Evil Twin Brewing Evil Twin Wet Dream – American Brown Ale at 6.0% ABV

Evil Twin Brewing Evil Twin Wet Dream American Brown Ale at 6.0% ABV

Pours a deep cola red with two fingers of loose tan head diminishing rapidly to a thin skim, moderate lacing. Nose is roasted nutty malt, coffee, light pine resin and citrus, hints of chocolate. Taste follows suit, with a bitter finish. Medium body with low carbonation and a creamy mouth feel.

Not a bad brown ale at all. Nearly a coffee porter or stout with the darkness of the malt, but with a somewhat lighter body. I’m not sure how old this bottle was (come on folks, is it that hard to put a damn bottling date on the label?) but I have a suspicion that the hops were a little muted with age – I’d like to try this fresh or on tap and see if there’s a bit more hop presence.

7/10 #ryansbooze  ryansbooze.com

UAB Švyturys Ekstra – Dortmunder/Helles Lager at 5.2% ABV

UAB Švyturys Švyturys Ekstra Dortmunder/Helles Lager at 5.2% ABV

Pours a clear straw yellow with one finger of white head diminishing gradually to a thin skim, moderate lacing. Nose is pale malt, corn, and faint grassy hops. Taste follows suit with malt and corn dominant over grassy hops. Light to medium body and moderate sustained carbonation with a slightly sticky finish.

The bottle says “Acknowledged by beer lovers and experts”. Fair enough: I acknowledge it as well. Furthermore, I acknowledge I didn’t actually go blind as a result of drinking it. However, I also suggest you don’t actually drink it, unless soviet-era vodka with a chaser of gasoline is to your taste. Perhaps acknowledge it with a little wave as you pass it on the shelf, or maybe the sign against the Evil Eye? This isn’t really so much a beer for drinking, as it is a beer for avoiding, or perhaps running away from, very quickly.

(OK, maybe it’s not quite that bad. It’s fun putting things down, though, isn’t it? I’ve clearly been doing this “beer tasting thing” all wrong, trying the best ones I can find. Obviously I need to find more bad beer to slag. I could have a bright future as a restaurant or film critic!)

My 103rd from the 2010 Edition of 1001 Beers, 97th by the 2013 Edition, and 106th overall.

3.5/10   #1001beers #ryansbooze   ryansbooze.com

Rogue Ales Rogues Farms Chipotle Ale – Spice/Herb/Vegetable Beer at 5.0% ABV

Rogue Ales Rogues Farms Chipotle Ale Spice/Herb/Vegetable Beer at 5.0% ABV

Pours a clear amber with two fingers of off-white head diminishing gradually to a thick ca and heavy lacing. Nose is… bizarre: smoky green jalapeños, caramel malt, and something I can’t identify. Taste follows, with a moderate spiciness that grows as the pint progresses. Medium body, low carbonation, and an off-dry finish.

I’m sorry, this is nasty. As in, sink pour territory – and I don’t generally do that, plus I love spicy food. This just doesn’t work. Save your time and money and don’t bother. I’m coming to the conclusion that this is a brewery that you can’t blindly support. Some of their brews just don’t work, and this is the poster child for that.

3/10 #ryansbooze  ryansbooze.com

McAuslan Brewing St-Ambroise Oatmeal Stout – Stout at 5.0% ABV

McAuslan Brewing St-Ambroise Oatmeal Stout Stout at 5.0% ABV

Pours nearly jet black with only the slightest hints of deep cola brown around the edges, a fat finger of tan head diminishing gradually to a thin skim, and moderate lacing. Nose is coffee, chocolate, caramel, slightly smokey. Taste follows suit with a mild molasses sweetness tempering roasted malt and bitter coffee. Full body and low carbonation, with a creamy mouth feel and dry finish.

Now that’s a stout – this is what Guinness wishes it was. (Yes, I once gave Guinness the same rating I’m giving this one. That was then, this is now. Deal with it. I’ll re-review a Guinness sometime and put it where it belongs.) I’d love to have this on a nitro tap to really amp up the creaminess, but it’s pretty decent just as it is. The oatmeal definitely tempers the flavour, giving it a fuller, rounder aspect. This can rightly take its place as one of the best Canadian beers around.

My 102nd from the 2010 Edition of 1001 Beers, 96th by the 2013 Edition, and 105th overall.

9/10 #1001beers  #ryansbooze  ryansbooze.com

Fuller Smith & Turner PLC Fuller’s ESB – Extra Special Bitter at 5.9% ABV

Fuller Smith & Turner PLC Fuller’s ESB Extra Special Bitter at 5.9% ABV

Pours a clear copper amber with one finger of light tan head diminishing gradually to a thick cap, moderate chunky lacing. Nose is toffee/caramel malt, slight nuttiness, faint yeast and fruity hops. Taste follows suit with sweet caramel and biscuity malts leading the way for mild pepper and an almost delicate bitter finish. Medium to full body and moderate sustained carbonation, with a creamy mouth feel and dry finish.

I generally find English Bitters to be a touch boring, and this is no exception. That being said, it’s pleasant, well-behaved, and highly sessionable. This is very much a beer for a few pints in a dim and smoky pub.

My 101st from the 2010 Edition of 1001 Beers, 95th by the 2013 Edition, and 104th overall.

7/10 #1001beers #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

BrewDog Hardcore IPA – American Double / Imperial IPA at 9.2% ABV

BrewDog Hardcore IPA american Double / Imperial IPA at 9.2% ABV

Pours a cloudy orange with a short tan head diminishing gradually to a thin skim, spotty lacing. Nose is pine resin and citrusy hops, caramel malt, some dark fruit. Taste leads out malty and sweet, giving way to a lingering piney bitterness. Medium oily/creamy body, low carbonation, and a lingering finish.

I’ve had worse… I’ve had better… It’s certainly not bad, but it’s got that malt-forward character that I don’t prefer in an IPA, let alone a DIPA. It’s not overly sweet, but I’d like it better if it were less so, and led out with hops instead of malt. Bottom line: not my preference, but I can see the attraction.

7.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Big Rock Brewery Big Rock Cherazz – Fruit beer at 4.1% ABV

Big Rock Brewery Big Rock Cherazz Fruit beer at 4.1% ABV

Pours a deep brownish ruby with a fat frothy pinkish-purple head diminishing rapidly to nothing, no lacing. Nose is dominated by cherry and raspberry, with a little wheat, pale malt, and vinegar. Taste is cough drops, artificial cherry and lots of sugar. Light to moderate body, low carbonation, and an off-dry finish.

Yeah, that’s about what I expected. I’ll keep buying Big Rock varietals till the cows come home – have to support home-grown breweries, after all – but I no longer expect to be impressed by them. This is a bit of a muddled mess, and is a far cry from the Belgian style it aspires to.

6/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Unibroue Éphémère Pomme (Apple) – Fruit beer at 5.5% ABV

Unibroue Éphémère Pomme (Apple) Fruit beer at 5.5% ABV

Pours clear straw yellow with a fat finger of frothy white head diminishing gradually to a thin cap and no lacing. Nose is green apple with a faint yeasty base, perhaps a hint of wheat and coriander. Taste is green apple and bready malt with a little citrus. Light body, moderate sustained carbonation, and a short, sweet, crisp finish.

Light and refreshing, mildly tart and not too sweet. Cider comparisons are obvious but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. A good summer patio beer.

My 100th from the 2010 Edition of 1001 Beers, 94th by the 2013 Edition, and 103rd overall.

7.5/10 #1001beers #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

McAuslan Brewing St-Ambroise Pale Ale – American Pale Ale at 5.0% ABV

McAuslan Brewing St-Ambroise Pale Ale American Pale Ale at 5.0% ABV

Pours clear medium amber with two fingers of frothy off white head, decent retention and heavy lacing. Nose is herbal hops, roasted malt. Taste is caramel malt leading light grassy hops. Light to medium body, moderate sustained carbonation, and a sustained balanced bitter finish.

A decently sessionable malt-forward APA with not much to distinguish it one way or another. Pleasant and easy-drinking, but without too much character.

My 99th from the 2010 Edition of 1001 Beers, 93rd by the 2013 Edition, and 102nd overall.

7/10 #1001beers #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Brouwerij Bosteels Tripel Karmeliet – Abbey Tripel at 8.4% ABV

Brouwerij Bosteels Tripel Karmeliet Abbey Tripel at 8.4% ABV

Pours a hazy straw yellow with two fingers of fluffy white head gradually diminishing to a thin skim, with sticky lacing. Nose is Belgian yeast, wheat, banana, bubblegum, and vanilla. Taste is light, sweet and mildly bitter, with wheat and fruit notes, and slightly spicy. Medium to light body and a sticky, off-dry warming finish.

Very nice Belgian Abbey Tripel. Balanced sweetness and a nice bright character with a pleasant lingering finish.

9/10 #1001beers #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

Beer Reviews