July 30th, 2008 beckel
With only two hopslams still sitting in my fridge I decided now was a prime time to inform you all of its brilliance. This Imperial IPA from Bell’s brewery is one heck of a beer, available from January to February officially, but I picked up some of the last in stock just a few weeks ago being very delighted at how regularly it seemed to be restocked even when I assumed the season was over. This beer pours an amazingly deep copper color that has hues of red when in light with a nice solid inch of head that dissipates slowly. The aroma of this beer is delightful, sweet and caramelized malt is detected but rounded off by massive bitter aromas. Clocking in at 10% ABV this beer is no joke but be warned you may not notice. Flavor is incredibly hoppy but surprisingly unbitter considering how much hop goes into brewing this beer. Strong hop flavor is immediately quelled by a massive caramel malt profile that includes hints of sweetness and floral flavors finished off by slightly bitter hop flavors again. This is one incredibly impressively flavored Imperial IPA, for its high ABV you will be amazed by how much its light floral and malty characteristics over power the alcohol flavor, delightfully balanced. Mouthfeel is medium but very drinkable. I have noticed many different flavors every time I try this beer but never been disappointed. Because of the lack of massive bitterness but full packed flavor this makes for a great Imperial IPA for someone who perhaps prefers a more floral beer but still wants a great hop kick and a nice ABV with a smooth finish. Everyone should try this beer even if it won’t be available until next year, at least you have something to look forward to. Give it a shot and ride your bike.
July 30th, 2008 beckel
I was informed that the Town Hall Brewery of Minneapolis was releasing a beer made with only warrior hops so I thought it was damn time I made my way over there. Drinking a single hopped beer is a great way to learn about a particular hop and what it can do to the aroma, flavor and even body of a beer. The Warrior Double dry pours a nice light copper color that is somewhat transparent. Smell is heavy on the hops, somewhat sweet but largely bitter aroma. Body is medium light. This beer has an insane hop profile, quite bitter but with a twisted tangy flavor that is almost like a citrus. This is a very interesting flavored beer and hop variety. Over all a darn good beer coming in at 5.5% ABV and definitely worth trying particularly if you adore hops. Drink it while its still around.
While I was at it I figured I should sample some of their Masala Mama IPA that was cask aged. This beer cascades immensely from a lovely hazy orange color to a nice amber red that is barely transparent. Aroma is slightly hoppy but smooth sweet malt is more predominate. Mouthfeel is light. The flavor of this beer is surprisingly sweet. Slight bitterness is present initially but overpowered by immense flavorful malt sweetness with a slight hint of caramel. Head is thick, persistent and off white. Not what I was expecting, but still a good beer. It will be interesting to try their normal IPA sometime to compare. If you like a sweet smooth IPA this is for you.
Lastly I ordered some of their Cow Tipper a seasonal coming in at 5.7% ABV. Light copper in color quite transparent. Smells strongly like a pilsner, heavy malt scent. Head is relatively large but fades quickly. Light mouthfeel and very drinkable. Tastes of full flavored pilsner malts, very nice flavor balance particularly seeing as I tend to not prefer pilsners. Quite carbonated. If you like a pilsner with a bit more flavor this is a grand choice, likely perfect on a hot summer day like we’ve been having as of late. Give Town Hall some love and ride your bike.