Armigideon Time

March 5, 2013

Noted Friend of Tilting Suds, Mr. JK, was his usual generous self recently, sending to Texas a package of smokes, charcuterie, and a curious bottle of beer called Armageddon from a Scottish brewer called Brewmeister. Billed as the “World’s Strongest Beer” it clocks in at 65% ABV. Mr. JK described it as a marketing ploy, and to a certain extent he is right. Brewmeister probably got more mileage out of brewing the world’s strongest beer when compared to breweries who win multiple gold medals at brewing competitions. On the other hand, this appeared to be a serious brewer who took the time and care to use quality ingredients in an attempt to make a good beer. Clearly, Brewmeister wanted the notoriety of brewing the “World’s Strongest Beer” but not at the expense of sacrificing their reputation as a brewer of good beers.

A lotta people won't get no supper tonight

A lotta people won’t get no supper tonight


Even though it was only a 12 ounce bottle, I was not going to tackle this myself, so I split it with Bro-In-Law Jeff.  He had been to Scotland recently and had visited one of the BrewDog pubs, so he had some experience with the Scottish propensity for brewing high alcohol beers.  This poured a somewhat cloudy caramel brown, with absolutely no carbonation whatsoever. The first thing I noticed is that there was very little in the way of  alcohol burn. If this beer is truly 65% ABV*, Brewmeister has done a remarkable job of making it a smooth drinking tipple. The other thing I noticed is that while it was different tasting, it still very much tasted like a beer. There was a caramel sweetness to the malts along with some mild hoppy bitterness. I am going to give it a 6.5/10.

*I had some doubts about that claim while I was drinking the beer, but when I stood up and had to immediately sit back down due to being a tad lightheaded after finishing my half glass, I had no further doubts.


New Kids On The Block: Deep Ellum Brewing Company and Peticolas Brewing

March 15, 2012

I was out and about the other night with fellow Beer Bully GEB. We started at the Flying Saucer and then later retired to the Holy Grail. During the course of the evening I tried a few beers from the newest breweries in North Texas, Deep Ellum Brewing Company and Peticolas Brewing Company.

I did not take any beer photos, so enjoy this photo of 508 Park Avenue, the Dallas location of Robert Johnson's recording sessions

My first beer was the Deep Ellum IPA, and it was outstanding. It poured hazy and orange with a pillowy white head. Before I could take a sip I noticed the pine resin hops wafting from the glass. The flavor started off with some tangerine and grapefruit before finishing with dry piney hops. Terrific chewy mouth feel on this, and some malty sweetness balances the bitterness from the hops nicely. Deep Ellum’s IPA is fantastic, 8.5/10.*

Next up was the Peticolas Great Scot Scottish Ale. Scottish ales tend to be malty, and as I am a hophead, these are usually not my favorite style of beer. With that caveat in mind, I thoroughly enjoyed Peticolas’ take on a scottish ale. It is very malt forward, but also has a peat smoke aftertaste somewhat reminiscent of a Highland Single Malt. It is light bodied despite the heavy flavors, with mild carbonation. This is one of the few Scottish Ales I would return to, 7.5/10.

*I must note that I had another pint of the Deep Ellum IPA later that night at the Holy Grail, and it did not have the same pop. Whether that was due to quality control problems at Deep Ellum, issues with the tap lines at the Holy Grail, or (the most likely explanation) that I had consumed several beers and my taste buds were a bit blown out is open to debate. It was still good at the Holy Grail, just not as fantastic as the pint I had at the Flying Saucer.


Alternate Spellings of Names

October 18, 2010

Do you know what really chaps my ass?  Alternate spellings of first names.  Using my first name as an example, Shaun, Shawn, and, God help us, Chone, are unacceptable spellings of Sean.  If it is good enough for Sean Connery, it is good enough for everyone.

This alternate spelling of Jennifer is the Queen of Alternate Spellings. What. The. Fuck.  I am not sure what is more offensive:  The way she spells her name, that she lists her profession as Child Caretaker/Magician’s Assistant, or that she lists her greatest accomplishment as, and I quote, “Being able to enrich the lives of others through dance has been my greatest aspiration.”  The sad thing is that she is good looking enough that guys have been telling her that it is cool that she spells her name that way in a desperate attempt to get in her pants.

On to beer: Oskar Blues Old Chub is a scotch ale with a malty caramel body and a smoky aftertaste.  It pours a deep mahogany with a cafe au lait colored head, a rich velvety mouthfeel, and a touch of coffee and chocolate in the aroma.  I am generally not a fan of scotch ales, not hoppy enough for me, but this is a good one.  Another winner from Oskar Blues, 7/10.


Brooklyn Winter Ale

February 25, 2010

Brooklyn Brewing Company is another of my favorite breweries.  They are not as experimental as Dogfish Head, for example, but they are a still damn fine brewery.  Their beers tend to be in traditional styles, and do not stray too far from the tried and true.  Brooklyn just does a damn fine job brewing those traditional styles, with a few misses here and there.

This is one of those misses.  I will eventually review some of their better beers,  but first up is the Brooklyn Winter Lager, which is a bit of a disappointment. I like my Christmas Ales to be full bodied, robust, and spicy, bringing to mind visions of sitting by a coal fire in a Dickensian Pub, and this beer doesn’t quite cut it.  It is a malty Scottish style ale, which is admittedly not my favorite type of beer.   In fairness, it is a decent enough example of a Scottish Ale, just not what I expect when the word “winter” is part of the packaging.  It is not a bad beer by any stretch.  I just expect more from Brooklyn Brewing.   I will give it a 5.5/10


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