Archive for the month “August, 2014”

Black Belle Imperial Stout – Blackstone Brewing Company

 

blackbelle_bttl10.2% ABV
Gifted by Nick M. and poured into globe glasses.

This imperial stout “infused with cacao nibs and aged in bourbon barrels” was brewed by Nashville, Tennessee-based Blackstone, and it pours a thick, oily black with a sliver of a brown head.  Black Belle has an exceptionally rich and dessert-like nose of dark chocolate-covered coffee beans, toasted marshmallow, cola, and some booze.  The alcohol is even more upfront on the first swallow, but the magic of Black Belle is that it expertly manages to offer all of the flavors of hard alcohol (i.e., chocolate and coffee take more of a supporting role to vanilla and toast) without any discomforting throat burn.

toasts-4.5   4.5 Toasts

BlackBelle

 

toasts-4.5   4.5 Toasts

 

His & Hers Beer Notes: Chocolate Hazelnut Porter – Heretic Brewing Company

Here’s our latest beer notes for Eat Drink Films: Heretic Brewing Company’s Chocolate Hazelnut Porter. Cheers!

EatDrinkFilms.com

 by Daniel Barnes and Darcey Self-Barnes

7% ABV

Purchased for $6.99/22 oz. bottle and poured into mason jar glasses.

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The City – Calicraft Brewing Company

city_bttl

6.4% ABV
Purchased at Curtis Park Market (22 oz. bottle) and poured into tulip glasses.

This “Dynamic” India Pale Ale from Walnut Creek-based Calicraft Brewing was “brewed with blackberry root and orange peel,” and it pours a murky tangerine color with a sizable off-white head.  Dried fruit and a honeyed sweetness are the first to appear on the nose, with apricot and cantaloupe especially prominent.  There is an unusual, seltzer-y flavor on the first swallow, along with a very definite berry and bitter root presence, and it ends with some nice citrus and pine bitterness.  As more is consumed, the bitterness on the first flavor movement becomes less and less pleasurable, too closely resembling cocktail bitters, although the pine and citrus finish still satisfies.

toasts-3   3 Toasts

 

TheCity

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Brotherly Love – The Commons Brewery

BroLove-commons-bttl10% ABV
Purchased at Final Gravity ($11.99/25.4 oz. bottle) and poured into goblet glasses.

This “bourbon barrel aged Belgian dark strong with sour cherries and cocoa nibs” pours a dark and brackish espresso brown with a marshmallow-like, sawdust-colored head.  Hard alcohol and barrel wood aromas assert themselves on the nose, with dark cherries, dark chocolate, and some citrus peel on the periphery.  Wood and alcohol take the lead on the tongue as well, although here those flavors are given depth by the cocoa nibs, as well as a little bit of tartness from the cherries.  Still, the most robust flavors (freshly cut wood and bourbon neat) seem to come straight from the barrel, and the fact that the Portland-based brewery The Commons used a Belgian dark as a base may have given the alcohol-soaked staves more to latch on to. Brotherly Love has a powerful firewater character, but there is also some nuance and craft, and despite being a little overwhelming, the flavors of this beer are still quite good.

toasts-3.5   3.5 Toasts

BrotherlyLove

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