I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One.New Seasons Market, the…

I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One.

New Seasons Market, the local grocery chain, is getting good at beer. They’ve been partnering with Portland breweries for exclusive releases. Four Hearts Beat as One is their second collaboration with Gigantic Brewing (the first was the fresh hopped Hop Bot). Four Hearts is a blend of Belgian Quadruples aged in bourbon barrels two years. 

Bourbon is a nice compliment to many beers, but it seems a little brash for Belgian ales. A Belgian Quadruple is fruity, subtle, balanced. Bourbon is hot, sweet, and rough.

But Four Hearts Beat As One pulls off the impossible. This beer is the perfect marriage of whiskey and fruitcake. Up front, Four Hearts is all figgy plums,

picking up a little char off the barrels. In the middle, you get a nice vanilla sweetness. Then the finish gives you the dry bourbon heat. It’s not astringent or anything, just warm and inviting. Very tasty.

Merry Christmas @beersofeurope some lovely goo…

Merry Christmas @beersofeurope some lovely goodies sent in December’s box 😀

Also an #Unboxing from @emelissebeer #WhiteLabel beers.

#Craftbeer #RealAle #Ale #Beer #Beerporn #BeersOfEurope #Emilisse (at Cadoxton, Vale Of Glamorgan, United Kingdom)

The Cat Are My Stash & Pissed on the Xmas TreeRarely has a…

The Cat Are My Stash & Pissed on the Xmas Tree

Rarely has a beer’s label so accurately described it’s contents. Gigantic Brewing’s new winter IPA paraphrases John Mallet at Bell’s Brewery describing Hopslam. It’s surprising to think that five, ten years ago, a dank, piney beer was revolutionary. The catty, harsh flavors of American hops were, for centuries, considered gross by most. But somehow, American brewers convinced us all that this is the taste we wanted, and they weren’t wrong.

I miss the hoppy tingle of an old school double IPA. I miss the grating bitterness on my tongue. Sipping on a pint of The Cat Ate My Stash was a helpful reminder of just how far palates have shifted since I started drinking beer ten years ago. Everything these days is sweet and tastes instantly familiar, like cookies and fresh fruit. It’s nice to taste something a little challenging for a change.

@topoutbrewery THE CONE for Xmas, then……

@topoutbrewery THE CONE for Xmas, then………DOUBLE CONE , what an unboxing! Also in the box Simon Says On!!! Thanks guys and Merry Xmas

#TheCone #TopOutBrewery #TopOutTheCone #DoubleCone #SimonSaysOn #BrutIPA (at Cadoxton, Vale Of Glamorgan, United Kingdom)

Old NewsWhen brewers make English style Old Ales, they often…

Old News

When brewers make English style Old Ales, they often forget the old part. 

Two hundred years ago, Old Ale wasn’t a style, it was an age descriptor. Mild Ale was fresh and ready to drink. Old Ale had been aging anywhere from a few months to a few years. Often the exact same recipe was sold in mild and old condition. The difference in flavor came down to oxidation – which neutralizes hop flavors and gives the beer a sherry-like feel – and the influence of wild yeast – which in small doses adds a funky tang, but can turn a beer into vinegar. Brettanomyces claussenii was first isolated from a barrel of English ale in 1904. Within a few decades, wild yeast was completely eradicated by commercial brewers.

More recently, brewer have been making beers under the Old Ale moniker, which may be strong and flavorful, but lack the funky, fruity flavors of the best aged beer. But the farming brewers at Agrarian have done it right. Colossal Blue was brewed with fire roasted Blue Hubbard squash grown on the farm and aged in rye whiskey barrels for eight months.

Don’t let the squash scare you, this is not a pumpkin ale. Blue has a slightly funky, fruity scent. It is tangy, almost tart, with cherry notes, with a light caramel undertone. The finish is very dry with a quick kiss of whiskey. The barrel aging gives the beer a slight sweetness and rye spice. It’s been a while since I’ve had a rye Manhattan, but Blue Colossal tastes like a nice stand-in. Slightly sweet like vermouth, dry and spicy like rye, with a maraschino cherry for garnish. Very tasty.

@bragdytwtlol just delivered! BOOM! Here is th…

@bragdytwtlol just delivered! BOOM! Here is the #Unboxing video.

#Craftbeer #RealAle #Ale #Beer #BeerPorn #BeerMail #bragdytwtlol #WelshCraftBeer #WelshBeer (at Cadoxton, Vale Of Glamorgan, United Kingdom)

Smoke and MirrorsI try to be open minded. I try to find…

Smoke and Mirrors

I try to be open minded. I try to find something good in every beer style. I try really hard, but I can’t really get behind Rauchbier. Yet, at the bottle shop last week I found a bottle of Schlenkerla Marzen in my basket. I didn’t put it there, but I brought it home anyway.

The smokey lager is native to Bamberg, Germany, but examples are brewed as near as Burnside Brewing and Heater Allen. The key ingredient is malt that’s been dried over a roaring fire. The smoke seeps into the malt and gives the beer it’s distinct scent. Schlenkerla malts their own grain and dries it over beechwood fires.

It smells like ham.

I haven’t eaten meat in a decade, but I still know what bacon smells like, and that’s what the beer smells like. It’s weird and slightly off putting. It’s weirdly savory, and the malty sweetness doesn’t make it any better. It’s really hard to get into the flavor at first. The first sip is weird and fun. The third one is just weird. And yet. I drank the whole thing. I didn’t dump it out. Schlenkerla has been making their smoked beer for six generations, so they must be doing something right. After half a pint the balance comes into focus. I got used to the smoke, even if I never really started to enjoy it.

I’ve enjoyed smoked malt before. In small doses, smoked can give a stout some added depth, but all smoke, all the time is just too much for me.

@gowerbrewery unboxing video for you guys, the…

@gowerbrewery unboxing video for you guys, these bottles look great.

#GowerBrewery #Gower #Craftbeer #RealAle #Ale #Beer #BeerPorn (at Cadoxton, Vale Of Glamorgan, United Kingdom)

MONSTER #BeerMail from Poland!! @browardwochbr…

MONSTER #BeerMail from Poland!! @browardwochbraci #LowcaWestCoastIPA and #ManoloNewEnglandIPA

#PolishCraftBeer #PolishBeer #CraftBeer #RealAle #Ale #Beer #BeerPorn (at Cadoxton, Vale Of Glamorgan, United Kingdom)

Extracting beer from the Oak Barrel at Brouwer…

Extracting beer from the Oak Barrel at Brouwerij De Dochter Van De Korenaar.

#brouwerijdedochtervandekorenaar #dedochtervandekorenaar #Craftbeer #RealAle #Ale #Beer #BeerPorn #BelgianCraftBeer #BelgianBeer