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What Was the Last Beer You Drank?


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This is my first ever Photo Beer report.

Hope you like it.

 

After having read many by the MASTERS (PHISHY, DEREK AND HATTchculi (sp?), I will try to do them justice.

 

Here's a shout out for Ted, Walter, Derek and hattchhuli(sp?)!

Thanks, guys!

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And in my hood, many beers of many places pass over this fence,

MAN LAW.... That's my neighbor dave and I by the fence.

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We also had Killians.

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yep, us blowing up the hood....

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My nephew dave and I...

Good times with fireworks.

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These are my neighbors, dave lil and lonnie.

great people!

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This is me and my pups. Frodo, the brown retriever and Nanuq, my Great pyrenees pup of 12 weeks at 40 lbs.

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Of the J W Dundees, this is the best of the lot. Amber Lager is not bad... But IPA makes for good Beercan chicken...

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The beers from the last couple of nights lie ahead matey, yaargh!

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The head smelled and tasted a bit funky, so I let it mellow a long while before I started drinking. It's good, it kind of grows on you. At first I wasn't sure about it, there are nice spices up front... But it is really mouth puckering as it sits in your mouth, hard to quaff, but keeps you coming back for more.

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Jolly Pumpkin's Luciernaga, aka "The Firefly" from Dexter Michigan. It's a Belgian Pale Ale at 6.5% ABV. The head was a little ridiculous.

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It is pretty hoppy! It also had some great chocolate and coffee flavors. It reminded me a lot of Ol' Rasputin, except it was a lot smoother.

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Victory is mine!!! Thanks go to Derek for bringing me Storm King, a top rated Imperial Stout.

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Tonight's intensity upgrade will have me going from a regular IPA to an Imperial IPA.

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Some sweet characteristics, some piney notes, and a little warmth of alcohol. One of my favorite things from Saranac

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Saranac Imperial IPA, weighing in at 8.5%

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Something new from one of the best of the Southern craft breweries.

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While it doesn't seem nearly as aggresively hopped as the label suggests, I did really dig the nice citrusy tang that is better than most other IPAs. Good stuff!

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The much ballyhooed Sweetwater IPA.

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I think after I run out of beer this time (Still will be a little while) I'm not going to buy anymore for a week or two. It's really taking a toll on my wallet, and I'm pretty much running on empty and with no job to replenish it. I guess the time of celebrating my graduation is finally over as I must buckle down and job search for real. Once I get a job I'll definitely reward myself with some new brews.

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Perhaps the best balance of any IPA I've had up to this point. It's got a nice kick in the face up front with some cirtusy hops, with a little grapefruit. It's a little bittering in the middle, and ends huge on some caramel malts. They used only one hop variety in here, Centennial... In my experiences that specific type does not totally dominate the malts, so it was a nice choice.

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Ballast Point's Big Eye IPA. Their labels crack me up, who thinks up this stuff? I'm happy I was finally able to find this at my BevMo. Here's to hoping they'll get Dorado Double IPA in...

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The head was a little funky, so I waited a little bit again. I really liked this beer. It's quite possibly the best wheat I've had yet, though Franziskaner's Hefe-Weiss is up there too. I didn't taste any gumballs though, just some really nice citrus.

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Three Floyd's Gumballhead. My first Three Floyd's brew. It's an American Wheat. I like the label design. Thanks go to Heath for putting this brew in my hands.

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I've been working on a case of Hacker-Pschorr Oktoberfest. I normally don't like to buy cases of beer but based on how drinkable this stuff is I'll probably need another case of Oktoberfest soon. This beer about the smoothest and freshest German Oktoberfest beer I've had outside of Munich (but with a lower ABV than you find at the tents in Munich). The flavor is great but a little weak so it really depends on the condition of your palate as to how it tastes from bottle to bottle. Sam Adams brews a nice Oktoberfest beer but I'm a sucker for the German brewed Oktoberfest beers.

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^ I have a good guess... But I won't potentially spoil it for everyone else.

 

Today my mom and I went to Pleasanton in the East Bay to meet up with my cousin Josh who is from Seattle. He was down here for work reasons, so it was quite convenient for us to meet him for a couple beers and dinner.

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For the next round, I asked if they could do growlers... When they said no, I knew I had to order the Pliny the Elder. I sure was hoping to take home a growler though. Josh got Rogue's Hazelnut Brown, and enjoyed it just as much as the Mad River Jamaican Red, Though he liked the small sample of the Schooner's Apricot Ale best.

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And here is my cousin Josh with a Mad River Jamaican Red Ale. He said he liked it quite a bit. We also got samples of Pliny the Elder, along with Green Flash EPA, and Schooner's Apricot Ale.

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Nope, not this one, I'll start off with a Sierra Nevada Anniversary Ale since I have never had it and have heard such good things about this IPA. It was very nice, a little dank with some nice maltiness in the finish.

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And here is a picture of all the taps. What's that staring out at me right in the middle with the big red circular tap handle?

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Here's the taplist, pretty hard to read a lot of these with the color of marker they used though. For anyone who is wondering, this is the place right next door to Hoptown Brewing that serves a lot of good local craft beers on tap.

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Then we went and picked up my cousin Josh, and hurried over to The Hopyard for a couple of pints before my sister would meet us for dinner.

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I only had time for one beer here though, and I decided to try something that they brew there, since I can get the Deschutes Twilight Ale some other time. I went with the Train Wreck IPA. It was above average, fairly balanced with some pronounced bitterness.

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A picture of their taps, they had some decent guest beers on tap as well. Including Deschutes Twilight Ale, which I almost got...

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Screwed up on this picture, I thought I got a wide enough angle, but it was kind of dark in there so I wasn't sure. They had 4 beers on tap of their own, Train Wreck IPA, a Porter, a Pale, and a Wheat.

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My mom and I got there a bit early before my cousin was off work, so we stopped by a sewing store for her and then it was off to Main St. Brewery in downtown Pleasanton.

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A sampling of some more stuff from down South.

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Blech! I didn't care for this one too much. Just too sweet in the finish with a mix of nuttiness and fruit that just didn't work for me at all.

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Next up, the Atlanta Brewing Company's Red Brick Ale. Their flagship brew and an English Brown Ale.

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Not bad. Pretty hoppy up front but seemed to lack a nice malt backbone to smooth it out.

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The Kashmir IPA from Highland Brewing in Asheville, NC.

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My final selection on the intensity scale leaves with very little in terms of options. I have a few cards left up my sleeve, but since this one has been chilling in the fridge, it's gonna be the brew of choice, a Triple IPA from Grand Rapids, Michigan.

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And this is fantastic. Sweet, piney, spicy, citrusy, and alcohol packed

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Founders Devil Dancer, not an IPA or a Double IPA, but a TRIPLE IPA, and rocking a whopping 13%abv

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A couple more Southern selections the other night.

 

By the way, I've now got the Nikon back from being repaired, so I'll no longer abuse your eyes with pics from my crappy, old Canon.

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Not a bad effort but one that just falls short compared to the 420.

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Round 2. The Atlanta Brewing Co. Red Brick Peach Tree Pale Ale.

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There certainly is something extra in this one! Once again, a seriously solid Pale Ale from Sweetwater.

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The Sweetwater 420 Extra Pale Ale.

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I had some more stuff when I got home on wednesday from the Pleasanton beer excursion.

 

And then a special treat last night to cheer me up because I was feeling a little bit depressed with the way my job search is going.

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And boy oh boy was it mouth puckeringly sour. So much so that I wish I had someone to share it with because the whole 750ml bottle was a bit hard to drink in the same sitting. Much more sour than Sanctification, but I still prefer Sanctification by a mile because of the other sweet flavors and great balance. Still, this beer deserves its place in the top 50, and was exactly what I needed last night to brighten things up a bit.

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It's listed as a Flander's Red Ale on BA, but the little tag that came with the bottle said it was New Belgium's interpretation of a Belgian Sour Brown.

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On to last night, I opened up something special. The bottle of La Folie I picked up at Beertopia in Omaha. This stuff cost me a pretty penny. The cork made a nice pop as I pulled it out.

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Maybe I just wasn't in the mood or something. It has some nice floral hop flavor, without much bitterness.

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My 2nd bomber of Kill Ugly Radio. It didn't seem as good this time around, and I'm not sure why.

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It's very hoppy up front. Dances on your tongue a bit and then right as you're swallowing you get the nice chocolate/coffee taste. I actually wish the hoppiness subsided a little earlier as I was really digging the background flavors. I kept trying to swirl it around in my mouth forever attempting to get those flavors before the swallow, but it wasn't working. A little frustrating, but a very good porter nonetheless.

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Troegs Dead Reckoning Porter. 5.4% ABV. I got this one from Heath I think? Maybe Derek... Nice head on this porter.

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Here is some beer thread update for when BACT came out to NorCal.

 

Sorry it is late, but oh well.

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It burned quite a few acres.

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On our way home we could see the huge fire by Henry Coe State Park.

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Sometimes the most random things become interesting.

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This was the watchdog of Toronado's. Pretty interesting atmosphere.

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I was woosing out on some small glasses.

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Derek has his corner seat...now what happened to my seat when I went to the bathroom?

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Here's the gang.

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We chased after the BACT crew to Toronado's where we met up with Bubba.

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and here is one of Gyendolynne.

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A hoppy photo of Kim

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This was our sampler after we left SFDK. Derek has reported on the place a few pages ago.

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^^ I'm glad to see that the La Folie didn't disappoint. Don't get too depressed about the job hunt. These things work themselves out. Trust me, after the last 2 years of job drama, I finally found something that I'm happy with.

 

^Nice pics from our meetups Rick! We had a great time hanging out with you guys. I'll drop you a line if we head back that way again next year.

 

So last night, Derek came over for this month's edition of "Friday Night Pints".

 

Luckily we had lots of tasty new brews that we brought back from our recent trip out to CA.

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It's September, which can only mean one thing. Stone 11th is in the house! Look for a joint review from Derek and I soon.

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Oh and I almost forgot. Picked up something new from Stone on the way home from work. What could it be?

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Wow. Well you should always expect something different from Jolly Pumpkin and this was no different. Lots of regular stout notes of roasty chocolate and coffee but then melds into a super sour finish. Very strange but still interesting on the palatte.

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We decide to finally start wrapping things up with something dark. Very dark. Very special and dark.:) The Madrugada Obscura Dark Dawn Stout from Jolly Pumpkin. An oak aged American Stout.

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You can always count on an Alpha King Challenge winner. Trust us.

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With our faith needing restored and palattes needing cleansed, we turned to an old friend. The Moylan's Moylander Double IPA.

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...and secondly, it's the worst West Coast IPA we've ever had. Oh well, the distinction had to go to someone eventually. Seriously. We paid $8-9 for this 750ml bottle and neither of us hesitated to drain pour half our glass. It was that bad.

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Our next West Coast guest, the Double IPA from the Blue Frog Grog & Grill in Fairfield, CA has a couple of special distinctions for Derek and I. First, it's probably the most nicely packaged bottle for something that we hated...

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A very solid effort with a nice hop profile and a sweet citrus twang but just lacked that West Coast magic. Plus someone unfortunately had to follow that awesome Lagunitas bomber.

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We keep the hop train rolling with an IPA from a Nor Cal brewery that we unfortunately didn't have time for on our recent trip. Marin Brewing in Larkspur, CA. Right off that fabulous 101 brewing corridor.

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Oh my! Hugely hoppy, citrusy, and piney, West Coast Double IPAs make Heath & Derek very happy! This was nice.

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Allright, time to kick the door down with some hops! Courtesty of Kevin, it's the latest release from Lagunitas and the second of their Frank Zappa beers. Kill Ugly Radio.

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This actually turned out to not really be light at all for a Belgian Style Golden Ale. Big body with sweet notes of fruits and spices. Most importantly though, it was quite drinkable!

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We start things out "light" with something special from a special West Coast brewery. The Deschutes 19 Anniversary Ale.

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^^ Nice pictures Rick and Gwen. I didn't even see you guys take those pictures in Toronado, super sneaky!

 

^ I'm glad to hear that Deschutes' Golden Ale was good, I've been wanting to get my hands on that for a while. I am also happy to hear you liked the Kill Ugly Radio! There has certainly been a mixed bag of reviews on it over at BA.

 

Last night I had a new porter and an old favorite, and earlier today I went to a place Derek and Heath told me I just had to visit!

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Favorite of the set was the Deuce, winning narrowly over the very tasty Imperial Stout. The Deuce was quite dank, reminded me most of Pliny the Elder out of all the DIPAs I've tried thus far, just not quite THAT good.

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And then I got a second sampler set. From left to right again: The porter, the Negro Oatmeal Stout, the Imperial Stout, and last but definitely not least, the Deuce Double IPA

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My mom got the Cod fish tacos, which she liked. She said they were pretty spicy but had good flavor.

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Then came the food, I ordered a Hawaiian Pulled Pork sandwich as seen here, with a side salad. The salad was pretty good. I liked the concept of this sandwich, but the pulled pork itself was a bit dry and tough. Wasn't impressed.

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My favorite of the first rack of samples was this one, The William Jones Wheat. It had a nice pop on the tongue, and was one of the most flavorful wheats I have ever had.

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My first sampler of 4. From left to right: William Jones Wheat, Forget the name, but it was like a golden ale that was done with Anise? Definitely tasted of licorice... The IPA, and lastly The Poppy Jasper Amber.

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Where do I start? Well, I'll ask the brewmaster who is also bartending! I asked him if he remembered you guys, at first he didn't, I said, two guys and one has a wife, they are from pennsylvania, they probably were snapping pictures everywhere, they bought merch, etc... But he didn't remember until I said you guys were coaster nuts!

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El Toro Brewing Co. In Morgan Hill, just south of San Jose... I was actually going to go here earlier, but it was so smokey from the fire that I decided to wait. My mom and I went for Linner around 4pm.

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However, this one left me craving some big piney hops! This oughtta do... Racer 5, woohoo. IPAs and DIPAs are still my favorite styles.

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Hey, whadda you know? Another porter I like... It's solid all around and I'm beginning to find out that Porters are close to the top of my list in favorite styles.

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Black Hook Porter, from the Red Hook company... A new porter for me!

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I'm not sure yet if I'm gonna have a third tonight, but I'll post what I've done so far so that I can say I actually contributed to the beer thread this week

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Yummy! This was a great brew, reminded me a lot of my beloved Terrapin RPA, but with a bit more bite! Awesome!!

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Next up, Troegs HopBack Amber Ale! mmm me loves these ales

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This really is a fine marzen. Not too hard, but with all the right flavors. Glad I still have 5 more to enjoy!

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First up, a Thomas Hooker Oktoberfest!

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^^ Glad to see you finally made it Kevin. You've got a pretty cool Mom there. Do us a favor and do a BTR from there once in a while. That way Derek & I won't miss it too much.

 

^Glad your liking my hometown Troegs Joe.

 

Time to get into some more West Coast awesomeness, in the form of some of the staple lineup from Deschutes. I've been very impressed from what I've had so far. I think a visit to Bend may just be in order for next year.

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Wow, and I would totally agree. Just fantastic notes of roasted cocoa, chocolate, and maybe even a little fruit that compliments the silky smooth sweetness of this thing. I need more of this stuff pronto.:)

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Next up, the Osidian Stout. Sitting right at #100 on the Best of BA list and one of the top American Stouts out there.

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Very nice. Not huge on the hops but they're there and rather nicely balanced with a yummy malty sweetness and a touch of citrus and pine. Damn tasty!

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First up, the Inversion IPA.

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Yesterday we continued Nicole's birthday celebration by stopping off at the King of Prussia Mall so she could spend her gift cards on some tax-free clothes and such before heading to Jersey. But before we got there, we was hungry!

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and Bret finally opened up the bottle of Troegs Nugget Nectar I gave him after assuring him it was hoppy and not honey flavored

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then Nicole would enjoy some Black Cherry Fizz, which kinda tasted like cough syrup

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and I'd go all redneck with a can of Dale's Pale Ale

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where Nicole would have more blue colada stuff

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then it was time to head outside and enjoy the nice brisk air with a fire

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and nothing says fun like Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA and some Wii

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Then it was off to Jersey, where I'd enjoy some Hacker-Pschorr Oktoberfest compliments of Bret and Rylee

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While Nicole did some shopping with crazy long lines, I sat down to enjoy the UF football game and drink a Catcher in the Rye, Rock Bottom's seasonal rye beer

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Then it was off to the mall, home of Rock Bottom

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But I still represented while drinking their Autumn Ale, a different kind of fall beer. Not an Oktoberfest, and not a harvest ale, very malty though with some nice bitter notes

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Saturday was another special day at Capones, as the brewer from Breckenridge was gonna be visiting. Lots of stuff from them on tap, as well as some leftover Bell's stuff. Sadly the brewer didn't arrive until after 6pm so I didn't get to meet him

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I've got lots of cash and a hunger for a burger, time to hit up Capones. And let's pick up some pumpkin beers and whatnot for future continuing of this thread

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^^ Obsidian is my favorite stout, by far. I was actually drinking quite a bit of that this last weekend, myself. Of course, no camera.

 

I actually did think to bring my camera with us the last time we went down to McMenamin's though. McMenamin's is the closest brewpub to our house, about four blocks away, so we go there at lest two or three times a month.

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I followed up the kolsch with the Sunflower IPA. Nothing too special, but still a decent IPA IMO.

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Sandi decides to go with a Yukon Jack and Coke instead of beer.

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It was a pretty hot day so I started with a nice refreshing summer brew, their Firefly Kolsch. Pretty typical kolsch. Very similar to Curve Ball.

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Time for a late dinner and some pretty decent beer.

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As some fo you know, Abra and I headed up to Racine, WI for their annual Great lakes Brew Fest. It's mostly midwest breweries, but some stuff like Lagunitas, Victory, a bunch of Colorado stuff (no New Belgium ) and Sam Adams came out as well.

 

The highlights of the show, were first, our VIP tickets. At $50 a piece, limited to 200 people, a free stein, and an hour of time before the general public was let in. As a group, I think we hit up all the major stuff before the hour was even up.

 

I was a bit let down with Victory, Capital, Bell's and Dark Horse. They all brought stuff that was readily available (if I go border hopping). New Glarus was simply awesome, their Raspberry Tart is awesome....and very tart! You guys can laugh, but Lakefront makes an awesome Pumpkin Ale that was just like sipping a slice of pie. We also enjoyed BluCreek's Blueberry ale, and my favorite of the show was Tyranena's Rocky's Revenge. It's a great brown with a sweet kick of caramel at the end.

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Needless to say, we made a major stop before heading back into IL. New Glarus and Bell's can now be found in refrigerator!

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We stopped in a local bar afterwards. Chris decided someone's pasta salad looked good, picked up the plate and went out the front door.

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Nice ass!

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I love some roasted nuts. They covered the other sign that said, "Heavenly roasted nuts."

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Here's the crowd after the VIP hour.

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Bell's. Again with a weak selection. I was hoping for so much more.

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Speaking of locals. I question anyone with a Lowenbrau hat.

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They brought their trailer and by the end of the night were completely tapped out. The locals didn't leave their table. Way to try stuff out morons.

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Winner of best named brews.

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Seriously, Hop Devil, Whirlwind, Prima Pils and Fest. Booo.

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Abra enjoys her free stein.

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VIP Crowd. Easy to navigate.

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Today we did our last visit to Great Adventure for the year, and then on the way home got thirsty again

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any of their pint glasses were available to me. I chose the Prussia's Pride IPA, as it's both local and tasty

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Woohoo! It's visit #5 for me as a Mug Club member, that means free stuff!

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Better enjoy the Argyle Scottish Ale now while it's still on tap, Rocktoberfest goes on come Wednesday evening. The beer was odd, classified as a Brown Ale, not very Scottish, but still pretty good. And yes, I did wear the El Toro Brewing shirt to Six Flags, and yes it really confused the staff

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and then it was BACK to Rock Bottom for lunch, since we still didn't want to give Six Flags our money for food, as nice as the park is becoming.

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started out with some El Toro goodness, though it had a line thanks to Kinda Klosed being down at the start of the day to suck lots of the line away from El Toro

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^^^^ Glad to hear you're enjoying Deschutes stuff Heath, I really want to get up to Bend at some point as well, preferrably when the newest Abyss is released.

 

Two days ago I visited the new Whole Foods that opened up recently with my mom. We had a small Whole Foods in Cupertino before but they moved into a huge new location. The store is 68,000 sq ft, making it the 2nd largest Whole Foods in the entire chain, only surpassed by the 80,000 sq ft Whole Foods in Austin, TX, where the company was born.

 

I was looking forward to checking out their expanded beer section, and I wasn't dissapointed. They carried a lot of new bombers, but unfortunately most of the ones they had I've tried at BevMo...

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Still excellent, better than El Toro's Oatmeal Stout in my opinion. I love the thick oily features and the excellent sweet roasted barley taste.

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Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout makes yet another appearance in my Uncle's garage.

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Hobgoblin delivered once again, it has some really sweet fruit flavors with a mild bitterness in the finish.

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Time for a nice English Pale. I like to call this one a juicy pale!

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I was very dissapointed. It was as light as a Kolsch, and filtered. The flavor just wasn't there, and since I had a great wheat earlier that day at El Toro, this one really fell flat.

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Except for this, Anderson Valley's High Roller's Wheat. I was pretty excited about this beer because I've been happy with everything from Anderson Valley for the most part.

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Woohoo! Matt finally makes it somewhere and his camera doesn't die right away! (Though apparently the photographer got a little tipsy too soon )

 

Was this your first beer festival? Unless you're going to the Extreme Beer Fest in Boston, don't expect to get the best brews a place produces, as they are usually higher in ABV and people get drunker and dumber faster because of that. It's normal for breweries to bring their most popular/mass produced stuff, as it's cheaper for them to donate a small keg of something they always have lying around and it generally helps them bring notice to their brewery, as a good portion of beerfest goers don't know the difference between a stout and a lager.

 

Most places that do bring a special brew normally don't put it on until the last hour of the festival. By then most of the drunkards have already passed out or just don't know enough about the beer and the concept of time to know when "last call" is. Did you guys get anything special from the VIP ticket other than an hour without idiots and the stein, like some special brews?

 

Soon it shall be time for me to enjoy some new awesomeness. But for now, I gotta go eat some Japanese food!

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