Archive for June, 2014

Goose Island Pepe Nero

Posted: June 30, 2014 by Kenny in Craft
Tags: , , ,

pepe neroMark:

Goose Island has not steered us wrong yet. Sofie made Ken’s 2013 top 10, and Matilda was one of my final cuts. This shows the major difference between the beers Ken and I love. He likes crisp, I like dark.

Pepe Nero is a Farmhouse ale (Ken likes) brewed with black peppercorns (Mark likes). This beer will be well-loved by us, right? It was by me!

The smell reminded me of my home-made steak marinade, and the taste was all steak as well. This is a mature beer for red meat lovers!! Very well-balanced and drinkable.

Goose Island beers are very much like fine wine or champagne to me, not something you drink, but rather something you experience, basically classy as hell!

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Here’s another champagne sized bottle of fancy beer from Goose Island. It was Father’s day and we wanted to enjoy the finer beers in the fridge.

This poured out black with lots of bits floating around in it. It smelled like something sweet and spicy. The first taste was all “whoa! Umm, what is that?” That’s when Mark and Julie came up with steak marinade. I took that one step further and singled out Worcestershire sauce. As I’ve done in the past, I went to the fridge and pulled out what I thought the beer tasted like as a comparison. Yup, this beer tastes like worcesterchestershire sauce. Interesting indeed.

The taste was actually really good on the deck on a hot day. It was thick and black and farmhouse and worcestershirey.

Country of Origin:  United States
Alcohol Content:  6.4%
Sequence:  Third
Finished:  Yes
Vessel:  Glass by was of fancy ass bottle



I kept this one on the cold shelf for a while after getting back from Florida. I am a big believer in saving the best for last. This beer gave me great hopes, high ABV Russian Imperial Stouts are my favorite, plus being a HUGE Packers fan I tend to have a soft spot for anything from Wisconsin.

My Florida haul was getting low, and all I had left was the ones I REALLY wanted. Each time a placed one in the fridge to chill overnight, I got pretty excited. The night I sat down to drink this big boy was the end of a tough day. I don’t remember why (does it matter?) but I do remember pouring this out and just staring at it for a short while. It looked the part, it sure smelled the part, and I knew I should let it warm up, but screw it, I want a taste…bad call.

The first sip had very little character and all I could taste was booze. Great, all this build up for nothing. Then, possibly because it was not a good first sip, I let it breathe and settle. That is when things got good. Once I let this warm up it developed the robust character I was looking for.

This beer is a good example of this type, and delivers everything you want in a Russian Imperial…just be patient.

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This had been sitting in the fridge for a while, because Imperial Stout! You kinda need to be in a certain mood for that kind of beer.

It poured out looking like motor oil and it smelled like a nice, strong stout. It tasted like a strong stout…minus the nice part. Up front, it was harsh, boozy and tasted like licorice.

When it warmed up, it got better, but not better enough for me.

Country of Origin:  United States
Alcohol Content:  9.5%
Sequence:  First
Finished:  Yes
Vessel:  Glass by way of bottle

Sam Adams Stony Brook Red

Posted: June 28, 2014 by Kenny in Craft
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SamAdamsStonyBrookRedWe were at the end of the day on spontaneous-Friday-drinking-day. We had a few regulars and a few not that great beers (1, 2, 3) so we were hoping that the last of the fancy bottled Sam Adams barrel collection would blow us away.

Dinner was done, Jackie went home and the kids were out in the backyard playing around. I went and grabbed this as a night-cap at 6:30 pm.  It took a lot to get the cork out of this one. In column A, it was really in there; in column B, I was a little drunk.

It poured out dark red and very heady. It immediately let off an aroma of prunes or raisins. That’s not a good start.  The first taste was all raisins, probably because of the smell tricking my brain. After that, it wasn’t that bad…..when it was cold.

I still had half a glass after they left, so when I was inside doing some dishes, I was only taking little sips here and there. It got warm. DON’T let it do that.

It was gross at that point. Like gross gross! At least I got a nice fancy bottle out of it.

Country of Origin:  United States
Alcohol Content: 9%
Sequence:  Fifth
Finished:  Yes
Vessel:  Glass by way of fancy bottle


La Cuvée des Trolls

Posted: June 27, 2014 by Kenny in Craft
Tags: , , ,

cuvee des trollsFridays during the summer are funny. I usually don’t work all day and either go our for a beer with a colleague or just go home and have a few there in the sun. This Friday was both. I had lunch and beer at McCabe’s and then went home. That’s where Jackie and I had the two new Shock Tops (Raspberry and Lemon Shandy). When I was ready for another, Mark and Julie showed up to pick up their kids. Now, being the courteous host that I am, I offered them a beer.

That lead to everyone staying for dinner. And what do we eat when we have more than 4 people over? Pizza.

This beer was another of the Total Wine haul. It came in a big bottle, had a cork and cap and looked really fancy, so we wanted to save it as long as we could. Since we are running low on beers from a single brewery, it was time to drink it.

It poured out cloudy amber and it was very heady. It had a very distinct smell that took us a while to pinpoint. It was a rustic kinda musky wheat….Dominius Vobiscum Saison. That’s what it was. We liked that beer, this should be good too by that logic.

Cuvée des Trolls tasted very hoppy and quite bitter with a tartness that lingers for quite a while. It’s not that bad at first, but as it warms up, it takes on a saltiness to it that I did not like. It started to resemble a Gose.

After that, I was grumpy…….

If you have get it.

If you have kids….you get it.

Country of Origin:  Belgium
Alcohol Content:  7%
Sequence:  Fourth
Finished:  Oui
Vessel:  Glass by way of bottle