Proprietor’s Vintage 2014 Double Double Barrel Ale by Firestone Walker

10574325_10101961969140080_8669463688062613703_n 10568898_10101961970711930_5434167109133143264_n 10913_10101961970108140_3879049272280645181_nRating: 5.45/5

Proprietor’s Vintage 2014 Double Double Barrel Ale by Firestone Walker is a 12% ABV World Class Imperial Special Bitter/English Barley Wine.

Label:
Since founding our brewery in 1996, we have specialized in the rare art of brewing beer in oak barrels. In the fall of 2006, we embarked on a program to barrel age a series of vintage strong ales that would later be used as components of a blended beer. That blend would become our first Anniversary Ale, “10”.

After the release of “10”, we released limited amounts of the component beers on draft only. Many of these beers gained a cult following that craft beer fans raved about and begged for us to put in bottle. Double DBA was one of these beers.

It has been said that the only constant is change and the same is true for barrel-aged beers. Cut from a similar recipe each year, Double DBA changes and shows a different face across each vintage; a result of time spent aging in the barrel.

We present the 2014 vintage of Double DBA, a barrel-aged Imperial Special Bitter. Lush toffee and caramel malt flavors combine with light coconut, vanilla graham cracker American oak barrel nuances.

Double DBA is a one-of-a-kind sipping beer built to last and will reward careful aging for years to come.

Ideal Aging Temperature 45° F
___

The final release of this beer has come. No longer will Firestone Walker brew this. Once this is gone it is gone. So definitely stop by the nearest store or online shop and get a couple of these. I had this beer about 2 years ago and since then I have not had a chance to pick it up again to do a re-review. When I heard this was the last time FW was going to make it, I had to get it before it is gone for good and bring it forward for a review. Not sure why they would retire a stronger version of their original flagship beer but they must have their reasons. Maybe some new oddity will come but until then, if you can get this one, definitely get it. For now, here is what you can expect, cheers!

2012 Review (https://brewerianimelogs.wordpress.com/2012/10/31/double-double-barrel-ale-by-fire-stone-walker/)
*Beer rating for 2012 was set before I implemented the new rating system.

Aromas:
Bananas and toasted coconut cream pie,marshmallows, dulce de leche caramel, flan, oak, bourbon, graham cracker smores, brown sugar, toffee, rye bread, dark fruit raisins, plum, honey, maple, oak, pecan pie, hazelnut nectar, chocolate, clove spice, coffee cake, almond joy, apple cinnamon toast, and butterscotch.

Flavors:
Lots of toasted Coconut macaroons, bananas, chocolate, coconut, dulce de leche, coconut cream pie, pecan pie, bourbon, vanilla, honey, maple, rich oak, flan, toffee, dark fruits like raisins, plums, clove spice, coffee cake, brown sugar, almond joy, rye bread, apple cinnamon pie, butterscotch and hazelnut, graham crackers and marshmallow smores.

Aftertaste:
Vanilla, caramel, maple, oak, banana, marshmallow, coconut, brown sugar chocolate hints and butterscotch. No alcohol in the taste, a sipping beer with some smoothness. Medium body with medium mouthfeel.

Overall:
A little more than just, perfect! This beer exceeds a good amount of expectations. This beer is freaking delicious. If you never believed the original Double Barrel Ale could be amplified to a higher atmosphere of flavor, then you will definitely be in for a surprise. The beer has so much . It is really sad to see this one go as this one is one I could easily enjoy just like the other awesome barrel-aged series from FW. Like I stated before, you should really get one or two before they are truly gone.

Anime Corner:
Yuffie Kisaragi and Vincent Valentine from Final Fantasy VII were used in this pairing from the original Double DBA to pair with several aspects of the beer. Yuffie’s costume pairs greatly with the colors of the label. The crimson color of the beer is Vincent’s department. The duo represent the Double aspect while the guns he carries is the double barrels. Yuffie provides the complex sweetness of the beer represented by her love for the colorful jewels called Materia. Vincent’s dark past brings and compliments the beer with the Alcohol content. Together as a team, make this beer a sweet, smooth and delicious success. This may the final time I see Double DBA but damn what a ride it was. Hope to see you again some day…

Sources:
http://www.wallpaperfly.com/thumbnails/detail/20120314/brunettes%20final%20fantasy%20yuffie%20kisaragi%20vincent%201280×1024%20wallpaper_www.wallmay.com_74.jpg
http://the-koko-empire.deviantart.com/art/Stand-by-You-191556373
http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/70/dd/7d/70dd7dd1a9bf58dac898deab7c9e4dd5.jpg

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Bière De Mars by Jolly Pumpkin

10580103_10101958121720340_2380971735712578752_nRating: 5/5

Bière De Mars by Jolly Pumpkin is a 7% ABV French Style Stock Ale (Bière de Garde) aged in oak Barrels.

Label:
Brewed with two yeasts, mellowed in large oak casks, and refermented in the bottle, our Biere de Garde is a sustaining beer that is brewed to comfort in the gusty tides of March and welcome in a wealth of warmer weather.
“Beware the ides of March” Some guy to some other guy, a long time ago.
Please enjoy our beers in good health, Cheers & Mahalo plenty!
___

A grand return to an old Jolly Pumpkin beer I haven’t tried since 2011, or at least the grand reserve version. I posted the old review on this site in October 2012 thought when I finally started doing my reviews publicly. At the time, I was involved in a car accident which thankfully I came out alive. At the time, I had saved the reserve version of the beer to try it and I really wanted to give it a shot since I figured, a great life is worth living it for what you love to do. In the essence of that beer, I had to bring the original to the stage. While my flavor palate has matured, the original beer vs. the Grand Reserve may vary. So in essence, you be the judge of how you want your beer to be. Cheers!

2011 Grand Reserve Review (https://brewerianimelogs.wordpress.com/2012/10/17/biere-de-mars-grand-reserve-by-jolly-pumpkin/)

Aromas:
Stone fruits like peach, mango, apricots, dark cherries, strawberry, plums, pears, green apples, musty wild yeast, wine grapes, sour notes, bananas, caramel, butterscotch,rye bread, hints of hazelnut, dark fruit raisins, fig hints, oak, vanilla, brown sugar, floral notes, farm house hay, tobacco and leather.

Flavors:
Dulce de leche caramel, vanilla, oak , dark cherry yogurt, rich strawberries, stone fruits like apricots, mango, plums, peaches and cream, pear, hazelnut hints, rye bread, coriander spice, citrus, lemon peel, apple cider, tart grapefruit, butterscotch, bananas, clove spice hints, coriander spice hints, musty wild yeast, peppercorns, tobacco, leather, wine grapes, floral notes, farmhouse hay, chocolate hints, brown sugar, white grapes, dark fruit raisins and figs.

Aftertaste:
Caramel, peaches, sweet bread, dark cherry yogurt hints, rye bread, oak, vanilla, lemon peel, citrus and apple cider. No alcohol in the taste, a sipping beer, fully body and full mouthfeel.

Overall:
A great example of a Biere de Garde done right. This is very delicious. Sour notes mainly turn into tart but sweet notes while maintaining a backlog of sourness to remind you. This why when you are a brewery that only concentrates at the Sour ales you are good at, you can truly make magic. There aren;t a lot of sour breweries or breweries in general that make beer this good. Even I have a rough time with some of the Bruery sours admittedly sometimes. Needless to say, this beer brings me back to the days I would always get Jolly Pumpkin beers and remind me of where my sour tasting roots came from. I definitely recommend this one without a doubt. Even some people that do not like sours may tolerate or even fully enjoy this one for sure.

Anime Corner:
Vocaloid Hatsune Miku in her art design by subaru01rins was used in this pairing because I wanted to pair something similar to the original artwork I used for the grand reserve long ago. When I stumbled upon the T-Shirt at Anime Expo which was made by WeLoveFine (http://www.welovefine.com/6946-i-am-your-melody.html#.U9hlYfldVuN) I had to buy it. After looking at the artwork, it was very bad ass and made me realize why I chose the tron evil looking being with the red eyes back then. It had to do with the fact that in the label, the wind blowing the ship represented the the blowing the light of hope. While Miku looks evil here, either way, by her saying ‘I AM YOUR MELODY’ it plays at the whole aspect of evil blowing in the wind. Not to say that she is evil, but more like say that while you may have a good side, you also have a bad side that tries to balance who you are. Biere de Mars (Especially because of my birthday) represents a lot and in the sense of importance. It goes to show that even in the most sourest of states, the sweetness will be there to balance things out. Just like the beer. Oh yeah and also, the fruits like the sweet strawberries, are represented by the crimson eyes of Miku. Green is the color of the sour apples.

Sources:
http://subaru01rins.deviantart.com/art/I-AM-YOUR-MELODY-wallpaper-413872921

Boont Barl by Anderson Valley Brewing

1910263_10101958120597590_3687737870308539064_n 10492141_10101958119884020_3593117725614335297_nRating: 4.35/5

Boont Barl by Anderson Valley Brewing is a 6.0% ABV American Amber/Red Ale aged 6 months in Wild Turkey, Bourbon Barrels.

Commercial Description:
What began with our flagship Boont Amber Ale and a passion for experimentation has become a unique addition to our Anderson Valley Wild Turkey Barl Series. The six month aging process in third-use Wild Turkey Bourbon barrels imparts flavors of coconut and vanilla and subtle bourbon aromas that are enhanced by a noticeable oak character in the finish. A great accompaniment to fine meals or to be enjoyed on its own, Boont Barl is a truly sessionable barrel-aged beer with finesse. MALTS: Pale Two-Row, Crystal (40L & 80L) HOPS: Columbus, Bravo, Northern Brewer, Mt. Hood.
___

I tried Anderson Valley’s Bourbon Barrel Stout so when I saw this one on the self at Ramirez Liquor, I had to get it. The Bourbon Barrel Stout was very good, but I don’t remember is as being extra ordinary. Even at 6% ABV, this one might still be just as good. You don’t always see session Barrel-aged goodies and some actually end up being more surprising than others. Some beers don’t need barrel aging but it still makes for one interesting beers. So let us see what this one is all about. Cheers!

Aromas:
Dulce de leche caramel, hints of vanilla, oak and bourbon, biscuit bread, dark fruit raisins, rye bread, hints of chocolate spread, brown sugar, grape jelly, some wine grape hints and whiskey.

Flavors:
Bourbon hints, vanilla, caramel, oak, dark fruit hints like raisins and plums, rye bread, biscuit bread, coriander hints, earthy hop notes, wine grape hints, brown sugar, grape jelly, butterscotch hints, hints of nutella chocolate spread and hazelnut nectar.

Aftertaste:
Leaving with residual caramel malt sweetness, oak, hints of whiskey, rye bread, raisins and earthy hop notes. No alcohol presence despite the nice oak whiskey notes. An easy to drink beer with a certain level of smoothness. Medium body with medium mouthfeel.

Overall:
A very good beer. Think of a Bourbon Barrel Aged Amber Light. You get a good amount of flavors like you would a nice bourbon barrel but nothing overwhelming. I think this type of beer is a good way to introduce barrel-aged beers to craft beer beginners. A gateway to the Barrel aged side of beers. In that aspect, I would recommend it. Especially if you just wanna drink a barrel-aged beer without calling it a night. Not too insane but still have some very good flavors to it.

Anime Corner:
Hera from Puzzles and Dragons was used in this pairing to pair with the label colors and to some extent the Anderson Valley Bear with the Antlers. The red hair represents that this is an amber ale while the blue represents some of the other flavors like dark fruit hints. Since I chose this character to represent this beer, the light aspect of the beer represents her petite figure. Show while the beer is light ABV, she still has a good amount of flavors.

Sources:
http://lohas.nicoseiga.jp/thumb/3225114i
https://fireden.net/4chan/images.4chan.org//vg/src/1399345901724.jpg

Black Butte XXVI (26th Anniversary Reserve) by Deschutes Brewery

10452426_10101956060291460_441247262558784893_n 10501923_10101956067347320_3240858399671713884_nRating: 6/5

Black Butte XXVI (26th Anniversary Reserve) by Deschutes Brewery is 10.8% ABV Imperial Porter brewed with pomegranate molasses with 50% aged in bourbon barrels blended with ale with cocoa nibs and cranberry added.

Label:
Our 26th anniversary imperial porter was aged in bourbon barrels and dry spiced with theo chocolate’s cocoa nibs, revealing hints of vanilla and chocolate. Pomegranate molasses and Oregon cranberries complement the robust flavor with a hint of fruits and just enough tart to make you smile.
___

Each year they release this beer, they always use different ingredients. I have been fortunate enough to be able to try the 24th and 25th. Today I bring you their 26th. Since I loved the previous years versions, I can only imagine this years version will be insane. I picked this one up at Ramirez Liquors and Kegs in Boyle Heights near downtown Los Angeles. I wish I could of picked up 2 but due to the 1 bottle limit I was unfortunate. I can only hope they have more in stock or if I am lucky to get it again. These types of beers are definitely the ones you want to try regardless of your previous conviction. Each one amazing and every year getting better. So on to the review and cheers!!

25th Anniversary Review (https://brewerianimelogs.wordpress.com/2013/07/22/black-butte-xxv-25th-anniversary-reserve-by-deschutes-brewery/)

Aromas:
Dark chocolate, milk chocolate, vanilla, oak, bourbon hints, rich pomegranate, raspberries, slight tart cranberries, dark fruit raisins, cherries, smoke hints, dulce de leche caramel, chocolate fudge cake, hazelnut, almond joy, coconut, banana, clove spice, brown sugar, pecan pie, chocolate abuelita, tobacco, molasses, and strawberry preserves on rye bread.

Flavors:
Chocolate covered tart pomegranates, raspberries, cranberries, smokey notes, marshmallows, coconut hints, dark cherries, dark fruit raisins, figs, bananas, clove spice, marshmallow smores, vanilla, oak, bourbon, pecan pie, flan, almond joy, earthy bitterness, chocolate abuelita, strawberry preservers on rye bread, hazelnut nectar, walnuts, pecans, maple bar, molasses, brown sugar, anise hints, chocolate fudge cake, dragon fruit nectar, bubble gum hints and licorice hints.

Aftertaste:
Dark chocolate, earthy notes, tart cranberries, pomegranate, strawberry, banana hints, caramel, vanilla, oak, smokey notes, tobacco, walnuts and pecans. No alcohol in the taste, silky and smooth mouthfeel even easy to drink surprisingly. Dark as the night appearance. Careful with this one as its smoothness will make you want to drink the whole bottle in one sitting.

Overall:
Even more exceptional than the last. Seems like every year they go all out with their release and each one is well up there in terms of flavors and deliciousness. By all means, this very exceptional and I definitely will be looking for this one again assuming I can find it again. I highly recommend this one because a dessert beer in a bottle, the rich flavors will linger and linger for quite a awhile on that palate making each sip just extraordinary delicious!!

Anime Corner:
Midna (Both Forms) from The Legend of Zelda Twilight Princes was chosen once again this year for the Black Butte release. I had chosen her in the previous releases since I wanted to represent the mixing of 2 of the same ale together. One being the the bourbon barrel aged (Twili Midna on the right) and the cocoa nibs and cranberry (Midna on the left). They are both the same person and both are kick ass. The pomegranate and cranberry colors can be see by the crimson in their beautiful eyes, staring seductively at your soul (sweet and tart) taking you to a land of pleasure…Or so this beer makes me feel in that sense. Don’t be fooled though, take your time with this one, she can be misleading and evil but only if you let her be.

Sources:
http://zeronis.deviantart.com/art/MIDNA-452543934

NightTime by Lagunitas

1924329_10101956052117840_7190569960310551737_nRating: 5.05/5

NightTime by Lagunitas is an 8.2% ABV Black India Pale Ale.

Label:
Fear The Dark

There are two kinds. There is the DayTime kind, which is bright and welcoming and then there is the NightTime kind, which should never be confused with the DayTime. NightTime is dark and deep and may take you to unexpected places, places that the DayTime cannot. But then, the NightTime is not suited for ordinary life and ordinary tasks. In fact, NightTime may be the answer for that sort of thing, meaning that those sorts of things may never get done. Things take time in the NightTime, things slow down and you can pause (you have to, actually) and investigate carefully to find that level of objective detachment that is only possible under the spell of the NightTime. Seek the Day, but fear not the Night.
___

Got this one at craftshack.com at a very low price. I have heard many people talking about how great his beer was and how it was unlike usual Black IPAs because it was more like a regular IPA than most. I have had similar beers that changed perceptions in the past, mainly Black Racer from Bear Republic. So I figured I give this one a go and see what was up with the commotion. This one should be readily available where ever they sell Lagunitas beers. Cheers!!

Aromas:
Lots of Tropical fruits, guava, papaya, prickly pear, dragon fruit, peach, pineapple, mango, chocolate, piney grassy, rich grapefruit and earthy hops, anise, molasses hints, citrus, dank garlic and onion notes, brown sugar, citrus, lemon peel, hints of vanilla, tangerine, gummy bears and passion fruit.

Flavors:
Very much tropical fruits for a Black IPA. Mango,papaya, pineapple, passion fruit, guava, peaches, cherries, strawberries, dragon fruit, dark chocolate, caramel, biscuit bread, brown sugar, citrus, hints of anise, molasses hints, hints of vanilla, cola notes, floral notes, hints of smoke, dank garlic and onion notes, tangerine, gummy bears and lemon peel.

Aftertaste:
Earthy hops, chocolate, smokey hints, rich tropical fruits like pineapple, papaya, and guava hints .No alcohol in the taste, black as night appearance, easy to moderate drinkability, crisp and refreshing despite the appearance with a full mouth feel.

Overall:
This beer does not drink like Black IPA, it drinks like a very delicious double IPA with Black appearances. This beer is freaking amazing. Lagunitas really knows their stuff in the IPA department. Tropical beers are my thing and like Black Racer, this one was just like that one but this one had a lot of tropics to it despite being a dark IPA. If you were to smother a bit of chocolate sweetness unto a plentiful tropical punch with ofcourse the IPA grassy bitterness, you would be close to what this beer has to offer. NightTime is freaking insane. Appearances can be deceiving but in this case they are doing it in a great way.

Anime Corner:
Original Character by dj.adonis was used in this pairing for several reasons. I paired this beer with the character because I wanted to show the aspect of NightTime and the colors of the label partially. As you can see, many sleep in the night (closed eyes), but this character with the night time background and the crimson bloody moon represent that fruit punch tropical aspect you get this this beer. Her weapons shown only make that more dangerous. As I have said before, about looks being deceiving, you should definitely “Fear The Dark” as stated in this bottle because you will be mesmerized by her beauty only to be deceived but experience bliss before your downfall…

Sources:
http://e-shuushuu.net/images/2014-07-13-660632.jpeg

Old Chub Nitro by Oskar Blues brewery

1240400_10101956049737610_1043788160705698714_nRating: 5.6/5

Old Chub Nitro by Oskar Blues brewery is an 8.0% ABV Wee Heavy/Scotch Ale on Nitro.
Label:

Rate Girth
A Virtual Planetoid

Description:

Old Chub is a Scottish style ale brewed with copious amounts of crystal and chocolate malts, and a dash of beechwood-smoked malts. While Dale’s Pale Ale (“the best-tasting canned beer I’ve ever had,” according to many brewers and beer experts) is a showcase of both hops and pale malts, Old Chub is a celebration of malts. The cola-colored beer features a dense, tawny head, a creamy mouthful and flavors of caramel, chocolate and lightly roasted malt. Complex and rich, it finishes with a whisper of smokiness that calls to mind a fine single malt scotch. Old Chub weighs in at 8 % alcohol by volume.

___

Decided to get this one as an extra when placing an order on craftshack.com. I have loved this style many times in the past even if it is the a favorite style but one I don’t always get to try. When I saw this one was on nitro, I said with that Evil Grumpy Cat stare, YES! >:S. I had no idea what to expect but at the same time I felt like this one was gonna be good since many of the other Oskar Blues beers I have tried have not disappointed. So I bring forth to you, the Old Chub on NITRO!!

Aromas:

Dark fruit and chocolate milkshake, vanilla, raisins, caramel, cherries, flan crème brulee, bananas, pecan pie, coconut hints, rye bread, brown sugar, coffee, toffee, marshmallow hints, molasses, raisin bread pudding and smoked peat.

Flavors:

Coffee, smoked peat, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, milk shake, yoohoo, dark fruit raisins, figs, plums, dulce de leche caramel, flan, cherries, bananas, pecan pie, brown sugar, toffee, marshmallow hints, hints of coconut, molasses, raisin bread pudding, almond joy hints, butterscotch, caramel spread on rye bread, hazelnut nectar and macadamia nuts.

Aftertaste:

Chocolate, caramel, vanilla, pecans, hazelnut, raisins, trail mix, smoked peat and earthy bitterness. No alcohol in the taste, silky mouth feel, smooth drinkability, pitch black body.

Overall:

I have said it over and over again. There has yet to be a Scottish Ale that has ever disappointed. From the makers of the Ten Fidy, this is the best damn can of beer next to that one that I have ever had. HOLY SHIT!! This really blew my mind as to how good this was. I am sure the regular may have been alittle bit less in rating but just step it up with the nitro and you have a very compelling Wee Heavy that can really take on the rest I have had before. There is a lot of complex things going on in this beer and that I can only moderately explain. You really have to try this one for yourself. Highly Recommended.

Anime Corner:

Original Archer character by Undine at deviantart.com was used in this pairing because I wanted to fit not only the colors of the label but the Irish aspect. The red haired archer seem very perfect which reminds me of the girl from the Hunger Games. Also, the fact that I once your a ginger/red head in another Wee Heavy pairing which was the Sam Adams one and that one came out awesome. (Hakufu SonSaku) Anyways, the arrow of the archer flies forth piercing the air toward her target as smooth as the way the beer flows down as you drink it. This is why I chose this to pair so awesomely. Cheers!

Sources:

http://sneznybars.deviantart.com/art/Archer-by-UndineCG-167377911

DUDE by Oceanside Ale Works

10557385_10101956032152850_4794543228595003690_n 10482134_10101956037352430_4186762066893743214_nRating: 3.75/5

DUDE by Oceanside Ale Works is a 9.4% ABV Double India Pale Ale.

Label:
Dude – a slang expression of emphasis, amazement, and wave. Through the intense aromas , strong and complex hop flavor , this double IPA will unconsciously make you bellow out a thunderous “dude”. Enjoy!
___

Got this one at the local shop down the street where I live. I have not seen this brewery or this beer so I am definitely thinking this is new stuff. I am always up for trying new beers so I figured let’s give it a chance. Besides, the dude on the label almost looks like the big labowski, the dude!

Aromas:
Very herbal, grassy, piney, floral and grapefruit hops notes, citrus, vanilla hints, biscuit bread, very bitter grains, caramel, tangerine hints and gummy bear hints.

Flavors:
More on the herbal and dank side of an IPA. Citrus, grapefruit, grassy, piney, herbal and floral hops, dark onion and garlicky notes, caramel biscuit bread, vanilla hints, bitter grains, tangerine, gummy bear hints and tiny hints peach.

Aftertaste:
Herbal, grassy and grapefruit hops linger with a good amount of dark piney and garlic notes. No alcohol in the taste and has a moderate drinkability with close to medium mouth feel and appearance. It is quite crisp and refreshing though.

Overall:
A good beer overall. Kick ass label for sure but if you like herbal and bitter IPAs then this one is good. Not a lot of complexity but just enough to keep stuff interesting. Not the supreme best double IPA I have had, but in terms of double IPAs I would at least give this one a try. You may actually like this one. This one is definitely for the super hop heads.

Anime Corner:
Yoko Littner from Tengen Toppa Gurren Laggan was used in this pairing mainly to pair with the beer label. I wanted to get something that would go with the whole sunglasses and the colors of the dude looking bad ass! Yoko definitely looks like a bad ass in these pictures.

Sources:
http://www.zerochan.net/657475
http://fc06.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2013/075/d/5/yoko_littner_hd_wallpaper_1440x900_by_labotaze-d5y86qe.jpg

Angry Orchard The Muse by Boston Beer Company/Samuel Adams

10559905_10101948628449930_1687341242734249979_n 10580088_10101948628804220_4217440511140560654_nRating: 5.12/5

Angry Orchard The Muse by Boston Beer Company/Samuel Adams is a 7.7% ABV Apple Cider aged in French Oak Barrels.

Label:
THE LEGEND OF
THE MUSE
The Muse is the newest addition to our Cider House Collection. Inspired by the festive nature of slightly sweet Demi-Sec champagnes and sparkling wines, the Muse is bubbly and effervescent. It is made from traditional culinary and bittersweet apples and aged on French oak. The Muse is sweet up front with a juicy apple aroma and bright acidity, and slightly drying on the finish with a lingering sweet apple note. The French oak adds a subtle wood impression, imparting notes of cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and hints of vanilla.
___

Many have known the Angry Orchard series to be pretty unique in terms of good hard ciders. I have not done any reviews from them but I have done dozens of great Samuel Adams beers. Today I bring forth a Cider that really caught my attention and I really wanted to bring it forward for a nice review. I got this one at Bevmo! In the city of Walnut California while visiting a friend of mine. There are 2 other variants aside form this one (Scarecrow and Iceman) but I may do those in the future. For now, let us dig deep at craft cider and see what this one is all about. Cheers!

Aromas:
Apple cider, chardonay, champagne, oak, vanilla, cinnamon, caramel, flan hints, clove spice, plums, white raisins, allspice, nutmeg, wine grape hints and funky brett hints.

Flavors:
Red apples, sour apples, peach, wine grapes, cinnamon, vanilla, caramel, biscuit bread, nutmeg, cherries, herbal spice, white raisins, plums, chardonay, champagne, honey, sourdough bread hints, hazelnut hints, baked apple pie with pecans.

Aftertaste:
Sweet apples, oak , wine grapes, vanilla and cinnamon linger momentarily. No alcohol in the taste, light body, very easy to drink despite the fact that it gets moderate at times and should be sipped. Very crisp and refreshing as well.

Overall:
This is a great cider for sure and it does exceed some expectations to the level of good ciders. You can tell this is not the usual cider as some of the complexity not only makes it go toward that natural state of natural apples but give a push into very nice flavor spectrum. There is some level of tart but it is more sweet than tart. I would highly recommend it as it is very good, but the price may kind of push you away ($14/750ml). Don’t worry though, if you do decide to get it enjoy and you will find some really nice things.

Anime Corner:
Vocaloid Gumi was used in this pairing not only to pair with the colors of apples and the label but the very definition of a Muse. Like the daughters of Zeus, they became an inspiration and represent the artistic traits and the sciences. Vocaloid Gumi is a Musician type of bot like Hatsune Miku so in essence, she is the Muse, Art form and science! As you can also see, the aspect of the beer calling it Effervescent & Bubbly, surely is depicted in the second picture as well.

Sources:
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-SUKWXDgE90k/UyUvXqSH8DI/AAAAAAAAFII/-EiraoXK4dA/s1600/VNLIVES.NET-Headphone_vocaloid_Headphone_girl_megpoid_gumi_anime_girls_1800x1024_Size_Wallpaper_2560x1600-1127.jpg
http://blogs.c.yimg.jp/res/blog-38-d6/kkky0502/folder/485437/25/11483425/img_0?1399720740

(Double Review) Stone Farking Wheaton W00tstout (1 year aged) & Stone W00stout 2.0 collaboration by Drew Curtis, Aisha Tyler and Wil Wheaton

10471111_10101946890911970_495929066031928011_n 10532555_10101946914369960_592542297536980996_n 1044579_10101946893811160_365181835335235225_nIt has been a while since I have done a double review. Most of my double reviews involve one regular beer and one spirit aged beer. This time around I wanted to do something special for the w00tstout anniversary and the tribute of the w00tstock/HopCon which is today at Stone Brewing. Today I review a 1 year aged version of the w00tstout and the newest release, w00tstout 2.0 which the difference is that it has stone crushed chocolate. You can get this in many beer stores that sell specialty craft beers and specially Stone Beers. The price is a bit higher than the previous years but I believe the ingredients and the the way it differs from last years could actually be different. So I will find out today which one will be the better deal. A 1 year version of w00tstout or the latest release with added ingredients and stronger Alcohol by Volume. Let us go and check it out. Cheers!!!

Original Review:
https://brewerianimelogs.wordpress.com/2013/07/21/stone-farking-wheaton-w00tstout-collaboration/

Stone Farking Wheaton W00tstout Review
Stone Farking Wheaton W00tstout (1 year aged) collaboration is a 13% ABV Imperial Stout brewed with rye, pecans, wheat, hops, awesome (beer + sci-fi)*geek ideologies with a 1/4 of it aged in bourbon barrels.

Label:
Wil Wheaton first called us in 2004 ask if it’d be OK for him to put the Arrogant Bastard logo on his blog’s website (back when people still asked permission to do such things), and I just so happened to answer the phone (back when I still answered the main line sometimes). Since he was so damn enthusiastic about our beers, I said ‘Sure, no problem,’ all the while thinking ‘Hmmm…this guy’s name sounds familiar.’

Months later, in a serendipitous turn of fate, I reached out to our 10,000th email newsletter subscriber…drumroll…Wil Wheaton. Since his gigs in the iconic Stand By Me and Star Trek: The Next Generation, Wil has become quite the renaissance man, adding author, w00tstock innovator, and homebrewer to his resume. His enthusiasm for the fermentable arts and our beer was such that after many occasions of sharing grog over the years, we decided it was time to brew in collaboration.

It was a no-brainer for us to choose Drew Curtis—who many know as the twisted mind behind Fark.com—as our third cohort. Drew was an old friend of Wil’s that I had serendipitously met (when he saw me and told me, ‘Dude, I love your beer) and enjoyed many beers with at the famous TED conference three years in a row. The beer you hold before you is an imperial stout made with wheat (Wil pretty much insisted), and we also paid tribute to Drew’s Kentucky roots by adding rye and pecans to the mix and partially aging the beer in bourbon barrels. The result? Nothing short of serendipitous.”

Greg Koch @stonegreg CEO & Co-founder, Stone Brewing Co. & Beer Seek

“Being a geek isn’t about what you love; it’s about how you love it. I’m a sci-fi geek, a disruptive technology geek, and a tabletop game geek. I’ve been lucky to do lots of work in those fields, but this is the first time I got to be a professional beer geek, and it was awesome.”

Wil Wheaton | @wilw Actor, Homebrewer & Professional Seek

“Beer tastes like my website…all over the map, but I’ve never met a beer I didn’t like.”

Drew Curtis | @drewcurtis Founder, Fark.com & News Geek
_____

Aromas:
Very rich Dark fruit prunes, raisins, plums, figs, dates, sangria, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, pecan pie, dulce de leche caramel, flan, macaroons, toasted coconut, mocha coffee, vanilla, oak, bourbon, banana notes, hazelnut, rye bread, butterscotch, toffee, licorice, brown sugar, molasses, pear, dark cherry and port wine.

Flavors:
Very Rich dark fruits like raisins, plums, figs, dates, mocha coffee, Kahlua, dark and milk chocolate, molasses, licorice, toffee, dulce de leche coffee, port wine, rye pie crust, bourbon, butterscotch, pecan pie, hazelnut nectar, bananas, clove spice, fig pudding, raisin bread pudding, coriander spice, earthy notes, hints of mint, wheat toast, old mango, pears and oatmeal cookies.

Aftertaste:
Dark raisins, old cherries, plums, prunes, hints of bourbon, port wine, oak, caramel and vanilla. No alcohol in the taste, the booze is far more hidden. Syrup mouthfeel with a sipping drinkablity and pitch black appearance with not much head retention.

Overall:
The flavors have gotten better and develop a more dark fruit character than the previous w00tstout. The beer exceeds my expectations a little more than last years. The stronger Quad like flavors take over more of the Imperial Stout flavors. The only way to really find this one now is to trade for it.

Anime Corner:
Mari Illustrious, Rei Ayanami and Asuka Sohryu Langley/Shikinami from Neon Genesis Evangelion made a return in this version of the W00tstout from last year because I wanted to represent the 3 collaborators Wil Wheaton, Drew Curtis and Greg Koch in this fine piece. While the beer is based on sci-fi, a great sci-fi anime and its characters was the perfect choice in my mind to pair with one of the geekiest beers ever seeing as Neon Genesis is a world renowned anime. So cheers to all sci-fi and anime fans alike and celebrate the communities…W00t!!

Sources:
http://e-shuushuu.net/images/2013-07-15-592967.jpeg

W00tstout 2.0 Review
Stone W00stout 2.0 collaboration by Drew Curtis, Aisha Tyler and Wil Wheaton brewed at Stone brewing is a 13.5% ABV World Class Imperial Stout brewed with flaked rye, wheat, pecans, hops, Stone-Ground Chocolate, awesome (beer + sci-fi)*geek ideologies with a 1/4 of it aged in Kentuck bourbon barrels.

Label:
In 2013, our CEO and Co-founder, Greg Koch, invited two respected fans of craft beer, brewing and all things Stone to develop an intense, inventive beer capable of not only delivering immense flavor, but also serving as a fitting, singular celebration of über-level enthusiasm. Self-proclaimed geeks in a number of arenas, the duo of thespian and renaissance man Wil Wheaton and Fark.com online news guru Drew Curtis proved up to the challenge, calling on their personal backgrounds to devise an imperial stout brewed with flaked rye, wheat and pecans that was partially aged in Kentucky Bourbon barrels. Shortly after being released, this creation—dubbed “w00tstout” in honor of w00tstock, Wil’s annual tribute festival to cross-genre geekdom—became an instant cult classic.

Despite the fact that Greg spent the first half of 2014 on an international walkabout-style sabbatical, Wil and Drew were invited back to Stone to put a new spin on this threesome-borne beauty. All they needed was a third conspirator, and for that, they called on friend and fellow geek, Aisha Tyler. An actress, talk show host, comedian and author with a flair for individuality, she brought an entire new dimension to the brew day, just as the stone-ground chocolate the trio added to the original w00tstout recipe added delicious depth to the beer.

A personalized stamp was put on this year’s edition of w00tstout by comic artist Dave Gibbons. The co-creator of the Watchmen series worked up the fine art for this bottle in exchange for a donation to The Hero Initiative (www.heroinitiative.org), a charity organization providing retirement funds for golden-age comic book artists.

He thought his super power to point out the obvious was the most useless “power” ever, until he realized many people don;t see that which is plain as day.
Drew Curtis is…Captain Obvious!

Limbs unwieldy and lank are her lithe tools of destruction. Years of Bradbury (and corrective lenses) gave her laser vision. Where once she stumbled into peril, now she springs toward it, headlong.
Aisha Tyler is…Lady Temerarious!

Flashes of his destiny occurred in his youth, but it wasn’t until he uploaded his consciousness to the digital realm, that his powers were revealed. Now, he brings hops and hope to a thirsty world.
Wil Wheaton is…The Mercene-ary!
___

Aromas:
Rich Bananas, dark fruit raisins, figs plums, dates, toasted coconut, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, bakers chocolate, Kahlua, pecan pie, mocha coffee, molasses, licorice, toffee, dulce de leche caramel, port wine hints, rye bread, vanilla, oak, bourbon, butterscotch, hazelnut nectar, clove spice, earthy hop notes, mint, wheat toast, raisin bread pudding, banana split sundae, flan and brown sugar.

Flavors:
Rich bananas, pecan pie, coconut, dark, bakers, milk, Abuelita and Belgian Chocolates, dark fruits like prunes, raisins, figs, almond joy chocolate, raisin bread pudding, chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal, hot fudge sundae, mocha coffee, licorice, toffee, dulce de leche caramel, toffee, licorice, port wine hints, rye pie crust, bourbon, oak, hazelnut nectar, butterscotch, clove spice, vanilla, hazelnut nectar, whipped cream, crème brulee, flan, brown sugar, wheat toast with nutella, mint and molasses.

Aftertaste:
Bananas, dark cherries, milk and dark chocolates, pecan pie, whipped cream, bourbon, oak, dark fruits, caramel, earthy hops and vanilla. No alcohol in the taste, a sipping beer, syrupy mouthfeel and pitch black appearance with hardly any head retention.

Overall:
WOW! The addition of the chocolate somehow took the beer to the next level. Even at its freshest point here, its taste extremely amazing. It is almost like a Banana split beer. Somehow, the fusion of Imperial Stout and Quad seems very close to the Stickie Monkee from Firestone Walker. The balance of this beer is also pretty ridiculous. Less boozy tasting than the first w00t and not as dark fruit forward as the 1 year aged one I also reviewed today. Simply ridiculous and delicious making this one extremely exceptional. This beer is world class already. I Highly Highly Recommended!! Get several bottles and I will see you next year after I age one of these for a year. W00t!

Anime Corner:
Mari Illustrious, Rei Ayanami and Asuka Sohryu Langley/Shikinami from Neon Genesis Evangelion were used in this years pairing of W00tstout. Just like last year, I wanted to represent the 3 collaborators Wil Wheaton, Drew Curtis and and this time the addition of Aisha Tyler. This time wanted to have Aisha take Greg’s place. As you can see from last year’s pairing, the colors are different but also, you can tell some of them have traded places with the anime characters. Along with scifi, Evangelion brings giant robot humanoids. This addition is synonymous with bringing the flavor balance that may have not been in the last beer. As you can see in one of the art pairings, one robot per character so everything is equal and just as bad ass as the last beer but still taking it to another level. Great Job and Cheers to all Sci-Fi, Anime and Beer fans out there!

Sources:
https://yande.re/sample/e87d0f51b9862ca10b223f546054ab9d/yande.re%20232423%20sample.jpg
http://33.media.tumblr.com/68b377c323245b4bfb0657c24de29291/tumblr_mydkomFyV81soko9to1_1280.jpg
Rating: 5.95/5 (Stone Farking Wheaton W00tstout)
Rating: 6/5 (W00tstout 2.0)

2013 Sour In The Rye Kumquat by the Bruery

10526100_10101935656870080_8110856558675223432_nRating: 4.5/5

2013 Sour In The Rye Kumquat by the Bruery is a 7.6% ABV Sour Rye Ale With Kumquats Added Aged in Oak Barrels.

Label:
QUAT’S NEW?
Deliciously sour, bursting with citrus peel and hints of oak from the barrel it was aged within.

Sour in the Rye with Kumquat is best enjoyed fresh for a full citrus character.
___

I had this one fresh long ago at the Bruery and have not had it since. It was definitely sour, tart and citrusy back then. One year later, and let us see where this one has taken the flavors too. Cheers!

Aromas:
Lots if oranges, citrus, rye bread, oak, caramel, wine grapes, toffee, stone and tropical fruit like peaches, apricot, mango, papaya, caramel, brown sugar, funky notes and lemons.

Flavors:
Lots of oak, caramel, citrus oranges, kumquats, lychee, sour wine grapes, rye bread, tangerine preserves, sour dough bread, lemon peels, prickly pear, sour apple, dark cherries and leather.

Aftertaste:
Finish with big tart orange and rye bread notes, sourdough bread, caramel hints, oak and kumquats. No alcohol in the taste, a sipping beer despite the ABV, medium body with a full mouthfeel.

Overall:
Well, for starters, the sour notes have definitely fallen a bit but the tart levels definitely remain. It is a very good beer but only really if you enjoy sours. The sweetness comes through as the beer warms up so drinking it at the 45° F temperature should be ideal. I would only recommend it if you like sours otherwise this may not be a beer for you.

Anime Corner:
Panty Anarchy from Panty and Stocking was used in this pairing mainly due to the label but mainly for the flavors. You see, Panty is pretty rude and aggressive who only interest is in herself and to seduce men into bed with her. The sour aspects of the beer plus the Kumquats definitely fit the description on this one. Not to say that she doesn’t care completely as she has a sweet side sometimes and knows how to get the job done when her friends are in trouble.

Sources:
http://www.zerochan.net/362559

New American Oak Barrel Aged Sucré (6th Anniversary Ale) by The Bruery

10334252_10101935655657510_8385266029330059885_nRating: 5.8/5

New American Oak Barrel Aged Sucré (6th Anniversary Ale) by The Bruery is a 14.5% ABV Old Ale aged in New American Oak Barrels.

Label:
100% Ale aged in New American Oak Barrels
This sturdy beer marks our sixth year, and we are grateful for the outpouring of community. Together may our supporters, our brewery and this beer grow in complexity and refinement over the years.

COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION (ratebeer.com)
Sucré is our sixth anniversary ale, loosely brewed in the English-style Old Ale tradition using our house Belgian yeast strain and then blended using the solera method.

A portion of each of our anniversary ales is saved in our barrels and blended in with the next year’s production, providing more complexity and depth of character that comes with aged. Layered with complex flavors of dark fruit, vanilla, oak, and burnt sugar, Sucré is a robust ale, surely the perfect beer to mark this major milestone.
___

Yet another Sucré variant worth mentioning, or atleast the one that comes in the Preservation Society release for 2nd quarter of the Bruery’s beers, this one is aged in New Oak Barrels. I have previously tried many variations of this one and this one is most likely the last one I review as they don’t sell the other ones anymore, unless you are part of the Reserve Society. Anyways, I will try to break down the similarities to the original as well as include some of the extra flavors this one brings. Cheers!

Aromas:
Lots of dulce de leche caramel especially the special caramel made in Mexico. Bananas, lots of oak, butterscotch, vanilla notes, dark cherries, port wine, chardonay, sweetened condensed milk, leather, tobacco, pecan pie, plums, raisins, figs dates, apples, stone fruit hints, burnt sugars, candy sugars, brown sugars, graham crackers, molasses, maple syrup and waffle cone.

Flavors:
Wine Grapes, Rich Oak, Stone fruit, Lots of Dulce de Leche caramel, toffee, pecan pie, flan, Bananas, clove spice, dark fruit raisins, cherries, plums figs, dates, raspberries, vanilla notes, butterscotch, chardonay, port wine, sweetened condensed milk, leather, tobacco, earthy spice, stone fruit, maple syrup, molasses, graham crackers, brown sugars, burnt sugars, candy sugars, waffle cone and hazelnut.

Aftertaste:
Finishes a little dryer than the other ones with caramel, dark fruit, wine grapes, oak wood, hints of vanilla and toffee. No alcohol in the taste, a sipping beer with a full body and a syrupy mouthfeel.

Overall:
While it is still exceptional, this one is missing just a tad complexity that the others offers. It does taste more like wine though. It is still extremely delicious but I think some of the complexity I got with the original (Bourbon Barrel Aged) had more to offer. I also think since it is New Oak Barrels, they may not be as mature as some of the barrels that have had left over spirits to get that Angel Share into the bottle. The Oak does provide its own unique and dry characteristics to the beer which many will find just as appealing if not more. You be the judge.

Anime Corner:
Mari Illustrious Mikinami from Neon Genesis Evangelion was brought back once again in this review since I wanted to show the aspect of New Oak in terms of using a test Plug suit. While used as a basic combat suit before she received her pink one, this one is one many have not seen before. Just like the beer, in this type of New American Oak Barrel, it may be premature even if it is just for wine but it still kicks a lot of ass because the power comes not from the suit she wears, but from Mari/Sucré herself.

Sources:
http://www.zerochan.net/1427349

Smoking Wood (Bourbon Barrel edition) by The Bruery

10537020_10101935653801230_6860115756038812406_n 10422057_10101935654529770_6287864060755739402_nRating: 5.75/5

Smoking Wood (Bourbon Barrel edition) by The Bruery is a 14% Smoked Imperial Rye Porter Aged in Bourbon Barrels.

Label:
WANT A SMOAK?

A rich porter layered with rye spiciness and earthy smokey, caramel-like flavors, roasty malt and oaky deliciousness.

Smoking Wood is brewed with a hefty amount of both rye and smoked malt, contributing to a full body and light spiciness, balanced by extended oak aging. This beer will cellar gracefully but is best enjoyed fresh.
___

The original Smoking Wood (https://brewerianimelogs.wordpress.com/2012/12/20/smoking-wood-by-the-bruery/) was aged in rye whiskey barrels. This bourbon barrel variation of the beer was released to the Bruery’s Preservation and Reserve Societies. After the loss of Couverteur, the Belgian Chocolate Vanilla Dubbel, the Bruery was able to replace that one with this one for their Preservation Society. Back then, when I first rated the original Smoking Wood I did not have my special rating system and rated that one 5/5. Today, the extra credit on that one would have been higher I am sure as this one will sure reach an exceptional rating I am sure. So let’s check it out and see if this one is worth obtaining.

Aromas:
Rich vanilla, campfire smoke, dulce de leche caramel, coconut, marshmallow smores, dark and milk chocolate, almond joy, burnt sugar on flan, jericallla (Mexican Custard), dark fruit hints, roasted malts, coffee hints, rye bread, butterscotch, bacon, BBQ honey glaze, maple, cherries, pecan pie, crème brulee, hazelnut nectar, plums, raisins, molasses and anise.

Flavors:
Rich Vanilla, oak, campfire smoke, dulce de leche caramel, bourbon, toasted coconut on flamed marshmallow chocolate smores, flan, cinnamon, dark and milk chocolate, jericalla Mexican custard, burnt sugar, BBQ hone glazed bacon, maple, molasses, dark fruit cherries, plums raisins, special beachwood oak, hazelnut, pecan pie, rye bread, sourdough bread, butterscotch, crème brulee, molasses, and anise.

Aftertaste:
Leaving with burnt chocolate, oak, beachwood fancy wood, vanilla, bourbon, marshmallow, Barbecue smoked meat and flan. No alcohol in the taste, A sipping beer with with a full mouthfeel, Pitch black body and yet very smooth.

Overall:
Exceptional beer just like the original smoking wood in rye whiskey. I really think both of these go hand in hand except this one sure shines more of the marshmallow coconut and vanilla aspect than the rye, burnt oak and hone glaze of the other one. Regardless, both are insane and just as good. If you can find this variant, I suggest you trade for it and see if you can find the difference between them a little better. Although, regardless, both are phenomenal and highly recommended.

Anime Corner:
Mikasa Ackerman from Attack on Titan returns in an epic pairing with the Bruery Smoking Wood. I wanted to include her in one of my reviews from the Bruery as she is my favorite character from that series. The aspects, aside from the label, that she bring forth to the pairing is how, in relation to smoking wood, her society relates to the smoking of wood. The time that she lives seems like something off of the old west where people ride in horses and carriages to get around and the only technology seems to be fire and wood in order to get light. So while lacking in technology, seems like this is what society is like during this time. Smoking wood reminds me of that. While everything is burning around her, there is this sweet glimmer of hope and strength that she brings forth. She is one of the strongest and fastest in the series fighting many of the Titans (Giant Zombie like creatures) in the series with easy. While she may have an dark cold demeanor, she is very kind and caring of her friends Eren and Armin. This was the perfect beer in my mind to pair with her.

Sources:
http://stazgaskarth.deviantart.com/art/Mikasa-Wallpaper-405729082
http://www.deviantart.com/art/Shingeki-no-Kyojin-Mikasa-Wallpaper-440812965

Stochasticity Project Varna Necropolis by Stone Brewing

10447528_10101935651640560_7351138857085732387_nRating: 4.75/5

Stochasticity Project Varna Necropolis by Stone Brewing is am 8.6% Belgian Golden/Strong Pale Ale Aged in Bourbon Barrels.

Label:
STOCHASTICITY
STO-KAESTI-CITY
There is no happenstance or coincidence. Dumb luck is a fallacy and randomness a commonly accepted mistruth. Much of what seemingly falls into place and seems so natural is a result of Stochasticity, a concept embraced and exalted by this special and unpredictable series of beers, where exotic notions, ingredients and ideas coalesce at an interesting and often unexpected endpoint.

For many, the verbiage “Belgian Golden Strong Ale” conjures the mental visage of a chalice of straw-hued liquid nearly overflowing with tight, fluffy, white bubbles. Though that effervescent European classic was a solid base for this, the sophomore release from our center for beer experimentation, but to test its unexplored possibilities, we added a sufficient lode of hops to up the ale’s bitter character and dry finish. Next came a lengthy aging period in bourbon whiskey barrels, quite the rarity for this style. Named for the Bulgarian site from which the largest golden treasure in history was excavated, this beer presents a wealth of next-level nuances including vanilla, wood and spice.

Beer Facts
OG 16°P
TG 0.21°P
IBUs 48
ABV 8.6% v/v
Color: 6.4 °L/ SRM (Standard Reference Method)
pH 4.22

Malt Varieties
Pale Malt and Flaked Oats

Hop Varieties
Simcoe and Amarillo

Aged in
Bourbon Barrels
___

The second beer on my journey during the World cup quarter finals and Anime Expo was this beer. I had initially traveled to Long Beach then the heart of downtown and Pasadena California all in a days worth to be able to get my hands on this piece of gold. This beer can only be obtained if you visit one of the Stone Company Stores only as it was not give a wide distribution. Not sure why, but anyways, I wanted to bring this forth as I have been wanting to try this since April of this year. Cheers!

Aromas:
Peppercorns, Piney, grassy, floral and grapefruit hops, oak, vanilla, biscuit bread, butter scotch, bourbon hints, citrus, oranges, coriander spice, cardamom,waffle cone, brown sugar, mango, pineapple, honey, musty grapes, farmhouse hay, flowers, honey and herbs.

Flavors:
Rich vanilla, oak, bourbon notes, flowers, peppercorns, banana clove spice, flan hints, caramel, piney, grassy and grapefruit hop notes, old oranges, wine grapes, farmhouse yeast, mushrooms, lemon peel, apricots, mango, coconut hints, coriander spice, wine and cheese party, honey, herbs and waffle cone.

Aftertaste:
Finishes Tart citrus, grapefruit, peppercorns, oak, bourbon, vanilla, honey grapefruit hops and old mango. No alcohol in the taste, light body, medium drinkability and medium mouth feel.

Overall:
While this is a very good beer, it starts to get to that perfect level once it starts to warm up. I have had other beers that really come close to this one but the bourbon really adds that extra level of complexity that I have not seen in such a beer. A Belgian Pale/Gold Ale in bourbon? It happened, and it seems to definitely work here. However, the bourbon barrel only gives it a slight sweetness as it leads more towards a sweet and tart taste as the hops still come on a little strong. A beer that probably comes close is the White Oak from the Bruery (Wheatwine Aged in Bourbon). Definitely give this one a try and see if this one works magic for you!

Anime Corner:
Original artwork by bcnyart at deviantart.com was used in this pairing because I wanted to pay tribute to the history that is represented in this beer. Liquid Gold and the name Varna Necropolis which is the tomb that holds the oldest treasures in the world. As you can see, the character is wearing all sorts of golden goodies dating even back into the Egyptian times as an example. I wish I could have found something relating to Bulgaria, lots of treasure and anime but Egypt serves as a great example in terms of age and some of the Egyptian tombs are just as old or maybe younger but still a good representative of treasures.

Sources:
http://bcnyart.deviantart.com/art/Dragons-with-Egyptian-Treasure-454386743

System of a Stout by Beachwood brewing

10556441_10101935648057740_6808822718300916755_n 10532943_10101935649380090_6744576644527777012_nRating: 5.75/5

System of a Stout by Beachwood brewing is an 11.2% ABV World Class Armenian Imperial Stout aged in oak brandy barrels.

Label:
System of a Stout incorporates the ingredients of a traditional cup of Armenian-style coffee: cardamom, molasses, and a massive infusion of coffee from our good friends at Portola Coffee Lab in Costa Mesa, CA. This robust and flavorful brew is then oak aged, adding even more layers of complexity. Enjoy fresh or cellar at 45-55°.
___

What a beer, named after the System of a Down in reference to being a beer made in the Armenian style of coffee. Definitely traveled far and wide to Long Beach California where I had to pick this one up before it was gone. That and the fact that the 2014 World Cup quarter-finals and Anime Expo in downtown Los Angeles were going on all at the same time. That day was totally worth it and the fact that I was able to bring this for a review for you may hopefully make you decide to seek this one out for yourself. Let us see why this one is so, ‘World Class’!

Aromas:
Immediate rush of dark and rich espresso coffee fragrances, dark chocolate, dark fruit notes, molasses, brown sugar, dulce de leche caramel, cinnamon, flan hints, oak, brandy, dark cherries, chocolate cake, bananas, flan, almonds, pecan pie and vanilla ice cream.

Flavors:
Rich Dark Espresso coffee, Vanilla, dulce de leche caramel, oak, brandy, dark cherries, toffee, rye, earthy hop notes, dark chocolate, bakers chocolate, milk chocolate, rocky road ice cream, cinnamon, brown sugar, dark fruits like raisins and plums, cardamom spice, molasses, anise, pecan pie, flan, almonds, banana and chocolate cake.

Aftertaste:
Lingering coffee, dark chocolate, caramel, vanilla, oak, brandy, cherry hints and earthy spicy notes. No alcohol in the taste, drinks smooth yet syrupy mouthfeel. Dark full body with no trace of light in site.

Overall:
Exceptionally awesome! This is my favorite beer from Beachwood so far aside from the Mrs. Stoutfire collaboration they did with the Bruery. This beer is pretty close to Mocha Wednesday but misses the super complexity of that one. It is way delicious and up there with the greatest of the the great and the Brandy oak aging definitely takes it to that next level. I highly recommend getting this one as it is freaking amazing and close to one of the best coffee stouts in the world for sure!

Anime Corner:
Ellie from the Last of Us and Marceline from Adventure Time were used in this pairing for many reasons involving the dark aspects of the flavors and tribute to System of a Down. In the art work from Ellie it actually reminds me of the song B.Y.O.B video where it shows an army of soldiers in suits marching forward. The soldiers in the artwork you can say represent those soldiers from the video. The Marceline artwork just represent overall rock and basically the darkness of this beer and System of a Down as a Rock Band.

Sources:
http://artgerm.deviantart.com/art/Marceline-466739861
http://blogs-images.forbes.com/andyrobertson/files/2014/05/The-Last-of-Us-concept-art.jpg
System of a Down: B.Y.O B https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zUzd9KyIDrM

Unapologetic IPA collaboration by Beachwood, Heretic and Stone Brewing

1545767_10101935642478920_7958521540701499321_nRating: 5/5

Unapologetic IPA collaboration by Beachwood, Heretic and Stone Brewing is an 8.8% ABV Double India Pale Ale.

Label:
WHO SAYS THE WORLD NEEDS ANOTHER IPA? WE DO.

When you get three hopheads together to collaborate on a beer, it’s only natural to expect some hopped up liquid incarnation of their lupulin lust to spring forth from such a session. Maybe it seems passé to some—three masters of hoppy beer once again exploring the familiar territory of the India pale ale. After all, who needs yet another IPA, double or otherwise, right? It’s all been done. To those who feel this way, this trio’s reply is: “so what?”

In birthing a double IPA made bitter and fruity care of a mélange of new and experimental hops (Azacca, Belma as well as HBC 342 and Steiner 06300, yet-to-be-named varieties from Washington’s Yakima Valley), they aren’t staying in a comfort zone—they’re hitting a sweet spot in the name of all that is good, delicious, hoppy and forward-thinking to create an IPA that’s both like and unlike anything they, or you, have ever tasted. Rife with essence of pine, resin, and fruits both citrus and tropical, there’s no need for apologies with this beer. All that’s necessary is a yearning for hops, a sturdy constitution and an empty glass.

“With this beer we collectively celebrate the marvelous hop flower.”
Julian Shrago // Brewmaster & Co-owner, Beachwood Brewing

“To me, there’s nothing better than getting to brew something special with good friends
Jamil Zainasheff // Chief Heretic & Brewmaster. Heretic Brewing Company

“This was a great chance for three hopheads to brew a really cool IPA using many new, exciting hop varieties.”
Mitch Steele // Brewmaster, Stone brewing Co.
___

Another IPA? Yes!! However, this one is made with new experimental hops so the flavors will most likely be unique or at least different than some of the IPAs I have tried before unless you include the Fillmore Fusion from Lagunitas which had the hop ADHA 483. Unapologetic may either come from the use of extra bitter hops or just the fact that they shouldn’t apologize for making another IPA. Who knows, this one may actually be different. So let us check it out. Also, this one should see national distribution.

Aromas:
Lots of tropical aromas like mango, pineapple, papaya, lychee, passion fruit, dragon fruit, pine, grassy, floral and grapefruit hops, citrus, oranges, caramel, apples, berries and peach hints.

Flavors:
Lots of tropical fruits forward like mango, papaya, pineapple, passion fruit, lychee, prickly pear, blueberry, raspberry, tangerines, piney, floral, grassy and grapefruit hops, caramel biscuit bread hints, peach apples, oranges, honey dew melon, bubble gum, vanilla and some minor herbal hints.

Aftertaste:
Leaving with a fruity and floral yet minor bitterness in the end. No alcohol in the taste, crisp and refreshing with medium drinkability and a light body.

Overall:
If you love more tropics forward IPAs, this is perfect! I think in the sense that I really like the tropical fruit forward IPAs more than the herbal grassy ones or the caramel malty ones, this makes for a very awesome beer. I am still trying to find the apologetic side of this beer but I cannot as it is not overwhelmingly bitter. Unless like I mentioned before, they are only doing this to basically telling everyone to shove it, here is another awesome IPA offering and this one is very good.

Anime Corner:
Revy from Black Lagoon was used in this pairing to to show the aspect of unapologetic but also the aspects of the 3 brewers. We start with Revy’s look which displays a “I don’t give a Fuck!” attitude. She really is like this in the anime as her character is described as a merciless and sadistic killer. The red in her eyes display the fire of the Heretic, followed by the arrogance shown in the way she holds that cigarette as shown by Stone and finally the youth and rebellious newcomer of Beachwood shown in that tattoo of hers. The shades of green are the shades of hops brought forth from the collaboration of them all. Truly a work of art!

Sources:
http://www.zerochan.net/1740503

2014 Quingenti series Batch no. 5 Bastard in the Rye by Stone brewing

10559952_10101935639734420_4230924272620446516_n 10451850_10101935640667550_7737156270887044399_nRating: 5.55/5

2014 Quingenti Millilitre series Batch no. 5 Bastard in the Rye by Stone brewing is a 10% ABV is an American Strong Ale aged in Rye Whiskey Barrels. Essentially, 2013 Arrogant Bastard aged in Templeton Rye Whiskey Barrels.

Label:
Brewed December 10th, 2013
The progenitor of the American strong ale style, Arrogant Bastard Ale is loaded with malt, hops and bold flavors. This audaciously complex, aggressive beer never wavers in its unprecedented celebration of intensity.

In the Mash: Classified
In The Boil: Classified
In the Whirlpool: Classified

Unfiltered and Aged
5 months in Charred American Oak Templeton Rye Whiskey-Barrels
IBUs: Classified
10% Alc/Vol
Bottled May 2014

Cellar Notes
This is our third experiment using barrels from Templeton Rye Whiskey, an artisanal spirit conjurer dating back to the Prohibition Era. Arrogant Bastard Ale’s aggressive base flavors lead the charge, followed by well-integrated whiskey flavors, lifting already intense caramel notes while adding nuances of vanilla and spice. Smooth and lingering toasted oak and coconut, developed during aging, come on strong in the finish. Deep and complex, this beer will continue to evolve with the passage of time, just as our country’s views on firewater have since the “noble experiment’s” abrogation.
___

The true king of beers has returned with an unleashing fury of honor this time equipped with extra strength and no holding back to complexity, bitterness and flavor. Why do I talk so highly of this beer? Because the original arrogant bastard has held up a lot of praise in my mind since the beginning when I first started doing reviews and getting into craft beer in general. Tasking like one bitter but potent and delicious son a of a bitch, it was no wonder I really liked it. Just like that one, I am sure this one will show no mercy either.

Aromas:
Strong banana and dulce de leche caramel aromas on rye bread, coconut, macaroons, chocolate, tropical fruits, old mango, oak, vanilla, bourbon whiskey, toffee, flan, crème brulee,honey, earthy hops, campfire wood, coriander, maple, berry, white chocolate, wheat, raw citrus oranges, brown sugar and butterscotch.

Flavors:
Dulce de Caramel glazed grapefruits, rye bread, bananas, dark cherry, flan, burnt oak, coconut, macaroons, chocolate, tropical fruits, old mango, oranges, oak, vanilla, bourbon whiskey, toffee, crème brulee, campfire wood, coriander, maple syrup, molasses, white chocolate, berries and cream hints, butterscotch, honey, earthy hops and the good cheese.

Aftertaste:
Leaves with caramel, rye, grapefruit, flan, piney and earthy bitter hops. No alcohol in the taste, sipping beer with close to a full body.

Overall:
Exceptionally delicious and very Bastard like. I really love how even though the super hop flavors are there, they are settled down to bring forth lots of complexity that is extremely complimentary of the Bastard showing a very special side of the bastard not seen before when done with other versions of the Bastard. I highly recommend trying this one out for sure and you may want to get another one just to savor. I just hope Stone releases these in 750ml instead.

Anime Corner:
Baiken from Guilty Gear was paired with this awesome beer as she has been used since the original Arrogant Bastard. She represents the original Bastard in the sense that she follows the arts of Bushido and honor, like the honor of Arrogant Bastard which fights the good fight against Macro tasteless beers as in the original philosophy of the Arrogant Bastard. This time, she is surrounded by the sugar canes and smoking her pipe to represent the oak and rye. The mission to not only surpass the pre-prohibition era as synonymous to bring more of the craft movement forward is ongoing and forever, she will bring the Arrogance forward as a weapon of delight!… Or so I am told, either way, don’t mess with her, she will make you pay.

Sources:
http://zytier23.deviantart.com/art/Baiken-59631303
http://de29v101l.deviantart.com/art/Baiken-Wallpaper-159984989

Lips of Faith series Grätzer collaboration by New Belgium and 3 Floyds

10492249_10101935637379140_6127348643821595713_n 10488251_10101935638322250_8591663400361695156_nRating: 4.25/5

Lips of Faith series Grätzer collaboration by New Belgium and 3 Floyds is a 4.5% ABV Grätzer style or Smoked Beer.

Label:
It’s not dead, but Gratzer is definitely a long-buried style from Poland. Together with 3Floyds we unearthed its robust smokiness with oak smoked wheat and Midnight Wheat. Polish Lublin hops for a bitter bite and lacto for a slightly sour finish, this pours out a billowing, foamy mouth worth indulging.
___

The next in line of zombie beers out there and brought by an unlikely collaboration with the Awesome 3 Floyds brewing and New Belgium. Prior to looking up this beer, I saw the type of style Grätzer was and long behold it is a smoked beer style like the German Rauchbeer. So I I guess going into this, you would definitely have to have a palate for smokey bitter beers if you would really appreciate it. Then again if you wanna know what grave stones, dirt and zombies taste like and enjoy the label, then awesome. So let us check it out.

Aromas:
Good amount of smoke, oak, dark fruit hints, ash, dark chocolate, burnt caramel, biscuit, smoked peat, licorice, anise, molasses, zombie brains, iron, coriander, wheat, rye bread, maple, brown sugar and earthy hops.

Flavors:
Earthy hops, Smoked malts, oak, dark fruit hints, ash, molasses, dark chocolate hints, burnt caramel, biscuit bread, licorice hints, anise, molasses, grains, coriander, wheat, rye bread, hints of brown sugar, oatmeal, bacon and barbecue hints…oh yeah and zombie brains 

Aftertaste:
Finishing up dry with hints of smoke, oak and earthy hops. No alcohol in the taste, easy to medium drinkability, pitch black body and refreshing.

Overall:
This one is very good for a smoked beer. Nothing is overwhelming here giving way to hints and flavors here and there while still maintaining a bitter and smokey balance that sweetens out as you drink it and warms up. For Smokey beer lovers only or just fans that are willing to try a zombie beer. Just realize, its not only evil in appearance…

Anime Corner:
Original character, Shizuka Marikawa and Rika Minami from High School of The Dead represent all aspects of zombies and ass kickery. Basically Shizuka (NB) and Rika (3F) are like the breweries collaborating and destroying zombies to add to the mash and boil. Sounds pretty gruesome but hey, it’s all in the zombie fanaticism anyway. Their creation, Gratzer, is representative of the original character with the samurai swords. This is one bad ass beer and well basically a bad ass collaboration so I really wanted to show the zombie aspects to fit with this one.

Sources:
http://img.batoto.net/comics/2011/10/14/j/read4e978d034584e/032.jpg
http://konachan.com/post/show/80323

Dark Night of the Soul by Monkish brewing

10447530_10101935635453000_3295597037562605673_nRating: 5.75/5

Dark Night of the Soul by Monkish brewing is an 11.1% ABV Belgian Imperial Stout.

So far few in between and yet another favorite style of beer comes forth and takes me back to why I really love these types of beers. The Belgian imperial stout is one that doesn’t come that often and for the ones that I have tried, simply some of the best I have ever tried. Monkish from Torrance California released this special batch of beer that is only sold at the brewery and is very limited. Only 50 cases made, so yeah. If this beer does good, they may one day decide to release it again. Until then, I bring it forth to you for review. Cheers!

Aromas:
Pecan pie, Dark fruit raisins, plums, figs, dulce de leche caramel, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, coconut, marshmallow smores, oak, anise, molasses, brown sugar, hints of rum, port wine, dark cherries, vanilla, black currants, raisin bread pudding, hazelnut nectar and banana hints.

Flavors:
Black currants, Pecan pie, dark fruits like raisins, plums, dark cherries, figs, Belgian, dark and milk chocolate, bakers chocolate, cocoa powder, port wine hints, rum hints, hazelnut nectar, banana hints, raisin bread pudding, clove spice, anise, molasses, oak, marshmallow smores and coconut hints.

Aftertaste:
Dark chocolate, dark fruits, earthy spice, pecans and caramel linger for a little bit. No alcohol in the taste despite the fact that this is a sipping beer. It also has some smooth chocolatey creaminess to it. It has a full mouthfeel and it has a pitch black body.

Overall:
Right next to Seme De La Vita, this is my new favorite offering from Monkish. It is extremely exceptional! It really does remind me about how unique the Belgian Stout style can really get. This is one of the best examples for sure. Highly recommended if you can get this one or trade for it.

Anime Corner:
Saber Alter/Dark Saber from Fate Stay Night was used perfectly in this pairing because I wanted to show something in regards to a Dark Night, Evil Soul as well as pay tribute to the monasteries like the theme Monkish brings forth. The colors represent the flavors of the beer and her dark evil power the ABV. She is very dangerous as you will want to drink the whole thing in one sitting, but just like the best beers ever, it must be respected and enjoyed wisely.

Sources:
http://www.zerochan.net/1637555

Greenshift (Three Year Anniversary Ale) by Beachwood Brewing

10489865_10101935633347220_2268094347154339343_n 10525829_10101935634065780_6656750052035895626_nRating: 4.8/5

Greenshift (Three Year Anniversary Ale) by Beachwood Brewing is a 10% ABV Double India Pale Ale.

Label:
Greenshift is a gargantuan double India pale ale with a wide spectrum of hops. Citra, Amarillo, El Dorado, Nelson Sauvin, Galaxy, and Warrior varieties in the kettle create a planetary array of flavors. An infinite wavelength of aromas come from a supernova-sized charge of Citra, Mosaic, and Nelson Sauvin.
___

Celebrating their 3rd year in brewing, Beachwood released this huge double IPA to the masses during their anniversary part. I am unsure if this beer will see distribution but I hope it does. I did not get a chance to try it while I was there and they recommended I grab a bottle to go. So I was like screw it! Let us see how good this beer is.

Aromas:
Herbal, floral, grapefruit, grassy and piney hops, garlic, and oniony dank notes. Mild caramel, biscuit bread, some tropical fruits coming through like mango, peach, apricot, hop oils, kiwi, strawberry, honey and herbal spices.

Flavors:
Herbal, grapefruit, floral, grassy and piney hops, garlic and onion notes, basil, caramel, biscuit bread, citrus, pineapple hints, tropical fruits like mango and peach, hop oil resin, herbal spices, mild brown sugar, apricot and all sorts of hop bitterness.

Aftertaste:
Leaving with dry finish only herbal hops, citrus and some caramel remain along with hop bitterness. No alcohol in the taste, but sipping drinkability. It is also very crisp and refreshing having a medium mouth feel.

Overall:
In the flavor profiles of IPA, this one falls strongly with the herbal hop type than the caramel citrus or intense Tropical fruit aspects which I really love and seek in IPAs. While it is a very delicious beer, I prefer the other kind of IPAs. Although, this one did have some tropical and malty caramel elements to it at different temperatures.. True hop heads can’t get enough of this one. At least in terms of the true hoppy and grassy style of IPA, this one knocks it out of the park for sure. Highly recommended if Grassy herbal dank IPAs is your thing.

Anime Corner:
Rydia from Final Fantasy 4 was used in this pairing to pair with the label colors and the whole green shift aspect. Rydia is a Summoner and a Black Sorceress so the whole Greenshift and aspect of change in one’s environment is what it is all about. That is what she does. So when you have a beer that shifts in all sorts of flavor profiles, nothing short of magic here.

Sources:
http://anime-pictures.net/pictures/view_post/57558?lang=en
http://www.zerochan.net/full/221561

Feminist by Monkish brewing

10556516_10101935631905110_5945416229010617032_n 10389661_10101935630143640_5197938761646202346_nRating: 4.75/5

Feminist by Monkish brewing is a 9.4% ABV Belgian Tripel brewed with Hibiscus.

Now available in some areas of Southern California, this beer is one of Monkish’s strongest an most delicious beers. While I mainly enjoy the Floraison, this one has its own great flavors to it. It is also now available for growler pour as well.

Aromas:
Vanilla, Flowers, Hibiscus, peppercorn spice, caramel, herbs, kiwi, lemonade, cherry, sour notes, apricots, watermelon, brown sugar, hints of chamomile, apples, citrus, coriander, biscuit bread, honey and ginger.

Flavors:
Banana, clove spice, vanilla, caramel, flowers, hibiscus drink (Jamaica), herbs, lemonade hints, citrus, grapefruit , wine grape sour hints, watermelon hints, apricots, brown sugar, ginger, apples, stone fruits, peppercorns, honey, biscuit bread, apples, chamomile apricots and coriander spice.

Aftertaste:
Almost dry finish with some lingering honey, biscuit bread, hibiscus flower notes, vanilla and fruits. No alcohol in the taste despite the ABV. A sipping beer yet medium mouthfeel even if it has a clear body.

Overall:
A very good beer which brings some Farm house and Floral characteristics to the Tripel Style some unique aspects of the beer flow through. While it is one of their most delicious selections, I still enjoy some of their other ones more. This is a highly recommended one though so give it a shot.

Anime Corner:
Erza Scalet from Fairy Tail was used in this pairing because I wanted to portray feminist as being a woman in power. Strong despite any objections and truly a just as bad ass. Erza is that kind of person who can take command of situations and truly persevere. So I figured this would work. Any suggestions or comments? Please let me know.

Sources:
http://unrealyeto.deviantart.com/art/Queen-Erza-Scarlet-339413114
http://www.wallconvert.com/wallpapers/anime/erza-scarlet-fairy-tail-14354.html

Backwoods Bastard by Founders Brewing

10450444_10101900867583090_5215587694190842325_nRating: 6/5

Backwoods Bastard by Founders Brewing is a 10.2% ABV World Class Scotch Ale/Wee Heavy aged in bourbon barrels.

Description:
Big and delicious for your ’perty mouth. Expect lovely, warm smells of single malt scotch, oaky bourbon barrels, smoke, sweet caramel and roasted malts. A bit of earthy spice and a scintilla of dark cherries. It’s a kick-back sipper made to excite the palate.
___

Thanks to my friend Aaron from www.beermetaldude.com for hooking me up with this awesome Wee Heavy. Rated as the 5th best Wee Heavy Scotch ale in the world, this is quite the honor. The Wee Heavy Style is one of my favorite styles of beer that is not often brewed or just not often seen by me. All the ones I have tried are just phenomenal, and yet I have not found a true bad Scotch Ale yet. So to Aaron, once again, cheers for donating this one to the site good sir! 

Aromas:
Lots of rich vanilla, dulce de leche caramel, dark and milk chocolate, very dark fruit raisins, figs, dark cherries, plums, rye bread, brown sugar, smoked peat, toasted coconut, bourbon, marshmallows, raisin bread pudding, pecan pie, choco flan, molasses, oak, scotch whiskey, port wine, almond joy, anise, licorice and marshmallows smores over campfire.

Flavors
Lots of oak, rye bread, vanilla, dulce de leche caramel, marshmallows, bourbon, scotch and butterscotch, toasted coconut, macadamia nut nectar, pecan pie, hazelnut nectar, molasses, smoked peat, dark fruits like raisins, figs, plums, dark cherries, anise, choco flan, raisin bread pudding, prailines, milk and dark chocolate, espresso hints, rye bread, brown sugar, marshmallow smores, almond joy chocolate, licorice hints, port wine, ginger spice hints, earthy notes, brownie on vanilla ice cream and cookies and cream.

Aftertaste:
Leaving with dark and mil chocolate, vanilla, caramel, scotch, toasted coconut, dark cherry, dark fruit raisins and anise. Well hidden alcohol, a sipping but very smooth drinkability with a medium mouth feel.

Overall:
Definitely one of the highest candidates. This beer is truly exceptionally world class. The way it is done with balance, smoothness and lots of complex and rich flavors is just up there with some of the greats! Probably the best Wee Heavy I have ever tried. Highly Recommended! Thanks again Aaron, and cheers!!

Anime Corner:
Kawashiro Nitori and Kurodani Yamame from the Touhou were chosen in this pairing represent the label and the overall name of what it really means to be a Backwoods Bastard!! Yes they fight over a cooked fish at camp grounds but that does not mean they should not share. That doesn’t meant you shouldn’t share this one as it comes in a 4 pack. My friend was awesome for passing this along to me and knows what it is like to share the wealth when it comes to searching for the lost beer treasures. I had only heard a little bit about this beer and now that I know, I wish to seek it out again one day. The woods and mountains is where Nitori is from and Yamame was probably lost since she is from the underworld. Just goes to show, how much of a Bastard Yamame may be. Oh well.

Sources:
http://www.zerochan.net/1241174

2014 RealTail Collaboration by Real Ale and Freetail brewing

10462592_10101879193019090_2800463206286259745_nRating: 4.5/5

2014 RealTail Collaboration by Real Ale and Freetail brewing is a 6.66%ABV Cascadian Dark India Pale Ale.

Label:
2014 Central Texas Collaboration
realtail
the black white IPA
brewed and bottled by freetail brewing co. of San Antonio in Collaboration Real Ale brewing Co. of Blanco.
___

A special thanks to my friend Aaron from Texas, owner and beer reviewer of www.beermetaldude.com who hooked me up with an even more elusive, super exclusive, brewery only release of this beer. This beer is so exclusive that there is little information about the beer even though it was made by two great Texas breweries and sold at Freetail this year. The idea behind RealTail is that it is supposed to be a Black IPA by color but a White IPA by taste. Or so it goes. An IPA that I may have tried similarly was the Bear Republic’s Black Race IPA long ago. It was black in color but man, the tropics and herbal hops were the win there. So I am very curious to see what the special creation of Real Ale and Freetail have to offer. Both breweries which I have reviewed their beers before are very delicious and awesome. Cheers to those good folks and Cheers to you Aaron once again, thanks brother!

Aromas:
Grapefruit, grassy and piney hops, citrus, Smoked malt, tropical fruits like mango, papaya, molasses, anise, herbs, peaches, caramel and brown sugar.

Flavors:
Smoked malts, mild chocolate, Grapefruit, grassy, earthy, and piney hops, citrus, tropical fruits like mango, papaya, pineapple, molasses, anise, herbs, brown sugar, peach hints, caramel, biscuit bread and flowers.

Aftertaste:
Grassy and earth hop resin, citrus, mango hints, caramel and smoked malt. No alcohol in the taste, easy to drink, refreshing and crisp with a medium mouthfeel.

Overall:
This is very interesting. There is a balance of the black smoke, and malty goodness of the black IPA and the herbal, dank and tropical fruit hoppy flavors of a regular IPA all melding together really nicely. So while it is not a black IPA trying to be a white IPA in taste, it is actually a fusion of both. This is great! If you love Black IPAs, this is awesome!

Anime Corner:
Original Artwork by Osamu (Jagabata) was used in this pairing to complement the idea of the Black White IPA as well as the collaborative efforts of Real Ale and Freetail in this beer. Some of the colors represent some of the flavors like the smoked malt, mild chocolate, floral notes, earthy hops to some extent tropical fruits and grassy hops. Either way, to me this pairing was just perfect in all ways. What do you guys think?

Source:
http://e-shuushuu.net/images/2012-11-23-543070.jpeg

Tree Shaker by Odell Brewing

10421605_10101879191267600_6904168163296953928_n 10417659_10101879191487160_3006276460666070116_nRating: 5/5

Tree Shaker by Odell Brewing is a 10.1% ABV Imperial Peach India Pale Ale.

Label:
Colorado…we really love your peaches, wanna shake your tree! Tree Shaker Imperial IPA was brewed with 3000 pounds of pureed Colorado peaches. The bright citrus hop character and subtle fruity sweetness will get your feet tapping and your taste buds dancing. 9.7% to 10.1%.
___

Another special shout to my good friend Aaron in Texas, beer connoisseur at www.beermetaldude.com, for hooking me up with another awesome beer. This time it is a Double IPA brewed with peaches. I would believe the peach flavors would be something seen in like a Belgian style. I have had many IPAs but I think this the very first time I had one with peaches. Let’s check it out!

Aromas:
Rich Peach aromas, flowers, grassy, floral, and piney hops are subtled by the tropical fruits of apricot, mango, pineapple, plums, tangerines, grapefruits, oranges, coriander, biscuit bread, strawberries, blueberries, honey, hints of peppercorns, honeydew melon, waffle cone, vanilla and caramel.

Flavors:
Rich peaches, apricots, plums, stone fruits, flowers, grapefruits, citrus, grassy, piney and floral hops, tropical fruits like pineapple, tangerines, mango, honeydew melons, strawberries, blueberries, vanilla, caramel, honey, coriander spice, peppercorn hints, honey, waffle cone, grapes, apples and dank herbal hops hints as well.

Aftertaste:
Peach, stone fruit, citrus, tropics, grapefruit hops and vanilla linger in the finish. No alcohol in the taste despite the ABV. A sipping yet smooth, refreshing and crisp beer with like an almost syrupy mouth feel.

Overall:
Hot damn! What a great beer. This beer drinks more to the Belgian Pale Ale than an IPA. However, there are many aspects especially the middle of the mouth hop presence that keeps reminding you, it is an IPA. I guess in terms of a Belgian IPA, it is not full bodied so it wouldn’t count there. I like fruit beers and this one was freaking amazing. Odell is a rarity here in California and there is no way in hell I would have known about this awesome beer’s existence. Thanks again Aaron, you really come through for me brother, cheers!

Anime Corner:
Hinanawi Tenshi from the Touhou series was used in this pairing to represent the tree shaker. She carries peaches on head which probably fell from the tree. She represents the peach and berry tropics that this beer brings to the table.

Sources:
http://anime-pictures.net/pictures/get_image/335403-1144×1600-touhou-hinanawi+tenshi-rayxray-long+hair-single-tall+image.jpg
http://www.zerochan.net/468447