Big Rock Brewery Big Rock Monk’s Misery – Herb Gruit at 6.0% ABV

Big Rock Brewery Big Rock Monk’s Misery Herb Gruit at 6.0% ABV

Pours a deep cola red with a short tan head diminishing rapidly to a thin skim and no lacing. Nose is herbal and floral, faint honey and molasses. Taste is similar, with a little liquorice and a hint of coffee on a bitter finish. Medium body, low carbonation, with a dry finish.

So that’s a gruit, huh? Well, can’t say I’m a big fan. The herbal tones have a medicinal character, almost like Buckley’s Mixture. It’s not unpleasant, as such, but I actually sort of like Buckley’s, so there you go. Even making allowances for the uniqueness of the style, I can’t say this is something I’m eager to try again. I can see why hops became preferred, even ignoring the abuses of the politics of gruit.

5.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Brauerei Gebrüder Maisel GmbH & Co. Maisel’s Weisse Original – Hefeweizen at 5.2% ABV

Brauerei Gebrüder Maisel GmbH & Co. Maisel’s Weisse Original Hefeweizen at 5.2% ABV

Pours a clear gold with a short white head diminishing quickly to a thin skim and no lacing. Nose is distinctly banana bread – banana fruit and bready yeast – with caramel malt. Taste is similar, with banana, malt, and clove. Light to medium body and crisp, with a slightly spicy dry finish.

Quite a pleasant hefeweizen. Decent aroma and flavour, pleasant body, and a crisp, spicy finish. Nothing too challenging, but decent enough.

8/10 #1001beers #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Phillips Brewing Company Phillips Ginger Beer – Spiced Beer at 5.0% ABV

Phillips Brewing Company Phillips Ginger Beer Spiced Beer at 5.0% ABV

Pours a clear amber copper with a short-lived head diminishing rapidly to nothing and no lacing. Nose is overwhelmingly fresh ginger, with only the merest hint of caramel. Taste follows suit, with low sweetness, and a building spiciness. Medium body and flat carbonation.

Not all that interesting. I like a nice spicy ginger beer, and typically don’t like a lot of sweetness, but despite its ticking both those boxes, I’m not all that fussed over this one. The low-lived head and carbonation probably contribute to this impression, and it feels like it would benefit from a little more sweetness.

5.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

1001 Beers

I’ve made some edits to Eddie Miles‘ combined spreadsheet list of the 2010 and 2013 “1001 Beers”:

  • Entering “2013” in (hidden) column A will automatically tint the row green
  • Entering “R” in (hidden) column B will automatically tint the row red
  • Entering “Yes” in column L will add it to your tally
  • Fixed a few typos that I happened to notice

There are tallies for beers that are 2010-only, 2013-only, and common to both, as well as a total tasted. (Presumably 2010 + 2013 + common should equal the total, but I haven’t bothered to put in a check.)

1090 Beers To Try 2014

Krombacher Brauerei Krombacher Dark – Schwarzbier at 4.3% ABV

Krombacher Brauerei Krombacher Dark Schwarzbier at 4.3% ABV

Pours a deep cola brown with two fingers of fluffy tan head, decent retention and well-defined moderate lacing. Nose is dark roasted malts, caramel and molasses, slightly smoky. Taste is light malt, hint of smoke, mild bitter finish. Mouth feel is watery, light body and moderate carbonation.

So… it’s a… slightly smokey… dark… lager… with a little bitter on the finish? It’s OK, I guess – better than an adjunct lager – but it’s not something I’d go looking for again.

6/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

8 Wired Brewing Co. Tall Poppy – American Amber/Red Ale at 7.0% ABV

8 Wired Brewing Co. Tall Poppy American Amber/Red Ale at 7.0% ABV

Pours a deep ruby with a loose finger of off-white head diminishing rapidly to a thin skim and spotty lacing. Nose is caramel malt, floral and herbal hops, slight fruit. Taste follows suit, with caramel leading the way and a bitter finish. Medium body and moderate carbonation, slick and slightly syrupy, with a dry finish.

Fairly middle of the road IPA, with a little more sweetness than I prefer. The floral/herbal hop profile is also less my preference than the pine/citrus side of the hop spectrum. That said, it’s a decent enough example of a hoppy red ale.

7.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Wild Rose Brewery & Taproom WRaspberry – Fruit Beer at 4.5% ABV

Wild Rose Brewery & Taproom WRaspberry Fruit Beer at 4.5% ABV

Pours a slightly hazy orange gold with a short white head diminishing quickly to a thin skim and spotty lacing. Nose is sweet raspberry and faint biscuit malt, with just a hint of funk as the bottle progresses. Taste follows suit, leading out sweet, with no hop presence. Mouth feel tends to the watery side, with low carbonation.

I only bought this because it was both a local brewery, and on the discount shelf. It’s a good thing I didn’t have high hopes, because they’d’ve been dashed. It’s not bad, as such, but it doesn’t have a lot of character. The fruit doesn’t taste artificial, and there’s even a little funk, but some hop presence would’ve been nice. Not bad, but not all that interesting.

5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Big Rock Brewery Big Rock India Pale Ale – English IPA at 5.5% ABV

Big Rock Brewery Big Rock India Pale Ale English IPA at 5.5% ABV

Pours a clear amber with a short-lived off-white head and spotty lacing. Nose is dominated by biscuity malt, with only very faint hop aroma. Taste is sweet malt with only a hint of citrus. Mouth feel is medium bodied with low carbonation and a bitter finish.

Oh dear. This is about as much an IPA as Alexander Keith’s “IPA” – which is to say, not at all. Disappointing aroma, no hop profile to speak of, and a malt dominated flavour, with the bitter finish being the one high note. This is more like an English Bitter or Pale Ale than an IPA. I really can’t recommend this much above a macro adjunct lager.

4.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Evil Twin Brewing All Occasions IPA – American Double/Imperial IPA at 8.0% ABV

Evil Twin Brewing All Occasions IPA American Double/Imperial IPA at 8.0% ABV

Pours a cloudy orange with one finger of fluffy off-white head, excellent retention and moderate lacing. Nose is somewhat muted, citrus and pine, with some sweet malt in the background. Taste starts with sweet caramel, citrus and pine following, with a long bitter finish. Mouth feel is medium to full, with light carbonation and slight warming.

A big beer with an emphatic hop presence attenuated only slightly by the malt. The bitter finish builds as the pint progresses, and lingers long after the glass is empty. Could either do with a little more subtlety in the hop profile, or dispense with the attempt to sugarcoat the hops with malt and go full palate-wrecker.

7.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com