Sixpoint Craft Ales Resin – American Double / Imperial IPA at 9.1% ABV | 103 IBU

Sixpoint Craft Ales Resin American Double / Imperial IPA at 9.1% ABV | 103 IBU (US$2.10 at Specs Main Houston, 355 ml, packaged on 19-Jan-2018, acquired 3-Mar-2018, reviewed 3-Mar-2018)

Appearance: clear pale gold with two fingers of fluffy ivory head, excellent retention and moderate lacing. (5/5) Aroma: resiny pine, citrus, caramel, floral. (8/10) Taste: moderate sweet, high bitter. (8/10) Palate: medium oily body, moderate carbonation, off-dry lingering and building bitter finish. (4/5)

Damn, that’s good. Pretty much what it says on the label, in fact: resiny goodness. Very West Coast-ish, and good fun. No, it’s not Pliny – but it’s also less than half the price. If I lived in the Excited States, this would have a permanent presence in my fridge. (17/20)

8.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Préaris Boutique Brewery Quadrocinno – Abt / Quadrupel at 10% ABV | 45 IBU

Préaris Boutique Brewery Quadrocinno Abt / Quadrupel at 10% ABV | 45 IBU (C$5.02 at Willow Park Wine & Spirits, 330 ml, no packaging date or best before, acquired 23-Feb-2018, reviewed 2-Mar-2018)

Appearance: slightly hazy amber-brown with one fat finger of fluffy beige head, excellent retention and moderate lacing. (5/5) Aroma: mild, bready yeast, coffee, mild dark fruit. (7/10) Taste: moderate sweet, moderate-high bitter. (7/10) Palate: medium body, moderate carbonation, dry lingering bitter finish. (3/5)

Yeah, it’s #hotelglassware but what can I say? Needs must. I’ve got an early flight tomorrow, so I figure the the extra hour of sleep is worth the $30 premium for hotel + parking, over parking alone.

I’m not sold on this, not by a long shot. The aroma is surprisingly mild for a Quad, and yeast-forward. The coffee is definitely present, but feels out of balance with the dark fruitcake character I look for in a Quad. The body is slightly thin for the style as well. Ultimately, the appearance is the best part of this beer, and when you’re as ugly as me, that’s not gonna get you far. (14/20)

7/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Bench Creek Brewing Legend Extra Old Ale – Old Ale at 11.8% ABV | 45 IBU

Bench Creek Brewing Legend Extra Old Ale Old Ale at 11.8% ABV | 45 IBU (C$20.10 at Willow Park Wine & Spirits, 650 ml, no packaging date or best before, best after 24-Dec-2017, acquired 13-Dec-2017, reviewed 28-Feb-2018)

Appearance: clear medium amber with one finger of fluffy ivory head diminishing gradually to a thin cap and ring, spotty lacing. (4/5) Aroma: sweet and boozy toffee, stone fruit, vanilla, earth. (7/10) Taste: moderate-high sweet, moderate-high bitter. (7/10) Palate: medium body, moderate carbonation, off-dry moderate bitter warming finish. (4/5)

OK, Bench Creek, time to wow me. After White Raven and Apex Predator you’ve shown your facility for A/IPAs and A/DIPAs (and Apex is damn near an apex, I might add, with an eminently respectable nine out of ten… though we won’t mention certain APAs or Rye IPAs, will we?) so let’s see what you do with a hugely alcoholic Old Ale. (And, no pressure, but you’ve put yourself in some fairly rarified atmosphere by putting a “best after” date on your label. Ballsy move, lads, ballsy move.)

Sidebar: I’ve driven through Legend, on the way to Foremost and Manyberries. Can’t say the original settlers lacked for ballsiness themselves with naming like that, could you? You could also do Sweetgrass, Milk River, and Dunmore on that loop, and if you can’t come up with a dirty interpretation of a Friday night using that, well, I’m deeply disappointed in you all. You should be ashamed.

Right! Back to the beer!

So. Yeah. Wowed. Erm. Not… really? I mean, yeah, it’s good… ish… But it falls short of great… ish… It might benefit from some extended cellaring to smooth things out, but it’s not particularly harsh now – it’s just not particularly interesting. On the other hand, it gets you good and squiffy in short order, so that’s all to the good, yeah? (15/20)

7.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

The Grizzly Paw Brewing Company Cellar Series Bourbon Barrel Aged Russian Imperial Stout 2016 Single Edition – Russian Imperial Stout at 10.2% ABV

The Grizzly Paw Brewing Company Cellar Series Bourbon Barrel Aged Russian Imperial Stout 2016 Single Edition Russian Imperial Stout at 10.2% ABV (C$11.90 at Willow Park Wine & Spirits, 650 ml, packaged on 16-Nov-2017, acquired 13-Dec-2017, reviewed 28-Feb-2018)

Appearance: solid black with no hint of relief, tan head diminishing rapidly to a thin skim, spotty lacing. (4/5) Aroma: bourbon, dark chocolate, anise, coconut, vanilla, dark fruit. (8/10) Taste: moderate-high sweet, high bitter. (8/10) Palate: medium body, moderate carbonation, off-dry mildly bitter finish. (4/5)

I’m a bit puzzled by the dating on this: the label calls it the “2016 Single Edition” but the bottling date impression says “16NOV17”, so I dunno – I’m gonna go with, brewed in 2016, barrel aged 12 months, bottled in 2017? I expected this to be brutally hot, but it actually isn’t. In fact, it’s pretty smooth, warm but not hot, with lots of flavour. I like this a lot. (16/20)

8/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com