Victory! Victory! Victory! brewed by Angel City Brigade (Do-It-Yourself Brew)

Rating: 4.95/5
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Victory! Victory! Victory! brewed by Victory! Victory! Victory! is an American Porter brewed with Coffee and Vanilla beans.

==Introduction==

The cousin of my friend William Carranza, founder of El Borracho homebrewing, created this recipe while working with Zymurgy Brew Works and Angel City Brigade. Essentially, they opened up a “Do-It-Yourself” brewing experience where the public can brew a recipe for a fee. They would get assistance from the brewers there in making the recipe they would like to make and provide them the finish product upon completion of fermentation. William’s cousin brewed this beer and was gracious enough to allow me to do a review for it on the site. When I first tried it, I was pleasantly amazed at how good this was. Something definitely worth reviewing. While the recipe maybe a onetime deal, I’ll share it with you as a favor to my friend. Cheers!

Aromas:
Vanilla, dark fruit raisin hints, currants, cherry hints, mocha, roasted coffee, pecan pie, hazelnut nectar, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, cocoa, Irish cream, brown sugar, earthy hop notes, and mint chocolate chip hints.

Flavors:
Mocha, Roasted coffee, vanilla, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, cocoa, Baker’s chocolate, caramel, anise, molasses, whipped cream, espresso, Irish cream coffee notes, mint chocolate chip, dark fruit raisin hints, currants, cherry hints, steamed milk, pecan pie hints, hazelnut nectar, earthy hops and lactose hints.

Aftertaste:
Finishes with a very nice fancy coffee and mocha roastiness, chocolate, vanilla, dark fruit and caramel. No alcohol in the taste. Dark full body, Smooth, creamy and velvety mouth feel along with an easy to moderate drinkability.

Overall:
A very delicious porter. Definitely very well made having great body, smoothness, no off flavors and delicious. I loved how it had rich coffee and vanilla forward overall and some complex flavors of the dark fruits coming through. I am definitely glad I brought it here. Hopefully they can brew this one again.

Anime Corner:
Stocking Anarchy from PSG was chosen in this pairing as I wanted to show Victory as a Victory to a battle. With the name being more of a tribute and a victory pose like that of Final Fantasy VII’s cloud, I figure it would fit nicely. In addition, the beer is dark, like the artwork being used. This version of Stocking is evil.

Sources:
https://archive.nyafuu.org/foolfuuka/boards/w/image/1444/86/1444868907939.jpg

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Firestone XX Twentieth Anniversary Ale by Firestone Walker

15384465_10103789156182600_7001657447950250330_oRating: 7/7

Firestone XX Twentieth Anniversary Ale by Firestone Walker is a 13.80% ABV World Class Strong Multi-liquor Barrel Aged Style Hybrid Blend Ale.

Description: (Please Click On The Strategy Guide/Letter From Firestone Walker and the Box)
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==Introduction==

The time has finally come for another review of some of the best World Class beers out there. Each year, I wait in anticipation for these releases. Many know Firestone Walker for being one of the best breweries when it comes to their barrel program and have maintained that status for many years. Their ability to brew barrel aged beers and create delicious Cuvees has been outstanding from release to release. They celebrate 20 years in business bringing many awesome beers like Double Barrel Ale, Double Jack, Parabola and Velvet Merlin just to name a few. Today I bring their anniversary beer to the site and it is with damn pleasure to see what this 20th year brings. Cheers to many more years!

Aromas:
Rocky road ice cream, almonds, walnuts, hazelnut nectar, rich marshmallows, chocolate smores, oatmeal cookies, oreo cookies and cream, flan, chocolate chip cookies, whiskey, brandy hints, dark fruit raisins, plums, figs, dark cherries, currants, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, prunes, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, Belgian Chocolate, German Chocolate, Chocolate milk shake, bananas, clove spice, honey comb, waffle cone, vanilla, dulce de leche caramel, bourbon, rich oak, toasted coconut, almond joy chocolate, Irish Cream coffee, Danish Cream cookies, capirotada raisin bread pudding and Chocolate Banana Sundae.

Flavors:
Dark fruit raisins, plums, figs, dark cherries, currants, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, prunes, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, Belgian Chocolate, German Chocolate, Chocolate milk shake, bananas, clove spice, honey comb, waffle cone, vanilla, dulce de leche caramel, bourbon, rich oak, toasted coconut, almond joy chocolate, rocky road ice cream, almonds, walnuts, hazelnut nectar, rich marshmallows, chocolate smores, oatmeal cookies, oreo cookies and cream, flan, chocolate chip cookies, whiskey, brandy hints, molasses, anise, leather, tobacco, sweetened condensed milk, port wine, Irish Cream coffee, Danish Cream cookies, capirotada raisin bread pudding, Chocolate Banana Sundae, cinnamon, coriander hints, stone fruit peaches, dragon fruit, passion fruit, pecan pie, hazelnut nectar and earthy hop notes.

Aftertaste:
Finishing with a grand variety of complex flavors ranging from dark chocolate, dark fruits, oak, marshmallow smores, rocky road ice cream, flan, fruit cake, bourbon, banana split, maple syrup, earthy hop notes and wine notes. No alcohol in the taste, crimson pitch black body, silky smooth, creamy, velvety, chewy and slightly syrupy mouthfeel with and easy to moderate drinkability despite the ABV.

Overall:
For being in the business 20 years, they got their stuff down and hands down, this is ridiculously delicious! They have Cuvee experts for years and even getting winemakers to assist with their creations to make something that is nothing but legendary. The best part about this beer and any of their other anniversary beers is that they have sold them to the public in many quantities for many to enjoy. Now it is your turn, seek this one as it is a must experience!
15384580_10103789156122720_2986642552389449490_o
Anime Corner:
Gainax and Trigger Studios Crossover characters were all used to represent all the flavors and all the beers used in this beer but in general all the years of blending awesome beers. Moreover, really for celebration in general. Some of the best characters in Anime are in this pairing.

Sources:
http://cdn30.us1.fansshare.com/image/mahoromatic/ogza-fanservice-1437649123.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/ywcJbAA.jpg

Zombie Monkie by Tallgrass Brewing

 

15272163_538636566332450_2923194009636993932_oRating: 5/5

Zombie Monkie by Tallgrass Brewing is a 6.2% ABV American Porter.

Label: 
Tactical Grip Can 
To Prevent Slippage while fleeing
Original Gravity: 1.062 IBU:35
Alc. By Vol: 6.2% Volume: Pint
Notes:
A relentlessly tasty beer inspired by approximately true events.

COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Zombie Monkie is a dark, rich porter, carefully brewed for the post-apocalyptic world to come. Crafted with lots of roasty dark chocolate and specialty malts, then inoculated with enough hops to add a floral/citrus character in the finish. It’s hardy, complex, and interesting, because you might be drinking it for a long time.

==Introduction==
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Thanks to my friend Aaron Mendiola of BeerMetalDude.com for sending this one my way. This Tallgrass Brewing can I have not seen and I definitely like how it is very unique. It has special indents and grooves in the can giving it a special feel. I think I will actually keep the can after the review. The design of the label is also awesome. So far, all the brews from Tallgrass brewing have been amazing but this one seems like it could be the best one yet. Let’s have a look, cheers!

Aromas:
Dark chocolate, milk chocolate, baker’s chocolate, German chocolate, Belgian chocolate chocolate brownies, mint chocolate chip, rocky road hints, dark fruit raisins, currants, cherries, vanilla, caramel, toffee, marshmallow smores, brown sugar and maple syrup hints.

Flavors:
Rich dark chocolate, milk chocolate, baker’s chocolate, German chocolate, Belgian chocolate, toasted malts, vanilla, caramel, toffee, marshmallow smores, graham crackers, cinnamon, fruit cake, dark fruit raisins, currants, cherries, coffee cake, milk sugar, mocha, molasses, brown sugar, oatmeal cookies, cookie dough ice cream, cookies and cream, pecan pie, rocky road ice cream hints, maple, chocolate brownies, mint chocolate chips and chocolate cherry cordials.

Aftertaste:
Finishes with rich chocolate and coffee roasty notes, vanilla, caramel and dark fruit notes. No alcohol in the taste, pitch black full body, smooth, creamy and velvety mouthfeel along with an easy to moderate drinkability.

Overall:
A perfect porter! This is damn amazing. They don’t use any additive ingredients like coffee, chocolate or vanilla but the flavor complexity is definitely pronounced. The best part also is that at 6.2% ABV, making this one is very drinkable. It almost feels more like a stout but regardless, this is very delicious. I would highly recommend this one and definitely get several.
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Anime Corner:
Panty, Stocking and Noodle as well as the Gorillaz and PSG crew were all chosen to go with the theme of the Zombie Monkey as shown in the label. A beer so dark and evil it should definitely be zombie based. Panty and Stoking are not necessarily monkies but their Gorillaz parody sure made them look like them. Also, since they have done an episode where they all turned into zombies, I feel fits the theme as well.

Sources:
https://images6.alphacoders.com/393/thumb-1920-393865.jpg
http://orig07.deviantart.net/a8d3/f/2015/092/e/0/last_living_souls_by_sirmonkeymccoool-d8o45qt.jpg
http://orig11.deviantart.net/2a14/f/2015/118/c/b/zombie_panty_and_stocking_by_twilightwindwaker777-d8rgywp.png

 

PranQster by North Coast Brewing

12068818_10102849583713360_5124066634343540358_oRating: 4.5/5

PranQster by North Coast Brewing is a 7.6% ABV Belgian Golden Ale.

Label:
Belgian Ales represent the height of the brewers’ art. Sophisticated brewing techniques, yeast blends and unique flavoring elements have elevated the beers of Belgium to the status enjoyed by wine in other countries. PranQster follows in this tradition using a mixed culture of antique yeast strains that results in a floral nose, a full fruity flavor and a clean finish.

==Introduction==

First time I tried this beer was in 2012. Fastforward to 2015, and my friend Jose, aka Chino, gives me a bottles of beer as payment for fixing his wife’s computer and I was like, SOLD! I had tried many of the other ones including this one but to be honest, I never really had the chance to just sit down and review it. Many of North Coast brews like Old Rasputin and Grand Cru, which are some of my favorites I cheer on about. PranQster was a very delicious beer but I guess I just never brought it to the site, until now! So without further ado, lets take a look at PranQster.

Aromas:
Floral notes, honey, pineapple, grapefruit notes, banana esters, phenolic clove spice, Oranges, peppercorns, wafflecone, pears, bubblegum hints, lemon candy, rock candy, candy sugar, stone fruit peaches, mango, apricots, vanilla, kiwi hints, papaya, passion fruit, coriander spice and cane sugar.

Flavors:
Oranges, peppercorns, Floral notes, honey, pineapple, grapefruit notes, banana esters, phenolic clove spice, candy sugar, stone fruit peaches, mango, apricots, vanilla, kiwi hints, papaya, passion fruit, coriander spice, honey dew melon, wafflecone, pears, bubblegum hints, lemon candy, rock candy and flan hints.

Aftertaste:
Dry finish with peppercorn, stone fruits, phenolic and estery banana notes, Grapefruit hops and floral notes. No alcohol in the taste, Sipping drinkability, clear golden light body, crisp, clean, refreshing and moderate mouthfeel.

Overall:
A very good Golden ale representative of the delicious beers of Belgians, especially Belgian singles. Phenolic, Clovey and spicy like the many greats before it. Not in the Tripel category but pretty near it. A solid Golden for sure and one that is worth trying for sure but not one that I would consistently pick up. I guess my taste for Golden ales has expanded to something even higher. However, for those that are craft beer entry level, this is a good introduction to the delicious worlds of Belgians. Delicious and not overly punching.

Anime Corner:
Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt and also Chuck! cosplaying as the Gorillaz were used in this pairing as they represent the gluttony of the dudes in the label. Mainly though, for the name, pranQster. They are up to no good playing by their own rules. They do what they want. This beer is refreshing and it does what it wants in your taste buds. At one time it will be lots of fruit and at another time it won’t. Learn to play a prank on this one if you will be one to succeed.

Sources:
http://wallpaperus.org/wallpapers/05/187/gillaz-stocking-1980×1080-wallpaper-947494.jpg

Abbey Normal by BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse

10365921_10102019956917110_1571724735164320888_nRating: 4.85/5

Abbey Normal by BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse is a 6.6% ABV Belgian Dubbel.

Label:
BJ’s Abbey Normal is a light brown ale with a sweet malty profile. The style is what the Belgians call Abbey Ale, molded after the famous ales brewed by Trappist Monks. BJ’s Abbey Normal is full-bodied and rich tasting, with a complex bouquet of fruit and spice derived from fermentation with an authentic Trappist yeast. Subtle aromas and flavors emerge as the beer warms up – caramel, plums, raisins, currants and figs. BJ’s Abbey Normal may not be brewed in an abbey but it sure tastes heavenly.

This ale is bottle-conditioned and flavorful enough to age in the bottle for several years. Like a fine wine, the balance of flavors will change over time. For optional aging, we recommend that you store BJ’s Abbey Normal at between 55 and 65°F. Or enjoy it now!
___

Since 2010, when I first really started exploring beers, BJ’s brewhouse was a central theme to explore different beer styles as well as different beers. Abbey Normal was one of the first Belgian style beers and it was damn good back then. I never realized until a recent visit with my brother and my friend Alex that they started releasing these beers in bottles. I definitely had to bring one home for review as they ran out of the tap. So if you happen to visit BJ’s, this maybe something to try that is out of the ordinary there. Unless they have Westmalle which is more expensive but way more awesome. Either way, this is a very good Belgian dubbel even pre-review.

Aromas:
Dark fruit raisins, plums, figs, dates, phenolic banana notes, clove spice, stone fruit apricots, peaches, apples biscuit bread, dulce de leche caramel, toffee, honey, rock candy, pecan hint, ginger bread, chocolate hints, cinnamon and hints of brown sugar.

Flavors:
Phenolic notes of bananas, clove spice, dulce de leche caramel, vanilla, dark fruit raisins, figs, plums, trappist yeast hints, rock candy, candi sugar, pecan notes, hazelnut hints, dark cherries, ginger bread, cinnamon, chocolate hints, coffee, nutmeg, biscuit bread, bubble gum and toffee.

Aftertaste:
Biscuit bread, rye, dulce de leche caramel hints, dark fruit and phenolic hints fade into a dry finish. No alcohol in the taste, medium drinkability, amber medium to full body, light to medium mouthfeel.

Overall:
A very good Dubbel for sure despite this comes from restaurant & brewhouse chain. I love sweet Belgian beers so even at the ABV presented, this drinks like champ. It nice in terms of balance providing you a very nice rich complexity of flavors while still not being over powering. Wish I had this more often but now I realize why I loved this one so much back then. This one I would definitely recommend if you are able to get it at BJ’s on tap or snag a bottle from them to take home and relax.

Anime Corner:
Stocking Anarchy from Panty & Stocking with Ganterbelt was used in this pairing in relation to how awesome this beer was back in the day. At my youth of craft beers, this presented me with something very distinct that I had never had on tap and really drove me to try out more beers. Now, how it relates to the Abbeys, the monks and heaven, well guess what, Stocking, along with her sister Panty are angels fighting for humanity vanquishing ghosts. She is lover of sweets to the point where she should be diabetic but she is not. The colors of the label fit her perfectly and in respects to heaven, she is just that. The flavors of dark fruits and dark sweet flavors are basically her whole embodiment. She is a sweet dark Gothic angel with a lot of heart and power.

Sources:
http://oi61.tinypic.com/2cgf23k.jpg

Lips of Faith series Pluot by New Belgium

1236441_10101360004751540_459170060_n 1236103_10101360003818410_696789262_nRating: 3.8/5

Lips of Faith series Pluot by New Belgium is a 10% ABV Belgian Tripel brewed with Pluot juice

Label: 
Cross pollinate your tastebuds with Belgian imagination and you’ll be sipping this ale while visions of pluots dance in your head. Pluots? A hybrid of apricots and plums that impart a subtle sweetness. Ferment that with a wild Belgian yeast strain and you have a fruity yet spicy nature with a body reminiscent of red wine. Delicious.
___

Along with Paardebloem, I picked up the second summer Lips of Faith ale, Pluot. I figured why not as I am trying this years releases so far. By the way, so far, Cascara has been the winner in the tastings. I actually had to get several of those. Love me some quads 😛 . Well, anyways, time to check this one out. Although by what I am seeing, an apricot/plum fusion does sounds good.

Aromas are of light plums, peaches, biscuit malt, light caramel and honey. Very limited in fragrance.

Flavors are of peach, plum juice, light caramel, biscuit bread, citrus, slight tart but possibly not to the wine level just notes of it. It also tastes like grapes, toffee, apples, sugar cookies and light rye bread.

The aftertaste is mildly sweet but hard to believe it is 10 percent. Especially in the taste. It finishes pretty dry. Seems easy to drink, way too easy lol. Kind of scary but awesome.

Overall it is a still pretty good beer for sure with nice flavors, but I guess I expected more. Still a killer clear body beer. I’d get this this often if I wanted to just get hammered. The notes of Belgian character is still present. If you pick this up, just to try it, go for it but do not expect lots of magic. Just a nice decently good beer, that will probably get you wasted as you cannot tell the ABV in the taste.

Young’s Double Chocolate Stout by Wells & Young

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Rating: 4.65/5

Young’s Double Chocolate Stout by Wells & Young LTD is 5.2%ABV Milk Chocolate Stout made with chocolate malts and dark chocolate.Available quite common and year round. It is probably one of the first stouts aside from Guinness that I had tried back in college. I have neglected this beer for a while so I figure I come back to it 🙂

COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Available filtered and pasteurised in 500ml bottles and in nitrocans. Also Nitro Keg on Tap 
Production moved from Youngs to Wells & Youngs in 2007.
Ingredients: Pale ale and crystal malt, chocolate malt, special blend of sugars, Fuggle and Goldings hops, real dark chocolate and chocolate essence.
Chocolate malt and real dark chocolate are combined with Young’s award winning rich, full flavoured dark beer to craft a satisfyingly indulgent, but never overly sweet experience.
___

The aromas are of strong malty chocolate, underlying coffee and mocha notes, vanilla, caramel, earthy hop bitterness and some smokey fragrance. The flavors are of like a borderline brown ale. A great amount of dark, milk and sweet chocolate shines in the taste along with coffee, mocha, vanilla crème, cocoa, smokey bitterness but only slight, caramel, toffee, a bit of hazelnut, earthy hop bitterness, some minor graininess. While it is not at the level of some of the most extreme imperial chocolate dessert beers, like organic chocolate, or even chocolate rain, it’s emphasis on being chocolate is more apparent than other stouts. Hence the reason why beer fusions work very well with this stout. This beer works way better as a dessert beer on its own even. Just the fact that it is a common beer is also worth getting as this is as close to a more chocolate beer than any of the rare stuff out there. Recommended? Yes, if you enjoy chocolate. In fact if you ever plan on doing beer fusions, this is the choice 😛

2 Turtle Doves by The Bruery

379663_10100997912622070_59218585_nRating: 5.2/5

2 Turtle Doves by The Bruery is a 12%ABV Belgian Strong Dark Ale Brewed with Cocoa nibs & Toasted Pecans

Label:
The second verse of our “Twelve Beers of Christmas” saga begins with caramel and toasty, nutty malt with a luscious layer of chocolate. Happy Holidays!
___

The 2nd bottle their 12 days of Christmas. As soon as I opened the bottle I got a rush of amazing dark fruit character. Raspberries, cherries, grapes, raisins, plums, cranberries, blue berries, chocolate, cinnamon, ginger spice, hazelnut, dulce de leche caramel and some sweet bread mocha fragrance as well. The flavors are of dark chocolate covered raisins, cherries, slight wine funkyness, dulce de leche caramel, vanilla, oak, coffee, hazelnuts, walnuts, pecan pie, roasted almonds, chocolate mocha, whipped cream and coffee cake. This is a luscious desert in a bottle. I would only have to assume it is to die for when floated with ice cream. I will admit, I almost wanted to chew although it is just liquid ;). The aftertaste is a lot like a caramel, chocolate mocha, whipped cream and coffee. As for the alcohol it does no deter from the drink-ability or the flavor. It is kinda smooth going down for a 12% which is quite unheard of. What really wins for this is the flavor. Just way good. This beer has probably been aging for quite a while and has developed a great amount of complexity. It is freaking delicious.

Bitter Monk by Anchorage Brewing

549533_10100936371396180_197145515_nRating: 5/5

Bitter Monk by Anchorage Brewing is a 9%ABV, 100IBU’s, Belgian Double India Pale Ale Brewed with Brettanomyces and aged in French oak Chardonnay Barrels. Yes, this is fancy as hell. Considered to be the best Belgian Pale Ale in the world by BeerAdv and RateBeer. Well let’s see what all the fuss is about.

Label: Ale brewed with Apollo and Citra hops. Dry hopped in the barrel with Citra hops. Triple Fermented – First in French oak loudres with a Belgian yeast, second in French oak Chardonnay barrels with brett, and finally in the bottle with a third yeast for natural carbonation.

“Deep within the tortured aberrations of a monk’s mind there lay a concept of a Holy Grail of beer — a beer oft imagined but never tasted, strived for but never achieved. It’s Belgian heritage manifested in its yeasty complexity, softened and rounded in its cooperage Francais and made to sparkle like the stars first seen by his distant predecessor, Dom Perignon.

Bitter Monk Belgian Double IPA is such a beer. Redolent of citrusy hop bittering and massive malt infusion, this is a beer to ponder, to sip, and, even for a monk, to dream. Why then is the monk so bitter? What provokes that sly smile? What is he wearing under that flowing robe? A triple-fermented beer gives three times the mystery. Remember, anything worth doing is worth over doing. Nothing exceeds like excess. Even for the cloistered. And what rough monk, his hour come round last, slinks slowly toward Brussels to be reborn.”

First of all, you have Emperor Palpatine on the label….LMAO!!…Only thing I can find to pair this with is Stocking’s Darkside (From Panty and Stocking Anime, Angel turned Demon) to reflect the sinfulness of the monk/Sith Lord over here. 

Immediately from the fragrance, no holds bar. This was the Stillwater As Follows take to another unholy level. Even that beers is scary as hell :S (https://brewerianimelogs.wordpress.com/2012/11/05/as-follows-eschatological-ale-by-stillwater-artisanal/) There are fragrances of hops, citrus, banana, musty hay, like a Saison a la Stillwater, flowers, hibiscus, roses and pine. The flavor is much more wilder than “As follows”. Much, much more, wilder. Lime, lemon meringue pie, herbs, spices, grapes, wine, chardonnay, some tart and Jolly pumpkin funk but not to make this a sour ale at all, hints of peach, apple, mango pineapple and other tropical fruit but it is only hints because they do not overwhelm like the regular DIPAs go. Grassy, pine and grapefruit bitterness are hinted but covered up by the Belgian yeast. Flowers like Roses, Hibiscus and honey as in the flavor of Love Buzz (https://brewerianimelogs.wordpress.com/2012/10/19/love-buzz-saison-ale-by-anchrage/). I would assume if you take Stillwater’s of Love and Regret and mixed it in with As Follows and aged it you would have this. This is truly another level of Belgian IPA. This is crazy evil beer. Goes to prove a beer doesn’t have to be dark (appearance) to prove that it is evil. Saison, BPA and wild ale lovers will like this one.