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What Was the Last Beer You Drank?


robbalvey
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Well, I missed some days of updates while I was in Nebraska, but just got all of the pictures off my camera to start putting them on here while I have time.

 

I also checked a box of beer to bring home because I went to Beertopia the day before I left to fly home. Nothing broke so that was good, but I did also pack 3 beers in my golf bag case that weren't as well packed. Well they made a mistake with that piece of luggage and left it in Vegas. It just turned up today and should be delivered shortly to my residence, so we'll see if those beers are unbroken after all the additional happenings with that bag...

 

I'll start with the stuff I was drinking back in Nebraska...

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It had very complex flavors. It tasted pretty much exactly like the Eisbock, the mouthfeel was thinner, and the drinkability was a little higher. Not a huge fan of Weizenbocks or Eisbocks if these are two of the best.

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Aventinus Weizenbock, #59 on the top 100. 8% ABV. I had their Eisbock earlier in the week.

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It didn't live up to the hype for me. It's on the malty side for a pale, and the hops didn't come through well. The juniper berries add a nice spicyness to it that isn't overdone. It was fairly enjoyable despite its shortcomings.

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Rogue's Juniper Pale Ale. 5.3% ABV. This is one of their more acclaimed beers, as it is brewed with Juniper berries.

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It was good. It's very balanced by heavy malts, so it was missing that clarity in the hop character that I like so much about West Coast IPAs. Still good nonetheless.

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Great Divide's Hercules DIPA. 9.1% ABV. I was happy with the Yeti so I was looking forward to this.

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Last night I decided to go with a heaping double helping of summer goodness with Three Floyds.

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That's one hopped up wheat brew. Excellent tastes of spices, wheat, and hops. No Gumball taste though

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2 bottles of the newly bottled smaller size of Gumball Head, one of Three Floyds best brews (outside of Dark Lord, Alpha King, etc)

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Another quick update from over the water. Picked up some more Breconshire Brewery stuff on Wednesday evening.

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A nice red ale with a great balance of Crystal & Black malts with Goldings & First Gold hops Very tasty!!

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Tonights tipple. Rambler's Ruin @5.0%

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Lovely colour but disappointing in the flavour department! Plenty of hops but no malt balance!!

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Last nights beverage ..... Golden Valley @ 4.2%.

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Continuing on with the rest of my Omaha trip pictures, here are a few more from going out to different places both downtown and out west.

 

My dad and I went to Beertopia for the 2nd time on monday, the day before I left. This time, the guy working was the guy who is an active beeradvocate poster. So we got along well and talked a lot about beer, just as I did with the first guy. He helped me pick out some more stuff that he thought I should try after I told him I was from CA and wanted to try good stuff I can't get there.

 

Then I asked him what kind of stuff I should get at Upstream on tap, since we were planning to go there for dinner, and he said nothing was too exciting there, but we should go seek out the Belgian Blonde on cask at Jobber's Canyon in the old downtown.

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I of course ordered the beer sampler, 10 different 4oz beers. From bottom left to bottom right: O! Gold Light Beer, Honey Raspberry Ale, Gold Coast Blonde, American Wheat, Capitol Pale Ale, Firehouse ESB, Double IPA, Belgian Wit, Blackstone Stout, and the very tasty unfiltered Saison.

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For dinner we headed over to Upstream out west where my dad lives. It's really big, with like 3 stories and a large restaurant.

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The windows to look inside where the magic happened had large black strips holding multiple windows together, so it was hard to get a nice shot of what was inside. Here's the best one. Our bill came to $10.16 AFTER tax. Amazing deal there.

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We also got some Calamari as suggested by the bartender since it was Happy Hour. My dad and I have tried Calamari many places and it's hard to find good calamari. This was one of the best plates of calamari I have ever had.

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My dad may have been camera shy, but I'm not. I was happy to see that they served the Belgian Blonde in snifters.

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The bar and restaurant were completely empty, so we sat down at the little bar and ordered 2 Belgian Blondes. This was the display outside showing what they had.

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So of course, we took the advice and headed there at around 4pm, before dinner. It's a small nice looking place, looks very new compared to the brick buildings surrounding the rest of the area.

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^ I love the name Jobber's Canyon. That's one of the better brewpub one's out there that I've heard.

 

So the other night I decided to get into some beers from a early favorite of mine when I first got into the craft beer scene. Otter Creek Brewing in Middleberry, VT. Since then, we'll let's just say that their beers haven't quite held up but bolstered by my recent visit up to Vermont, I decided to dabble into a couple of their summer offerings.

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But heh, in the end it actually ended up working as just a plain ole' tasty Summer Ale anyway. And damn, isn't that Otter cute?

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Time for something new. The White Sail Belgian Style Ale. Actually "Belgian Style" is the operative word here as I thought it failed pretty miserabley at that.

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Actually this is just an excuse to break out my cute-as-hell Otter glass. Ah, isn't he adorable?

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The 'Otter Summer Ale. Now made with real Otters!

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Last night I decided to revisit my favorite beer that I've tried so far. Tonight it's all about college football and some DFH.

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College football and good beer, What more can you ask for on a Thursday night?

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Tonight in honor of a 60 minute game, DFH's 60 Minute IPA.

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Last Night - Stoudts Double IPA - My personal favorite.

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Time for some last minute East Coast goodness before heading away for the weekend for some West Coast sweetness.

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Definitely one of my favorite Pale Ales out there

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Then it's time for some Shelter Pale Ale

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Such a wonderful flavor

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First up, Dogfish Head 60 Minute

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To prepare for the weekend, as well as to pay respects to MJ, I not only had some NorCal goodness tonight, Nicole also decided to join me in the thread!

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and Nicole joins me for an update, sampling my stout as well as drinking a nice glass of Bailey's, Kahlua, and milk

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This glass is for you, Michael Jackson (the beer expert, not the pedophile king of pop)

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Starting to show its age a little, but still excellent and loaded with coffee

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For me, the Lagunitas Cappuccino Stout

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Dipped into some Brooklyn goodness while finishing up some packing tonight.

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Very nice but much too malty and sweet to be considered an APA. This would be nice during October playoffs though.

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And since this weeks sweep of the Mets by my Fighting Phils got me thinking Pennant Race, I'll try something dedicated to a former NY team. The Brooklyn Pennant Ale 55'.

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A pretty solid Hefe with refreshing hints of banana and clove. I much as I liked this one, I would still suggest you search out the even better Brooklyner-Schneider Hopfen-Weisse collaboration beer. One of my favorites of this summer.

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The Brooklyner Weiss Beer. Ooooooh. Shiney.

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While driving across country (fleeing Utah as fast as we could) we made a pilgrimage to the the birthplace of Fat Tire, the New Belgium Brewing Co in Ft. Collins Colorado. When we arrived in the evening, the brewery was closed, so we checked out Coopersmith Brewpub, and it did not disappoint! Food was fantastic, beer was excellent, and a great crowd. Really worth a side trip from Denver (about an hour) if you are in the area.

 

New Belgium was way laid back, the tastings were free, and the self-guided tour was fun. And it was very family friendly. We bought some t shirts and stuff, and when they gave my husband too much change and he let them know, the staff gave him a free bottle of Fat Tire for the road--for his honesty. Nice!

 

Fat Tire from the place of origin? Priceless!

 

Oh yeah, BTW...for you SD beer fans, we visited the Karl Strauss in Carlsbad, just outside the gates to Legoland, and it was probably our best KS experience yet-- especially after a long day at Legoland!

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This is the entrance to Coopersmith. Great pub!

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Um, this doesn't really look comfortable.

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My kid demonstrates HOPS-scotch. Get it? Hops? Oh, all right.

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Mmm, sweet beer!

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Employee of the month...

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Fresh and tasty!

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This biking stuff is no joke.

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pray at the alter of sweet nectar.

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This mirror ushers you into the self guided tour.

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Travel around with New Belgium! This rig has a keg and a movie screen.

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Great stuff!

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We heart beer!

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Your daily selection.

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Enter and be merry.

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Welcome!

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Entry to beer mecca.

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I haven't posted in a while, mostly because I haven't been drinking much. Hopefully tomorrow or Sunday I will have a better update!

 

Anyways here are a couple pics from Tuesday and tonight..

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oh, who am I kidding? Not many things make me happier than sipping a St Bernardus Abt!!

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Tonight, nothing too special

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but my meat chili made a great ending

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Maybe it's just because of the age but man that was a strong beer. A little bit too strong, but I'm still smiling so that means I liked it overall I just didn't love it

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The beer poured well, but I'm still not sure on the taste

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Weyerbacher Decadence, thanks to Derek!

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^ Sometimes I post root beers I'm not much a fan of ginger beer though.

 

^^ You totally stole my thunder on that St. Bernardus Abt 12, I drank it last night, but I'm still pretty far behind in my beer updates! It was my first time having it though =P

 

^^^ Cool I am happy to see you had a good time at New Belgium, I actually got a bottle of La Folie while I was out in Nebraska and brought it home with me. How'd you like La Folie? I will probably try it soon.

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Rock on Bear Republic, rock on.

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Honey, I'm home!!! Boy have I missed that over the top piney flavor from the West Coast IPAs.

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It was Excellent! I've liked everything from Great Divide. It's too bad they didn't have some of the stuff in bombers that they had in six packs at Beertopia, cause they had some other stuff I would have tried. This is just a really well hopped Barley Wine, delicious.

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Back in California, but still drinking the stuff from my trip, here's another top 100 beer checked off the list, Old Ruffian from Great Divide. 10.2% ABV.

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Another pretty decent DIPA where I feel like the raw hop flavor didn't come through that well. Maybe too balanced for my tastes or maybe I don't like the hops they used.

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Breckenridge 471 DIPA. 9.2% ABV. Looks pretty beautiful...

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Continuing my quest for locally brewed real ale, I found a couple more offerings from the Rhymney Brewery.

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Named after Welsh politician Nye Bevan, who founded the National Health Service over here.

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First up, Bevan's Bitter @4.2% & as it says on the label, "Taste Is Everything!"

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With today's GA Tech-ND game, I decided to go out to Taco Mac to watch the game. With the huge victory (no, not beer) there was much to rejoice about!

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Anyways, once we cashed out, we got a new, crappier waitress... took forever but finally I got a 90min IPA from Dogfish head. Great stuff but I kinda prefer the 60 minute a little. Thanks for reading... go jackets!

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I complained about my tab.. together the other two guys had a tab of less than $25 (although I admit one wasn't even drinking)

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Very nice! not the best, but still pretty yummy!!

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Third up for me was the Aventinus dopplebock. Does that sound familiar? Anyways, I loved it, and at this point the game became more about beer than the route that was going on!

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Here is Corey. He's posted in the beer thread if I remember. I bought him an Abt 12 since he said he liked dark beers, and what the hell, I had one too. It was one of the better bottles Ive had!

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I started off with a standard Terrapin Rye Pale Ale.. honestly it was the worst I've ever had, the keg must be old and near empty or something

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Well, after months of planning, our big Bay Area BACT Attack for LaBeer Day Weekend is finally upon us. After waking up at 4am and flying from Philly to San Francisco, we were pretty hungry and in much need of food and beverages before hitting up some parks. When doing my research, I found a place that had an awesome name, but no brewpub. Suddenly, they decided to open a brewpub, and while I heard the service was lacking, we decided to check it out anyway, and I'm glad we did!

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Even Kim was double fisting these sweet things. Definitely check out El Toro Brewing if you're up in the Gilroy/San Jose area. It rocks!

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and to end our drinking, a sampler of the 3 fruit beers (raspberry wheat, peach, and black raspberry) and their Imperial Stout

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Definitely gets passes Kim's Hopface challenge

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The big reason we wanted to come here for the beer, The Deuce, a double IPA and an Alpha King Challenge winner. Pure hop bomb excellence here!

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some of the brewing process right there on site

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and the El Toro burger with salsa

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regular pork bbq

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Hawaiian style pulled pork bbq

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the food ruled too. To start, hot dog tacos!

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cute sign

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To end our sampler, Negro Oatmeal Stout and their Porter. Both nice bitter and packing coffee

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The bar is made out of a rock that is found only in Morgan Hill. Purdy stuff

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2 different IPAs on tap too, a regular and a Bravo. As you can see, both awesome as well

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Definitely enjoyed the Extra Hoppys

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there, all done! for now...

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oops, better zoom out so you can see the rest of our starter sampler

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Not knowing what to start out with, we chose a sampler. The 4 different hop varieties of the Extra Hoppy Poppy Jasper; Amarillo, Columbus, Simcoe, and Apollo

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Holy crap, look at all those taps! 24 beers, all of them El Toro!

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The place was nice and big, and the bar was calling to us

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and with a name like El Toro Brewing, you know us coaster beer nerds had to go!

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First stop of the day, the old Morgan Hill Police Department, now remodeled into a brewpub

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^What a damn shame we're not getting that far West next year!

Never mind, I'm sure we'll find some good places on the East side (When we find time!)

Meanwhile, another of Rhymney Breweries offerings .....

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At 5%, it's brewed with six (yes 6!) different malts and is quite tasty.

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They call it Export ..... I can only assume that they do export it, but I think that tag just goes waaaaaaaay back to a time when "strong" beers could only be brewed for export.

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^^ I wish the train had been running down to Morgan Hill on weekends! El Toro looks cool. I'm sure I'll check it out some other time though.

 

Continuing on with my "almost a week ago" updates...

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This beats the Rocheforts in my opinion. I enjoyed the mouthfeel a lot better, and also got some better fruity flavors out of this one. My favorite belgian to date.

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St. Bernardus Abt 12. #16 on the list! 10.5% ABV. Looks awesome.

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It was light in flavor too. Nice and refreshing but I wish it had at least been unfiltered.

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New Belgium's Sunshine Wheat. 4.8% ABV. Lighter than I expected in color. Check out my new glass!

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This stuff was dreamy. I love porters and all that chocolatey coffee goodness was there in a very strong form.

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Flying Dog's Gonzo Imperial Porter. 9.2% ABV. Interesting label to say the least.

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It was pretty good. I usually go for West Coast IPAs whenever possible but this was quite good for a british style one.

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Boulder's Cold Hop British-Style IPA.

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BJ's Owen's IPA. I had this when I went to dinner there with my mom. It was just okay.

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Well, we're sadly home now, but we accomplished everything we wanted to do on our Bay Area BACT Attack. Continuing on, Sunday we started out the day at PGA before heading up north of San Francisco to Santa Rosa. We were a little worried about the traffic thanks to the Bay Bridge being closed all weekend, but we only ran into a little bit of traffic on the 580. Arriving in Santa Rosa we hit up a BevMo to stock up for our return home before going to the #17 place to have a beer in America, Russian River Brewing.

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Merch on shoulder, Russian River has been completed. Next stop, Healdsburg!

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We didn't go this route, but the sampler looks pretty cool

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You're a beer nerd, and you've got your pad and pen, trying to rate Pliny on site.

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Pliny gets a semi-hop face from Kim, or she had a stroke and neither of us realized it because we were too excited to be at Russian River

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and to end our drinking at RR before we move on to the next, Pliny the Elder double IPA fresh from the source

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Check out that awesome lacing

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While I would try the O.V.L. Stout on nitro. Yum!

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see, told you. Now he's enjoying a Russian River IPA

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Heath will be right back, don't take his seat

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all Russian Rivers medals and awards are proudly displayed

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Time to get our drink on. Blind Pig IPAs for the boys and a Little White Lie for Kim

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The place is well known for their excellent Belgian styles. Unfortunately, they were out of all the top ranked stuff

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Good stuff on the beer list, all brewed on site

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Not what I was expecting, but the people were all friendly and passionate for good beer

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Finally, we arrive at Russian River, where all day Sunday is happy hour. $2.75 pints sounds great to us!

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It took Heath 30 seconds to realize he'd be broke if he lived in California...and 35 seconds to realize we need to invest in a travel case for beer

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First beer stop, BevMo

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A man cannot survive on beer alone. Luckily there's In N Out

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^ I love the "Gone to pee" signs. Are those just the bottom of the drink coasters? I also liked the bottle caps on the beer sampler so you know what's what. But if they are making bottle caps for everything, where are all the bottles, distribute Russian River, distribute!!!

 

More stuff from a few days ago. This was from Labor Day Weekend, we made a driveway fire at my uncles on both Friday and Saturday. Almost caught all the way up!

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This was the best DIPA I've ever had up until labor day of course. My uncle thought it was excellent as well, go figure...

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Durr, time to drink da Hop Stoopid... 8.2% ABV. This time my uncle is lucky enough to have me share it with him!

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I think I've decided I like this porter a little better than Deschutes', but I need to try them side by side.

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Anchor Brewing's Porter. 5.6% ABV.

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So packed with flavor, it made my right eye tear up and my mouth go "WHAT?"

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Onto saturday night's lineup... First up, Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic! 8.0% ABV. My 2nd bomber of this but my uncles first time trying it.

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It is decent in the flavor department for a witbier. Some nice orange peel flavors but not quite enough spice for me.

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Oops, looks like we had one more on friday, Lost Coast's Great White Beer. From Eureka, CA. Witbier!

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Obligatory Fire picture!

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Stronger grapefruit flavor than the Odell IPA. This beer still has the best grapefruit flavor from hops I've ever had by a landslide. It's pretty awesome, I just wish it had some more sticky head.

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Last beer we had on Friday was Anderson Valley's Hop Ottin IPA, a favorite of my uncles.

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Yay, first good beer of the night. It has a nice up front malt presence, and fades into some pungeant grapefruity hops.

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Odell IPA. 7.0% ABV. From Fort Collins, CO. That sticky head looks enticing.

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He swears this was a bad batch, because it was essentially flavorless. I don't know if I buy it or not, in my opinion he might just think it's flavorless now that he's drinking beer with flavor.

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My uncle decided to get more Mississippi Mud from back in his younger days after all this beer tasting with me to see how it compares. It's an english porter mixed with a pilsener.

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It was pretty standard. Actually, I liked the Shiner Kolsch a lot better. The flavor just wasn't as clean and bold as the Shiner one, which is currently my favorite bottled Kolsch.

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The Reissdorf Kolsch. 4.8% ABV. This is a Kolsch I've wanted to try for a long time because it's one of the only Kolsch's with a bunch of fairly solid reviews.

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After having 1 too many at Russian River, we made the short 20 minute drive up the 101 into Healdsburg to enjoy another California brewpub. While they're not on the top 50 list, lots of their beers are, and the place had a nice variety of food to choose from as well. Onward to Bear Republic!

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and don't drop the deuce here unless your friends are blocking the door!

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Just remember, if you're going to drink at Bear Republic, there's no privacy in the bathroom, and if you drink too much, the walls will freak you out!

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and I had the always fantastic Racer 5 IPA on tap. Fantabulous!

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along with some awesome food, Heath went with the Hop Rod Rye on tap. This time we actually chose to get the good stuff, not the credits

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Sadly, this is all we would see of Racer X at Bear Republic, the double IPA in his honor was not on tap

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even the water glasses had logos on them, score!

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Kim enjoyed a root beer

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A look at the taps

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Woohoo, merch, along with random Bear Republic theming on the walls

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just some of the brewing process in the building

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Heath was smart enough to get the Smokey Bear Stout, but I got the Big Bear Black Stout not remembering that I had it before. Oh well, at least this time's on tap instead of bottle

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The taplist had lots of stuff we've yet to try, but after that Pliny from Russian River we were a little forgetful

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Tiny bar area compared to Russian River and El Toro, with the dining area scattered throughout

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Bear Republic Brewing, one of the first California microbreweries that distributed to our area. Once again, this place wasn't like we expected it to be

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Healdsburg, California, home of...

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Three whiteys in a Fusion make their way to the next stop on the agenda...

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Monday would see us starting out the day at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom. Getting Heath and Kim all their credits was more of a challenge there, but we managed, and by 1:30 were on our way back to San Francisco via Route 37. When we got back to the 101, it was a measly 0.5 miles North to Moylans in Novato, another brewery with some great beers, a perfect stop for lunch.

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then it was off to San Francisco we went for more good stuff. Lucky us, traffic wasn't bad at all crossing the Golden Gate Bridge

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Great beers, though the food was a little pricier than other brewpubs in the area. At least it was good stuff though

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and another winner of the Hopface Challenge as well

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and Heath went with the Hopsickle triple IPA, yet another Alpha King Challenge winner

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I went with the Moylander double IPA, another Alpha King Challenge winner

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which Gwyn didn't like at all!

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Round two sees Rick getting the Dry Stout

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Kim enjoys another root beer

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Said taps

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Good stuff on the taplist

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Some decor, and oooh, merchandise. Too bad it was a little too expensive and bold for us.

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But it turns out I was right when I told Rick to go with the Home Run Red

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Gwyndolyne and Rick got a sampler to start to determine what they liked

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I started light and refreshing with a really sweet Pomegranate Wheat

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Time for some drinks. Heath started with the IPA

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Very Irish pub vibe going on here, but the place was plenty big

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Here's Moylan's, quite easy to find right off the 101 in Novato

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