SippyTimeBeer Review – @AVBC, @GLBCinColumbus, @lagunitasbruhws, @RevBrewChicago and @SeventhSonBrew

IMG_20140221_204305I’m writing this article well ahead of time because I am in Richmond VA having a Sippy Time Beer courtesy of my older brother, who graciously provided more pumpkin beers to try than any one person should in our Year End Review. I’m also sure that I’ve had a few beverages from the neighboring state West Virginia on our way. Those beers should hit the internet come next week. Until then, here’s some drinks from February.

Anderson Valley Brewing Co.Winter Solstice – Ken and I had some free time without the ladies so we went to the 16 Bit Bar & Arcade in town. Not only is it a fun place to play the terrible video games I played as a child, it’s also a great place to try beer. Anderson Valley started off the fun with this take on a Winter Warmer. Though their site only says that they use spice, there’s definitely nutmeg in this beer which is standard for this style. They also include toffee & caramel which helps sweeten the beer up even more. Sometimes that would make the beer too sweet but it doesn’t for this one. They don’t even add much hops to offset the sweet but at 6 IBU, there’s no bitterness to be found. This beer packs a wallop at 6.9% even if that’s low for a winter beer. They are based in Boonville CA so if it reaches Ohio you probably have a good chance of trying it in the winter.

Great Lakes Brewing Co.Conway’s Irish Ale – At some point during my tenure of writing beer reviews, I will do an Irish themed post around Saint Patrick’s Day. This beer will get included in that post. I’ll also review it now. This seasonal beer is available from January to the end of March. It is similar in flavor to their year round offering & one of my personal favorites, Eliot Ness. It is lighter on the malt though so it’s as in your face. Neither are hoppy which is confirmed by the 25 IBU for this one. Conway’s provides a decent punch at 6.5% ABV. They distribute in these areas so even though it’s a seasonal beer, you may still be able to find this one.

IMG_20140222_191243Lagunitas Brewing Co.Maximus – Jeremy brought this company to my attention. It is another California based company so the distribution area is bigger which helps me try them too. This beer is an amped up version of their IPA. Since I haven’t had their IPA, I can’t compare them. They don’t list IBUs so I can’t compare bitterness. I do know though that this beer didn’t taste bitter for a Double IPA. They claim it will remove enamel from your teeth because of the hops but I don’t agree. To no one’s surprise though, you jump from 6.2% in the IPA to 8.2% for the DIPA. It provides quite the punch so be careful if you’re a hop head.

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#SippyTimeBeer Review – Crescent City Brewhouse, @Jaxnola and @TinRoofBeer

Jackson Brewery Flight

I believe this will be the final Wrestlemania related post. I hoped to do this at my parent’s house this past weekend but to no avail. I did get to pick up some beers though that I hadn’t gotten a chance to try before when I visited thee Altoona PA so more research material is a positive.

Jackson Brewery Bistro Bar – After wondering around much of Saturday morning just taking in the sights in the French Quarter, we finally worked up an appetite for lunch and stopped in at Jackson for food and beer. To make life easy, Jeremy and myself ordered flights of beer. Since they had a light colored flight and a dark colored flight, we ordered one of each. They didn’t follow North High Brewing theory that IBUs should order how you taste the beers. The two flights had two beers, their IPA and Double IPA, in common though so we didn’t order that much differently. I just got an amber & a stout while Jeremy and his lady got two other beers that no one can remember. The three of us tried all of the beers. I discovered that Jeremy isn’t much of a DIPA drinker even though he prefers the hops much more than I do. I thought the DIPA had an interesting taste though it wasn’t close to the Seven Fists of Deth from Revolution & Seventh Son. The IPA wasn’t too hop heavy. The amber wasn’t too malty. The stout wasn’t too heavy on coffee. I think that’s part of their beer problem. All of their beers didn’t have anything that defined their taste. The beers weren’t terrible but they weren’t anything to rave over. Most beers that are good play up one or a couple of ingredients then down play others. These beers seemed to be made with a thought of balance but they did that too well so their beers came out middle of the road.

Crescent City Brewhouse Flight

Crescent City Brewhouse – Later that night, before meeting up with Shahid, Cameron Hawkins & their respective ladies, we stopped in at the Crescent City Brewhouse. We yet again ordered a flight of beers to figure out which beers were the best. Because of the larger sample size, we only ordered one flight here. They had five types to choose from: Pilsner (Btm L), Black Forest (Top L), Red Stallion (Btm. R), Weiss (Middle R) and an Alt (Top R). I tried their Pilsner first as I knew it wouldn’t really grab my interest. It was good for a pilsner but as usual there’s no real bite behind it. The Black Forest is a traditional Munich style Black Lager. It’s a malt heavy beer with small notes of hop in it. This one was good. The Red Stallion is their Vienna style lager which has a sister beer in Eliot Ness from Great Lakes Brewing. This beer isn’t quite as malty which I don’t prefer but others may like this one better. The Weiss beer is their version of a hefeweizen. It was the beer I ended up ordering a pint of after our flight because I didn’t get to sample enough of it. After having a full beer, I’d say this beer was in the middle with the Black Forest and next beer taking the taste department. The Alt was their seasonal beer and was quite tasty. I had only ever had one other one and it’s the Myopic Red from Zauber Brewing. Crescent City wasn’t quite as good but it was Crescent City’s second best beer.

Tin Roof Perfect TinTin Roof Brewing Co.  – Perfect Tin Amber – Because the lady & I spent most of Friday traveling (and due to the fact that Jeremy & his woman had their flight delayed), we decided to pack it in early after eating at Emeril’s, which I highly suggest even if it’s on the expensive side. I decided I’d have some beer for the hotel room. While looking around one of the local corner stores, I found this beer from Tin Roof which is from Baton Rouge. It was interesting because it melded two similar beers, an Amber with a Red. It came out more hoppy than I expected from two malt beers. It was a solid beer with a 4.5% ABV and 28 IBU. I just wish I had remembered that I was allowed to walk outside with an open container or else I wouldn’t have left two of these bad boys in the fridge when we checked out Tuesday morning.

Have a good weekend and remember to have a #SippyTimeBeer! – Kevin

#SippyTimeBeer Review – @BreckBrew, @GreatDivideBrew, @GreenFlashBeer and @SeventhSonBrew

Breckenridge Christmas AleBreckenridge BreweryChristmas Ale – Breckenridge brews some seriously good beers. This beer is no exception. It didn’t have the usual nutmeg or cinnamon in it which was a nice change of pace. They went for caramel and chocolate in their beverage so it made it more like a porter than any Christmas beer I have tasted. The hops are pretty much absent with a 22 IBU but the alcohol isn’t at 7.4%. That will give you some Christmas cheer. Since this company emanates from the fine city of Breckenridge, CO and gets the whole way here to Columbus, I’m going to guess you might be able to find some in your area. Probably in the clearance aisle now that we’re almost a full two months removed from Christmas.

Great Divide Hibernation

Great Divide Brewing Co.Hibernation Ale – This one wraps up my Christmas beer selection, which has been quite extensive. I’m more than ready to leave nutmeg and cinnamon for the next ten months. Interesting enough though, this beer didn’t have either of those ingredients. Which might have been one of the reasons I didn’t like this very much. It’s an English style old ale which doesn’t taste all that good to my palate despite having plenty of malt in it. It clocks in at a nice 8.7% ABV so it does have it virtues but I wouldn’t recommend this one come late 2014. If you want to try it though, they distribute here.

Seventh Son Seventh SonSeventh Son Brewing Co.Seventh Son – I had no idea what an American Strong Ale was until having this beverage. It is a beer that uses a lot of the grapefruit and stone fruit hops meets a meets the malty goodness of an Amber Ale. They blend seven types of hops during the dry hopping process to make sure the name fits. The earlier hops cut through the dry hopped part perfectly with their fruitiness. The malt still comes through even with plenty of hops in this beverage. To continue the Seventh Son theme, the ABV comes in at 7.7%. Unfortunately for some, it’s only available here in Columbus. When you come to visit, we’ll definitely grab several pints at their brew pub. It doesn’t hurt that they almost always have a food truck there and most of them make tasty food. The picture also reminded me that I love their half growlers. I’m starting to see them at all of the local brewers now but they were the first spot I saw them at.

Green Flash TrippelGreen Flash BreweryTrippel – This beverage was the first new beer of 2014. Time to start a new picture folder and a new count down for the end of the year on my computer. It’s always good to take monks old recipes and updating them. Belgian yeast has been a noticeable taste that keeps popping up in my beers and when the formula comes from monks, it’ll definitely be there. Green Flash pops in pale malt and a pair of hops flavors to come up with this bad boy. The hops aren’t overwhelming or even that noticeable since Trippel only comes in at 24 IBUs. I talked about a Double White last week. This one is triple brewed so guess where the ABV is at? 9.7% is what this beer delivers. It was a perfect beer on New Year’s Eve since I was hosting the party and I bought this beverage in 22 ounce form. This company is out of San Diego, CA so if I can find it you should be able to also. I recommend this one if you like the Belgian style beers. It’s right up your palate’s alley.

Another fun part of Seventh Son Brewing is that they have teamed with other small brewers to produce some unique joint beers. I recently got a mini-growler of Seven Fists of Deth which is a collaboration Revolution Brewing out of Chicago. It’s a double IPA which I will be reviewing in November at this rate. They are also doing a collaboration with Rockmill Brewery out of Lancaster, Ohio. Here’s a little video they put together during the brewing process of Urban Cowboy Stout they are collaborating on. Have a good weekend and enjoy a #SippyTimeBeer! – Kevin

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