New Glarus Wisconsin Belgian Red: A Cherry Bomb of a Beer

wisconsin belgian redWisconsin Belgian Red is a tapestry of flavor. This beer is brewed with whole Montmorency Cherries, Wisconsin Farmed Wheat and Belgian Roasted Barleys, lagered in oak tanks and balanced by Hallertau hops we aged in our brewery one full year.

Over a pound of Door County Cherries in every bottle makes this beer uniquely “Wisconsin.” So unique, in fact, that we applied for a patent. Expect this beer to be ruby red, with a medium body that is highly carbonated and intense with cherry flavor and bouquet. Serve your friends Belgian Red in a brandy snifter or champagne flute and toast life with beer from the land of Wisconsin.

Final Rating: 4.38/5

look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a Lindeman’s flute. Acquired in a trade with moonman14, thanks!

Pours a hazy, effervescent dark amber body with a big gushing light pink head that reduces quickly at first, then slows down to leave frothy foam which sticks around for a while. Leaves nice lacing.

Aroma is BIG cherries.. cherry candy, marischino cherries, all cherry! Slight metallic aroma in he background.

Taste follows the nose, big cherries, pretty sweet but not cloyingly, slightly tart finish. It might be my imagination but I got a hint of cinnamon on the finish. High carbonation, extremely refreshing and tasty. Medium body, slightly syrupy.

I’m a sucker for a cherry bomb, and WBR didn’t disappoint.. straight cherries all around. Comparable to Lindemans but a little less sweet and more full body. If you like a lot of cherry flavor, seek it out

Jester King’s Provenance with Clementines and Tangerines!

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“We are pleased to introduce Jester King Provenance — a series of three farmhouse ales brewed with different combinations of winter citrus fruit. The first of the three batches was brewed with the zest and juice of grapefruits and oranges. The second batch incorporated the zest and juice of lemons and limes, and the third batch used the zest and juice of tangerines and clementines.

All three variations are dry, highly-attenuated, authentic farmhouse ales, brewed with Hill Country well water, malted barley, malted wheat, hops, and fermented with a unique blend of brewer’s yeast, native wild yeast, and native souring bacteria. Their flavors are yeast and souring bacteria driven with the fruits serving as integral components of the fermentation. We don’t add fruit (or fruit flavorings or concentrates for that matter) to filtered and pasteurized beer at packaging time to make what amounts to a beer cooler. Rather, we incorporate the fruit into the fermentation, so that wild yeast and souring bacteria can transform the fruit flavors into something that’s greater than the sum of the parts. For instance, think about the difference between grape juice and wine. Why are the two so different from one another? It’s because the grape juice has been fermented by living microorganisms. We apply the same principle to the use of fruit in our beer. “

My Review:

Final Rating: 4.4/5

look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a Jester King stemmed glass. Acquired in a trade.

Pours a light straw, hazy body with a 2 finger white head that lingers for a while.

Pungent fruity aromas dominate the nose.. tons of citrus, banana, clementine, mango. Spices, cloves, wheat, some barnyard, and cherry.

On the tongue, tart, fruity notes of citrus, oranges, grapefruit , cherry, white wine, and banana come first, followed by spices, bubblegum, caramel malt. Finish is dry.

Mouthfeel is light and drinkable with medium carbonation .

Overall a nice farmhouse ale.. nice, balanced acidity with a delicious, undeniable fruityness. Well done.

Bourbon Barrel Aged Speedway!

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Alesmith’s Bourbon Barrel Ageed Speedway Stout is a huge, bold, rich, dark imperial stout aged with coffee in bourbon barrels for at least a year.

final Rating: 4.5/5

look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into an Alesmith sample glass. Not sure of the vintage, as the bottled on date is smudged, but I think it’s a 2010. Thank you Kevin for this one!

Pours a thick, inkjet, oily body with a 3 finger milk chocolate colored head that reduces fairly quickly to leave a ring of retention.

Smell is inviting and potent – vanilla bean, heavy dark fruit, bourbon, some mustyness (I’m assuming from the age), milk chocolate, some booze in the background.

First thing to hit the tongue is sweet butterscotch, vanilla, sugar cookie, followed by milk chocolate, bitter roasted coffee, with a super charred, roasty malt aftertaste that sticks around for a while. Thick, rich, heavy body with low carbonation.

Very nice, super tasty, rich, complex, and balanced while hitting all the good flavor points of a barrel aged stout. Highly recommendable!

whitechoco

The Bruery’s White Chocolate is monsterous 15% ABV Barrel Aged Wheat Wine with Cacao nibs & Vanilla Beans. It’s only avaiable to Bruery Preservation Society members, good thing I have a hookup!

Final Rating: 3.86/5

look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a Bruery tulip glass. Thanks vitese for the hookup! 2014 edition.

Pours a light, hazy, amber-marmalade body with a big, frothy, off-white head that reduces slowly to leave leggy lacing that sticks around.

Aromas are quite potent and inviting.. white chocolate seems appropriate as aromas of vanilla cake, caramel, toffee, dark fruits, and butterscotch all come into play.

Taste is a different story.. upfront is a muted caramel-toffee flavor, vanilla/bourbon and dark fruit on the follow through, somewhat astringent, almost sourness on the finish. A little boozy.

Mouthfeel is odd… watery, low carbonation, with a medium-light body. I’d expect something a little richer for a beer of this caliber.

Overall I wasn’t impressed with White Chocolate, maybe a couple years will add some richness or balance to it. Will revisit.

Das Uberkind!

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Das Uberkind is an Organic Vielle “Old” Saison aged for months in oak barrels. Unfiltered, unpasteurized, and 100% naturally conditioned.

Final Rating: 4.36/5

look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a Jester King stemmed glass. Acquired in a trade from Trey.. thanks bro!

Pours a super hazy, cloudy dull golden body with a bubbly white head that reduces fairly quickly to a think layer of foam.
Smells sour, tart, citrusy, lactic, musty, and somewhat oaky with hints of farmhouse spices in the background.
Big sour notes of tart citric acid, fruit peels, sour apple, dry champagne, oak, caramel and spices on the finish. The aftertaste is super dry and tart, leaving an acidic sourness on the tongue. Medium carbonation, super drinkable, refreshing and crisp.

A very nicely crafted Wild Ale.. very complex and flavorful, on the acidic side. If you’re into sours, this is a beer to seek out!

Jack’s Abby Cocoa-Nut Barrel Aged Framinghammer

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Big, bold, black barrel aged and aged in bourbon barrels with coconut and cocoa nibs. This baltic porter was aged for extended periods of time.

Final Rating: 4.55/5

look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 500 mL bottle into a Jack’s Abby snifter. Purchased at the Brewery.

Pours a deep brown, nearly black body with a a finger dark brown head that reduces quickly but leaves spotty lacing.

Big coconut aromas take center stage here, along with vanilla, coffee, chocolate. Very, very enticing. I wasn’t expecting that much coconut, complimented by some nice bourbon barrel stout notes.

Taste follows the nose, very coconut-vanilla forward upfront, followed by roasty coffee, chocolate, some dark fruit, vanilla, bourbon, toffee, caramel. finish is roasty and toasty, somewhat bitter. Very nice, complex, and balanced.

Mouthfeel is medium-heavy, but drinkable at 10%. medium-low carbonation. rich and indulgent.

What a great beer. Super complex and tasty, while really nailing the coconut-chocolate flavors. Easy drinker, and definitely a sipper.

Jester King Black Metal, a Farmhouse Imperial Stout

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Black Metal Imperial Stout, a.k.a. Suds of Northern Darkness, a.k.a. Iron Sword, a.k.a. El Martillo del Muerte. Black Metal is a cruel and punishing beer fermented by the sheer force of its awesome will.

Final Rating: 4.2/5

look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a Jester King stemmed glass.

Pours a deep, deep black, inky body with a huge, gushing dark mocha colored head that reduces fairly quickly to a thin layer of foam, leaves a little lacing. Beautiful.

Smell is interesting.. almost smells sour with hints of coffee, milk chocolate, and toffee. Not overly aromatic, tough to get a good analysis here.

Upfront is heavy freshly ground coffee, roasty malt. The follow through is bittersweet chocolate and maybe some farmhouse belgian spiciniess. The finish is hoppy, roasty, and toasted and charred.

Mouthfeel is medium with medium high carbonation. Not super rich, but super tasty.

I liked Black Metal a lot.. my only complaint would be that I don’t get much “farmhouse” character.. maybe a little more spiciness, fruityness, or tartness would have helped. Overall recommendable.

Hill Farmstead Abner: An Imperial IPA to Remember

abner

Next beer up from my Hill Farmstead beer haul this past weekend: Abner. This double IPA sits high on the top 250 beers list and is considered one of the best IIPA’s in the world, which is why I wanted to enjoy it fresh. Here’s an excerpt from the Hill Farmstead website, offering a back story to Abner as many of their beers do:

Abner (1867-1953) is our great grandfather; Hill Farmstead Brewery rests upon the land that was once home to him and his fourteen children. In his honor, this Double IPA is dutifully crafted from American malted barley, a plethora of American hops, our ale yeast and water from Abner’s well. It is unfiltered, naturally carbonated, and double dry hopped. Aromatic and flowery, bursting with notes of citrus and pine, this is the ale that I dream to have shared with Abner.

My Review:

Final Rating: 4.72/5

Poured from a 750 ml growler into a hill farmstead stemmed glass. Best by 9/19, purchased 3 days ago at the brewery!

Pours a super hazy golden body with a big frothy head that reduces slowly to leave thick lacing and chunks of white foam.

Smells amazing – super aromatic with heavy citrus, sweet resin, bursting tropical grapefruit, pineapple.

The taste follows the nose with citrus being the dominant note, followed by tropical fruit, pine, floral hops, and creamy malt with raw hop oil sticking to the tongue, leaving a resinous pine bite on the tongue. Absolutely delicious, perfectly balanced. Medium carbonation with a rich creamy body.

Overall, does Abner live up to it’s high regards? Drink it fresh (this was 3 days old), and the simple answer is a resounding yes. This is up there with heady, and with it’s raw character and perfect balance, it’s safe to say that it can give heady a run for its money.

Hill Farmstead Anna

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Anna is Bière de Miel, brewed with 20% raw wildflower Vermont honey and house saison yeast.

Final Rating: 4.61/5
Appearance 4.65
Smell 4.5
Taste 4.7
Mouthfeel 4.6
Overall 4.5

Poured from a 750 mL into a Hill Farmstead stemmed glass. Acquired in a trade with Keith, thank you kind sir!

Pours a golden yellow, hazy body with a big, white frothy head that rises like a cloud and reduces slowly to leave uneven foam chunks. Leaves heavy lacing.
Smell is complex and inviting, eminating aromas of barnyard funk, lemony citrus, light fruit, spices, yeast, sweet malt, and wheat.
First thing to hit the tongue are notes of tart citrus and fruit skins, next up is a delicious funk characteristic of a good farmhouse ale, old, musty, and leathery. The follow through is banana, wheat, cloves. The finish is tart, dry, and citrusy. Goes down easy, very refreshing and drinkable. Medium-high carbonation.

My first Hill Farmstead saison, and I can see what the hype is about.. this is absolutely delicious, balanced, and complex. Not too tart with just the right amount of funk. Very good representation of the style.

Founders Dissenter IPL

“It’s been a dozen years since we’ve brewed a lager—and, true to form, we’re going big with Dissenter India Pale Lager, our argument in favor of the potential for complex lagers. Brewed with a wide variety of tropical, citrus-forward hops, Dissenter clocks in at 8.7% ABV and 70 IBUs. Our ales are fermented at warm temperatures, but this lager is fermented cold, using a different kind of yeast. The longer brewing process used for lagers gives Dissenter an exceptionally clean finish, allowing you to appreciate the clear beauty of the hops as you would a well thought out, eloquent dissenting opinion. We’ll let this one speak for itself.”

My final rating:

4.35/5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a founders KBS goblet. purchased in Attleboro MA

Pours a clear deep golden body with a 1 finger white head that reduces slowly to leave some lacing. Aroma is SUPER floral and upfront, combined with tons of pine, citrus,and resin. Taste starts off with citrus rind, pine, resin, and the finish is tropical, clean, and juicy. Very drinkable with a light body for 8+%, medium carbonation. I love that it doesn’t leave an astringent bite on the tongue but delivers tons of flavor.

Overall very well balanced, tasty, and drinkable. Well done.

09-08-2014

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