Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Apparently, people like to eat.

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Bakemaster » Wed Mar 18, 2009 11:27 pm UTC

Finally sitting down to taste Dogfish Head's Indian Brown Ale, notes below.
Spoiler:
Pours a really beautiful dark brown, mahogany when held up to the light, with one finger of a thick-looking head that sticks around a bit. Smells of coffee grounds and some hops. The first sip is nutty, with a blend of coffee, hops and a bit of alcohol in the finish. It's got more body than a lighter ale or an IPA, though not as much as a stout, and that's welcome; and there's a hint of something fruity or floral in the background. The predominant flavor to me, though, is the coffee grounds; with hops and an indistinct (to me) nuttiness second. The head is really sticking to the glass. I'm going to let it warm up a little.

A few minutes later, this is a smoother beer—the coffee seems a bit more subdued, although it could just be that my expecations are different. The flavors are more unified; definitely improved by the change in temperature. The only thing I can immediately imagine eating along with this beer is a steak, and I think that would be absolutely wonderful. Spaghetti with meatballs might do well, too. Though when I give it some thought, this could also be an amazing beer to have with a variety of cheeses. Strong, not necessarily hard; cheddar, bleu, asiago. Sharp cheeses with bite rather than smokey or smooth cheeses. I could also see this pairing well with an earthy pilaf or couscous; whatever it is, it should be fragrant and commanding. In general I think I'd go for constrasting flavors rather than similar flavors, with the single exception of dark chocolate; that would be the perfect complementary flavor, if you're drinking this after dinner rather than during. But then, dark chocolate goes with so many things. If I had to pick a vegetable to pair this with, it would have to be spinach or brussels sprouts, and I don't like sprouts, so there you go.

Once the beer starts to approach room temperature, the hops become much more pronounced; I preferred it before it got to this stage. So I'd take this beer out of the fridge ten to fifteen minutes before serving. All in all, I wasn't expecting so much coffee, but it's not overwhelming, and it sure doesn't show many signs of the 7.2% ABV in the taste. My impression is that I really want to drink this with a meal; it's got more flavor, and stronger, than I want for a refresher, and drinking this on its own seems like something of a waste of its potential; I want to appreciate its complexity along with other flavors. Someone with more of a taste for coffee, or for IPAs (this is a blend of the IPA, brown ale and scotch ale styles), might find this a more acceptable beer for casual drinking.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Alpha Omicron » Sun Mar 22, 2009 2:55 am UTC

I'd like to recommend James Ready 5.5 as a decent dollar-bear.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby netcrusher88 » Sun Mar 22, 2009 10:19 am UTC

Costco recently added a large box (24-pack) of Kirkland Signature-branded beer to their selection. Six each of German-style lager, hefeweizen, amber ale, and pale ale, for about $20 USD (in Washington). I don't know what other states this is available in or if the price varies. They're brewed and bottled by Gordon Biersch, which also does Trader Joe's private label.

Cheap, and extremely drinkable. Nothing special, but good.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby semicharmed » Sun Mar 22, 2009 2:45 pm UTC

I think I've seen those in the Costco in NY.

I really enjoy Abita. And crawfish. It might be my favorite combination of beer & food ever. Especially if it's Amber.

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby caje » Mon Mar 23, 2009 6:42 am UTC

My Kegerator is complete and I am kegging tomorrow.. MUHAHAHAHHA :twisted: :mrgreen:

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Bakemaster » Tue Mar 24, 2009 6:09 pm UTC

So I hosted a dinner last night to pair with the Indian Brown Ale, because doing the tasting had gotten me so interested in the idea. I served a simple sirloin steak (S+P/sauteed), baked sweet potato fries, carrot salad with apple, golden raisins and sliced almonds, and baby spinach salad with walnuts and goat cheese. I think that while the food was good, the beer did pair best with the steak, and not quite as well with the sweetness of the carrot salad.

My guests brought dessert and a second beer, and while they didn't coordinate their picks with each other, it ended up an excellent pairing: orange-banana-nut bread with Harpoon's Leviathan series Baltic Porter, a beer I've had before and particularly liked. They went really well together. I also took a sip of the Baltic Porter after I'd had some of the spinach salad, and found that the taste of balsamic vinegar transitioned very nicely to the taste of the beer, which is something I hadn't been looking for or expecting.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Alpha Omicron » Tue Mar 24, 2009 7:06 pm UTC

Turned 19 yesterday, and drank about half a (big) bottle of Koenigshoeven quadrupel. Was tasty.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby dubsola » Wed Mar 25, 2009 2:17 pm UTC

Bakemaster wrote:[Beer/food dinner party]

What a great idea. I'm going to do this one day.

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Cadvin » Sun Mar 29, 2009 4:39 am UTC

Beer not good for drinking. Beer only good for BASH SMASH POW and hearing crinkly glass. Beer smell like something horrible. something Cadvin want to BASH SMASH POW. Just because Cadvin like to BASH SMASH POW. Cadvin actually want to run away and hide in cave, but Cadvin feel compelled to BASH SMASH POW!

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Mr. Mack » Thu Apr 09, 2009 12:41 am UTC

Reunion '08. Organic Red Rye Ale.

It's in one of those 22 oz. bottles. It's only $5. It isn't great, but it is really good. Like a 4 out of 5. It's spicy, a little peppery, caramel, a little apple, kind of sweet (in a good way), with a nutty hoppiness and otherwise grainy flavor.

Like I said, not great, but really good. At $5, I think it was well worth it.

Also, it was made to raise awareness for the Institute for Myeloma & Bone Cancer Research. So, you know, donate if you can.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Bakemaster » Wed Apr 22, 2009 6:27 am UTC

Tonight I picked out a six-pack of New Belgium "Fat Tire" Amber Ale, because I remembered the brewery being mentioned here. I was glad I grabbed it because it turned out to be quite excellent with our light supper of fruits, cheeses, freshly baked thyme bread and grilled shrimp. (Which started as "let's have bread, cheese and ale tonight!" because we are dorks.)

I didn't sit down and write tasting notes or anything, but what stood out to me was how very well-balanced it was. I don't mean simplistic or one-sided, but truly balanced. Fresh and drinkable, absolutely what I want on a warm day with summery food—like our supper, or burgers and hot dogs, or what have you. More presence than a wheat beer, which I like.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby bigglesworth » Thu Apr 23, 2009 5:13 pm UTC

Tried a Schwarzbier for the first time last night. Brewed by Köstritzer.

Very nice, especially given that I had a bit of a sore throat beforehand... I'm fairly patriotic but I can't understand the obsession with some British brewers to make very bitter stouts.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby the_stabbage » Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:46 pm UTC

I tried Rogue Brutal Bitter a couple days back, and I have to say it is really delicious. I'm going to have to seek out more of their brews.

There's a pub in town that serves Rochefort beer, I'm excited to try some. I'm a big fan of Belgian beer, my favourites are probably Orval and Westmalle Dubbel.

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Subliminity » Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:58 pm UTC

Just had a Shock Top Beligian White, first beer ever...:P Was good, smooth and had a sorta-kinda citrus-y taste to it.

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby clintonius » Fri Apr 24, 2009 4:46 pm UTC

Ah, yes. I quite like Shock Top. Citrus is definitely the primary flavor, but it's also distinctly a beer. Some other citrusy cervezas, like Leinenkugel Sunset Wheat, are more akin to weak screwdrivers than brews. If you liked it, there are a couple ways I recommend branching out: you can try something like a Blue Moon, which is similar to Shock Top but with less-defined citrus and a stronger "Belgian" flavor (kind of sweet), and from there further explore Belgian-style beer; or try a hefeweizen, and use that as your springboard to get into amber ales.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby the_stabbage » Sun Jun 14, 2009 1:36 pm UTC

I had Saison Dupont about a week ago - it makes me sad that I won't be able to find it where I actually live. I love Saisons - they're slightly sour or tart - but not in a bad way - that element is there just as it would be in a pie made with actual fruit. It pours a red colour, with nice big frothy head that reminds you it's a Belgian. Tastes a bit sweetish, and yes there's the stereotypical "farmyard" smell/taste to it. Extremely delicious! I wish there were more Saisons in the world.

I encourage anyone who can find it to try it. You get the bonus of cracking open a beer in a champagne bottle. Corked beer!

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Bakemaster » Mon Jun 15, 2009 8:21 pm UTC

I have a question for any and all Australians hereabouts.

We've got a neighbor who's from Perth originally, who gave us a ski chair to install on our porch as a swinging bench type of deal. She mentioned that she's sorry she never got a chance to sit on it herself and swing about with a beer. So, my mother in-law wants to have her over once we get it set up for a sit and a beer, and was wondering if there was something we might be able to find that would be reminiscent of home.

Anyone have suggestions? I'm not yet sure if we can get anything other than Foster's here, and from what I've heard it's pretty much swill that's not actually that big in Australia. We might not be able to get a good import, but if anyone can describe a typical style of beer produced and/or popular in Australia, I could look for something similar albeit not actually Australian.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Dream » Tue Jun 16, 2009 12:30 am UTC

Little Creatures is a very good brewery from WA, and it's distributed very widely. Its biggest seller is its Pale Ale, and it also does a Bright Ale, a Pilsner and a few others. That would probably do the trick just right.

Alternatively you could go trashy and get stubbies of Victoria Bitter, which is a cheap lager but is classic barbecue fuel. It's fairly ubiquitous in Australia, and is actually kind of what people think Foster's must be like. Foster's of course is actually unheard of. For a much better lager look for James Boag's, it's Tasmanian. There are dozens of microbrews and craft breweries that probably aren't exported widely, but you might find one or two. They're usually good, but unremarkable. Better than the mass market stuff by a mile, but not as good as they could be.

Each of the beers I mentioned are available all over the UK and Ireland, so I'd guess they're available in the States somewhere. And, I'm not Australian...
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby dubsola » Tue Jun 16, 2009 3:16 pm UTC

I would also suggest Coopers, in particular Cooper's Pale Ale. James Squire is also pretty good.

But I get the impression you're asking for beers which have a better chance of being available to you, that are similar to popular Australian beers. Australia is mostly a lager country, although there are a few pale ales, it's only recently that darker ales are being brewed by major Australian breweries.

If she's from Perth and enjoys beer, she would probably also have had Redback, which I quite like. It's classed as a wheat beer but is in no way as rich or heavy as, say, German wheat beers.

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Dream » Tue Jun 16, 2009 4:00 pm UTC

dubsola wrote:I would also suggest Coopers, in particular Cooper's Pale Ale.

Of course, I completely forgot Cooper's. I don't think it's a patch on Little Creatures, but it's a much easier beer to drink loads of on a hot day. A bit lighter, less sweet. Probably much more widely available in foreign parts.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Bakemaster » Wed Jun 17, 2009 3:04 am UTC

I went to a place today that was advertised on the side of the highway as I was going up to one of the more sizable cities to buy some flagstone. It claimed "warehouse prices" and I expected it to be warehouse-sized and with some selection too, but it turned out to be a pretty average-sized liquor store. Advertised Foster's in the window and I couldn't even find that; crap beer selection; but I got a fifth of Hendricks for $30, so it wasn't a totally wasted trip.

Thanks very much for the advice, I'll keep a lookout for places that might have a decent selection of imports, and for your recommendations.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Jacque » Wed Jun 17, 2009 3:23 am UTC

Had a Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA the other night, and boy-howdy, that was an interesting beer. It was more like drinking wine. Incredibly strong at ~20% abv. Incredibly hoppy, yet actually quite sweet. This is not a beer to drink, it's a beer to sip. At roughly $9 a bottle, it's not something I'll pickup very often at all, but it was an interesting experience. If you ever run across a bottle of this stuff, pick it up, even if you're not going to drink it right away apparently it ages very well for years.

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby scrt_rbt_agnt » Wed Jun 17, 2009 4:21 am UTC

i had one of those once and it took me like 2 hours to drink it. twas delicious though.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby DSenette » Fri Jun 26, 2009 8:19 pm UTC

hopefully these haven't been mentioned...but some of my favorites in no particular order:

old speckled hen (do not drink this if it comes in a can...they pack it in REAL steel cans and it makes it taste like shit...only bottles or on tap should be accepted...)
Scrimshaw...if you can find it on tap drink the keg dry...the stuff is great
anchor steam beer (and anything else made by the anchor brewers...yum yum)
hoegarten (acquired taste...but it's complex)
anything made by the abita brewing company out of louisiana (turbodog is my favorite but amber is quite good)
red seal
modelo (any of them)
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Mr. Mack » Wed Jul 08, 2009 9:39 pm UTC

I'm starting to think that this is my favorite beer ever (despite the page I linked to, this is an 11% ABV beer, not 9.7%). At the moment my experiences with barleywine have been more limited than I care for, but this one has been my favorite so far. I like it more than the Flying Dog or Stone Old Guardian barleywines (not enough hops and not enough body, respectively). Lagunitas is also cheaper than both of those, but it's a limited release. I also still need to try Hog Heaven* and Old Ruffian.

I didn't write up any tasting notes, but my memory (after drinking a bottle of barleywine and starting another on an empty stomach) is that it's a full bodied beer with a strong, heavily hopped bitterness and a strong caramel(-ish) type flavor. It was thick, smooth, and not too expensive (I only paid $3.99 for a 22 oz. bottle).

Also! I bought Libbey's International Beer [glass] Set. Now I have 8 German Pilsner glasses (I already had some), four Czech Pilsner glasses (how do I know whether to use these or the German glasses?), and four English Pub Glasses in the Nonic style! Between all of those and my oversized wine glasses, I think I'm pretty much ready for any beer you can think of!

*(almost Fun Fact: "Hog Heaven" was the name of a barbecue place in the town I grew up in. I always thought the name was kind of stupid and I never heard anyone say anything nice about their food. Probably because it was right next to Charlie Joseph's, who sold the best hotdogs in town.)

PS: Sorry about any typos, I've obviously been drinking today.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Bakemaster » Thu Jul 09, 2009 5:17 am UTC

If you like barleywines, I heartily recommend Criminally Bad Elf. I don't think I've tried the other beers in the Bad Elf series, but my sister turned me on to them, as she's a big fan of them in general.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Amarantha » Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:02 pm UTC


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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Bakemaster » Thu Jul 09, 2009 11:49 pm UTC

That says scotch ale? Also good, but not the same as a barleywine, afaik? They certainly don't taste the same to me, anyway.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Amarantha » Fri Jul 10, 2009 3:39 am UTC

Hmmm, it does say that on that particular page. I'm pretty sure I've seen it described elsewhere as a barleywine, so now I'm a little confused. I also thought I'd read somewhere that beers that strong are techically not beer but are classed as barleywine. Having just done a quick Wiki, I see it disagrees. Now I have to go and re-read all my beer books...

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Samsoneffect » Sun Jul 12, 2009 7:17 am UTC

Innis & Gunn. Evidently, wicked expensive (Something like $3.50 a bottle here in Canada) but it's delicious. Got a nice cool toffee/vanilla aftertaste to it, that really jumps and kinda completes it. Highly recommended.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby acb » Sun Jul 12, 2009 2:02 pm UTC

Innis and Gunn is good, I think it tastes like melted butter. I can only usually drink 1 or 2 as it can get sickly after a while though.

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby darthchazza » Mon Jul 13, 2009 1:59 am UTC

I would like to recommend Timmermans Fruits de la Foret (Timmermans fruits of the forest). This is a fruit lambic beer that I love. It's a lot sweeter than most beers but not unpleasantly so, it could be described as halfway between a fruity dessert red and a pale ale but that doesn't really do it justice. It is very fruity dark red/purple with a pale pink head. Aroma of berries specifically blackberry and raspberry and jam, tastes of blueberries, rasberries and black current with a slight hops in the backround.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Samsoneffect » Fri Jul 24, 2009 12:05 pm UTC

This is certainly interesting.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby jobriath » Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:43 pm UTC

Samsoneffect wrote:This is certainly interesting.


Aaaaugh! Dinosaur beer! (Can yeast actually survive 40M years?!)

On topic: Old Empire IPA by Marston's is a staple in my household. Marvellously hoppy and flavourful. Also sitting in front of me is Black Sheep's Riggwelter ("Strong Yorkshire Ale"), with its reassuring picture of a ram that has fallen and cannot get up. It's a bit strong for a session ale, but I like to end on a couple because it's just delicious. Looking forward to the opera tomorrow!

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Mister_Penguin » Fri Jul 31, 2009 5:02 am UTC

Living in Madison, WI is great because there are so many awesome microbreweries within a hundred miles. So far my favorite is Great Dane's Texas Speedbump IPA. (It's a summer seasonal from a local brewpub). I also like Ale Asylum's Hopalicius, and for a non-local brew I love Three Floyd's Alpha King. I guess I'm a bit of a Pale Ale junkie.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby dubsola » Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:31 am UTC

Mister_Penguin wrote:I guess I'm a bit of a Pale Ale junkie.

Me too, especially when it's hot.

Titan IPA is a particularly delicious end-of-a-hard-day's-work beer. I actually thought it was Australian, because it said something about Australia on the bottle, but I was wrong. It's from Denver. It won the Australian International Beer Awards Silver Medal in 2008 for IPAs. Delicious.

Also worth mentioning - especially since there are so many Warren Ellis fans on here - is Brew Dog's Punk IPA.

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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Dream » Tue Aug 11, 2009 4:40 pm UTC

dubsola wrote:Also worth mentioning - especially since there are so many Warren Ellis fans on here - is Brew Dog's Punk IPA.

I believe I have been ignoring that beer like it was an Edinburgh Comedy Festival flyer. Badly presented and definitely a total waste of time.

But now I'm going to try it. Not because Ellis is a massively talented author, but because he is a properly committed boozer. He is probably not wrong.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Bakemaster » Sat Aug 15, 2009 10:08 pm UTC

So, a mix of awesome and disappointment... TWO of the three beers I wanted for the wedding next month are available in kegs. The third, Torpedo Extra IPA from Sierra Nevada, I expected to be the easiest one to get (since Sierra Nevada distributes on both coasts and is pretty popular). But, as we learned from none other than the company's Twitter account, they're only bottling it right now. Shame.

I tried Torpedo for the first time at the recent brewfest here in Mount Shasta, and as a man who's generally not fond of pale ales and IPAs to begin with, let me say that Torpedo Extra IPA is just. Plain. Fantastic. For some reason even Sarah liked it, and she does not like beer. She only likes beers that don't taste like beer... and, this beer.

But at least I'll have a keg of Black Butte Porter at the wedding! Only the best beer that ever was! And, a very interesting brew in Etna Brewery's Blackberry Blonde. I neglected to post about our tasting at the Etna Brewery last month—the Blackberry Blonde is one of the less sweet fruit beers I've tasted, with the blackberry coming mostly in the nose and the finish, almost like an herbal infusion.

So that's our wheat beer and our dark beer; now I have to come up with something to replace the Torpedo as our beer beer. I'm not going to cater to any Bud drinkers, but I feel like I need something more crowd-friendly, an ale or lager. And preferably somewhat local. I'm going to try the brewery near my workplace again I suppose, as that's about as local as it gets.
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby Heisenberg » Fri Aug 21, 2009 6:49 pm UTC

I just wanted to put in a recommendation for Two Brother's Domaine DuPage French Country Ale. It's a great beer all around and it has a very full flavor. Anyone in or around Chicago should seek them out.

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mosc
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Re: Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Postby mosc » Mon Aug 24, 2009 4:52 pm UTC

My father has been getting into beer lately. Since It's been my religion almost for the past few years, we agreed that I should give him a sampling to educate his palate. I picked 12 beers all from different types. I thought other people on here might want to look at it too. See if you've tried these and could thus make more of an informed opinion on what genres you like and don't like.

Dogfish 90 minute IPA
Samuel Smith Nut Brown Ale
Rochefort 10 Trappist
Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout
Delerium Tremens
Samuel Smith Porter
Pilsner Urquel
Rogue Shakespeare Stout
Belhaven Draught
St. Bernardus Tripel
Duvel
Samuel Smith Tadecaster (ESB)
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