from the plums.

Framboise by Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub at Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub & Guesthouses

Big raspberry flavor with some vinous notes and a touch of oak. Light puckering tartness.

2017 Ortega Blonde by Spinnakers Gastro BrewpubIMG_20170903_205615

Very light citrus and white wine grape notes over a grainy pilsner malt base.

Cabernet IPA by Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub at Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub & Guesthouses

An interesting mix of vinous red wine, vanilla, oak, Brett funk, and a touch of citrus from the hops. Can’t really call it an IPA any more, but it is delicious.

Concord Grape Kettle Sour by Moon Under Water Pub & Brewery—at Smiths Pub

Decent kettle sour with puckering lactic acidity and lots of grape juice on the palate. Medium-sweet finish.

Ginger Perry by Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse—at Smiths Pub

Tons of sharp ginger notes, but it was way too sweet for my tastes.

Dry Hopped Passionfruit Sour by Persephone Brewing Company—at Smiths Pub

A moderately puckering kettle sour with tingling lactic acidity, subtle passion fruit flavour, and aromas of tropical fruit from the hops.

IMG_20170903_205843O Trabalho by Stillwater Artisanal—at Smiths Pub

Palate of dark cherries, a touch of coco powder, and light spice. Moderately tart with some Brett funk in the finish.

Kili Wit by Logsdon Farmhouse Ales—at Smiths Pub

A mildly tart fruity and spicy wheat beer with notes of orange, pepper, coriander, and some hoppy citrus. Silky mouthfeel from the oats.

Zwarte Wheat by Townsite Brewing—at Smiths Pub

Grainy and bready roasted pale malt with dusty wheat. Spicy yeast phenols. A touch of fruity esters. Grassy hop bitterness.

Crystal Weiss by Doan’s Craft Brewing Company—at The Drake Eatery

Clean and soft on the palate, with much more subtle banana and phenol notes than a standard hefe. Refreshing and light

Windows Up by Alpine Beer Company—at The Drake Eatery

Not as dank as advertised. Notes of citrus, tropical fruits, pine, and grass. Bready malt body.

Rowing Needles by Modern Times Beer—at The Drake Eatery

Bright and fruity notes of blackberries and rasperries. Mildly tart with a dry wheaty body.

Last Week’s Craft Beer Tasting Notes—Aug 21–27 (36 Beers)

Well, here we are again! It’s been another week of hard drinking and I’ve survived to tell the tale. I’ve had the usual bottles at home, cans in the park with a beautiful girl, who then accompanied me the the Canadian Alesmith launch at The Drake, then there was also a Rogue Ales tap Takeover at Moon Under Water.

I feel like this is a good time to remind everyone that if you keep a blog, you aren’t an alcoholic, you’re an enthusiast.

The Canada Alesmith Launch at The DrakeIMG_20170823_222826

Old Numbskull by AleSmith Brewing Company

This was billed as an American barleywine, but tasted quite a lot like an English barleywine. It had malty notes of caramel, toffee, plum, and figs, followed by gentle hop bitterness and a smooth finish.

Grand Cru by AleSmith Brewing Company

This dark Belgian ale had sweet caramel malt with notes of raisin, plum, chocolate, fruity esters, spicy phenols, candi sugar, and balanced hoppiness. Complex and intriguing.

Horny Devil by AleSmith Brewing Company20170825_212513

This Belgian strong was fruity and spicy with notes of banana, orange, peppercorn, and coriander. It had lots of sweetness from the malt and candi sugar, but finished dry from the booze

Wee Heavy by AleSmith Brewing Company

Rich malty notes of toffee and caramel, and dark fruits offset by a touch of smoke and subtle hop bitterness.

Speedway Stout by AleSmith Brewing Company

This multiple award-winning imperial stout was full-bodied with intense notes of coffee and dark chocolate over a roasty dark malt backbone. It was rich, decadent, and boozy. World class!

Thai Speedway Stout by AleSmith Brewing Company

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This annual variant of the Speedway stout was had dark malt notes of coffee, chocolate, and caramel complemented by notes of tropical fruit and spice. Rich and complex.

IPA by AleSmith Brewing Company

Hoppy aromas of grapefruit, tangerine, pine, and tropical fruits over over a sweet bready malt backbone. Finished with resinous bitterness.

Nut Brown Ale by AleSmith Brewing Company

Smooth, dark, and rich, and full-bodied with notes of biscuit, mild cocoa, and earthy hops.

X Extra Pale Ale by AleSmith Brewing Company

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Hoppy aromas of citrus and pine over a light, crisp malt body. Smooth, with the bitterness of the hops offset by the malt sweetness.

Spezial Pils by AleSmith Brewing Company

This was a classic German pilsner with a grainy malt body and spicy, floral noble hops. It finishes crisp, clean, and dry with a touch of bitterness.

Lil’ Devil by AleSmith Brewing Company

A light Belgian pale with added orange peel and coriander to enhance the natural yeast and hop flavours and aromas.

Bottles and Cans

Olde Ale (Bourbon & Brandy Barrel Aged) by AleSmith Brewing Company

A sample of this amazing rare beer was shared with me by Mike Spence who founded The Drake. It was rich and decadent with notes of bourbon, brandy, vanilla, raisins, and oak. The finish was very boozy and comforting.

Double Cyclope by Brasserie Dunham

This double IPA was really juicy with notes of pineapple, guava, papaya, orange, and grapefruit. It had moderate bitterness and hid its alcohol very well

Isseki Nichō by Brasserie Dieu du Ciel!

This dark saison was aged for two years and had rich chocolate and coffee notes from the dark malts with peppery spice from the Belgian yeast. Divine!

Pipewrench by Gigantic Brewing Company20170827_202519

This gin barrel-aged IPA had a lovely floral quality from the juniper and gin botanicals that really complemented the citrus notes from the hops.

Dark Saison by Field House Brewing Co.

I really wasn’t impressed by this beer, it was a one-dimensional kettle-sour with gentle lactic acidity. Despite the ingredients, there waslittle liquorice flavour and barely any saison yeast spice or fruitiness.

Punch Bowl Mango IPA by Russell Brewing Company

The mango in this was very subtle. I think this would work better as an NE style, as the hops were slightly too bitter for the delicate flavour.

Personas West Coast Common by Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks

This is more of an ISA than a California Common. It had hoppy aromas of citrus, tropical fruits, with a touch of floral and herbal.

Breakfast of Champions by Riot Brewing Co.

This coffe lager had nice coffee notes over a sweet biscuity malt base. The finish was a little sweeter than I would have liked.

Hopocalypse Meow by Phillips Brewing Company20170821_205623

This 14th anniversary beer was a a big old hop bomb. I got tropical fruit, melon, and resin. Not getting the esters due to the strong hops. It was like Amnesiac’s long-lost brother.

Bachelor Pad by Twin Sails Brewing

This smooth East Coast Double IPa had hop-forward aromas of pineapple, mango, orange peel, and a touch of dank. The body was hazy and the mouthfeel was incredibly smooth.

Market Saturation IPA by Coal Harbour Brewing Company

This was one of the best Coal Harbour beers I’ve had. They nailed the NE style. It was cloudy and smooth with tangerine, pineapple, and melon.

Juice Monkey Tropical IPA by Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub

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Decent tropical fruit and citrus aromas, but it wasn’t nearly juicy enough. Definitely not a true NE IPA.

Blazing World by Modern Times Beer

This red ale had hoppy aromas of grape and gooseberry over a light bready malt backbone. It was really dank and highly aromatic.

Impeachment by Red Collar Brewing Co.

Wheaty, but neither tart, nor particularly peachy. Had the aroma of cheap beers I drank as a teen.

Draft

Zomer Saison by Four Winds Brewing—at The Drake Eatery

A light and thirst-quenching saison with notes of apple, citrus, pepper, coriander, and a gentle touch of oak.

Double IPA Bavaroise by Les Trois Mousquetaires – LTM—at Smiths Pub

Smooth and slightly hazy with notes of honey melon, pineapple, guava, and mandarin oranges.

Ten Times Ten by Brassneck Brewery—at The Drake Eatery

20170828_004433

A really nice pale ale with lots of pine, citrus, and a grassy/earthy bitterness.

Dime Bag by Moon Under Water Pub & Brewery—at Smiths Pub

While this latest batch of still a good Brett IPA, I couldn’t taste the candy as muchas much as previous batches.

Tangerine Wheat by Lost Coast Brewery—at The Mint

There was tons of tangerine aroma and flavour in this dry and thirst-quenching wheat beer.

Chimay Bleue (Grande Réserve) (2017) by Bières de Chimay—at The Mint

Rich notes of dates, raisins, cherry, caramel, toffee, apple, pear, clove, pepper. So much alcohol warmth with a drying finish.

Hiatus by Category 12 Brewing—at The Mint

This might be my perfect summer beer. The cucumber and lime combine so perfectly with the earthy, rustic character of the Norwegian yeast.

8 Hop IPA by Rogue Ales & Spirits—at Moon Under Water Pub & Brewery20170826_185443

A big hop bomb with notes of pineapple, grapefruit, pine, earthiness/grasiness. Nice lingering bitter finish.

Morimoto Soba Ale by Rogue Ales & Spirits—at Moon Under Water Pub & Brewery

This was interesting. It didn’t really taste like noodles, but the soba added a bit of nuttiness. Otherwise a little unremarkable.

Hazelnut Brown Nectar by Rogue Ales & Spirits—at Moon Under Water Pub & Brewery

Smooth and malty with a subtle hazelnut flavour that enhanced the nutty notes from the malt.

Cold Brew IPA by Rogue Ales & Spirits—at Moon Under Water Pub & Brewery

The coffee flavour and aroma really came through, while also complementing the hops with bitter and earthy notes.

 

Last Week’s Craft Beer Tasting Notes: Aug 14–20 (27 Unique Beers)

With no beer festivals or brewery crawls, were back down to a slightly more reasonable 27 unique beers this week… well, reasonable for me at least

Don’t judge me!

Bottle and cansIMG_20170817_235824

Rosé de Gambrinus (2016) by Brasserie Cantillon

This was a young sample of the 2016 batch and was ripe with fresh and fruity notes of raspberry and touch of mild funk. The mouthfeel was tingling and effervescent with puckering acidity.

Pretty Much Yeah by Superflux Beer Company

A hazy NE IPA with citrus and passionfruit from the hops with a really smooth mouthfeel from the oats and lactose. I kinda of wish Superflux would branch out a bit, but at the same time, they are so damn good at what they do!

Melodie Raspberry Kölsch by Twa Dogs Brewery

This Kölsch was crisp, refreshing, and fruity. The raspberry was well represented, but I found it a little too sweet.

Market Saturation IPA by Coal Harbour Brewing Company20170816_205701

This was one of the best Coal Harbour beers I’ve had. They nailed the NE style. It was cloudy and smooth with tangerine, pineapple, and melon.

Juicy Double #2 by Foamers’ Folly Brewing Co.

The mango in this double IPA really complemented the citrusy hop notes perfectly and it doesn’t finish too sweet. However, I slightly preferred the Strawberry version.

Lake City Farmhouse Ale by Dageraad Brewing

This farmhouse ale opened with a beautiful herbal, floral, and grassy aroma, followed by a spicy and herbal palate. It was medium bodied and very effervescent with a dry finish.

IMG_20170820_223323Rhythm Section by Dageraad Brewing & Upright Brewing

This collaboration was a very spicy saison with black pepper, coriander, and a touch of lime. It was floral on the nose with a dry and slightly funky finish.

Solid! by Gigantic Brewing Company

This dry-hopped American wheat ale had nice tropical hoppy aromas of kumquat and orange with a grainy and wheaty body. It finished moderately dry with a touch of bitterness.

Side Cut by Bridge Brewing Company

On of BC’s first NE IPAs, this one was smooth and cloudy with hoppy notes of peach, tangerine,tropical fruits.

Stay Gold by Powell BreweryIMG_20170818_223909

This oat pale ale had aromas of tropical fruits, pear, watermelon, and stone fruit. It was medium bodied with a smooth and creamy mouthfeel from the malted oats and barley.

Olde Winston Smoked Porter by Off The Rail Brewing

This one was very over-carbonated for the style, in fact the bottle blew and spewed foam all over the kitchen counter. It was full-bodied with moderate smoked salmon flavour that overpowered the richness of the malts a little.

White Rabbit Lemon Raz Radler by Russell Brewing Company

The lemon and raspberry flavours in this radler were well-balanced, but it was a little too sweet for me.

Blazing World by Modern Times BeerIMG_20170817_224007

This red ale had hoppy aromas of grape and gooseberry over a light bready malt backbone. It was really dank and highly aromatic.

Woodland Sour Saison by Coal Harbour Brewing Company

This saison was moderately sour with complex notes of orange peel, coriander, and peppercorn. It was medium-bodied with a nice dry finish.

20th Anniversary Encore Series: Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale by Stone Brewing

I aged this once hoppy Belgian strong for two years. The hops notes had fallen off leaving behind bitterness that accentuated the pepper and clove note. It was sort of like a spicy barley wine

20170819_002849Teppistenbier by White Pony Microbrewery

This rich Belgian quad had a complex grainy body with notes of chocolate, toffee, figs, dates, almonds, and plums. It was full-bodied, with a creamy mouthfeel and a dry and boozy finish.

Long Root Ale by Hopworks Urban Brewery

This was a decent pale ale with a touch of peppery spice. It wasn’t exactly mind blowing, but I appreciate the fact that the grain was organic and sustainable.

Hopocalypse Meow by Phillips Brewing Company

IMG_20170820_224217

This 14th anniversary beer was a a big old hop bomb. I got tropical fruit, melon, and resin. Not getting the esters due to the strong hops. It was like Amnesiac’s long-lost brother.

Old Stumpy Pine IPA by Fernie Brewing Company

For a beer calling itself a pine IPA, I was actually hoping for more pine. Sure the hops bring notes of pine, but it would be nice if they added spruce tips or something.

On tap

Spruce Tip by Steel & Oak Brewing—at Smiths Pub

Wow! This was like licking a Christmas tree! The spruce tips were really well represented and complemented by the fruity and vinous Nelson Sauvin hops.

Sapperton Anniversary Beer (2017) by Steel & Oak Brewing—at Smiths Pub

This was really nice for a lager. It was moderately tart with notes of peach, apricot and plum. Light-bodied and super refreshing.

Jasmine IPA by Steamworks Brewing Company—at Smiths PubIMG_20170815_232009

The jasmine mainly comes through on the nose. The body was more spicy than anything and it finished quite bitter.

Antwerpen by Dageraad Brewing—at Smiths Pub

This was a fantastic triple with a nose of Earthy and herbal noble hops and floral alcohol. The body was spicy and fruity with a touch of pepper, coriander,  banana, and pear. The finish was warming and dry.

Tropical Tart Ale by Steamworks Brewing Company—at Smiths Pub

This was a moderately tart kettle sour with notes of passion fruit and pomegranate.

Fuzzy Wuzzy Peach IPA by The Parkside Brewery—at Smiths Pub20170820_175714

Not as much peach as one would expect, but on the plus side, it was not sickly sweet. Lots of grassy/piney hops, which was an odd choice.

Coastal Wit- Batch #0044 by Swans Brewery—at The Drake Eatery

Wonderful spiciness from the the grains of paradise and the coriander, counterpointed by a touch of sweetness from the orange peel.

Chocolate Hazelnut Porter by Heretic Brewing Company—at The Drake Eatery

A rich and creamy porter with notes of chocolate, hazelnut, coffee, and caramel. Quite sweet, but not cloying.

 

Last Week’s Craft Beer Tasting Notes—Aug 7–13

20170809_234346Well, shit! That was a really big week. I had a few bottles at home, then went to the pub, then went to the Cowichan Craft Beer Festival, than a rare beer tap takeover at Smiths, then did a Vancouver Brewery crawl.

I think I tried about 83 unique beers. I didn’t have time to make notes on most, as I was with people and was a little tipsy, but here’s about half.

I don’t tend to make notes when I’ve am festivals or at tap takeovers, as time is of the essence.

Bottles & Cans

Bachelor Pad by Twin Sails Brewing

This smooth East Coast Double IPa had hop-forward aromas of pineapple, mango, orange peel, and a touch of dank. The body was hazy and the mouthfeel was incredibly smooth.

Blackberry Festivale by Townsite Brewing

This had a really nice and natural blackberry taste with a touch of banana. It finished medium-sweet. I don’t normally like fruit beers, but this was great!

Lush Crush by Twin Sails BrewingIMG_20170810_234757

For a session pale ale, this one had a really hop-forward aroma, with bright fruity notes of citrus and tropical fruit. The mouthfeel was really silky from the added oats.

Barrel Aged Ale Refermented With Rhubarb by Kettle River Brewing

This one-year barrel-aged beer had a light rhubarb flavour with hints of oak and red wine. It was a touch tart with and a dry finish.

White & Lazy IPA by Foamers’ Folly Brewing Co.

This white IPA had hoppy citrus and tropical fruit notes on the nose. The body was wheaty and slightly spicy with a nice dry finish.

Black Sheep by White Pony Microbrewery

This imperial stout was rich and creamy with roasted malt flavours and notes of caramel, molasses, chocolate, caramel, and dark fruits. The finish was dry and quote boozy.

Berliner Geist by Strange Fellows BrewingIMG_20170812_020050

This first first release from the Strange Fellows 2017 Fellowship programme was a mildly sour gose with a touch of funk and hints of vanilla and oak. It was refreshing and effervescent.

The City Never Sleeps by Gigantic Brewing Company

This black saison had toasted malt notes of coffee, liquorice, and dark fruits with hints of saison yeast spiciness and a dry finish.

The Great Grätzer by Moody Ales

This smoked wheat ale had moderate peaty smokiness with a wheaty body and a touch of umami. This finish was dry and dusty.

Two Evil: Pachamama Porter by Two Roads Brewing & Evil Twin Brwing

This collaboration was brewed with  sweet potatoes, purple mais and aji panca chili peppers. It was mildly spicy and quite sweet with a touch of starchiness, along with roasted malt flavours of coffee and chocolate.

Antwerpen by Dageraad Brewing20170813_151008

This is a fantastic triple with a nose of Earthy and herbal noble hops and floral alcohol. The body was spicy and fruity with a touch of pepper, coriander,  banana, and pear. The finish was warming and dry.

Light Saison by Field House Brewing Co.

This light saison was mildly tart with a touch of saison yeast spice and a hint of citrus from the lemongrass.

On Tap

The Abyss by Deschutes Brewery

This is possibly one of the best imperial stouts in the world. It had complex and intese notes of bourbon, molasses, liquorice, coffee, chocolate, oak, and a hint of red wine. The finish was boozy.

Blackberry Berliner Weisse by Strathcona Beer Company20170813_205342

This one had a decent blackberry flavour, and was tart, sweet, and fruity. It was a little too sweet thoughout for me and everyone else who tried it.

Must Be Dreamin’ by Twin Sails Brewing

This double IPA was brewed with grape must. The Pinot Noir grapes really came through and complement the fruity/citrus notes from the hops.

Cash Only by Twin Sails Brewing

This East Coast DIPA was super cloudy and smooth with notes of orange peel, melon, and pine. It was dangerously crushable for a beer with 10.3% ABV.

Raquira by Andina Brewing Company

Roasty dark malts with an interesting tropical fruitiness.

Ocaso Evergreen Red Ale by Andina Brewing Company

Piney and spicy with roasty caramel malt.