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mori
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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by mori » Sun Oct 27, 2019 6:36 pm

On Friday I went to a brewery/taproom that was new to me in Rochester, MN. I have been to over 100 different breweries and always make mental notes on how I would do things differently. This brewery did everything perfectly, they even had two beer engines, and I could not find fault until it came to the actual beer. It was very mediocre. But beer in that city is relatively mediocre to outright poor.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Sun Oct 27, 2019 8:53 pm

mori wrote:
Sun Oct 27, 2019 6:36 pm
On Friday I went to a brewery/taproom that was new to me in Rochester, MN. I have been to over 100 different breweries and always make mental notes on how I would do things differently. This brewery did everything perfectly, they even had two beer engines, and I could not find fault until it came to the actual beer. It was very mediocre. But beer in that city is relatively mediocre to outright poor.
What did they do so right that impressed when the beer was "meh" at best?

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by mori » Sun Oct 27, 2019 10:14 pm

Jeff V wrote:
Sun Oct 27, 2019 8:53 pm
mori wrote:
Sun Oct 27, 2019 6:36 pm
On Friday I went to a brewery/taproom that was new to me in Rochester, MN. I have been to over 100 different breweries and always make mental notes on how I would do things differently. This brewery did everything perfectly, they even had two beer engines, and I could not find fault until it came to the actual beer. It was very mediocre. But beer in that city is relatively mediocre to outright poor.
What did they do so right that impressed when the beer was "meh" at best?
The layout of the place ticked all the boxes as far as I am concerned. Ordering stations on opposite ends of the bar so people are not queuing up behind people sitting at the bar. Nice glassware and not shaker pint glasses. Variety of serving sizes. Overall open atmosphere with a half wall separating the taproom from the brewhouse. Combination of intimate and communal seating. A large patio although that will go unused for the vast majority of the year around here. Ample parking and access to bike paths. Large modern bathrooms that try not to get too cutesy or delicate. A variety of textures with enough soft to keep sound from echoing. Two beer engines when most breweries will not even brew anything English let alone on cask. Two TV's dedicated to video games. There was a bit of geeky comic book theme going on but the original artwork featuring that theme was very well done.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Kraken » Sun Oct 27, 2019 11:08 pm

Weyley New England Red Ale, by Anonymous Brewing. Yes, I am starting to transition into cold-weather brews. This one's malty and toasted, with only a hint of sweetness that's thankfully extinguished by a bitter hop finish. IDK if this brewery is trying to invent a NERA category or what; it's unfiltered, so arguably hazy, which is a hallmark of NEIPAs. Whatever NERA is supposed to mean, it's a very good fall beer. Will buy again, despite being in one of the uglier cans on the market.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Rumpy » Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:15 am

I've already transitioned to cold-weather beers :D I usually start in October given that's when the cold weather starts gearing up.
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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:04 am

Fall beers are already giving way to winter beers. Sam's Winter Ale has replaced Oktoberfest and I've seen some others. Expecting Celebration Ale any moment now.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Kraken » Mon Oct 28, 2019 11:10 am

Rumpy wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:15 am
I've already transitioned to cold-weather beers :D I usually start in October given that's when the cold weather starts gearing up.
Winter comes late to Boston due to moderating ocean currents. We still haven't had a hard frost, the late trees still have some green leaves, and snow before Tgiving is unusual. Daytime highs are still in the 50s and 60s...so fall weather is really just now settling in -- and, as JeffV points out, fall beers are nearly done for. By the time we get any real winter weather (mid to late Dec), the spring ales will be knocking on the door.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:06 pm

Double Dry Hopped Formerly Known As...American IPA by Werk Force Brewing Co., Plainfield, IL. With a name like that, you'd never guess this beer to be a peanut butter porter, and well, it's not. Citra and Amarillo hops combine to give a rather grassy flavor with an undefined citrus kick at the end. No ABV is listed, so I can't verify this is beer at all, although it apparently gained a recommendation from Beer Advocate (displayed under it's tag at Flight Bottle Shop). I, however, can't recommend an alcohol-free beer and if this indeed contains some, it's not much.

Cool can though (the green one).

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Isgrimnur » Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:14 pm

7.1% ABV
Pineapple - Apricot - Juicy

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:29 pm

Isgrimnur wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:14 pm
7.1% ABV
Pineapple - Apricot - Juicy
So it would have been suitable to give to my son who yesterday asked me "daddy, what does beer taste like?" My response of "heavenly" was lost on him since I'm raising him to be a good Atheist. :twisted:

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Tue Oct 29, 2019 10:51 pm

Citra Slam IPA by Revision Brewing Co., Sparks, NV. The only remarkable thing about this beer is that it's from Nevada, and I can't recall if I ever before had a beer brewed there. At 6.5% ABV, I should put "beer" in quotes. The can holds 16 oz of meh, and that's not necessarily a good thing.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Rumpy » Wed Oct 30, 2019 12:54 am

Jeff V wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:29 pm
Isgrimnur wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:14 pm
7.1% ABV
Pineapple - Apricot - Juicy
So it would have been suitable to give to my son who yesterday asked me "daddy, what does beer taste like?" My response of "heavenly" was lost on him since I'm raising him to be a good Atheist. :twisted:
Ok, now that was funny! :lol:
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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:15 pm

Art of Neurosis IPA by 2nd Shift Brewing, St. Louis, MO. St. Louis is famously known for their incredibly terrible beer scene, thanks to monolithic mass market purveyor of Clydesdale urine. Their craft beer scene is spectacularly meh as well. Art of Neurosis is a decent effort. 7.6% with a rich , fruity flavor this drinks like a DIPA. It went really well with the coconut shrimp I had for dinner.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:24 pm

So Binny's had their occasional $2 off a pick-6 coupon this weekend. i went with the intention of loading up on beers I've not tried before but I think only managed 8 new-to-me out of 12, the selection just wasn't there. Lot's of seasonal stouts, of which I bought a few. Then I had to go blow the budget...first I came upon Ballast Point Victory at Sea Barrel-aged at $14/4. I buy this once a year in honor of my late friend Don, whom among the many games we played over the years Victory at Sea was one of them and I had initially bought this a few years ago intending on sharing it with him, but he was too far in the grips of cancer and we never got to share this together. Then i happened upon 2019 Anchor Xmas Ale -- I missed last year when they sold out well before Football and Turkey Day. Didn't want to miss it again (their recipe changes every year and my friends and I have a long history with this seasonal dating back before craft beer was a thing). And then, finally, the first sighting of Celebration Ale. Naturally, i had to grab a 12. So with the intent of spending $16 on a mixed-12 pack, I walk $60 poorer but the walk-in beer cooler is now operational and well-stocked.

BTW, the Xmas beers were out in force. Didn't see Fistmas yet, though I notice that the Revolution Deth Tar I had last weekend is selling for something stupid like $35/4 pack, limit 1. :shock:

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Fri Nov 01, 2019 8:31 pm

Actual events this evening.
Daughter: "Daddy I want chocolate milk." Make her a glass of Nestle Quick.
Son: "Daddy I want chocolate milk." Tell him to go make it yourself, daughter tries to be helpful, takes Quick out of the pantry and tells her brother, "here you go!"
Daddy: "I want chocolate milk stout."

Chocolate Milk Stout, 4 Hands Brewing, St. Louis, MO. Read what I wrote previously about St Louis Breweries. There's nothing wrong with this beer, with the possible of exception of being weaker than Nestle Quick at a dismal 5.5% ABV. And I do have to say it goes well with Pizza Hut Hershey Chocolate Brownie (no, I didn't buy this, it was abandon here after the party we had last night). It should be no surprise that average complements average -- so the combination actually works, in a very pedestrian way.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by EvilHomer3k » Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:03 pm

Jeff V wrote:
Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:24 pm
And then, finally, the first sighting of Celebration Ale. Naturally, i had to grab a 12.
Me too. It was between that and CBS. I'll probably go back and get the CBS tomorrow.
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bluegrass band of comfort food. - LawBeefaroni

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Kraken » Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:55 pm

EvilHomer3k wrote:
Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:03 pm
Jeff V wrote:
Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:24 pm
And then, finally, the first sighting of Celebration Ale. Naturally, i had to grab a 12.
Me too. It was between that and CBS. I'll probably go back and get the CBS tomorrow.
I seldom see Celebration before Tgiving out here. IDK if that's just on my packy or if it takes longer to reach the East Coast. Now that it's been spotted in the wild I'll swing by the new booze barn and see if they get it any earlier.

(The new booze barn is Total Wine, a regional chain that's like the Walmart of liquor, if Walmart had upscale ambitions. All of the local independents are running scared because nobody beats their inventory and prices. My packy responded by hugely expanding their craft beer section and slightly lowering their prices, so competition = good for consumers, if not for the packies. I'm mostly loyal to the store I've been patronizing for the past 25 years, but TW is on the way home from the T station, not even a mile away, so I have cheated on them a time or two.)

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Scuzz » Sat Nov 02, 2019 1:54 pm

mori wrote:
Sun Oct 27, 2019 10:14 pm
Jeff V wrote:
Sun Oct 27, 2019 8:53 pm
mori wrote:
Sun Oct 27, 2019 6:36 pm
On Friday I went to a brewery/taproom that was new to me in Rochester, MN. I have been to over 100 different breweries and always make mental notes on how I would do things differently. This brewery did everything perfectly, they even had two beer engines, and I could not find fault until it came to the actual beer. It was very mediocre. But beer in that city is relatively mediocre to outright poor.
What did they do so right that impressed when the beer was "meh" at best?
The layout of the place ticked all the boxes as far as I am concerned. Ordering stations on opposite ends of the bar so people are not queuing up behind people sitting at the bar. Nice glassware and not shaker pint glasses. Variety of serving sizes. Overall open atmosphere with a half wall separating the taproom from the brewhouse. Combination of intimate and communal seating. A large patio although that will go unused for the vast majority of the year around here. Ample parking and access to bike paths. Large modern bathrooms that try not to get too cutesy or delicate. A variety of textures with enough soft to keep sound from echoing. Two beer engines when most breweries will not even brew anything English let alone on cask. Two TV's dedicated to video games. There was a bit of geeky comic book theme going on but the original artwork featuring that theme was very well done.
I was recently at a brewery/restaurant that featured not only sampler sizes but also had 8oz pours. The smaller size is nice if you want to try a couple beers or maybe a half pint of that high alcohol (not to JeffV of course) Imperial IPA. It was Figuroa Mountain Brewery in Grover Beach, California.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Scuzz » Sat Nov 02, 2019 1:56 pm

Kraken wrote:
Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:55 pm
EvilHomer3k wrote:
Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:03 pm
Jeff V wrote:
Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:24 pm
And then, finally, the first sighting of Celebration Ale. Naturally, i had to grab a 12.
Me too. It was between that and CBS. I'll probably go back and get the CBS tomorrow.
I seldom see Celebration before Tgiving out here. IDK if that's just on my packy or if it takes longer to reach the East Coast. Now that it's been spotted in the wild I'll swing by the new booze barn and see if they get it any earlier.

(The new booze barn is Total Wine, a regional chain that's like the Walmart of liquor, if Walmart had upscale ambitions. All of the local independents are running scared because nobody beats their inventory and prices. My packy responded by hugely expanding their craft beer section and slightly lowering their prices, so competition = good for consumers, if not for the packies. I'm mostly loyal to the store I've been patronizing for the past 25 years, but TW is on the way home from the T station, not even a mile away, so I have cheated on them a time or two.)
We have a Total Wine here now but it is in an area I try not to frequent. Across town with difficult parking. I haven't seen the Celebration here yet (although they probably have it) but my local grocery store has really downgraded their beer department in the last 6 months.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Kraken » Sat Nov 02, 2019 3:35 pm

Snagged a case of Celebration today. When I told the buyer I didn't usually expect to see it before Tgiving, he said that it will be gone by then and spring ale will coming in.

Not so long ago, Celebration Ale was just about the best beer on the market. Now it's one more among hundreds of great IPAs -- still a treat, but not something one needs to stockpile.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Sat Nov 02, 2019 5:05 pm

Kraken wrote:
Sat Nov 02, 2019 3:35 pm
Snagged a case of Celebration today. When I told the buyer I didn't usually expect to see it before Tgiving, he said that it will be gone by then and spring ale will coming in.

Not so long ago, Celebration Ale was just about the best beer on the market. Now it's one more among hundreds of great IPAs -- still a treat, but not something one needs to stockpile.
Last couple of years it's been lingering until Valentine's Day around here.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Sat Nov 02, 2019 5:10 pm

A tale of 2 Pecan Ales.

Pecan Ale by Main Street Brewing Co., Belleville, IL. Very acidic, I had to check the can again to see if I had grabbed a sour by mistake. Nope, just a very acidic brown ale that doesn't taste much like the pecans they claim to roast themselves. Only 5.5% ABV, but this will not be a seasonal favorite.

Pecan Ale by Abita Brewing Co., Abita Springs, LA. Very nice, pecan flavor strong and present. Rich flavor, not acidic at all. I would like brown ales more if as a species they aimed for this flavor profile. Only abysmal 5.2% ABV holds this back from being a major contender.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Kraken » Sun Nov 03, 2019 12:08 am

Nightmare on Wood Road chocolate brown ale from Widowmaker (which is on Wood Road, duh). I'm always interested in Widowmaker, my most-local brewery (2 easy miles away), but also always hesitant on brown ales, so I took the unusual step of buying just one can.

I would not have regretted buying the whole 4-pack. The flavor strikes a nice balance between bitter and sweet, and the chocolate note just hovers in the background, but it's still got that typical brown-ale flatness that I don't like. Won't buy again. I prefer their peanut butter porter for a winter brew.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Sun Nov 03, 2019 2:11 pm

Brooklyn Oktoberfest, Utica NY. Brooklyn is one of those breweries on par with Sam Adams and the like. Never really good, but not bad either. In a blind taste test between this Oktoberfest, Sam Adams and Goose Island, being blind might be the best option.

Only 5.5% ABV. Slightly nutty flavor, not the worst seasonal I've had but that season is pretty much over (but I needed to fill a pick-12 with something I hadn't had yet and I'm not starting on Xmas beers just yet).

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:24 pm

Vanilla Stout by Big Muddy Brewing, Murphysboro, IL. Everything I've had from this brewery has been commendable, and this is no exception. Flavor wise it's 80% of the Victory at Sea vanilla porter I had yesterday, albeit with half the booze (only 6%). It does come in a sub-$10 6-pack though, so the compromises work out in the end.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by ImLawBoy » Mon Nov 04, 2019 11:51 am

Jeff V wrote:
Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:24 pm
BTW, the Xmas beers were out in force. Didn't see Fistmas yet
They had some at Mariano's this weekend, so it's out there. It was on sale for $8.99/six pack.
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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Scuzz » Mon Nov 04, 2019 3:10 pm

Jeff V wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 2:11 pm
Brooklyn Oktoberfest, Utica NY. Brooklyn is one of those breweries on par with Sam Adams and the like. Never really good, but not bad either. In a blind taste test between this Oktoberfest, Sam Adams and Goose Island, being blind might be the best option.

Only 5.5% ABV. Slightly nutty flavor, not the worst seasonal I've had but that season is pretty much over (but I needed to fill a pick-12 with something I hadn't had yet and I'm not starting on Xmas beers just yet).
For reasons unknown my local grocery store is selling a Brooklyn beer. The lager I think. I haven't paid that much attention because I had no plans to buy it.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Mon Nov 04, 2019 3:22 pm

Scuzz wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 3:10 pm
For reasons unknown my local grocery store is selling a Brooklyn beer. The lager I think. I haven't paid that much attention because I had no plans to buy it.
Don't go out of your way. If you see a mix-pack 12 at a reasonable price, that would be the time to explore any curiosity you might have towards this brewer.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Tue Nov 05, 2019 8:09 pm

Luponic Distortion #13 by Firestone Walker. After 12 previous efforts, you'd think they'd get one right. Maybe California has a market for ultra-light IPAs that don't even hold up to flavored water? The rest of the country uses Coors Light for that. The label claims hints of pina colata, key lime and nectarine. It does have a citrus hint, but it's more along the lines of what you get by dropping a lemon wedge in a pitcher of water.

5.9% ABV - this should not even be allowed to call itself an IPA.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Scuzz » Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:00 pm

Jeff V wrote:
Tue Nov 05, 2019 8:09 pm
Luponic Distortion #13 by Firestone Walker. After 12 previous efforts, you'd think they'd get one right. Maybe California has a market for ultra-light IPAs that don't even hold up to flavored water? The rest of the country uses Coors Light for that. The label claims hints of pina colata, key lime and nectarine. It does have a citrus hint, but it's more along the lines of what you get by dropping a lemon wedge in a pitcher of water.

5.9% ABV - this should not even be allowed to call itself an IPA.
This beer is in almost every bar but other than the first or second versions I haven't found them anything special.

I have heard Firestone's 805 called the Coors of craft beer.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:22 pm

Scuzz wrote:
Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:00 pm
This beer is in almost every bar but other than the first or second versions I haven't found them anything special.

I have heard Firestone's 805 called the Coors of craft beer.
I grabbed another of their beers too, mainly because the DYO rack is pretty tapped out when it comes to beers that are new to me (or that I'm certain not to like). I am not looking forward to it, might choke it down tomorrow though.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Fri Nov 08, 2019 7:13 pm

Vacation day! Took my daughter to Flight Bottle Shop, where she indulged on the donut and juice box I bought her at the supermarket while daddy enjoyed:

You Can't Handle the Juice by Heretic Brewing Co., Fairfield, CA. I've been somewhat disappointed by this brewery in the past, but this is a very good DNEIPA. Clocking in at 8.5% ABV, a pounder of this was a good start to the day.

Galaxie: 503 by Black Lung Brewing Co., Waukegan, IL. A milky white DNEiPA, this is the most opaque of it's kind I've had since Sierra Nevada's Hazy Little Thing. Only 7% ABV, but also a nice flavor, no overkill on the "juice". Had to settle for a 10 oz though because I had to fetch the boy from school...

Last time there I spent $18 on a mix 4-pack of pounders. Today I was expecting similar when the owner offered me a six-pack carton to make it easier to carry. So the six pack I accumulated, plus the $9 Heretic totaled $38. :shock: And then the Black Lung was another $6 or so. Another thing I like about this place though - no tipping. On their big-screen monitor, they explain they pay their employees a living wage and therefore tips are not accepted. However, for those who insist they have a different charity every month that any tips are donated to. There is not a tip line on the credit card receipt -- and this place does not accept cash. I like this place more and more, although as today proved, patronage could prove expensive. But my daughter said afterward she likes the place and had fun!

Dinner tonight is chili. My chili recipe calls for a half-bottle of chocolate stout and hey, Two Brother's North Wind Stout is in season and on sale! 9.1% and less than $10/6, this is an outstanding value beer. The flavor is exactly what I need for the chili, and I really have no excuse why I opened several bottles when only 6 oz was required.

Celebration Ale by Sierra Nevada, Chico, CA. Our favorite holiday seasonal (not, in of itself, a "holiday beer") is back and still awesome. Fresh hop beers are a bright yet not really summery. Only 6.9% ABV, this beer is a spacer for the evening.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by AWS260 » Fri Nov 08, 2019 8:57 pm

Tonight is Goose Island's Juliet wild ale. Really delicious.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Kraken » Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:20 pm

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I was intrigued by a NEIPA imported from CT, by Bad Sons Brewing. Containing no cannabis, it apparently wants to be a marijuana beer; "dank" is its buzzword. Nicely balanced, it's a "haze of sticky, resinous glory." IDK about that, but it goes well with cannabis...maybe that's what they're after. Would buy again.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by disarm » Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:03 pm


Kraken wrote:I was intrigued by a NEIPA imported from CT, by Bad Sons Brewing. Containing no cannabis, it apparently wants to be a marijuana beer; "dank" is its buzzword. Nicely balanced, it's a "haze of sticky, resinous glory." IDK about that, but it goes well with cannabis...maybe that's what they're after. Would buy again.
I tried Doobious a couple weeks ago on draft and really enjoyed it...was my first beer from Bad Sons and liked it enough that I'd like to track down some of their other offerings. As a CT resident, that shouldn't be too hard. Fortunately, there are a ton of great local breweries in CT now.
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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Rumpy » Sat Nov 09, 2019 1:22 am

Mill Street Chocolate Blossom Chocolate Cherry Stout. Good stuff. I like most of Mill Street's stouts, especially their Cobblestone Nitro Stout.
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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Jeff V » Sat Nov 09, 2019 5:20 pm

Stratus Hazy DIPA by Hailstorm Brewery, Tinley Park, IL. This opaque beer has notes of...wait, no, that's not the right word...it's more a symphony of...dirt. 16 oz of 8% dirt and I'm not sure I can even finish this. It is truly wretched...the only thing this beer evokes is being inundated in a mud slide. Bleah.

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Kraken
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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by Kraken » Sat Nov 09, 2019 5:49 pm

Found out today that my packy has a limit of one Lawson's Sip of Sunshine 4-pack after spotting two in the cooler and snagging them both. Oh well, they would never have any without that limit; it's a rare find as-is.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by mori » Sat Nov 09, 2019 7:27 pm

Surly Brewing Black Horsemen in collaboration with Danish metal music artist King Diamond. Described as a Danish-style Black Lager. Not a fan of either King Diamond or this beer, and the last few years, this brewery. Just sort of bland, this is not metal, and not worth the price of entry.

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Re: Whatcha drinking?

Post by disarm » Sat Nov 09, 2019 9:11 pm

I found myself in Cleveland for the day and stopped for lunch at Fat Head's Brewery...nice brew pub with good food and reasonably good beer produced on-site. I had a beer flight with my lunch...eight beers in a flight, so tried the eight different IPAs on their menu. None of them were bad, but several fell into the 'unremarkable' category. The highlight was definitely their Dank Sinatra Triple IPA...most flavorful of the bunch and very drinkable even at 10.4% ABV and 100+ IBU.

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