All posts by dpatrickryan

No-Li Brewhouse Winter Warmer – American Strong Ale at 7.5% ABV

No-Li Brewhouse Winter Warmer American Strong Ale at 7.5% ABV (C$7.49 at Willow Park Wine & Spirits, 650 ml, no bottle date or best before)

Pours clear medium amber with one finger of loose tan head diminishing rapidly to a thin skim, moderate patchy lacing. (3/5) Nose is caramel malt, light spices, faint fruit. (5/10) Taste is mild to moderate sweet, moderate bitter. (5/10) Medium to light body, moderate carbonation, mildly bitter and warming finish. (3/5)

Yes, I know it’s a winter warmer – I still have snow in my back yard. That said, not much “winter warmer” character here – light body, not much spice, little warmth. Maybe a bit elderly, but I’d expect the style to hold up better, and I’m even getting a little faint butyric acid. Not one of No-Li’s better efforts. (10/20)

5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Garrison Brewing Company Imperial I.P.A. – American Double / Imperial IPA at 8.0% ABV

Garrison Brewing Company Imperial I.P.A. American Double / Imperial IPA at 8.0% ABV (C$5.99 at NLC Howley Estates, 650 ml, no bottle date or best before)

Pours clear pale amber with two fingers of rocky white head, good retention and lacing. (4/5) Nose is bright citrus and pine resin, tropical fruit, mild caramel malt. (8/10) Taste is mild to moderate sweet, moderately strong bitter. (8/10) Medium body, moderate carbonation, slightly sticky and lingering bitter finish. (4/5)

No bottle date, but definitely fresh – hop-forward all the way, bright and sharp, with just enough malt in support. Probably the strongest performer I’ve had from Garrison’s lineup. The ABV isn’t absent, but it’s also not intrusive. (16/20)

8/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Parallel 49 / Townsite Brewing Inc. – Brews Brothers Les Portes du Pénitencier Black Table Saison – Saison at 5.0% ABV

Parallel 49 / Townsite Brewing Inc. Brews Brothers Les Portes du Pénitencier Black Table Saison Saison at 5.0% ABV (C$2.63 at Andrew Hilton Wine & Spirits, 341 ml, bottle date 11-Feb-2015)

Pours clear amber-brown with one finger of dense light tan head, good retention and minimal lacing. (3/5) Nose is dark malt, mild citrus, faint coffee. (4/10) Taste is mild to moderate sweet, mild bitter, slight sour. (4/10) Medium body tending to watery, moderate carbonation, mildly bitter finish. (2/5)

Aaaand I dunno what the hell this is. Looks fairly pretty, but that’s about the extent of it. A muddled boring mess that tastes like coffee and dishwater, without much saison character to speak of. (8/20)

4/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Parallel 49 / Moon Under Water – Brews Brothers Boom Boom Boom Triple Hop Belgian Tripel – Tripel at 9.0% ABV

Parallel 49 / Moon Under Water Brews Brothers Boom Boom Boom Triple Hop Belgian Tripel Tripel at 9.0% ABV (C$2.63 at Andrew Hilton Wine & Spirits, 341 ml, bottle date 20-Feb-2015)

Pours clear pale straw with a thin white head diminishing gradually to a thin skim, minimal lacing. (3/5) Nose is banana, coriander, bready yeast, mild citrus. (5/10) Taste is mild sweet, mild bitter. (5/10) Light body, moderate to low carbonation, off-dry, sticky, and mildly bitter finish. (3/5)

To be honest, I went into this worried what kind of mess they’d make of one of my favourite styles. And no, they didn’t nail it – not even close – but at least it’s not a complete dog’s breakfast. It’s nowhere near dry enough, and if that’s “triple hopped”, well, I’d hate to see single. One thing it does do well, though, is integrate the ABV: there’s hardly any heat at all, except towards the very end of the glass, and for a near double-digit ABV that’s no mean feat. (10/20)

5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Parallel 49 / Steel & Oak Brewing Co. – Brews Brothers Tiger in Your Tank – Kellerbier at 5.0% ABV

Parallel 49 / Steel & Oak Brewing Co. Brews Brothers Tiger in Your Tank Kellerbier at 5.0% ABV (C$2.63 at Andrew Hilton Wine & Spirits, 341 ml, bottle date 19-Feb-2015)

Pours clear pale amber with one finger of dense off-white head, good retention and no lacing. (3/5) Nose is grainy caramel malt, earthy hops, smoke. (5/10) Taste is moderate sweet, mild bitter, mild smoke. (5/10) Light to medium body, moderate carbonation, lingering mildly bitter and smoky finish. (3/5)

Well, I don’t hate it – and believe me, after the first sniff and sip, that was the direction things were heading. I really wasn’t expecting smoke. And, apparently, neither do the BJCP (2014 draft guide) or the German Beer Institute – I checked: even the amber Franconion Kellerbiers are expected to have bready/toasty and spicy peppery hop aromas, and caramel or biscuity malt are acceptable. “Smoke” isn’t mentioned at all. This would be better classified as a light Rauchbier. As a Kellerbier, it’s a massive failure, but as a Rauchbier, it’s not terrible. (10/20)

5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Parallel 49 / Brassneck – Brews Brothers The Thrill is Gone Post-Classic Pilsner – Pilsener at 6.5% ABV

Parallel 49 / Brassneck Brews Brothers The Thrill is Gone Post-Classic Pilsner Pilsener at 6.5% ABV (C$2.63 at Andrew Hilton Wine & Spirits, 341 ml, no bottle date or best before)

Pours clear pale straw with one finger of rocky white head, good retention and lacing. (4/5) Nose is crackery malt, faint grassy hops, hint of citrus. (6/10) Taste is mild to moderate sweet, mild bitter. (6/10) Light body, soft carbonation, crisp with lingering mildly bitter and slightly sweet finish. (4/5)

If you ask me, the thrill might be coming back – goes down a treat after another 12 hour work day. Light and crisp in the body, with soft carbonation and a surprisingly absent ABV, except for just a hint of sweetness in the finish. I generally find pilseners pretty boring – because, let’s face it, they are – but I could drink a few of these. (14/20)

7/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Parallel 49 / Powell Street Craft Brewery – Brews Brothers Stone Crazy – American Double / Imperial IPA at 9.0% ABV

Parallel 49 / Powell Street Craft Brewery Brews Brothers Stone Crazy American Double / Imperial IPA at 9.0% ABV (C$2.63 at Andrew Hilton Wine & Spirits, 341 ml, bottle date 5-Mar-2015)

Pours clear pale amber with two fingers of rocky ivory head, good retention and lacing. (4/5) Nose is pithy grapefruit, piney resin, stone fruit, caramel malt, light fruit. (7/10) Taste is mild sweet, moderately strong bitter. (7/10) Medium body, moderate carbonation, lingering mildly bitter and slightly boozy finish. (4/5)

Maybe just slightly light in the body for the style, but on the up side, the ABV doesn’t intrude at all. Big bitterness, but it isn’t overwhelming. Malt is appropriate and supportive, without being forward. (15/20)

7.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Parallel 49 / Storm Brewing Ltd. – Brews Brothers Backdoor Man Basil India Pale Ale – American IPA at 6.5% ABV

Parallel 49 / Storm Brewing Ltd. Brews Brothers Backdoor Man Basil India Pale Ale American IPA at 6.5% ABV (C$2.63 at Andrew Hilton Wine & Spirits, 341 ml, bottle date 9-Mar-2015)

Pours clear pale amber with one finger of soapy off-white head diminishing rapidly to a thin skim, moderate patchy lacing. (3/5) Nose is definite basil, weedy herbal and floral, caramel malt, faint citrus. (4/10) Taste is mild sweet, mild bitter. (4/10) Light to medium body, moderate carbonation, slightly spicy finish. (3/5)

I found the flavours unbalanced and off-putting, but maybe it works for some folks. Not “bad” as such, but definitely not for me. Maybe good to cook with? Dumped it after a third of a glass – see no reason to struggle with something that isn’t working. (8/20)

4.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Parallel 49 / Yellow Dog Brewing Co. – Brews Brothers Hound Dog Belgian India Pale Ale – Belgian IPA at 6.0% ABV

Parallel 49 / Yellow Dog Brewing Co. Brews Brothers Hound Dog Belgian India Pale Ale Belgian IPA at 6.0% ABV (C$2.63 at Andrew Hilton Wine & Spirits, 341 ml, bottle date 5-Mar-2015)

Pours clear pale amber with one fat finger of soapy off-white head diminishing gradually to a thin cap, moderate lacing. (4/5) Nose is Belgian yeast, lemon peel, honey, coriander and cloves. (6/10) Taste is mild sweet, moderate bitter. (6/10) Medium body tending to thin, moderate carbonation, lingering mildly bitter finish. (3/5)

Not bad, but sort of lacking in emphasis. Both the flavour and the body tend to the thin and watery. OK without being remarkable. (12/20)

6/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Parallel 49 / Bomber Brewing – Brews Brothers Little Red Rooster Red India Session Ale – Session IPA at 4.5% ABV

Parallel 49 / Bomber Brewing Brews Brothers Little Red Rooster Red India Session Ale Session IPA at 4.5% ABV (C$2.63 at Andrew Hilton Wine & Spirits, 341 ml, no bottle date or best before)

Pours clear red-tinged pale amber with one finger of light tan head, good retention, moderate patchy lacing. (4/5) Nose is citrus, light floral, stone fruit, bready and caramel malt. (6/10) Taste is moderate sweet, mild bitter. (5/10) Light to medium body, moderate carbonation, fairly crisp with a rapid finish. (3/5)

The aromas start off quite promising, but fade fairly quickly and aren’t really followed through on the tongue. Could really stand to be more bitter and less malty, but I guess the malt is an integral part of any “red” ale. Really too sweet for a session ale for me, though. (12/20)

6/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com