Last Week in Untappd – 11/17 – 11/23

This was actually a busy beer weekend for me, but I stockpiled written beer reviews that will release over the next few weeks rather than check them in with a few brief comments. So, Untappd (drewsbrewsreviews) is a little light on check-ins. That will change with the impending Black Friday event at Capone’s unleashing the flood of fantastic beers that will surely culminate in the Untappening. I look forward to highlighting the best of my favorite yearly event, so that’ll be ready next week. In the meantime, here’s what I checked in the week past.

Narwhal - BBASierra Nevada– Narwhal (Bourbon Aged)
Location: Bulls Head Pub
Style: Imperial Stout (Bourbon Aged)
Score: 3.5/5
Original Comment: Buttery bourbon, vanillian, roast aroma, med mf, dark malt, chocolate/vanilla, raisin/plum finish, lingering heat. Decent, but too expensive.

Additional Comment: My “too expensive “comment is slightly disingenuous as I didn’t actually pay for it. A friend of mine did and was kind enough to share some with me. Plus, this was also purchased at a bar, which comes with a markup. That said, there are very few beers I will pay $30 for, and this is no where near one of them. A price around $12 – $15 seems about right based on what I had. Narwhal is on the lower end of imperial stouts I enjoy, I like mine on the heavier, near Russian Imperial levels, and Sierra Nevada’s imp stout is too thin and dark fruit heavy for my tastes. Obviously, if Narwhal is your jam, I can’t see you disliking a bourbon barreling of it. The difficulty in landing a bottle, at least around the Lancaster PA region, makes this a buy it when you see it beer. Mostly likely you aren’t going to see it again anytime soon.

Continue reading “Last Week in Untappd – 11/17 – 11/23”

Southern Tier – Pumking (Rum Barrel Aged) Review

RumkingAll You Need to Know

Brewery: Southern Tier
Style: Pumpkin Ale (Rum Barrel)
ABV: 10.7%
Cost: $18 (24oz)
Glassware: Snifter, Goblet
Temp: 45°F
Availability: Limited
Purchased@: The Fridge

Quick Take: Southern Tier took a very popular and minorly flawed pumpkin beer, one that I’m quite fond of I might add, and made it better. The use of rum is an intelligent and well-considered addition that doesn’t really turn the beer into something entirely new, but enhances the flavors that are already present. For fans of Pumking, it’s a no brainer and worth trying, even at $18 a bottle. If you never understood the hype or prefer a meatier pumpkin beer experience, this might not change your mind. My personal opinion is that the rum is so well-integrated, it seems like it was always there and exactly what Pumking should be. I don’t know if I’ll be able to go back to standard Pumking after trying this, but given how difficult it is to find, I might not have a choice.

→Full Review

Capone’s Black Friday Beer List

CaponesThose that know Capone’s, an unassuming diner on the outskirts of Norristown, know that it is a haven for beer nerds from all over PA. They do big beer events and do them right. Well, the rightest event of the year is upon us and Capone’s has posted the coveted Black Friday list. I highlighted the gems to help you formulate a plan of attack. Going with a group of people and efficiency is the key to getting through a tap list this long. Event starts at 7am and rolls through the day with the second wave of beers in the afternoon at 4:30pm. Check it out and spread the word!

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Against the Grains – Mac FannyBaw Review

Mac FannyBawAll You Need to Know

Brewery: Against the Grain
Style: Rauchbier (Bourbon Aged)
ABV: 8.5%
Cost: $19 (24oz)
Glassware: Snifter, Teku
Temp: 50°F
Availability: One Off
Purchased@: Pinocchio’s Beer Garden

Quick Take: Mac FannyBaw is brewed as a 750ml monument to smoke and tangy malts. Pushing the smoke cloud to the side, regular beer drinkers will find a fine, but unremarkable ale. Unfortunately, this is a niche beer that probably won’t satisfy that niche. I appreciated it for being different and find it to be an ok beer, but it can’t live up to the high cost of entry.

→Full Review

The Why Not of Aging IPAs – Science!

Old Hops 2

In a world of beer cellars and “vertical slices” going back through 15 generations of a single beer, the beer age rage is strong. If you’ve ever had a properly stored beer with some age on it, you already know why.  If you never have, I highly recommend it. My first was a 3 year old Avery Mephistopheles that turned my brain into toasted porridge (I don’t know what that means either) and a high I’ve been hunting down since. I only have another year to wait for my next Mephisto!

While I have roughly 20 beers aging under my bar, a paltry sum compared to most enthusiasts, only one is an IPA. I know the initial gut reaction is to drop to your knees, screaming to the beer gods, “Why would you age an IPA!”, but a Dogfish Head 120 can handle the fall of civilization and still be drinkable by whatever irradiated overlords still roam the cracked husk know as earth (an 18% ABV can do that). Generally though, hoppy IPAs are meant to be drank and drank now. I think most IPA lovers know this or figure it out after trying that IPA they forgot about on the back shelf, but what keeps IPAs from keeping? Well, that worthless pursuit, “science”, can shed light on this cruel trick of nature.

Continue reading “The Why Not of Aging IPAs – Science!”