#SippyTimeBeer Review – #Cbus Winter Beerfest – @OhioBeerfest

Me at Winter Beerfest '14A picture is worth a thousand words, right? I’m going to test that theory because this picture will be accompanied by a few words. I went to the Columbus BeerFest and I made a rookie mistake. Saturday started like a normal day. I got up, walked the dogs, my lady & I had breakfast then we planned out the day knowing that the VIP entrance for the Beerfest at 6:30 PM. We normally eat lunch at 2 and dinner around 7:30. To make up for that, we decided to eat lunch at 1 PM so we could eat around 6 before we headed down. We got lunch early but then ended up trying to fit too much in after that and neglected to eat before heading out. It’s a rookie mistake to not eat before going to any beer drinking activity especially a festival in which I would be drinking for four hours. My lady didn’t have a problem because she was the designated driver. Unless you count the two drunks she had to corral. I am trying to talk her into recording a podcast about the night but haven’t do so yet. On the upside, I did record comments about some of the beers before getting to the point of no return. I will review those beers now.

When I took a glance at the useless map, I didn’t see too many breweries I hadn’t tried. Because I can get the local beers, I took them off the list. So a lot of the night was spent drinking offerings from companies. When I first attended the Great American Beer Festival I had a 4 ounce tasting glass. I thought it was too small but it worked out because I got to try a boatload of beers. The mug you see above was 8 ounces, which was also part of my undoing.

21st Amendment BreweryBrew Free Or Die IPA – So the smartest thing to do after not eating before going to a beer festival is to get a tasty beverage that is 7.7% alcohol with a 70 IBUs (bittness unit).  I bring up the later because the Rivertown Hop Barron clocked in at 103 which was too much for me. Now, I know that I can tolerate at least 70 before my “too hoppy” stage hits. I’ll fine tune that over this year. It’s their top selling beer. Although it isn’t my favorite, it’s a good beer.

Founder’s Brewing CompanyImperial Stout – The second smartest thing I did after not eating was get an Imperial (aka Double) stout that clocked in at a mere 10.5% ABV with a 90 IBU. I’m not surprised by the bitter limit as this taste was very heavy in the coffee department. Though I’m getting used to that taste and enjoy it in small dose, this one was too much for me. It drank pretty smooth though.

Green Flash Brewing CompanyDouble Stout – Continuing a trend of heavy ABV beers, I got this one which was “only” 8.8%. It had a low 45 IBU which made it better than the previous stout in my eyes. It drank just a bit smoother.

Triton Brewing CompanySin Bin Belgian Pale – When I read about this one on my Untappd app (difrango11) I saw that it was a sour beer. I didn’t need that heads up though after the first sip of this beer. I’ve had some other Belgian Pale Ale’s recently and they weren’t anything like this one. The Belgian yeast taste was not all that present. The sour tasted was toned down compared to the other sours I’ve had. At the present time though, I don’t think I’m going to fully get into sours like I have IPAs. I did finally drop down to closer to a regular ABV at 6.2% with an IBU of 19. This beer was also the first one from a company I had never drank from before. They’re out of Indianapolis so it’s not far away from me.

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#SippyTimeBeer Review – Flying Dog, Fortune Teller & Green Flash

Flying Dog Pale AleFlying Dog BreweryClassic Pale Ale – I’ve mentioned more than once that I’m not always the biggest fan of India Pale Ales (IPAs) but they are starting to grow on me. This beer dials back the hops and delivers quite a good balance of hops and malt. Their site says that there are grassy and citrus notes but I didn’t get those. I remember a failed beer from Great Lakes Brewing that was called Grassroots Ale. I felt like I was tasting a thinned out version of dirt. I got nothing of the sort from this beer. This beer out of Frederick MD is worth drinking.

Barley’s Smokehouse & BrewpubFortune Teller East India Porter – There is a Barley’s chain around that are serving house brews but as far as I understand this spot is unrelated to the chain. According to their website, IPAs were made for the officers on the ships sailing from England to India since hops are a natural preservative. The crew got a similarly hopped porter. Even with all of the hops, it isn’t heavy handed. It has a dark color but is thinner than most porters. It was another tasty beverage that I’d recommend. It helps that the food is good to boot.

Green Flash Saison Diego

Saison Diego with Sir Perry Berry in the background

Green Flash Brewing CompanySaison Diego – Saisons are quick becoming a favorite. They remind me of hefeweizens because they’re light, have just a hint of fruit and a noticeable spice note. For this beer, the citrus is orange (banana for most hefeweizens) and the spice is ginger (usually clove or cinnamon for the other) which makes for a light, crisp refreshing beer. This beer seems suited for summer so since it’s upon us, give it a try.

Here are a couple of links that I got to read today. Thanks to extra local brewers like Zauber, Hoof Hearted and Four Strings along with Cbus staples Columbus Brewing Company and Elevator Brewing, Ohio has become the #4 state for craft beer production. My liver is not happy with this news. The other link is about how one rates a local beer on the Untappd app, which I have but don’t use. Do I overrate local beers? I don’t think so but it could be a factor. Enjoy a #SippyTimeBeer this weekend! -Kevin

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