Xocoveza Mocha Stout (Insurgente Release) Collaboration by Chris Banker, Stone Brewing and Cerveceria Insurgente de Mexico

Rating: 6.25/7

Xocoveza Mocha Stout (Insurgente Release) Collaboration by Chris Banker, Stone Brewing and Cerveceria Insurgente de Mexico is a 8.1% ABV World Class Milk/Sweet Stout brewed with cocoa, coffee, peppers, vanilla cinnamon and nutmeg.

Label:
Se Un Insurgente, Toma Artesanal

Xocoveza Mocha Stout is the result of the homebrewing spirit and a cross-border collaboration. In 2014, Stone Brewing invited us to join them on this Mexican-Hot-Chocolate inspired creation. Based on Chris Banker’s winning recipe, we created this rich and decadent Imperial Milk Stout with traditional Mexican ingredients. In your hands you have Insurgente’s version of this for the first time on this side of the border. ¡Salud!

==Introduction==

Xocoveza has been an important staple in terms of what makes great Mexican Spice and Chocolate beers. It is one of my favorites and it was one that was done very well. The version I am bringing today is the one made in Tijuana Mexico, the one from Insurgente brewing. The purpose of this is to see how different it differed from Stone’s release. It is the same recipe but the process might be different. I did try this one sometime last year when I went to Tijuana for a brewery run with my friend Oscar. While I tried to remember, I could tell it was damn delicious. However, is there subtle differences from this one to the Stone one? Let’s see, Salud!

Aromas:
Mocha Coffee, Roasted Coffee, Mexican Coffee, Mexican Hot Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, , dark fruit raisins, currants, dark cherries, capirotada raisin bread pudding, Cinnamon, Ancho chile spice, bananas, clove spice, vanilla, dulce de leche cajeta/caramel, hazelnut nectar, pecan pie, nutmeg, champurrado, piloncillo sugar cone, Molé and pan dulce.

Flavors:
Rich Abuelita Mexican Hot Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, Mocha Coffee, Roasted Coffee, Mexican Coffee, Cane sugar, Cinnamon, Ancho chile spice, bananas, clove spice, vanilla, dulce de leche cajeta/caramel, Peanut Butter, Reece’s Pieces, Molé, pan dulce, dark fruit raisins, currants, dark cherries, capirotada raisin bread pudding, hazelnut nectar, pecan pie, nutmeg, champurrado, piloncillo sugar cone, Kahlua Coffee Liqueur, flan, sweetened condensed milk and peanut mazapan.

Aftertaste:
Finishing off with Dark Chocolate, Dulce de leche caramel, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, Mocha, chile notes, earthy notes, vanilla and peanut butter hints. No alcohol in the taste, pitch black body, ridiculously smooth, very creamy and velvety mouthfeel along with a moderate drinkability.

Overall:
Damn! This one is different than the Stone release by a good amount. While I feel both beers overall are supreme World Class but this one emphasizes sweeter flavors while the Stone one balances out with earthy hops. This one shines more in the Mexican chocolate department big time! I love this version so much but I think I love both for the differences as well. This series of beers from both breweries are definitely some of the best Mexican Chocolate and Coffee beers ever. I highly recommend getting these!

Anime Corner:
Yoruichi Shihouin from Bleach and May from Backstreet Billiards for the PS1 were chosen in this pairing as they were chosen in the previous iterations of Xocoveza. The original Xocoveza I used May as she represents the Mexican culture of where the recipe was inspired from especially the Mexican brewers that helped Stone with the creation. I used Yoruichi for the bourbon barrel aging version, but bringing one of my favorite anime characters into this to be the main focus is to showcase the roots of the ingredients in Mexico. Yoruichi is a Goddess of Thunder, like Quetzacoatl!

Sources:
http://orig05.deviantart.net/09b6/f/2015/018/7/3/bleach_yoruichi__head__in_skyrim_by_user619-d8eer4h.png
http://trzaraki.deviantart.com/art/Yoruichi-Shihouin-12-01-583945424

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Home Brew Project #30 Royal Succubinal’s Midnight Brunchy Bliss by Nubis Sanctum Ales

Rating: 6.35/7

Home Brew Project #30 Royal Succubinal’s Midnight Brunchy Bliss by Nubis Sanctum Ales is a 12% ABV American Strong Ale brewed with Black Hole Necromancer Remy Martin Cognac Barrel Aged Red Eye Unicorn Blood Espresso Coffee Beans, Maple Syrup and Oak aged in Maker’s Mark 46 Bourbon.

Label:
Royal Succubinal’s Midnight Brunchy Bliss

Many know the story of Dracula and the origin of vampires being from the very Vlad Țepeș (The Impaler), son of Vlad Dracul (The Dragon/Devil). While during his life, he had done many atrocities
like impaling people and drinking their blood. Even so, many did not know that he bore children.

Little is known about his daughter Lilith/Zaleska Dracula who also had a thirst for blood like her father. Although, killing was not her style and she chose to deal with this by creating a substitute. You see, in those days, where magic and alchemy were abundant, all she had to do was come up with the right incantation, ingredients and rituals. Of course, she had to pull a couple of favors to get the recipe just right and thankfully, she had perfected something that has survived the centuries. It was hidden in Dracula’s Castle in Transylvania, until today!

American Strong Ale brewed with Black Hole Necromancer Remy Martin Cognac Barrel Aged Red Eye Unicorn Blood Espresso Coffee Beans, Maple Syrup and Oak aged in Maker’s Mark 46 Bourbon

==Introduction==

Project #30 was inspired by One of the ultimate Double Bastard variants called “Arrogant Bastard’s Midnight Brunch”. Double Bastard has always been one of my favorite beers from stone since the first time I found it long after trying Arrogant bastard. In Midnight Brunch, they took the Double Bastard, American Strong ale, added espresso beans and aged in in maple syrup and bourbon barrels. It was definitely a huge beer that made me a fan of making my own.

One of the beers that was similar but not exact was the Highwater Sugaree which used similar ingredients but added pecans. So essentially, I did research for a Double Bastard recipe. Then, to add my own ingredients, I added a very special coffee. The Black Hole Necromancer Remy Martin Cognac Barrel Aged Red Eye Unicorn Blood Espresso Coffee Beans (What a mouthful!!) from Dark Matter Coffee was the ingredient that was created in collaboration with Three Floyd’s Cognac Barrel aged Dark Lord Imperial stout in 2015. They took the barrels that had that beer and cognac and aged their Unicorn Blood Coffee Beans into it. Essentially, this would add a special key set of flavors to my brew not found in any of the other beers. Putting all that together and into a secondary with maple syrup and Maker’s Mark 46 Bourbon and half a year later out comes something that was very different from even from that of the Midnight Brunch. Now that I brought it here to the website, let’s have a look at this creation, Cheers!

Aromas:
Lots of maple syrup, bourbon, vanilla, mocha, coffee, oak, Cadbury caramel and chocolate cream eggs, Irish cream, Danish cream, campfire smores, peppery notes, pecan pie, port wine, hazelnut nectar, tiramasu cake, jamoca ice cream, maple coffee cake, dulce de leche caramel, toffee, dark fruit raisins, cherry, figs, dates, currants, stone fruit old mango, candied orange notes, chambord raspberry, marshmallows, toasted coconut, earthy dark chocolate, Mexican chocolate, milk chocolate, pancakes and flan.

Flavors:
Rich oak, vanilla, mocha, roasted coffee, fancy coffee, Khalua Coffee, peanut butter notes, marzipan, mazapan, pecan pie, port wine, bourbon, cognac hints, maple syrup, dulce de leche caramel, toffee, dark fruit raisins, cherry, figs, dates, currants, stone fruit old mango, candied orange notes, chambord raspberry, marshmallows, toasted coconut, earthy dark chocolate, Mexican chocolate, milk chocolate, pancakes, crème brulee, Cadbury caramel and chocolate cream eggs, Irish cream, Danish cream, campfire smores, pepper notes, banana, earthy hop notes, sweetened condensed milk, flan, fruit cake, capirotada raisin bread pudding, figgy pudding, molasses, tiramasu cake, jamoca ice cream and maple coffee cake.

Aftertaste:
Finishing with maple syrup pancake notes, earthy chocolate, oak, marshmallows, vanilla, dark fruit, toffee, caramel, crème brulee, flan and fruit cake. No alcohol in the taste despite the high 12% ABV. Amber Crimson Full body, smooth, velvety creamy and syrupy mouthfeel along with a sipping drinkability.

Overall:
Absolutely phenomenal! This is indeed a brunch or breakfast beer, if your breakfast is late at night. It has almost everything I loved about the Midnight Bruch from Stone but with the addition of the coffee and my own ingredients, the beer became some other creature entirely. The coffee added some most inner depth that I did not find in even the depth charged or the Midnight Brunch. While I feel it is worthy of a bucket lister, it would not make sense since this is such a rarity not found anywhere. This right next to Sangrileche 2 are probably the best beers I have ever made. Yet, some of my other barrel aged and other experimental batches have been the best too. It is hard to decide, but this is definitely on another level even for the different craft beers I have had in the past.

Anime Corner:
Lilith Aensland from Capcom’s Darkstalkers was used in this pairing as I have used her in many of the Stone beers including many of the double bastard iterations. While I did use Etna from Disgaea for the Stone Midnight Brunch, I wanted to pay tribute in my own creation to Lilith for coming up with an inspired beer. While she along with Morrigan are some of my favorite characters from the Darkstalkers series, it was only fitting that I used a beer that fits the curriculum of vampires having their brunch after hours when there is no sun outside. Essentially, when the name of “Midnight Brunch” came about, I could only think of how vampires probably do their breakfast or brunch at Midnight. So the story was born!

Sources:
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/f2/3b/c3/f23bc3f028786ed7269e74c157f80798.jpg
http://livedoor.blogimg.jp/wakusoku/imgs/a/2/a244a2bf.jpg
http://i.imgbox.com/dGLRkI0j.jpg
http://1.foto.radikal.ru/0601/b7bd5d5bf0ce.jpg
http://t03.deviantart.net/znLHcT5m7cFv_fuVEpYSgETCnV4=/fit-in/700×350/filters:fixed_height(100,100):origin()/pre04/4bd8/th/pre/i/2015/103/0/d/lilith_aensland_wallpaper_4k_by_jaksonstoker-d8plg0v.png
http://img05.deviantart.net/cb03/i/2014/266/a/e/lilith_aensland_wallpaper_by_jaksonstoker-d809i3x.png
http://static.zerochan.net/Lilith.Aensland.full.802428.jpg
http://static.zerochan.net/Lilith.Aensland.full.309888.jpg
https://brewerianimelogs.files.wordpress.com/2017/05/11d62-10cfd7fc39e678c7f9efc044037b16fe.jpg

2017 Proprietor’s Vintage No. 001 Bravo by Firestone Walker

Rating: 6/6

2017 Proprietor’s Vintage No. 001 Bravo by Firestone Walker is a 13.2% ABV Imperial Brown Ale aged in American Oak Bourbon Barrels.

Label:
(Please See Picture Below)

==Introduction==

Since the release of Parabola and the consecutive Anniversary beers from Firestone Walker, I have always wanted to try this one. Bravo is essentially one of the major components of their anniversary beers including Parabola, Sucaba, Double Double Barrel Ale, Helldorado, Stickee Monkee, Velvet Merkin, PNC and others. Up until now, it has only been a tap room exclusive. With the retirement of Sucaba unfortunately, this has paved the way for people start enjoying Bravo. While the smaller bottle personally is something I don’t like since it is less beer, the good thing is the price does drop with it. Unlike some breweries, (like The Lost Abbey, although a favorite of mine) drops the bottle sizes and keeps the same damn price. It is ridiculous really but the reason I still have sources that have 22ounce bottles of some beers like Santa’s Little Helper Bourbon Oak Barrel Aged. Anyways, you came here for a Bravo review and that is what I am going to deliver. Let’s have a whirl at this, cheers!

Aromas:
Cadbury caramel and chocolate cream eggs, dark fruit raisins, currants, blackberries, figs, dates, cherries, dark chocolate, vaniolla, oak, caramel, toffee, mocha, tiramisu, coffee cake, molasses, port wine notes, fruit cake, Toasted coconut, peanut butter notes, Danish cream cookies, Irish cream notes, English cream caramel, Butterscotch and pecan pie.

Flavors:
Dulce de leche caramel, vanilla, oak, bourbon, toffee, pecan pie, marzipan, Rye bread, Butterscotch, Toasted coconut, peanut butter notes, Danish cream cookies, Irish cream notes, English cream caramel, dark fruit raisins, currants, blackberries, figs, dates, cherries, milk chocolate, German Chocolate, Cadbury caramel and chocolate cream eggs, sweetened condensed milk notes, almond joy, cashew butter, milk chocolate, Chocolate truffles, mocha, stone fruit peach notes, honey, tiramasu ice cream, nougat, coffee cake, molasses, port wine notes, bananas foster, maple syrup, capirotada raisin bread pudding and fruit cake.

Aftertaste:
Finishing with rich toffee notes. Slight alcohol in the taste but not detracting from the amazing flavors. Murky amber brown full body, smooth, creamy, velvety and semi chewy mouthfeel with a sipping drinkability.

Overall:
Such a different beer! It’s amazing what Firestone Walker has done with all their beers. This is why they have a world class barrel aging program. Many of their beers are very unique in terms of their flavor profiles with the use of different oak barrels. There is something that makes their barrel aged beer and become coveted. For Bravo, the component that seems to stand out more is the English style sweet flavors. Almost like an English Barleywine but with some coffee notes as well. Overall, I think this is definitely on that world class list and stands great on its own even if it is part composition of the anniversary beers.

Anime Corner:
Tron Bonne from Capcom’s Megaman Legends series was used in this pairing as I wanted to pair it with the aspect of a well made beer. Bravo is expressed for a job well done but also a well made beer. Well made beers are synonymous with well-engineered pieces of work. Engineering applies to anything made including robotics. Since there was a trending theme that I have applied to FW’s special beers and their Anniversary beers, it was only natural to find a character that would follow the trend too. Essentially, the trend is similar to the job class system in RPGs like Final Fantasy. The reason why this is came from the first time I tried their Anniversary beers that usually comes with an in depth analysis of the beers composition using blends of other beers. An analysis like a strategy guide to RPGs. So a combination of the beers is like characters in these RPG games. My personal breakdown is as follows: Parabola=Knight, Velvet Merkin=Black Mage, Stickee Monkee=Monkey Monk, Helldorado=Demon Class, Wookie Jack=Mercenaries (Like Star Wars Solo and Chewbacca), Double Double Barrel=Double Cross Thief class, Sucaba=Maid/Dancer and now Bravo=Engineer/Mechanic. Tron is the Robotics Engineer in this instance.

Sources:
https://secure.static.tumblr.com/8528ef37e773bd5ced7c523c97f5316f/9izxgqz/3X2o3szjj/tumblr_static_tumblr_static_1tiflnb9inpcs8ksk0gokocsw_640.jpg
http://i64.tinypic.com/2efp0ty.jpg
http://i299.photobucket.com/albums/mm289/_ORIONSTAR/324429.jpg~original
http://i.imgur.com/E4RWQc7.jpg
http://www.fightersgeneration.com/nx6/char/tron-bonne-oni-soul.png

Candy Sours Series – Silly Straw by Valiant brewing

Rating: 6/6

Candy Sours Series – Silly Straw by Valiant brewing is a 4% ABV American Wild Ale brewed with Green Silly Straws Candies

Label:
Candy Sour Beers! What else will we think of? Our team was let loose in the brewery and came up with a unique twist of combining a Wild Sour Ale with the sweet enjoyable flavors of candies that we call our “Candy Sours”.

In this limited series, Silly Straw Sour will get your attention in more ways than one! Apple, Berries and Cherry are a few of the abundant flavors you’ll be greeted with.

==Introduction==

I have wanted to try this beer ever since I first heard about the Candy Sour series. Not just for the appeal of it tasting just like the candies but also the green colored body. This version that was released may have actually been a re-release of the brew which actually had a green colored body as this one did not have the green colored body. That being that case, since I wanted to do the pairing based on the green color, the green that you see in the picture is actually a green light I use as a backlight. Other than that the beer should hopefully be the same as what was released in the past. Let’s give it a whirl, cheers!

Aromas:
Green sour silly straws, funky and musty sour notes, matured grapes, kiwi, apple notes, raspberry and lemon candy.

Flavors:
Rich Green sour silly straw, Golden apples, sour apples, dark fruit currants, blue raspberry, cranberries, pomegranate, tart cherries, Kiwi, Strawberry, Grape, apple jolly ranchers, mild funky cheese, candied apple, vanilla, banana hints, lemon candy and butterscotch.

Aftertaste:
Finishing with Green Tart silly straws, dry candied apple, caramel, butterscotch, tart cherries, blue raspberries, lemon candy and cane sugar. No alcohol in the taste. Batch 1 had an Ecto Cooler Green hazy body while this one has a mildly golden hazy body, crisp, smooth, refreshing and effervescent mouthfeel and finally very easy to drink.

Overall:
Insane! Taste just like what it says, green silly straws. Just like I did with the Peach Rings, this one gets rated on how close it came to tasting like the actual candy, which essentially it does. Yes, its fakey candy but the body is essentially a perfect sessionable sour. I loved this one despite its complexity and I know even people that don’t like sours will love this beer as well. Definitely check it out before they are gone for good!

Anime Corner:
Terra/Tina Branford from Final Fantasy VI (III in the US) was chosen in this beer pairing as I wanted to go with the colors of the candies and in the previous batch, the green colors which pair well with Terra’s hair. The aesthetics in Terra’s attire reminds me to that of Kefka in a way. Kind of a frilly type of outfit which kind of works in the similar style to that of Willy Wonka himself.

Sources:
http://pre04.deviantart.net/0212/th/pre/f/2017/064/c/f/terra2_final_web_by_lucidsky-db1bwxn.jpg
http://pre07.deviantart.net/e21f/th/pre/i/2016/014/c/c/ffvi___terra_branford_by_midorisa-d9ny4x2.jpg
http://reptilia.sakura.ne.jp/sblo_files/haruhitonagase/image/160829.jpg
http://situero.com/wp-content/uploads/00525041807201626.jpg

Sea Rose by Ballast Point

Rating: 2.95/5

Sea Rose by Ballast Point is a 4% ABV American Wheat Ale brewed with Tart Cherries and Pomegranates.

Commercial Description:
A crisp wheat ale with a tart cherry twist.
Our Sea Rose tart cherry wheat ale is a fresh take on fruit beers. Originally conceived during an employee-led R&D brew, it’s one of our most imaginative recipes yet. The American wheat style is light and clean, while fresh cherry juice adds a soft coral color and fruity nose that gives way to a dry, slightly tart finish. It’s approachable, yet unexpected—exactly what we love to brew.

==Introduction==

I first heard of this one while searching online for information for the Red Velvet on nitro from Ballast Point. So since it was a new fish to the list of fish added to the Ballast Point labels, I wanted to bring it to the site. It looked awesome so I chose it for that reason. Tart Cherry Wheat brews are something that I like since the Sam Adams Cherry Wheat and my own homebrew, Heff By Black Cherries. So based on my experience, they are typically awesome brews. So one made by Ballast Point has got to be awesome. Let’s take a look, cheers!

Aromas:
Wheat grain, cereal notes, cherry hints, biscuit bread, cane sugar and lemon notes.

Flavors:
Cereal grains, pilsner malt, pomegranate hints, tart cherry, cranberries, wheat bread, cane sugar, honey notes, lemon and seltzer notes.

Aftertaste:
Finishing very dry with tart cherry, cranberry and pomegranates along with biscuit and cereal hints. No alcohol in the taste, super clear amber to honey light body, crisp, clean, refreshing and smoooth mouthfeel and very easy to drink.

Overall:
Close to Average at best. While I feel this is super great for non craft beer drinkers and a great entrance for those that want to try other beers since it is so light and refreshing. Ultimately, it falls short on flavor with only notes of the mentioned fruit flavors. I personally would like more flavor but that is just me. I really feel for those that hardly drink craft beer and want something that is only hinted and still super light, this is an awesome beer for that. Worth a try if once but there is better out there.

Anime Corner:
Kneesocks Daemon from Panty & Stocking W/ Garterbelt was used in this pairing for the colors mainly of cherries and pomegranates. I also wanted to find something to pair with the red fish and that is where Kneesocks comes in. She is a red hot devil with a spiky hair looks frilly like the waves of the fish.

Sources:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CfIw4QIUYAAPPcn.jpg
http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh186/erik_zorninsson/eec23fdbf997b33890d54f7fcafe2911.jpg
http://i57.beon.ru/45/32/793245/79/64651079/14873385.jpeg
http://tbib.org/images/5142/1e5a290ff1744f9ee2feddaa40b7d6f5b3972834.png?5656721