Alameda Brewing Co. Yellow Wolf Imperial IPA – Imperial/Double IPA at 8.2% ABV

Alameda Brewing Co. Yellow Wolf Imperial IPA Imperial/Double IPA at 8.2% ABV

Pours hazy pale gold with a fat finger of loose off-white head diminishing rapidly to a thick cap, moderate lacing. Nose is moderately intense citrus, piney, and herbal hops balanced with pale malt. Taste starts moderately sweet, giving way to moderately intense bitter. Medium body with low sustained carbonation and a long dry bitter finish.

I’m not sure if I entirely like Columbus hops in a DIPA. For me, the herbal aspect reduces the overall impact of the hops and makes this feel like it’s not quite the 103 IBU hop bomb it might otherwise be. It sort of leaves the door open for the malt to have a greater presence on the nose and the tongue, edging into the malty DIPA territory I don’t prefer. I don’t dislike this beer, and it’s quite drinkable, but a better hop blend might make it more memorable.

7.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Half Pints Brewing Co. Humulus Ludicrous – Imperial/Double IPA at 8.0% ABV

Half Pints Brewing Co. Humulus Ludicrous Imperial/Double IPA at 8.0% ABV

Pours clear pale amber with two fingers dense beige head (that doubles in size after the pour becoming a marshmallow) and great retention, heavy lacing. Nose is moderately intense citrus and piney hops with light pale malt in the background. Taste starts moderately sweet, giving way rapidly to intense bitter. Medium body with moderate sustained carbonation and a lingering spicy bitter finish.

“Ludicrous” is a good name for this beer. The head, the nose, and the finish might all be described as such. This is not a beer that believes in hiding its light under a bushel. I like it! The flavour of the Centennial and Cascade hops comes through loud and clear, and despite the colour and the initial nose, the pale malt plays very much a supporting role, rather than coming to the forefront. I like precisely this balance in a DIPA. An excellent choice to hold its own against spicy foods.

My 112th from the 2010 Edition of 1001 Beers, 106th by the 2013 Edition, and 115th overall.

8.5/10 #1001beers #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Willow Park (2014-10-01)

Willow Park (2014-10-01)

My latest shopping trip:
Alameda Brewing Co. – Yellow Wolf Imperial IPA
Anderson Valley Brewing Company – Huge Arker
Brouwerij De Koningshoeven – La Trappe Quadrupel
Brouwerij De Koningshoeven – La Trappe Isid’or
Brouwerij der Trappistenabdij De Achelse Kluis – Trappist Achel 8° Bruin
Brouwerij Huyghe – La Guillotine
Brouwerij Lindemans – Pêche Lambic (Pêcheresse)
Brouwerij Lindemans – Framboise Lambic
Brouwerij Oud Beersel – Framboise
Brouwerij Oud Beersel – Kriek
Brouwerij Van Eecke – Kapittel Watou Dubbel
Brouwerij Van Eecke – Kapittel Watou Tripel Abt
Elysian Brewing Company – Superfuzz
Gueuzerie Tilquin Oude Gueze – Tilquin à l’Ancienne
Half Pints Brewing Co. – Humulus Ludicrous
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales – Madrugada Obscura
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales – Maracaibo Especial
Selkirk Abbey Brewing Company – Infidel

#ryansbooze

8 Wired Brewing Company iStout – Imperial Stout at 10% ABV

8 Wired Brewing Company iStout Imperial Stout at 10% ABV

Pours nearly solid black with only a hint of ruby around the margins, a short finger of dense chocolate brown head with great retention, moderate lacing. Nose is somewhat muted, coffee and dark chocolate, dark roasted malt, faint vanilla. Taste is dark roasted malt, coffee, light vanilla, ending mildly bitter. Full bodied and viscous, with mild sustained carbonation and a mild bitter finish.

A very nice example of the Imperial Stout / RIS style. Suffers only very slightly by comparison to the Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch Weasel I had immediately before it – a little less smooth and rich, but only barely, and possessing a little more typical coffee astringency. All that said, still a helluva fine beer, and a helluva lot cheaper than the Mikkeller! (Yes, I’m marking it down for the stupid name.)

9/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch Weasel – Imperial Stout at 10.9% ABV

Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch Weasel Imperial Stout at 10.9% ABV

Pours a solid inky black (without even a hint of colour round the margins) with two fingers of dense chocolate brown head diminishing gradually to a half finger cap, moderate lacing. Nose is dark roasted coffee and dark chocolate, with a hint of café latte milkiness and maybe some dark fruit. Taste is dark roasted malt, rich coffee, perhaps a hint of liquorice and only a very mild, very late bitterness. Full bodied and viscous, with mild sustained carbonation and a smooth finish.

Wow. I didn’t realize before tasting this, that the titular “weasel” was the civet cat, and that this is basically made with kopi leuwak. And it shows – there’s no bitterness or astringency from the coffee at all. In fact, there’s very little bitterness at all, despite the rich coffee flavour. I keep waiting for the bitterness to hit, and it just doesn’t. The bitterness is not the only thing that’s conspicuously absent here, either: the ABV is utterly and completely missing. This thing is nearly 11%, and it drinks like a cup of coffee. One could get in a great deal of trouble with this exceedingly dangerous beer… were it not roughly as expensive as unicorn blood – or, given the colour, printer cartridge ink…

9.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com