#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 – #Cbus Microbrew Festival

Cbus Microbrew Festival '13

I got to taste a lot of local beer when I went down to the Columbus Microbrew Festival. I had a chance to taste some of my favorites but as usual, I decided to try beers that I didn’t have. Zauber Brewing is still working on a larger facility. Four Strings had a couple of offerings there and I passed on them along with Barley’s, Barley’s Smokehouse & Pub, Columbus, Elevator, Gordon Biersch, Great Lakes, Ohio & Thirsty Dog because I have had and reviewed a number of all of their products. I’ll list in alphabetical order what I did have since I’m not completely sure of the order I drank them in. They were supposed to serve 4 ounce portions but almost everyone was very generous with their pours so I got a good idea of how they all taste.

Buckeye Lake BreweryOctoberfest – It’s that time of year, Oktoberfest & Pumpkin beers are everywhere. I’ll get around to a whole column on pumpkin beers later. This brewery just east of Columbus in, you guessed it, Buckeye Lake has gotten good reviews from my friends in the area. It was finally time to try some for myself though. I’m not sure if it was fair to try a seasonal beer though. If it is indeed seasonal since they don’t even have a beer list on their website. The beer had the red hue that most “Marzen” (March in German because of when they brewed them) beers have. This one has a nice balance of hops and malt to make it taste really good. Thumbs up for my first taste of Buckeye Lake.

Great Black Swamp BrewingWetlands Wheat – This company is based in Toledo, OH so it’s not the most local beer there but it was a new one to me. No one wants to go to Toledo so I’m glad they came to us. I love wheat beers so it was an easy first choice from the company and it delivered. Nice and crisp on a night that was reminiscent of Fall than the Summer.

Great Black Swamp BrewingBull Frog Stout – Because there weren’t any cider beers on tap, my girl friend ended up giving me her tickets. Since they had a hard closing time of 10 PM on Friday, we had to venture back Saturday afternoon to finish using the tickets. You don’t need to twist my arm. Since I had a second crack at this brewery, I went with their Bull Frog Stout which was quite good. Double thumbs up from this company.

Homestead Beer CompanyPine Table Pale Ale – This beer is from Licking County which, like Buckeye Lake, is just east of Cbus. Unfortunately, my memory of this beer is hazy at best. I didn’t take notes and I didn’t Instagram each beer, just their label. No, it wasn’t from drinking too much, this time. It just means I’ll have to try it again.

Homestead Beer CompanyBoat India Pale Ale – On Saturday, I couldn’t remember how many choices Homestead had. When I got to their station, I was talked into trying this beer. “It’s the right balance of hops & malt” said the worker who must have been part of the brewery because he was dead on.I could get into more IPAs if they were like this one.

Hoof Hearted BrewingVoltan – Russian Imperial Stout – Aside from the over played but somewhat amusing name, they do have a goofy centaur as a mascot so these guys know how to market. Of course, it helps when you have a fantastic beer. One of the best beers of the weekend.

Jackie O’s BreweryMatriarch Tri-Pa – I have reviewed two of their beers with another one on my “To Get To” list. I hadn’t seen their Tri-Pa probably because it contains six different kinds of hops and a total of five pounds of it per barrel. It’s no wonder this beer cost me not the normal one ticket for four ounces but three tickets. Another reason the cost was so high was because of it’s 11% alcohol content. If you want to get drunk in style and quickly, have this beer if you can get a hold of it.

Lagerheads BreweryWhite Water Witte – When we arrived Saturday, I grabbed this beer first because the vendors let us in without getting our 21 and over wrist bands. No one cared that we didn’t have them on. Yep, starting to get old. Any way, since it was good and sunny, mid 0s I went with a Belgian wheat beer. Perfect plan to soak up some of the last rays of summer. Come Fall and Winter, that whole sun thing is going to be scarce around these parts. Glad I could enjoy a smooth crisp and citrusy beer. They are located up in the Abbeyville OH which is just south of Cleveland.

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#SippyTimeBeer – Jackie O’s, Ohio Brewing & Boulder Beer

JackieOs_Chomo-lung-ma

Jackie O’sChomo-lungma – I had never heard of this brewery out of Athens, OH before I went to Kenny Road Market this past week. The owner of KRM, who I’ve known since I moved here in ’99, told me it’s one of the best breweries in the country. His co-worker backed him up. I found it a little suspect since I’ve had a number of friends who went to OU and only live forty five minutes from Athens but I had never heard of this bar. The main reason for that is that they hadn’t packaged their beers until recently. Jackie O’s is also in the link below for top 25 breweries in the country. I had no such intentions because I had only picked up the beer because of the packaging. After having the first beer when I got home, I was disappointed with the taste of this honey nut brown ale. I thought maybe I had too high expectations for it. So the next evening, I went for round two. Then had another one when doing the Raw Blog. I only have one left in my fridge after having the six pack for six days. I’m starting to think that it tastes pretty good. From the way KRM talked, this beer wasn’t their best so I’ll look forward to trying more.

Ohio Brewing CompanyVerich Gold – Another company from the Buckeye state but it resides in Akron, OH. People need to drink to live there so I’m not surprised there are a number of good breweries up there. Yeah, it’s a hack joke but it’s true. I have only had two kolsch style beers during my review phase, if memory serves. The third kolsch was finally one that I enjoyed. It was a light beer that gave you malt first with just a hint of hoppy bitterness at the end. The other two beers had too much hops. They are distributed in Akron, Canton, Cleveland and Cincinnati/Kentucky so I’m not sure how I got it. Probably the impeccably stocked Kenny Road Market.

Boulder BeerSweaty Betty – Yet another hefeweizen that is perfect for the hot summer. Betty had some familar friends in the party, a hazy, cloudy look, hints of banana & clove and a whole lot of wheat. I’m looking for more to say but I think it’s pretty much covered. You can find their beers in these states. They don’t cover Ohio but I’m sure I got it from KRM. So not only should you support your local breweries, support the stores that supply tasty beers from all over this country like Kenny Road Market.

If you happen to live near the Cleveland area, go to the Burning River Festival that will serve the (at least around these parts) legendary Great Lakes Christmas Ale and help pay for ecological clean up for a river that may not burn any more but still look pretty bad.

If you want to have a say what’s the best brewery in America (at least according to TheDailyMeal.com) go to this link. They already cut the vote down to 25 breweries grouped by region. Give your input then go enjoy a Sippy Time Beer. -Kevin

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