#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 Suggestions For Memorial Day

Grilling_With_Victory

I figured I’d try something a little bit different for this coming weekend. I have probably drank these beers at some point or another but I’m not going to do a full review of any of these beers. Just suggestions for what to do with your extra long weekend.

Columbus Brewing CompanySummer Teeth – I feel like CBC has more beers but after looking through their website they only have five beers. Their year round beers are a pale ale, which I drink frequently, and IPA, which is solid. Summer Teeth is only available April through August so I make sure I get my fair share. It is considered a kellerbier which is a Bavarian style. It reminds me of a hefeweizen without the bananas or spices. It’s a crisp cool beer perfect on a summer day.

Great Lakes Brewing CompanyLake Erie Monster – Let’s say that you’ve had a bad start to the year. It’s your first long weekend of the year and you really want to get shit canned to start the summer because you have plenty of time to recover for work. Lake Erie Monster is just the beer for you then. It has a 9.1% ABV and only comes in a four pack because it is so potent. It’s an Imperial India Pale Ale and I really like it. Monster isn’t as hoppy as Commodore Perry, which is their year round IPA. The upside to this selection is that GBLC just expanded their coverage in Pennsylvania.

Victory Brewing CompanySummer Love Ale – How could I not select one of their beers when I used one of their posters? This company out of Philadelphia has made several tasty beers that I’ve reviewed already. This beer is the only one on my list that I haven’t tried. It looks like another crisp, clean ale.

What I’m Going To Drink This Weekend

Zauber GrowlersI picked up a couple of growlers from my favorite Cbus brewer, Zauber Brewing Company. I reviewed their Vertigo about a month ago. My favorite beverage from them though is their Buxom Blonde which is on the far side of the picture. It’s a Belgian Abby style of beer. It’s really clean with just a hint of fruit. It has a little less fruit than a hefeweizen and it also doesn’t have the spice but they are similar styles. The near growler contains Stodgy Brown, a German Alt beer. It’s an old style that is not made much now and predates even lagers, at least according to Zauber. I haven’t had this one as recently but I thought it was a bigger change of pace than grabbing their Magnum. The mouth feel is more like a thin porter because it has hints of that and stout but it drinks more like a lager. I may not mention what I think of their taste during tonight’s Penguins game but check in on my Twitter & Instagram (@difrango11) for more insight into the tastes of these beers.

Go out to your local brewer, even if it’s not fifteen minutes from your house, grab a great beer and enjoy your grilling this Memorial Day weekend. -Kevin

#SippyTimeBeer Review – Otto’s Pub & Brewery

Ottos Beers

When I went back to Altoona, PA for my father’s 70th birthday party, I wanted to snag some beers that I couldn’t get here in Columbus. The task proved tougher than I thought. Yuengling made the trip across the border a bit over a year ago. I went to the best place fro selection in town, the Brew Zoo, but many of their offerings were ones that I could get here like Victory and Stoudt’s.

Mount Nittany American Pale Ale – This beer was the first one that I tried. I think it was a good place to start because out of the four beers, this one was the worst. I have a fondness for pale ales because of drinking entirely too much Rolling Rock when I was younger. This one was nondescript at best.

Red Mo American Red Ale – Beer number two went down better. It was closer to Killian’s than anything else I can think of. It was a good solid ale that did the trick.

Slab Cabin India Pale Ale – I’m starting to think I like IPAs more than I expected. This one was hopped perfectly in my opinion. It was definitely more hoppy than your either of the other four beers in this quartet.

Apricot Wheat – Holy apricot taste, Batman. This one to me delivered in the taste department even if you don’t like this type of beer. It had the crispness I associate with wheat beers and obviously apricot. I don’t generally like these types of beers but they’re good to have every now and again. Maybe I’ll hold out until the summer when it’s more appropriate.

The bad part of this review is that my friend Steve in Altoona is a huge Black Mo Stout fan. He says that it’s Otto’s best beer. They doesn’t sell it outside of their stores because they can’t figure out the correct mix to put in a widget ala Guinness to make it taste the way they want it to. Looks like I’ll have to make a trip up to State College the next time I go back to the parent’s place. -Kevin

#SippyTimeBeer Review – 3rd Annual #Cbus Winter Beerfest

I went to the 3rd Annual Columbus Winter Beerfest on Saturday. It was the first time I’ve attended the event. I went with my girl and my neighbors. We paid for the VIP entrance an hour early at 6:30 PM and it lasted until 11:00 PM. We got a set of twenty five tickets, one for each beer that you could taste. Many of the vendors didn’t care if you gave them one or not. The samples were supposed to be 5 ounces but most of the vendors topped you off to about 8 ounces. In no way am I capable any more of drinking that much. I got around to twelve samples. Here’s the list.

Weasel Boy BrewingBarrel Aged Brown Stoat Cherry Stout – I started off the night with a local beer from Zanesville, OH. It was a wise choice as it was quite good. It had nice head and was as thick as expected out of a stout. The cherry kicked in as an aftertaste. I think it matches well with a stout. It was one of my favorites of the night.

Victory Brewing CompanyRed Thunder – This beer was served to VIPs only. It became a mission to try as many VIP only beers as possible in our hour head start. It wasn’t as much of a help though because a majority of the crowd pitched in the extra $10 for the the extra hour. This beer was served out of a double deuce bottle that was chilled on ice. They don’t have this beer on their website so it was an exclusive. It tasted like a red amber. A big bounce back from the Prima Pils.

Six Point BrewingResin – I’m not much of an India Pale Ale fan. The heavy dose of hops is not my favorite taste. This IPA is very tasty. The hops was kept to the minimum considering the type of beer. They’re out of Brooklyn, New York.

Kona Brewing CompanyBig Wave Golden Ale – This beer was very crisp and refreshing. This one would be my other favorite beer of the night. Outstandingly smooth. They’re out of Kona, Hawaii so I won’t be able to get this one too often. That’s too bad.

Green Flash BrewingSaison Diego – I was told this was “some type of Belgian Blonde” by the woman working the counter. On the beer map, it was called Grand Cru but it is definitely not that. I’m guessing that it is the Saison Deigo because of the slight fruit note at the end with a summer ale feel. As can be implied by the name, they’re out of San Diego, CA.

North Peak Brewing CompanySiren Amber Ale – This beer got the thirty two second video review above. It was very tasty with some spice kick at the end. I did this review just in time because things started to get ugly soon there after. My presentation could have been better. As I do more of them, hopefully they’ll get better. I hope not to tell my camera woman when to cut next time. They’re out of Traverse City, MI.

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#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

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