Tuesday, 29 April 2014

REVIEW: COORS

Untappd: All American Badge


STATS
  • Country: United States
  • Style: American Adjunct Lager
  • ABV: 5.0%
  • Serving Type: 355ml Bottle
  • Price: Inexpensive
Here we are at a day that had to happen; the day I review one of these major American lagers. Interestingly the Coors Brewery in Golden, Colorado, is the worlds biggest single brewery operation - something I did not know until looking up stuff for this review.

The All American Badge is awarded for drinking the 7 big American macro lagers. Here is the list - ignore any other lists, there's a few wrong ones out there. Budweiser, Bud Light, Budweiser Select 55, Miller Genuine Draught, Miller Lite, Coors Light and this beer; Coors. Having had the first 6, it's fair to say I'm not expecting alot from this...

If I was to judge this beer solely on it's appearance, my assertion in the last paragraph would be 100% correct! The pour was a disgustingly yellow, clear beer. If any beer looks like piss, this is it! There was at first a brilliant white head, which was only a finger and a half tall. It faded very quickly and there was almost no lacing. Within 2 minutes you'd have been surprised if there was any carbonation at all!

Again I wish there was something to prove my initial thoughts wrong, but the nose is awful as well! It's a very very sweet aroma with corn and grain being there in equal parts. There is no hint of hop bitterness, which certainly isn't ideal for the style.

Having now tasted this I can't understand why anyone would buy this beer once they've tried it! The beer (if you can call it that!) tastes like sweet corn, that's about it. There's very little evidence of other grains or hops and there is almost no detectable bitterness. The only positive that I can draw is that there is quite light carbonation so you can get rid of it quickly if you must drink it.

Unless you are trying to get this badge I see know reason to drink this beer. Truly it's awful! It's just far far too sweet for the style and is not even particularly drinkable. For such a huge brewery with such huge sales in the U.S. this is a really disappointing product - almost as bad as the Coors Light, which really is saying alot! Don't buy this!

Remember it's always Beer O'Clock somewhere in the world!

Friday, 25 April 2014

REVIEW: BRAHMA

Macro Lager


STATS
  • Country: Brazil
  • Style: American Adjunct Lager
  • ABV: 4.6%
  • Serving Type: 330ml Can
  • Price: Inexpensive
Today I'm bringing to you Brazil's national lager, Brahma. Now before my Brazilian readers jump down my throat, I know you guys have much better beers than this but there are only so many that make it over here.

Brazil is a huge country with the fifth highest population in the world, sitting at just over 200 million people. Having had a couple of Brazilian craft and mass produced beers I know that the country makes some pretty good stuff. I've never had Brahma though and am unsure what to expect. The clear glass bottle doesn't fill me with confidence though...

No surprises on the colour of the beer here, you could see it when you bought it thanks to the stupid bottle. Brahma pours a very translucent yellow straw colour. The head that is produced is minimal and fades incredibly quickly, to the point that after a minute there is not sign that there ever was a head. Really disappointing lager appearance.

The aroma is surprisingly good for a macro lager. There is a good malt body and some grassy hops which appear to give off good bitterness. For me the most pleasing element of the nose was that despite the trip from Brazil to Australia in a clear glass bottle there was no noticeable skunking. The importer has obviously done a good job with this.

Brahma also tastes a bit better than the appearance would have suggested. Initially there are good grain flavours, which aren't too sweet, before some grassy hops kick in. These impart lots bitterness, more so than your average macro lager, and as the beer warms there are some mildly spicy hops that begin to show through. It's lightly carbonated but definitely slots safely into the drinkable category.

After a disappointing start I actually got left with the idea that Brahma isn't a bad beer. It's not in the slightest bit sweet, which is the one thing I hate in lagers and the lowish (while still sufficient) carbonation made it very drinkable. Are there better lagers? Of course! Would I drink this again? Yes. What would I recommend it for? If you want a Brazilian beer for a themed event or to try a Brazilian beer.

Remember it's always Beer O'Clock somewhere in the world!

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

REVIEW: ROGUE DOUBLE CHOCOLATE STOUT

The Dark Side


STATS
  • Country: United States 
  • Style: American Imperial Stout
  • ABV: 9.0%
  • Serving Type: 650ml Bottle
  • Price: Expensive
Happy Easter everyone! I was hoping to get this review out on Monday but this bomber beat me... I probably shouldn't have had the beers before it. Anyway I'm going to smash this review out now. As an aside how cool is that snifter? That whole bomber is in that glass!

As regular readers would be aware that I'm quite a big fan of Rogue's beers. I've had almost everything they've brought out here, from Beard Beer through to the Voodoo Donut beers. This lairy red bottle is I think the first stout I've had from Rogue, but I could be wrong (in fact I am - I've had the Shakespeare Oatmeal Stout), and I'm really hoping that there will be lots of chocolate in this one.

The body of the beer pours a very dark brown colour with a voluminous cream coloured head. The head lasts for the entirety of drinking, which is impressive considering it took me at least an hour and a half to finish. There is plenty of lacing left behind, in fact I can't think of a stout that has better lacing than this one. All in all a very impressive looking beer.

WOW! The aroma of Rogue's Double Chocolate Stout really lived up to expectations. It was huge on chocolate! As the beer warmed there were more elements, although similar, toffee and a hint of coffee being the most noticeable. Thankfully for a 9% stout, there was no hint of alcohol on the aroma which is always pleasing to me.

Unsurprisingly the taste was also strong on chocolate flavour. Other than chocolate there was a small hint of roast, but that was about it. I think the most apt description of this beer I've ever heard is "It delivers on Double, on Chocolate and on Stout." That pretty much sums up my feelings towards the beer, it's everything I expected and nothing more - a solid if not exceptional beer.

While not the most chocolately beer I had this Easter, that honour goes to Saltaire's Triple Chocoholic (amazing by the way!), it's still pretty strong on chocolate. Personally I would recommend sharing this bomber with someone else if you get your hands on a bottle, it's very good but packed more of a punch than I had expected. Definitely worth trying if you are a fan of chocolate stouts.

Remember it's always Beer O'Clock somewhere in the world!

Monday, 21 April 2014

UNTAPPD CATCHUP 8

Untappd Catchup


With Easter and a fair bit of stuff going on at work, I've struggled to get reviews out lately. It's been over a month since I had to resort to an Untappd Catchup but everything has caught up with me now - so here we go.

Level 3 of The Rising Sun badge was mine when I sampled the Hitachino Nest White Ale. I was really surprised that this was my first Untappd check in of this beer as I used to have it quite regularly. It's a witbier which has alot of coriander in the aroma and taste, it's very refreshing.

Drinking Like a Kiwi (level 6) was achieved by sharing a cider with Lizzie. 8 Wired, one of my favourite New Zealand breweries, have recently produced their Dry Oaked Cider. I'm not a cider lover but this was really good, you could really taste the oakiness in combination with the apple flavour, it's definitely one I'd try again.


Hello My Name is Vladimir (full review here) earned me the Brew Traveller (level 6) badge. This badge clearly has issues as I've said before - the check in that unlocked this badge was while I was walking the dog in the park behind my house, clearly not another state... Sticking with the location theme, level 5 in the Crisp as Day badge was unlocked away from home - at the Mornington Brewery to be precise. The new and improved Czech Pilsner from those guys is excellent.

Finally I have knocked off New Brew Thursday! The beer that unlocked level 10 of the most confusing badge of Untappd was Fuller's Wild River. The beer itself was quite enjoyable although a little bland. At times it seemed like there was no bitterness and at other times it seemed overly bitter. There are much better examples of the style out there, although worth having one for the label.


For the last little while I've been considering taking the plunge and becoming an Untappd Supporter. That day finally came on Saturday and to celebrate I cracked open a bottle of Lost Abbey Saint's Devotion. The marked ABV (probably not the actual ABV) is 6.66%, it's a Belgian Pale Ale brewed with Brett. Although it wasn't hugely sour, it was an enjoyable beer with the Brett providing more flavour than sourness.

There were some pretty momentous badges in this catchup. New Brew Thursday has finally been completed and I am an Untappd Supporter for the next year. Apologies for the lack of reviews lately, but hopefully now that Easter is over I'll get back on top of things. If the planets align correctly, hopefully I will have an Easter review up some time this afternoon.

Remember it's always Beer O'Clock somewhere in the world!

Friday, 11 April 2014

REVIEW: OLD CHUB

Untappd: NC Beer Month (2014) Badge


STATS
  • Country: United States
  • Style: Scotch Ale
  • ABV: 8.0%
  • Serving Type: 355ml Can
  • Price: Slightly Pricey
Scotch Ale's are a style of beer that many people I talk to about beer rave about. I've had few I really enjoyed, although Backwoods Bastard was amazing, but I've been told my people I trust that this one will appeal to me more.

April is North Carolina Beer Month. If you want to unlock this nice looking badge, simply check into a beer from any brewery based in North Carolina in the month of April. I'm going to help you guys out and chuck the list here for you. Enough of helping all of you get this badge, it's time for me to crack open this can and get into some Old Chub.

Oskar Blues' Old Chub pours a very dark colour for a Scotch Ale. It's almost completely opaque and a deep brown with a touch of red. The head is quite dark, almost reminiscent of a stout's head in some respects. There are a number of small bubbles in the head but these do not effect the retention which is excellent, whilst the lacing is also commendable.

The nose is chock full of caramel sweetness. These are the malts that characterize this type of beer and they are abundant. There are also elements of chocolate in the nose as well as a very light peaty/smokiness. There is even a light hop presence as the beer warms.

Much like the nose, the flavour is dominated by the caramel sweetness from the malts. It's hardly overpowering and is in fact balanced nicely by a smokey flavour and the slightest hint of bitterness from the hops, which appear to impart almost no taste. The mouthfeel is a little sticky but there is no evidence of the 8% alcohol...

I am pleased to report that Old Chub is another Scotch Ale I can add to my list of ones I've enjoyed (awful English but you get the point!). From my understanding of the style, which is limited I must say, this is a bridging beer between the Scottish Ale and Scotch Ale. It's not quite as rich as many Scotch Ales but this makes it eminently more drinkable.

Remember it's always Beer O'Clock somewhere in the world!

Monday, 7 April 2014

REVIEW: KAIJU METAMORPHOSIS IPA

Untappd: National Beer Day (2014) Badge


STATS
  • Country: Australia
  • Style: English IPA
  • ABV: 6.7%
  • Serving Type: 500ml Bottle
  • Price: Slightly Pricey
My fridge is remarkably devoid of any real hoppy beers at the moment. Some digging led me to this; Kaiju Metamorphosis IPA. It's the first beer launched under the new Kaiju name, from the guys who made Monster Mash before Monster energy drinks stepped in, and I'm expecting alot from it!

To get the National Beer Day (2014) badge simply check into any beer today, April 7th. If you're in Australia you don't have long at all left if you want to add this one to your collection so get drinking! I'm really really looking forward to this beer so enough about the badge, let's get onto the beer!

Kaiju Metamorphosis IPA has an unusual colour when it's poured. The pour is quite a deep brown, almost amber colour with a pink tinged head. The head has some bubbles shortly after pouring, but still retains good retention. By the end of drinking there is a thick rim of foam around the glass and a light smattering of foam across the surface of the beer. There is minor lacing left behind but nothing to write home about.

On to the nose and initially it's a simple nose. Quite a heavy malt aroma which is followed by some hops with good bitterness. The hops are quite grassy on the nose, which seems odd for the style, and there is also a honey aroma which becomes more prominent as the beer warms.

How this beer tasted surprised me a bit; it wasn't great. At times it seemed like the malt was overpowering and at other times it seemed as if the hop bitterness was too strong. The hops were still grassy and had light hints of tropical fruit, although the biscuity malts drowned this out a bit...

At no point did the flavour grab me and make me think this was a beer I wanted to drink again. It was by no means a bad beer, but by the same token it's not a great beer. It's certainly a drinkable IPA and one that I wouldn't turn down if I was offered it again, but I wouldn't buy it again. It's a bit of a nothing beer. Now I have quite a few beer reviews to catchup on, so I better move on. In short, if you're looking for a really well balanced IPA this isn't the one for you.

Remember it's always Beer O'Clock somewhere in the world!

Saturday, 5 April 2014

E IS FOR ESTRELLA INEDIT

E is for Estrella Inedit


STATS
  • Country: Spain
  • Style: Witbier
  • ABV: 4.8%
  • Serving Type: 750ml Bottle
  • Price: Slightly Pricey
I'm reprising the Alphabet Challenge tonight and reviewing Estrella Inedit. This was one of the first beers where I really thought I knew what I was talking about when I was talking to other beer geeks. So for me it's a beer that holds a special place in my memories.

This beer was designed with Ferran Adria to compliment his food at El Bulli, at one time the world's top ranked restaurant. I've actually review this beer before, way back at the start of my blog in December 2011. You can read that review here, hopefully my palate has evolved a bit and I can pick up some more intricacies.

Estrella Inedit pours a little darker than your average but still with that characteristic cloudiness. The head is brilliant white, although very aerated. Accordingly the head's retention is quite short lived, fading to a small ring within a minute or two. It's not the prettiest looking beer in the world but it's also awful, when it's first poured it looks excellent!

The nose is really delicate. The malt base seems like mostly wheat, which surprises me a little, with light pilsner malts also present. I can smell plenty of citrus, with orange peel very prominent and zesty. As the beer warms the aroma becomes more herbal, with coriander the only one I can distinguish for sure. A nice peppery spiciness finishes the nose, it's more reminiscent of a Saison than a Witbier.

Unexpectedly the most notable element of the flavour is the coriander, it's far more prominent than the aroma would have indicated. The malts are light as expected and there is plenty of citrus - mostly orange peel. It has a particularly dry mouthfeel, somewhat reminiscent of a Saison just without the Belgian yeastiness. It's a very drinkable beer which really lends itself to eating with.

Please note I did review this beer with food. I can't explain it but by itself, Estrella Inedit is not a great beer. With food it's a totally different beast! I mentioned in my last review of this beer that it should be on every restaurant's beer list in Australia, I stand by that comment. This beer is one of the best beers to compliment food that I've come across. If you come across it grab some, it's great value for the price and the quality!

Remember it's always Beer O'Clock somewhere in the world!