It has been awhile since I have had a variety case. Pennsylvania has weird laws concerning six pack sales and all of that. You have to go to a state store to get liquor and/or wine. Go to a beer distributer if you want to get a case or a keg. And finally go to a bar or a few select grocery stores with “restaurants” inside of them that have a liquor license if you want to get a six pack or a single bottle. I have a feeling that these laws will be changing within the next few years, but living in Texas is a whole different story.
When I first moved here Lubbock was completely dry. A month an a half after living here they legalized alcohol sales in the city limits. Now any place that sells food mostlikely sells beer and wine as well. A side note, Lubbock has a minimal beer culture but a very large wine following. Go figure. I like to attribute Lubbock going dry to wet to myself, because, let’s face it, before I moved here it didn’t happen. After I moved here it did.
Anyway I was browsing in the local upscale super market and came across a variety 12 pack (half a case) of Flying Dog beers. Inside were five different examples of there beer. For $13.99 I grabbed the case right up. Flying Dog started as a brewpub in Colorado but has since shifted to a production brewery in Frederick, Maryland. Weird, and they will be the first ones to claim that as well. Anyway, in celebration of getting to try a whole bunch of new beers for one low price. I am dedicating this week as Flying Dog Brewery week here on Brewery Reviewery. For the next five days I will review each of the five beers that came in the case.
BeerTap TV has recently changed their “rating policy.” If you refer to my previous post on rating beer you will get a better idea of where this post is coming from and also why there are no ratings on this site. Anyway, BeerTap TV made a change where they are not rating the beers in the traditional manor, bur rather giving them a 1-5 scale in terms on your own walk in knowing and understanding craft beer. A one for example your be your basic Bud Light or dozens of other clones of that beer. Where a five might be Dogfish Head’s 120 Minute IPA. Basically as you taste more and more craft beer your taste buds evolve and beers that might of blown you away when you first started getting into the hobby, might not anymore.
For me personally, if I had half of the beers I am drinking now a few years ago, I would not of enjoyed them or appreciated them as I do today. The scale they are using a based on white water rafting and the different classes of rapids that you would experience. A newcomer to rafting should not be in rapids that have lots of rocks and other hazards because they will be eaten up by them. I think the crossover to craft beer is a good one.
In my previous post on beer ratings, Scott from The Brew Club talked about the ratings they make on their website. Essentially he pointed out that the ratings on their site are not meant to be the end all of a beer, but rather their own personal rating, more or less for them. Fair enough and I can totally understand that. In fact, when I first started this site I put a lot of thought into a ratings scale, but I never ended up using it for reasons I have already mentioned. I still don’t think that a ratings scale will ever be coming to Brewery Reviewery, but it is nice to see that some usable scales out there exist. Below is the ratings scale of what I originally come up with for this site, it is based on how much of this beer I would drink (goes from bad to great)
Taking seat at the brewery
I thought it was clever at the time and I am sure it has been used all over the place well before I thought of it. Well, I mainly just wanted to point out a few other thoughts on beer reviews and such. Again, nothing like this is coming to this site, but I am glad to see that there are ratings scales out there that don’t really judge the beer.
When my wife and I look our honeymoon to Portland, Oregon we had our first taste of Full Sail beers. Since living in Texas, I have gotten to taste them more regularly since they distribute here. Full Sail Brewing Company is based out of Hood River, Oregon and is completely employee-owned by 47 employees. Full Sail Amber is one of my favorite amber beers, in fact I think it may be the most classic example of an American Amber Ale out there. These guys don’t mess around when it comes to making quality beer.
Full Sail Pale Ale pours a bright amber color with a nice white head that lasts all the way through. As you expect from a pale ale it is perfectly clear. The nose has some nice hoppy aromas with bits of sweetness from the malt and also a few bready smells as well. Very clean and nice to say the least.
On the taste of the beer you will get the malt sweetness up front, with come bread/caramel, then followed by the hops. The hops are very crisp and leave easily and without any fuss. Some of the bread flavors hang around long after the hops are gone, which I really enjoyed. Unlike some Pale Ales that try to be something special, this one seems to take a straightforward approach and succeeds very well. The whole KISS principle worked very nicely here. The balance was perfect and the taste is everything a pale ale should be. Unlike an IPA where the hops leads the way (but should still be balanced) a pale ale can be slightly hop forward or slightly malt forward. This one leads a bit towards the hop end, but the balance is right there.
This brew is medium bodied and is slightly creamy. In terms of drinkability it is spot on. A wonderfully drinkable beer great for any time of the year. As I said before nothing on this beer jumps out at you and says this is something “wild and crazy” but it is a great example of a wonderfully brewed pale ale. I highly recommend it, I don’t think you will be disappointed. Continue reading →
Hello long lost beer website. It has been a busy time around here. We are going to be moving back to the east coast, Delaware to be exact, and I was recently back home (PA) to attend my sisters graduation from college. All in all a lot of good things are happening right now. During the hours I spend on the plane I spent a lot of time catching up on some books. Homebrew books to be exact.
One of the book (I really don’t remember which one) was talking about ways to make your beer more complex. It can be done in a number of ways; specialty malts, different base malts, etc. All of these are well and good, but I finally got around to trying something that I have wanted to do for awhile now. Mix homebrew.
For some reason it never really occurred to me to mix and match and come up with something that should taste good. I had a pale ale that I had made, which came out a bit too caramely and my Winter Warmer which is super dark and tasty. My Winter Warmer really ended up being more of a strong stout, mainly becasue I didn’t add any spices like I was originally thinking of doing. I was have a beer on the couch watching the Flyers and decided to make a half and half with my two homebrews.
I have to say, I liked what I tasted. The hops from the pale ale gave the stout some more kick and the caramel helped round out the body of the stout a bit more. The stout helped mask all of the caramel and gave a wonderful richness to the beer. In all the sum was better than the parts. I might start trying to do this more (once I brew again that is) with styles that should compliment each other or maybe even something that doesn’t. Who knows. Homebrew is all about making something that you enjoy drinking and can be proud to call your own.
As I have said before I am a sucker for a good name and/or a good looking beer bottle. In this case, Terrible had both. When I saw this beer sitting on the shelf at the local beer store, I knew I had to get it. I mean how can you pass up a beer with the audacity to have the name Terrible. And the bottle wasn’t too shabby either; simple, clean, and attractive.It is also brewed by Unibroue Quebec, Canada.
On pouring the beer it comes out a nice dark brown. There is a tan, almost redish head, that quickly faded back into the beer. I was somewhat surprised that it went away so quickly as most Belgian beers have ample amounts of head. Maybe it was just the 10.5% ABV that thinned it so quickly. On the nose I fist noticed how sour it smelled. I believe that it came from the dark chocolate notes that I later tasted, but I was a bit surprised to smell them in there. Other aromas came out of some nice malty sweetness and the ever present Belgian yeast strain.
The taste was complex and pleasant. The sourness was there and so was the malt, but there is also a lot more to be found. Those chocolate notes that I talked about before are sure in there, but not over powering. Heat is there to be sure, but at 10.5% that should be expected. Terrible had a few peppery notes as well and judging by previous Unibroue ales that I have had, it is part of their signature yeast strain. I also got some almost bourbon notes in there as well that I didn’t expect, but rather enjoyed.
The mouthfeel is medium and lighter than what I would of expected for such a big beer. I really enjoyed it. I’ve had better Belgian Strong Ales, as this is what Terrible is classified as, but I was solid. From what I have read this beer is a limited or special release, so it might be tough to find, but if I can get it in Lubbock, Texas than I would imagine it can’t be to terrible to find. The biggest downside to this beer is that it comes in a 750 ml bottle, which at 10.5%, one bottle is more than enough. I sure enjoyed it and I think you will too if you get the chance. Continue reading →