#SippyTimeBeer Review – @LeftHandBrewing, @BreweryOmmegang and @OrkneyBrewery

IMG_20140301_181925Left Hand Brewing CompanyMilk Stout Nitro – I reviewed this beer a little more than a year ago. I feel like the reviews have improved since then and since this was my first beer on my birthday way back in March, I had to review it again. I’m not sure the Guinness analogy works any more other than the fact that both are stouts. Milk stouts seem like enough of a division to do away with that in my book. I did forget to mention in the North High Brewing review that milk is used because it doesn’t ferment in the brewing process and it keeps it’s sweetness. They use brown sugar and vanilla cream to help sweeten up this beer. They have just enough bitterness from the hops (at 25 IBUs) to offset some of the sweetness. It also comes with an ABV of 6.0%. They distribute a whole lot of places, so even if you don’t like stouts, give the company a try because they have many fantastic beers.

IMG_20140228_211358Brewery OmmegangHennepin – This beer was from my lady in my birthday six pack. This beer is one of their year round offerings. It is a farmhouse saison Golden ale. They use Grains of Paradise in it, which much like Belgian yeast that has a very distinctive flavor that you can’t miss. They also use coriander, orange peel and ginger in smaller dose because you just get hints of them. Those sweet ingredients are offset by a low IBU of 24. The beer itself lives up to the golden name in color. It’s very smooth and crisp going down. For a beer of this style, it has a high ABV at 7.7%.  I’d have to say it’s a very good beer for this time of the year, even if it’s available all year. Find out where you can get beer from this Cooperstown NY brewery here.

IMG_20140228_225831Brewery OmmegangGlimmerglass – I bought the Glimmerglass for a spring beer that was to be an Irish beer substitute for St. Patrick’s Day according to the worker at Kenny Road Market. It wasn’t a substitute for an Irish beer, but that doesn’t mean that it was bad. It is a limited edition beer during that time of the year so technically she may have a point. If I called the Hennepin smooth and crisp, I’m not sure how to describe this beer. It comes off lighter and less full bodied, but just as crisp and tasty. Without the Grains of Paradise, the light flavors of pear, apple and citrus come through more. It was hard for me to notice the spice that is said to be in there. This beer doesn’t pack much punch at 5.2% ABV. I wish this beer were more of a summer selection instead of spring as it would work very well in warmer weather. It’s a good beer though so if it’s still on the shelves or in a bargain aisle like Kenny Road Market has, go and grab some.

IMG_20140227_232402The Orkney BrewerySkull Splitter – I haven’t had a lot of foreign beers. I didn’t actually chose this one as it was a birthday six pack that I had received from my lady. I’m quite happy to get this craft beer from England. The company has a viking motif for all of their products.  Dragonhead Stout, Dark Island Reserve Ale and photos of Stonehenge like rock formations are among their imagery. Skull Splitter is named after Thorfin Einarsson, the 7th Earl of Orkney. This beer is their heaviest of the lot at 8.5%  ABV. It’s not the highest but it will do the trick especially with how smooth this malty goodness was. Though I didn’t notice the flavor, they use figs and dates in this beer. They use East Kent Goldings hops to bring about a light bitter note. If this doesn’t make it to my top five beers tasted this year, I’ll be surprised. Considering it’s English, I’m pretty sure anyone can find this beer.

#SippyTimeBeer Review – A Round Table of Drunks: Part 1

Everyone loves a good year end list. Here at Stunt Granny, we’re no different. It’s fun to yell at paper or a computer screen and tell the person who can’t hear you that they’re an idiot. I’ve rounded up quite a few of those idiots to give their opinion on beer. Since I have a tendency to be a beer omnivore, it’ll be good to have opinions from people who tend to stick to families of beers. The other upside to this list is that these people are from all over this fine country of ours so you don’t have to listen to me yammer about beers from Ohio or more specifically Columbus. Keep in mind that I asked these drunks to list their five favorite beers from this year, not their five favorite beers of all time. Could I put Eliot Ness on my list? Sure but that seems silly since most people that read this site know it’s an easy top five beer for me. Part 1 will be friends of the site, while part 2 will be the staff:

Fred – Columbus, OH

Victory DirtWolf Double IPA 2

Beer: DirtWolf
Brewery: Victory Brewing Company
Location: Downingtown, PA
Style: Double IPA
ABV: 8.7%

Brewed using whole flower Chinook, Citra, Mosaic, and Simcoe hops. The DirtWolf is a great IPA and I am overjoyed that this beer will be available year round unlike most other DIPA’s like the Lake Erie Monster.

Beer: Engine 20 Smoked Pale Ale
Brewery: Great Lakes Brewing Company
Location: Cleveland, OH
Style: American Pale Ale
ABV: 6.0%

I am a big fan of smoked beers and this one is a good example of a pale ale as well as a very good smoked ale.

SouthernTierWarlockBeer: Warlock
Brewery: Southern Tier Brewing Company
Location: Lakewood, NY
Style: American Double / Imperial Stout
ABV: 8.6%

Even stronger than the Pumking, the Warock has great malt, plenty of hops and a great finish.

Bell's Hopslam Ale

Beer: Hopslam Ale
Brewery: Bell’s Brewing, Inc.
Location: Kalamazoo, MI
Style: American Double / Imperial IPA
ABV: 10.0%

Probably one of the best beers ever sold. Brewed with honey. Hoppy as hell. Say no more.

Seventh Son Humulus Nimbus

Beer: Humulus Nimbus
Brewery: Seventh Son Brewing Co.
Location: Columbus, OH
Style: American Pale Ale
ABV: 6.0%

A very solid IPA for an almost brand new microbrewery, it is definitely worth a try.

Ron – Richmond, VA

southern-tier-pumking-reviewBeer: Pumking
Brewery: Southern Tier Brewing Company
Location: Lakewood, NY
Style: Pumpkin/Yam Beer
ABV: 8.6%

I’m a fan of all things pumpkin especially pumpkin ale’s.  This one is top’s on my list and is a must drink for anyone who likes pumpkin ales. This one is extremely smooth, lightly spiced, and as you drink it you can imagine a good pumpkin pie. This one is a very limited release so if you find it in the stores you need to stock up!

Shipyard PumpkinheadBeer: Pumpkinhead Ale
Brewery: Shipyard Brewing Company
Location: Portland, ME
Style: Pumpkin/Yam Beer
ABV: 4.6%

This is my second favorite pumpkin ale.  Similiar to the the Sothern Tier, it drinks extremely smoothly and is lightly spiced.  It isn’t quite the pumpkin pie tase, but pretty darn close.  Fortunately, this one isn’t quite as well known and seems to have a wider and longer release cycle so it can be easier to find, but I still stock up.

schlafly-pumpkin-aleBeer: Pumpkin Ale
Brewery: Schlafly Beer (The St. Louis Brewery)
Location: St. Louis, MO
Style: Pumpkin/Yam Beer
ABV: 8.0%

This one I’ve only found in a local restaurant and it was pretty tasty as well, though not quite as smooth as my top two.

Strangeways Gourd

Beer: Gourd of Thunder Imperial Pumpkin Porter
Brewery: Strangeways Brewing
Location: Richmond, VA
Style: Pumpkin/Yam Beer
ABV: 9.2%

Generally speak, I’m not a big Porter fan, especially Pumpkin ones, its something about the combination of pumpkin spices and the dark rich flavors of a porter that throws me off.  This one had none of that and was surprisingly tasty and is now on my list to have next year.  Since this brewery was local and I was in their tasting room when I had it, I decided growler to go was well worth it.

Hardywood Gingerbread StoutBeer: Gingerbread Stout
Brewery: Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Location: Richmond, VA
Style: Milk/Sweet Stout
ABV: 9.2%

For this year, this is my one and only NON-Pumpkin.  This is produced by a local brewery and it is one of the brews that made them “famous” as it was rate 100% by beer advocate magazine.  It is quite simply Christmas in a bottle and pretty much can ONLY be purchased at the brewery or on tap around town.  Last year, friends helped me obtain a few bottles, but this year my wife and I stood in line to pick our my stash for the holidays.

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#SippyTimeBeer Review – @3Floyds, @ElevatorBrewing, @LeftHandBrewing and @OhioBrewing

3 Floyds Robert the Bruce

In order to play some form of catch up, I’m going to start reviewing four beers a week. When I was talking to Jeremy last week, I realized I was at least 27 beers behind. I may add a second posting per week. I definitely have a bad beers article in mind for the future.

3 FloydsRobert The Bruce Scottish Ale – My neighbor Fred loves to talk about 3 Floyd’s. He’s been to the brewery in Muenster Indiana and has introduced me to any number of their flavors. This one I found on my own though but got it because of good previous experiences. I’m glad I took the chance because this is easily one of the best beers I’ve had this year. It’s already on the short list for Best Beers of 2014 that I’ve tried, which will be posted in about a month. Don’t worry, I’ve got a round table of drunks who have treated their liver as poorly as I have so it won’t be just my perspective for a change. Back to Robert the Bruce which has two different types of malt in it with a dash of hops to offset it. It’s official that I’ve got a soft spot for beers with plenty of malt. It’s got a punch at 7.0% alcohol too. They only distribute in Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Ohio and Wisconsin. If you live nearby one of these states, it’s worth the trip to drink this beer.

Elevator Brewing CompanyHeiferweizen – Elevator was the first microbrewery I went to in town. Since they have a cow on the label to this beer, so they call it Heiferweizen. That’s the only thing that makes this beer different from a regular hefeweizen. It has the familiar banana and clove flavors that comes from the yeast. I’m not cool with their suggestion that you add a lemon to the beer. It’s plenty good to drink by itself.

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#SippyTimeBeer Review – Great Lakes, Left Hand & Samuel Adams

Left Hand Good Juju Great Lakes Lake ErieGreat Lakes Brewing CompanyLake Erie Monster – I have covered this beer before for the Memorial Day weekend beers. I heeded my own advice and grabbed one for that weekend in a pick a six pack. This Imperial India Pale Ale is quite tasty and has just the right amount of hops. Great Lakes says that there’s lot of hops in this beer but the extra heaping of malt mellows it out. It’s hard to go wrong when you buy from this company. Be glad they discontinued Grass Roots Ale though. Yikes.

Left Hand Brewing CompanyGood Juju – This beer is a pale ale that hides any hops flavor by loading up on ginger. It has the spicy bite that ginger provides in food. I’m not a fan of it in beer. Even though Left Hand is a great company, this beer gets a boo from me.

Samuel AdamsSummer Ale – This company is probably the first microbrew that I had. Their standard Boston Lager was an early go to. I’ll have to review that at some point. Anyway, after helping my girl’s parents clean up their back yard, they provided me with a tasty beverage. This beer is typical of what I thought of when summer beers were given to me. It’s an ale that puts lemon in it so that it feels more refreshing. The problem with that is the fact that I’m not the biggest fan of lemon. At least in beer. I’d take a tasty lemonade over most summer beers. Luckily, Sam Adams know how to dial back the lemon to not make it overwhelming. I’m still not the biggest fan of this beer but it’s better than most.

Doesn't the neighbor's yard look nice?

Doesn’t the neighbor’s yard look nice?

I follow Chef Michael Symon of Iron Chef America & The Chew fame because he’s from Cleveland. He sent out a tweet earlier this week about how he enjoys sour beer then linked to an article in The New Yorker. I’ve had a couple of sour beers recently from Russian River so I will give my opinion on the article when I get around to reviewing those beers.

From the Brewer’s Association, craft beer in America has grown 15% in sales and 13% in volume. Good news, better quality beer for every one! Enjoy a Sippy Time Beer or two this weekend! -Kevin

#SippyTimeBeer Review – Flying Dog, Left Hand Brewing & Shiner

Flying Dog Left Hand Shiner

Do you need to try a new beer this weekend? Well I’m just the guy to tell you what choices you have out there. I’m going to be trying out some new beers when I head out to Woodlands Tavern for Happy Hour this evening. So I’ll have even more suggestions next week.

Flying Dog BreweryUnderdog Atlantic Lager – Are you normally a Budweiser guy? Don’t like those foreign beers like Leinenkugel? That’s an inside joke. Do you want to look cool by having a micro-brew with that same old taste? I give to you Underdog Atlantic Lager. It works as beer but the flavors and looks aren’t complex.

Left Hand Brewing Company400 Pound Monkey – This beer is an English style India pale ale. If more IPAs were like this one, I’d drink more of them. My assumption drinking this beer was that they were going to have 400 pounds of hops in the bottle. I was wrong. On their site, they say they use a different color hops which definitely has a different flavor. They also use a bready malt which may make the difference too. If you’re not a big IPA guy like myself, drink a bunch of these then go fling your poo like a 400 Pound monkey.

Shiner BeersFM 966 Farmhouse Ale – Make sure you hit their website. It’s one of the better ones that I’ve seen. They “pour” you a beer when you want to look at which type. This beer is named after the road from Shiner, Texas to the farm market. It was meant to be a spring beer. It’s refreshing like spring. It is similar to the Atlantic Lager but it packs more punch in the flavor department without being too complex.

Enjoy a Sippy Time Beer this weekend. -Kevin

#SippyTimeBeer Review

Victory_Stoudts_Left Hand

To absolutely no one’s surprise, I will be going to the Columbus Winter Beerfest tomorrow. I’m hitting it with my lovely lady who is going to be the designated driver for myself and my neighbors. There will be 60+ breweries on hand with a selection of 300+ beers. It’s not quite the Great American Beer Festival in Denver but I’m sure it’ll be a good time. I won’t put all of those beers into one post but I will stockpile some information. On to what I had recently.

Victory Brewing CompanyPrima Pils – I have had good beers from Victory. This one was not one of them. It’s a pilsner that tastes, well, like a pilsner. You could do worse than buy this one. I’d take it over a Beck’s or Grolsch but not a Heineken or Warsteiner. Here’s TheFullPint review which is about as lengthy as mine.

Stoudt’s Brewing CompanyOktober Fest – This beer is an amber lager so it should be in my wheel house but it wasn’t my favorite Oktoberfest beer that I’ve had in the past twelve months. It was better and smoother than the Prima Pils but it didn’t have much more punch than it. I didn’t taste much of the sweetness or the hops that they say are in there. I’m not a hops guy so while I will drink IPAs, I tend to steer away from them. Maybe the hops was hitting me and I didn’t realize it. TheFullPint review.

Left Hand Brewing CompanyMilk Stout Nitro – This beer was my favorite of this batch. I love Guinness, especially when you get to drink it at the Brewery in Dublin, Ireland. I’ll save the rest of that story for later. I mention Guinness because I would call this an American version thereof. It has that nice rich taste but has a touch of sweetness from the milk. I’d venture a guess that they use condensed sweetened milk. This drink has a widget of nitro just like Guinness too so you have to wait for it to settle. It is worth the wait. I drank it at as fast as a stout can be drank. Highly recommended. TheFullPint review. -Kevin

#Wrestlemania Weekend – Cbus Edition

Just in case you're confused like Mr. Maes, that is my foot. Sleeping from left to right, Jer, Kia and Cayenne.

I thought we’d get more work done for the site with Jeremy & I in the same spot. We didn’t have to worry about taking the MARTA and using at least thirty minutes of time to do so. We weren’t going to have to hunt for food like we did in Atlanta after the hour of 8:00 PM. We ended up finding out that showing off a cool city that you’re familiar with takes up more time than going to CNN, the World of Coca-Cola and the Georgia Aquarium. The last time Jeremy was here was four or five years ago. I was limited by my ex-wife who didn’t like to try new places. I’ve been liberated and wanted to show it off to the first friend that has been to Columbus who hadn’t lived here before. We talked plenty of wrestling while we were out so I’m going to give you a preview of where you’d go if you stopped in to visit along with some additional thoughts on wrestling we talked about.

Friday Gallo’s Tap Room – They offer a number of microbrewery beers on tap so it has Sippy Time Beer Award written all over it. On top of that, they’ve got some seriously delicious bar food. The menu isn’t that long (check the link) but it’s high quality bar food. Sippy Time Beer Choice – Columbus Brewing  Company India Pale Ale. Wrestling thoughts: Our plan for this evening was to do a round up this evening. We didn’t take down many beers, but after an eight hour drive for him and the woman and a full day of work & week for yours truly led to a sleepy crew. There wasn’t much to update than the players in Team Johnny vs Team Teddy. It wouldn’t have changed my pick for Team Johnny. I’ll hope that his character does as well as he did on Monday. And also takes up as much air time. I have a doubt on the later because we’re not going to have a Rock farewell speech or a appearance by Brock Lesnar after a lengthy John Cena promo.

SaturdayLa Casita & Bob’s Bar – The former is the finest of three Mexican establishments in my neighborhood and the only place that Jeremy had been to previously. We took down some good grub and a pitcher of tasty margaritas. At Bob’s Bar, they serve over two hundred beers with thirty six of them coming off a tap. Sippy Time Beer Choice – Left Handed Brewing Company – Smoke Jumper, an Imperial Porter. Wrestling Thoughts: I was expecting to watch the Hall of Fame ceremonies this night. It wasn’t until Monday Night Raw that it was noted the show would be aired on Monday. I still haven’t watched it. I’m sure it’ll be fun but I wish more of inductions were in there. We were at the event in Atlanta and it last approximately three hours. An hour of TV will not do the ceremony justice.

SundayBabushka’s, homemade meatballs & a Great Lakes Variety Pack – Babushka’s is a Polish joint that opened up about a year ago. I hadn’t had the chance to eat there yet so I figured the Pollack in Jeremy would be a good excuse to try it. It was some good food so long as you like cabbage or pierogies. After getting fat and sassy, we took a nice walk then grabbed the variety pack on our way back to my place. I still have plenty of meatballs left. Good thing I have a large freezer. I have five quarts of tomato sauce in there too. It’s a big undertaking and quite delicious. The twelve pack had Edmund Fitzgerald, Dortmunder Gold and Commodore Perry but my Sippy Time Beer Choice – Eliot Ness. It’s one of my top five favorite beers. I know I’ve pimped it before but I’ll repeat myself. Wrestling Thoughts: The jokes that didn’t make it into the blog were too many because context is everything. I hope you had a good crew to watch. It would have been nice if my neighbors were wrestling fans but they were a nice addition to the crew. After having re-watched the whole thing, I still think this show is in the B-/C+ area. Good but not great, it would have been fun to get Dusty on audio with his take on Undertaker versus HHH and the card as a whole but my week hasn’t been any less busy without Jeremy & his woman around. Hence this going up on Friday.

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