Beer of the Day

Please Note:If you are looking for past beers of the day please go to the page listed above entitled, “Beer of the Day Archive.”  Every month this page will be cleared and transferred to the archive.  Thank you.

Also Note: This is not an attempt to rate and rank beers.  This is meant as a rough idea of what I thought of beers I have tried in an attempt to spread information in hopes that people may try beers they may not have otherwise.  Whether or not I achieve this goal is debatable.

A Final Note: All images are meant for educational use.  Clicking on each image will bring you to the site where I obtained the image.  I have no intent to steal or distribute these images and hope only to help spread beer knowledge and awareness.  Thank you.

February 4th, 2010.

Irish Red Ale-Matt Brewing Co. (Saranac)

Saranac is a brand I find to be dependable.  If I can find no beer I want to try somewhere, it is on a list of brands that I know I can go to and be happy with my purchase.

The Irish Red Ale was no disappointment: it was medium-bodied, semi-sweet and had good malt flavors.  It was very non-offensive and very drinkable, another reason why this brand is so dependable.  It is by no means one of the best beers I have ever had and it certainly lacks complexity.  There is something to be said though for a nice, cool 6-pack of simplicity.

February 3rd, 2010.

Hofbrau Original-Staatliches Hofbrauhaus

This is a light, subtle lager that is very drinkable.  Don’t expect a lot of flash and flare, or extreme flavors with this beer.  What you can expect is nice very light fruit flavors and some light, sweet bready malts coming through.  It is a very refreshing beer best served in a 2L stein at a beer hall, but then again, what isn’t?

February 2nd, 2010.

Le Freak-Greenflash Brewery

The combined flavors of an American Imperial IPA with a Belgian Trippel create a crisp, hoppy and truly funky beer.  This was an insanely complex brew that left me not really knowing what to think about it.  It was both sweet and bitter: makes for a hard description.

The beer certainly lived up to it’s name, and I would try it again some day.

February 1st, 2010.

White Crane Bitter (Oregon Golden Ale) –Rogue Ales

Best I can tell, this is Rogue’s Oregon Golden ale packaged differently and shipped overseas.  This is really a pretty smart way to expand your distribution, and since Japan has had a boom in craft beer and micro brewery interest over the last few years in seems only logical.

However, poor schmucks like myself get duped into buying the exported version.  It was still an excellent beer, but after learning more about it the beer lost any magic I had associated with it.

January 31st, 2010.

Garde Dog-Flying Dog Brewery

The other day I realized that I was quite done with Winter.  I would have no problems at all if the snow left and warm weather came rolling in.  I realized after saying this that it is only January and we have several more months of snow and cold before any signs of Spring show.

After buying Flying Dog’s Spring Seasonal, I feel a little bit better about the whole situation.  Garde Dog is a Biere de Garde, which is a French beer meant to be enjoyed in warmer months.  Garde Dog did not disappoint, though I have never had a beer in this style which I did not enjoy.

January 30th, 2010.

Brown Lager-Wild Goose Brewing Co

I was not thrilled with this beer.  The taste was slightly metallic and left much to be desired.  I bought because I had never heard of this brewery, however, after some research I learned that Wild Goose has been bought out by Flying Dog. This makes sense in the beer world as well as in actuality, that is, if dogs could fly they would certainly overpower the goose.

January 29th, 2010.

Pikeland Pils-Sly Fox Brewing Co

Winner of two gold medals from the Great American Beer Festival it is no surprise that this was a greatly enjoyed beer.  The beer came straight out of Pennsylvania but I think some could be fooled into thinking it was from Germany.  This is an authentic and very drinkable pilsner that should be welcome at any public event, as it comes in a can.

January 28th, 2010.

Red Sky at Night-Clipper City Brewing Co.

For too long my beer drinking has been missing a flare only obtained by association with pirates.  Heavy Seas delivered a Belgian-style Farmhouse Ale, one of my favorite styles, that shows the style off in a very drinkable way.  I think this beer would be ideal for someone who hadn’t had a Farmhouse Ale before as it is a mild version.  It hits all the flavors: light pepper, some citrus, a funky yeast, etc.  The beer lacks in complexity, which greatly improves it’s drinkability and makes it fair game for those wary on trying new styles.

January 27th, 2010.

Vanilla Porter-Breckenridge BBQ and Brew Pub

The smell from this beer was like vanilla frosting had been rubbed on my face: wasn’t a big fan.  The taste was better: some darker malt flavors with some chocolate and coffee coming through with some sweet vanilla laying in on top.  It is kind of  hard to describe, but it wasn’t like there wasn’t enough vanilla flavor, but the flavor itself seemed weak, almost a little watery.

After a little research on BeerAdvocate, it seems I am not alone in thinking this.  Overall this was a beer I am glad that I tried, but I do not think I will be having again.

January 26th, 2010.

Road Dog Porter-Flying Dog Brewery

This was the first of the Flying Dog beer labels to have Ralph Steadman’s artwork on it (famed illustrator for Hunter S. Thompson.)  The beer also took considerable heat in it’s home state of Colorado for the saying, “Good Beer, No Shit” being printed on it. After a long battle with the court system Flying Dog emerged victorious and the saying was allowed to stay on the beer.

The porter is full of rich, dark malty flavors with flavors of chocolate and black licorice coming through.  Good story, good artwork and good beer (no shit.)

January 25th, 2010.

Scrimshaw Pilsner-North Coast Brewing Co.

From what I can tell if you can catch this on tap somewhere then it is a pretty respectable brew, however, the bottled counterpart leaves something yet to be desired.

I had this pilsner from a bottle and the experience was not life changing but nothing tasted really off to me.  North Coast uses a Munich malt and a blend of two hops to create their beer, which is a slight deviation from the standard pilsner flavor profile which one may be used to.  I thought the flavors that came through were nice: hay, and fresh cut grass came to mind with a moderately crisp finish.  I think the beer’s overall ranking on BeerAdvocate seems correct.  Thoughts?

January 24th, 2010.

Dixie-Dixie Brewing Co.

Having enjoyed Dixie’s Blackened Voodoo, I thought that I would give one of their other brews a try.  I guessed ahead of time that this beer would not be amazing: it’s an American Lager that I have not heard anything about.  It was an underwhelming beer, all in all.  That is not to say that it was a bad beer, just don’t expect anything out of the ordinary.  I would still grab this over a Budweiser or Coors any day.

There were some sweet malt flavors, no hops and high carbonation.  Not a beer I am likely to be buying again, especially when Blackened Voodoo is on the shelf next to it.

January 23rd, 2010.

Strike Out Stout-Cooperstown Brewing Co.

This brew boasts the typical distinction between porter and stout: roasted barley.  There is a nice oatmeal, velvet-feel as well with subtle notes of mild chocolate and coffee.

Many don’t agree at first, but stout’s are meant to be refreshing and I totally get it.  I personally don’t find stout’s to be any more filling than other beer.  There are stronger flavors but who doesn’t love that?  Strike Out was a good stout and it is locally brewed in Cooperstown, NY.

January 22nd, 2010.

Alpine Black IPA-Otter Creek Brewing Co.

Black IPA styles have been sprouting up all over the country, but due to the uniqueness of the style each brewer’s beer has had a limited area of impact.  These beers are catching on, however, and I was able to snag a pint of Black IPA our of Middlebury, Vermont.

Imagine the hops of an IPA with dark malt thrown in: that’s a black IPA.  I found Otter Creek’s take to be citrusy with a good roasted character.  If you are interested in the style I have read that Rogue’s Mogul Madness and Stone’s Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale are both delicious.

January 21st, 2010.

Kulmbacher Eisbock-Kulmbacher Brauerei

Supposedly a result of a brewer’s apprentice leaving a few barrels of bock beer out in the snow and cold for several months, this dark, malty concoction shows off it’s flavors and alcohol content in a more pronounced way than it’s typical bock-style siblings.

I did enjoy the beer, and to be honest, it did seem more pronounced the what I remembered the bock-style being.  I have not had many bocks, however and it has been some time since I enjoyed one, so maybe I’m not the right person to judge.  Either way it is a good beer and a good story.

January 20th, 2010.

Old Style Porter-St. Peter’s Brewery

A true and traditional porter: a combination of an older, dark ale with a  young light one.  The result is a very easy to drink beer which is probably one of the closest things to an original, authentic porter that I have ever had.

Being non-American, the beer had subtle flavors that were noticeable but very delicate.  I would certainly have this porter again and I would also try other brews from this brewery.

January 19th, 2010.

Pilsener-Stoudt’s Brewing Co.

A little bready and floral, this is a great example of the style and it can hold it’s own in any American or European arena.  With 5 awards from the Great American Beer Festival it seems that others feel as I do.

The Pilsener taste (and lager taste in general) is growing on me.  I typically only drink ales, but lately the bottom-fermenting cousins seem all too appealing.  Of course it helps when beers like this one are available to you.

January 18th, 2010.

Dead Reckoning Porter-Troegs Brewing Co.

The name dates back to sailing days when there was no clear set process in order to ensure a safe journey or arrival.  Troegs claims this is their process for their porter, and whatever the process they made a nice brew.

There is a nice hint of chocolate with some hop-presence.  A nice beverage, and you can never go wrong with a porter.

January 17th, 2010.

Palo Santo Marron-Dogfish Head Brewing Co.

A brown ale which gets it’s unique caramel and vanilla flavors from the South American wood it ages in.  I could see this beer pairing very well with darker meats or even something with a little spice.  In fact, I probably wouldn’t buy a 6-pack of this to just drink, I would probably purchase it to go with a meal.

Cool fact: the wooden vessel the beer ages in was the largest built in the United States since the prohibition.  This only adds to my theory that Sam Calagione is out to make the coolest beers on the planet.

January 16th, 2010.

Maierfest Lager-Rogue Ales (Brewers on the Bay)

Not an overly complex beer, but very typical of the German-style.  Maierfest delivers sweet bread and light citrus hop flavors.  It is obvious why this brewery and brew master have gotten so much attention.

As said above, it is not a very complex beer, but I don’t consider this a bad thing.  There is something to be said for a great tasting beer that is simple in nature.

January 15th, 2010.

Alta Gracia Coffee Porter-Otter Creek Brewing Co.

Typically there are coffee flavors present in a porter or a stout but this beer tastes like carbonated, alcoholic coffee.  It is well balanced by vanilla  and toffee notes and makes for a nice choice for the coffee-lover.  I mean a real coffee-lover, though: someone who makes their coffee strong enough to taste the beans, for you will certainly be tasting the beans in this beer.

All organic ingredients and made with free trade coffee and brewed locally in Middlebury, VT.  I can’t really ask for more.

January 14th, 2010.

Polestar Pilsner-Left Hand Brewing Co.

Light and crisp with lemon and grassy flavors.  It poured a beautiful color and complimented my meal last night very well.

My friend, and administrator of the Foodonia food blog, cooked up a home-raised ham that was deliciously paired with a glass of pilsner.  It may have even helped the pairing in that she cooked the ham in herbs, which would only have complimented Polestar’s already grass-like flavors.

All in all this was another good beer from Left Hand.

January 13th, 2010.

Porter-Southern Tier Brewing Co.

I typically find Southern Tier’s brews to be a little overpowering:  not in alcohol, but in flavor.  I did enjoy this beer, as I do most of their work, however, the first sip certainly caught me off guard.  I am normally an avid supporter of the “go big, or go home” philosophy, but I am not sure I like it so much in these beers.

I think what is happening is the upfront flavor profile detracts from any complexity the beer did have.  All tastes are on the table from the first sip.  A very straight forward brew, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing: it’s still porter, and I do love porter.

January 12th, 2010.

Cascazilla-Ithaca Beer Company

I like Godzilla, and I like the brewery in Ithaca so this beer was an obvious must-have.  It is a sweet red ale with some dry hopped flavors to make it a little citrusy.

Apricot Wheat remains to be their dominant flagship, however, their other brews are certainly worth a try.  Don’t expect them to change your life, but they are decent beers.  On top of all that: they are made in Ithaca, NY and I do love to support the little guy.

January 11th, 2010.

Old Crustacean Barleywine-Rogue Ales (Brewers on the Bay)

At 11.5% ABV it is no shock that I am still feeling this beer’s effects this morning.  The first sip is the beer equivalent to a punch in the face: hops, dark malt, fruit, licorice and alcohol.  Perhaps the best [and worst] part is that as you drink it the alcohol taste goes away and the subtle flavors come through showing off the beers great complexity.

Rogue has made many a great beer and this one is no exception.  Be wary of it’s high ABV and treat it (just as the name states) more like a wine than a beer.

January 10th, 2010.

Chocolate Indulgence-Brewery Ommegang

This is a wonderful, chocolatey Belgian take on the traditional stout.  Every flavor you typically associate with a stout: chocolate, coffee, etc. Topped by a Belgian fruity-yeast flavor that compliments the rich chocolate flavors in a way only fruit and chocolate can.

The sad news on this beer is that they are no longer going to be brewing it.  I have a bottle saved in my apartment and I am very tempted to go buy myself another.  Grab a bottle of this while you can for it is soon to be replaced by a new beer in the Ommegang line-up.  For me, this one will be hard to top.

January 9th, 2010.

Robust Porter-Smuttynose Brewing Co.

I am getting hung up on Porters.  Smuttynose’s offering is quite a treat: the beer represents a nice blend of an English beer tradition with a slightly American take.  The addition of roasted barley makes this one a ‘robust’ blend of porter, and the small hop-kick certainly makes it come off as American to me.

This brew has been voted one of the best porters in the country and it is pretty clear to see why.  Give it a try if you find yourself wanting all porters of the world as I do.



4 Responses to “Beer of the Day”

  1. Kayla October 4, 2010 at 1:17 am #

    I like the new archive layout. More user-friendly and not so wordy. Good move!


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