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What Was the Last Beer You Drank?


robbalvey
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LOL I guess I didn't get my package off to PA quick enough, since Hop Shortage made it up there already

 

Yeah, you've got to be pretty quick before we start getting stuff up here Joe. Actually my buddy Greg dropped me off a bottle when he was up visiting the other week.

 

Well on the eve of a pretty epic beer trip, I'd thought that I'd break out something from one of the places out where we will be this weekend.

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This had lots of roasted bitterness, chocolate, coffee, dark fruits, and beefy heat. I had actually wanted to try this before we left so that I could pick up a couple of extra bottles when we are out there if I liked it. Uh, let's just say that I think I'll be picking up some more bottles!

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Something new from New Holland Brewing of Holland, MI, it's their new Imperial Stout, Night Tripper. This was brewed in conjunction with this year's Mardi Gras celebration, hence the Jester on the bottle.

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Guess I better find some time to catch up from all the goings on from the last week before I get even more buried by all of the upcoming awesomeness we're going to unleash.

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Weird consistency, but smells great and tastes really good too. Nice breadiness as well as banana, clove, apples, and caramel. Good stuff for a homebrew

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and finishing it off yesterday with some more of Samuel Adams Longshot series, this time the Weizenbock

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Very light and wheaty, but with a nice honey and citrus twist. Good for the hot weather

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After some fun at Great Adventure on Monday I picked up some of Breckenridge's new Agave Wheat on the way home

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After trying so many different IPAs, this is still one of my favorites

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Followed that up with more Stone goodness that Bret had in the fridge, the IPA

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Which I enjoyed with Bret. Lots of pineapple, grapefruit, dark fruits, molasses, brown sugar, scotch, rum, and other strong flavors in this bad boy

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On Sunday I headed into Jersey in search of the Jersey Devil, but all I found was a Double Bastard

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For dessert, some Double IPA for me

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and for a unique twist, Nicole got a burger that she claimed was heavenly.

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For the main course I got the Fat Dog Salmon, a salmon in a wild mushroom and Fat Dog Stout reduction glaze, awesome

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We started off with a cheese plate consisting of a triple creme cheese, a hard cheese that tasted like butter, and the Pond Hopper, a soft cheese with hops in it

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and their Blonde Double Maibock, good and sweet

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and then we followed up our visit with some dinner at Stoudts, and some beers while we were there, like their Fest beer, which still confuses me why it's out year round

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The great weather continued into Saturday, so we flew to Europe. Or we went to check out Stoudt's Village, built in the back of the brewery with lots of little shops

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Sweet and light, easy to drink lots of these, but not as flavorful as the Sunset. No blueberries to speak of

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Friday it was time to enjoy some of Leinenkugels other stuff besides the Sunset Wheat like the Honey Weiss

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Nice stuff, light hoppiness and easy to session

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With fantastic weather in the latter half the week, I decided it was time to break out some stuff to enjoy outside, like the Barnstormer Pale Ale from Flying Bison up in Buffalo

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It has been a while since I have posted. I hope everything is well with everyone... Nice to hear from the U.K. but where are the pictures of your last beer fest?

 

Congrats to your Flyers Heath... Here's to hoping they meet the Sharks in the finals.

 

I'll catch up on some pictures now...

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A really good german style pilsener. Pilseners aren't usually my thing but it had great floral qualities and a nice clean crisp backbone. Tasted bright, clean, and refreshing. May have tasted better as the Sharks won... As you can see, I'm attempting a playoff beard but I suck at beard growing.

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I finally found the stuff! Picked up a sixer at Whole Foods, deciding it would be a good beer to enjoy during Game 7. Trumer Pils, from Berkeley, CA.

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AWESOME stuff here. Kind of like a spicy dubbel. Great dark fruit complexities with some pepper, even hints of banana and chocolate though. The yeast strain imparts just enough flavor without being overdone like many other Belgians. This is up there with Sanctification for me. Tremendous.

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Sunday night I had some Salvation, from Russian River. It's a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. 9% ABV.

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Great dark fruit flavors that go down easy, actually quite refreshing on cool spring night.

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This is my uncle's new readily available favorite I think. 1554 Enlightened Black Ale. From New Belgium...

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Really good job too. Nice winter warmer dark malt flavor paired with just the right amount of spice. Reminds me of Jubelale, just a little spicier/thinner.

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Then we'd move on to Snow Cap, Pyramid's Winter Seasonal.

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Harbin is actually owned by Anheuser Busch now, and yeah, it pretty much tastes like Bud Light... We give this beer a D.

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On saturday we broke open our first chinese beer. A next door neighbor went on a trip there and brought back two different brews, unfortunately both are Macro Lagers...

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My uncle liked it quite a bit but complained that he wanted to be able to get up the next day, so he poured most of his portion into my glass, works for me! Great rum raisin flavors with some chocolate and molasses. There is a roasty/coffee flavor missing though I feel. Still awesome stuff.

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Still friday and we're buzzing so we decided to go with a lower strength beer to end the night... Syke. It's Stone's Imperial Russian Stout, but one I've kept since '07 so it's a little over a year old!

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Great stuff out of Moylan's as always. Great roasty toasty flavor with a side of dry coffee bitterness.

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Next up came Moylan's Dragoons Dry Irish Stout. I had this guy to myself on St. Patrick's Day, so my uncle picked one up to share.

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Surprisingly as good as I remember it. Nice sweet caramel and toffee flavors with a sweet floral kick and some nice citrus/grassy hops.

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The next thing on the menu was a beer I haven't had since last year. Hoptown Brewing's Paint the Town Red. They shut down their place in Pleasanton and are now brewing in Sudwerk's facility in Davis.

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Yeah, we all know this beer kicks ass already so I'll spare the details.

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At my uncle's we prepared to get ruinated on friday night.

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I'd have a baked potato at 2am the same night to satisfy my hunger.

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Not one of my favorite quadrupel's. Too much alcohol character and not quite enough in the way of dark fruit complexities. Still, it was pretty good.

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The Lost Abbey's Judgement Day. A quadrupel weighing in at 10.5% ABV brewed with raisins.

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Hello everyone! This is my first post here and yes the drinking age is 18 in Finland.

Anyway I've had 62 different beers so far (not counting some tasted at parties etc.) My biggest favourites so far are: Grimbergen Blonde, Kapuziner Hefe-Weizen, Shepherd Neame's Late Red, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Weihenstephaner Hefe.

 

I'll try to make reports of beers that you necessarily don't have in the States to hopefully make it a bit more interesting for you.

 

Here are some pics of beer from last October ->.

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Enjoyed this one. Nice hoppy start, then a nice rush of flowers, fruits, a hint of sweet almond. Pleasant bitter finish. This one got into my top10.

 

Thanks for reading, I'll get back with more beer pics after I return from Bratislava (Slovakia) after about 10 days.

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Kukko Pils vahva 5.5% btw. Kukko means cock as in rooster.

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It was quite decent, balanced, but a bit too bitter for me, it really didn't taste much, but was a well-made beer, still nothing to write home about.

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Baron Trenck, a Czech pilsner 6.0%

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Quite boring, it felt a bit watered down, it needed to be more hoppy. It had very small hints of rye and redcurrants, but really it was quite bad.

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Koff Jouluolut- A dark Christmas lager 4.6%

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It's gone. It was a very well balanced and smooth lager, it didn't have any special flavours, I expected a bit more, but still it was pretty good.

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Zeunert's 3.5% This one had won Silver in San Francisco beer contest in 2004. (Same contest that there's a symbol on one of the Rugged One's bottle further up this page).

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Nice one, quite like the last one, but with a more lighter taste, also this is a lager instead of ale. An All right "summer beer", worth giving a shot.

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1836 Classic White lager. 4.5%

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Quite nice. Like a musty stronger lager, but then with some small tones of flowers, fruits and light caramel with a nice finish. I would've hoped this to taste a bit more, it wasn't really worth 3.5€.

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Jennings Cocker Hoop Golden Ale, 4.6%.

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Hmm... nothing wrong here, well balanced lager, didn't really taste much, Nice sort of hoppy bite, with a smooth bitterness in the end. Well worth the price (although they don't sell it anymore).

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I bought this as it was only 99cents and I had read somewhere that it should be pretty good.

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It was good. Quite a complex taste. First it was fruity then hoppy and bitter, then like a regular Czech pilsner, like Pilsner Urquell, with a hint of honey. It was a bit like Amstel beer mixed with Spitfire, if that helps.

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Bohemia Regent President, a Czech lager, 6.0%

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Ugh. It was absolutely terrible, it was sour, tasted mostly like cheap lemonade stayed too long open and then the bitterness of the ginger attacked. I really wonder how they can call this a beer. I almost spit this out, it was quite repulsive to drink, please don't try this.

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This is a strange lime, ginger-beer. 4.7% Interesting.

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If any of you still have the Sam Adam's Long Shot Weizenbock, cellar it for a month or two. I've found it to be more flavorful now.

 

I'd be interested if you find the same thing.

 

I've got pics, I'll probably get up tomorrow. I've got to take the car in tonight.

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Just to note that the beers on the hand pumps are not as advertised by the pump clip. They are in fact brewed by my good self for consumption by the fellow Buzzards who are arriving Friday (whilst Pete and I are playing down at Southend.) It's a tale of the dark side this time with a Stout and a Mild on tap both of which are going down extremely well.

 

More photos will follow once the rest arrive and I might even be tempted to go for a Beer Report from the festival.

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Drinking without Derek!!!!!! What is the world coming to? I mean, that's like Fish without chips it's like steak without chips!

 

Anyway, across the little lake that separates our two nations I've been quaffing ale at the 17th Annual East Anglian Beer Festival. Featuring ales only brewed within the region means that the smaller breweries have a large presence at the event.

 

Mr. Pete and myself arrived at my Mum's house on Thursday and immediately got the bar set up as you can see earlier in this thread. 30 pints of mild and 30 pints of stout were soon on tap and we didn't waste any time pulling the first pint or four! However, mindful of the following days little trek down to Southend to get some more credits whored away we took it easy (ish.)

 

After a successful whoring down at Southend we traveled back to Bury to find that two more of Buzzards had arrived and therefore it was time to get stuck into the bar. The final two members of the weekend Beer raiding party soon turned up and by 8pm we were happily supping ale, eating some superb stew and racing around on Mario Kart wii. Finally we gave up on all the fun at about 2am and crashed out ready for the Festival.

 

Saturday dawned bright and sunny and remarkably no hang overs were spotted amongst the group. That's always a good start! After various treatments were administered to both myself and Nodders for our various back problems it was time to take a walk into town. A nice gentle stroll saw us arrive at the venue just before 11am as there were varied reports of different opening times and we didn't want to miss an hours drinking time if it opened at 11am. Alas it didn't open so we decided to trundle down to one of the few remaining free houses in Bury St. Edmunds, The Queens Head. Of course on the way we passed the sausage stall and availed ourselves of some excellent cooked sausages.

 

At The Queens we were met with a sight that brought joy and delight to our beer tasting tongues. The landlord had just put on a barrel of Adnams Tally Ho which had been maturing in the cellar for the best part of 18 months. The only thing he could say for certain is that it was over 9% abv but exactly what percentage was anyones guess. (I knew I should of brought the hydrometer with me. )

 

Well it would be silly to pass up such an opportunity so the three us enjoyed a quiet half each and most enjoyable it was too. Extremely smooth, no nasty aftertastes as you sometimes get with Barley Wines and overall a damn good way to start the day. Once we'd finished our halves it was time to wander back to the venue in readiness for opening where we met up with the rest of the Buzzards who were then informed of what they'd missed out on. HA HA!

 

12 o'clock and for once the doors opened on time we all flashed our CAMRA membership cards which gave us free entry and proceeded to claim a table before grabbing our glasses and Beer tokens. As is usual for me I started off at the low end of abv scale with a "Gannet Mild" which was nice if nothing special. Now I am a bit of a citrus fan so half number two was St. Peters "Grapefruit" which I do enjoy and this didn't disappoint. Very fresh and definitely a summer beer. The grapefruit is strong but not over powering and met with approvals all round as the glass did the rounds.

 

Next up was another old fave from the local ale house "The Old Cannon Brewery" which is a pub and brewery all in one. You can actually sit next to the fermenting vessels in the pub itself. At the Festival they had several ales on and for me it had to be "The Gunners Daughter" which is pretty much their flagship ale and very nice too. Buffy's "Hopleaf" was number 4 of the day and closer to a lager than a real ale in taste although that would probably be down to the high amounts of lager malts used in the beer. That said it was certainly better tasting than most lagers! As is usual with these things names tend to attract attention and being a Pratchett fan when I spotted "Light Fantastic" I just had to have a half. OK, so there's no actual connection but tenuous links work for me! Another light summer type ale which at first didn't really hit the spot but the hint of grapefruit in the aftertaste made up for it's bland beginnings. By the end of the half I was quite enjoying it!

 

From light to dark for number 6, Fox's "Nelsons Blood" which was a very deep red ale and quite spicy in taste with a wonderful rich almost rum like flavour also cutting through. Not quite my favourite of the day but definitely up there. Oakham Ales "Bishops Farewell" graced the glass next and it fell into the not a bad quaffing ale category. Nothing truly special but a good beer to have on your books as a brewer as it will sell well. Now we get to my favourite ale of the day "Carvell Ale 9503" from the Wolf Brewery. This was a low percentage ale at just 3.7% but it just had the most gorgeous caramel taste to it and it just went down an absolute treat. I could happily have drank that ale all day long.

 

Finally we get to the last half of the day. By now between us we'd tasted pretty much all the beer that was still available and as we had plenty back at the house it seemed a good idea to call it quits and have a gentle wander home. So I finished with an Adnam's "Explorer" which I've had before from a bottle so figured out of the barrel should be pretty good too. I wasn't disappointed and this blonde beer was a nice way to round out the day.

 

So there we go, nine halves in the festival and one before hand made for a pleasant days drinking.

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I like my hand pumps and funnily enough so does everyone else. Strange that!!!

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But for some of us there was Mild on tap. Ah lovely Mild! (Note: Somehow I brewed a strong mild unintentionally and this little baby was coming in at 5.3%)

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After all that beer and a walk home it proved just too much for poor old Pete!

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Looking back on the way home. There's some Buzzards somewhere in the distance.

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The last half.

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Not much left of the Carvell. It was so nice I nearly forgot to get the TPR Beer shot!

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It's Pete manybeers!

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and in close up. Well at least he was happy......

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Now forget the muppet in the foreground the reason for this picture is the bloke behind him. Talk about wasted....

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and here's the rest of it.

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Talking of which, here's some of the company.

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Nothing like quality ales and good company.

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Mr. Pete deep in thought. St Peter's Grapefruit to the right.

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The Festival hall.

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At the festival an the first beer of the day. Gannet Mild.

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Mind you, it's not often you see a selection of different ales in one either!

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Don't often see notes like this in a British pub!

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SCRAMBLE!

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Lots of stuff to cover over the last couple of days for our trip out to the Midwest exclusively for beer. I'll cover each day separately over the next couple of days. Thursday I left work at 12 and had some time to kill before Heath got done working, so I decided to tromp around Harrisburg while waiting.

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But rock on, the bartender got us some bottles of it, score!

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Too bad the merch shop was closed, I would have liked to buy some more glassware and a shirt, and maybe a bottle of their Lake Erie Monster Double IPA since they were out of it last year when we stopped by.

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and Carolyn couldn't help but end her stay with a Blackout before we called it a night and headed to our hotel outside of Cleveland.

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Heath took on the Edmund Fitzgerald Porter. Its full body sank to the depths of Heath's stomach quickly

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For round two I went with the Moondog ESB, seeing how good Troegs ESB was earlier. This one was just meh

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A look at the taps

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Kim and fellow BAer Carolyn both went with the Grassroots Ale, packing notes of ginger and lemon grass.

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Heath and I decided to officially start our trip off with some Blackout Stout, another well rated Imperial Stout. Lots of sweetness in this beer

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the tap list

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But lucky for us, the brewpub was still opened for drinks, just not food

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With good traffic conditions and Kim's driving we made it to Great Lakes Brewing before midnight. Sadly the brewery was closed for the night, as was the merch shop

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Scratch #11 is an ESB, and good stuff! Glad I got a 6pack for later enjoyment. After a few more tasters and talks with the dudes in the brewery, it was time to tag and bag Heath and head on out

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and since there is some new stuff on the board I haven't tried yet, let's have a taste or two while waiting

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Next up, a quick stop down the road at Troegs to pick up some goods to take with to Dark Lord Day

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and it's pretty good. Nice and crisp, easy to drink, and sessionable

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For all you dudes in San Jose, this brew's for you. It's highly ranked too, for a pils

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A look at the taps reveals that they've got it on tap, as well as several others, some that were released last July!

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First stop, Appalachian Brewing so I can finally try their April special ale

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^yeah, whatever you say. Just stay home, drink Lakefront, and leave the adventures to Team Extreme and the Dark Lord drinking to those of us who really want it (as well as those frat boys who really want to sell it on eBay for a profit).

 

Time to venture into uncharted territory in the Beer Thread as we continue our voyage to Indiana on Friday. After a stop at one great liquor store outside of Cleveland, we continue onto Detroit and surrounding points. This will probably be the biggest of all the updates.

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mmm, cherry Timbits and coffee!!!

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Because he was close enough to Canada that Tim Horton's existed around him!

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While driving through the area, we came across Eminem's old stomping grounds. He didn't have it that bad...

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and I end my stay at Dragonmead with a 6Ts Dortmunder, fairly light and sessionable, but no Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold

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A closeup of their tap handles. They really go all out here with the theme

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While Heath goes with the Imperial Bourbon Stout

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Next for me, the Crown Jewels IPA. Good and hoppy

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Time for some pepper jack cheese and crackers. They had a very limited menu, but encourage you to bring in outside food. They just want you to drink!

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They proudly show what awards they won around the area for their brews, mostly like the Final Absolution, Erik the Red, and Crown Jewels IPA

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Heath goes with the Final Absolution, a very stealthy Belgian Triple at 10%, but that you cannot taste any alcohol at all!

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mmm, Nicole tastes like caramel, banana, bread, cinnamon, clove, and citrus.

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Next up for me, something that caught my eye, the St. Nicole's Weizenbock. Had to get it, just for the name

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Showing off more of their very beautiful theming around the bar

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Heath goes with the Imperial Stout while Kim enjoys the Redwing Raspberry Wheat and Carolyn the Honey Porter on Nitro

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Time to start enjoying some of these brews. First up, the Ring of Fire, a chili beer, and quite spicy!

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and all the stuff is brewed on premises back here in the little fermentation farm they have set up

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37 things on tap currently, with up to 50 things available.

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The entire menu was basically the taps list!

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and more taps and theming. In fact...

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More sweet theming showing the rest of the dining area

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Stained glass windows with dragons on them, way cooler than the Enchanted Oak Tavern at IOA simply because they serve microbrews here

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Turns out the place was awesome. Themed to the gills AND they had plenty of stuff on tap

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Our next stop was Dragonmead. We didn't know much about this place, their website showed they brewed like 40 different beers, but we weren't sure how many and which would be on tap at the time, and we hadn't heard anything about the place, but since it was in the same town as Kuhnhenn and we had a Garmin with us, we decided to check it out

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and thanks to our rental upgrade, we've got "plenty" of room for more

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Needless to say, we bought enough to keep the beer thread going strong!

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Yeah, this place is awesome!! And very cheap to boot! Selling 4 packs of Blackout Stout for $9!

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Oh dear!

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stuffed lions too?! OK, this place rules, but what about the beer selection?

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and any place with a stuffed moose is ok in my book.

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Well, it seems pretty impressive in terms of wine and liquor

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Next stop, a local liquor store to see how this place fares

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and holy crap, it's a visit from Kuhnhenn Sr, the owner! He seems grumpy every time we see him, but we're told he's just very serious, but loads of fun after he's had a few of his own beers. Works for us, keep on brewing!

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While Heath and Carolyn are both jealous of my awesome Creme Brule Java Stout and have to get their own (as you can see behind them, the homebrew shop has been moved next door. Either they're in the process of remodeling and expanding the dining area, or they're setting up bingo)

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Time for different beer #1500 for me, Kuhnhenn's American IPA. Really hoppy with good backbone as well. I could definitely drink this daily

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Next up, just because I could get one, a $2 sample of Tenacious Cassis. At 16.5% I wouldn't want more than 2oz of this, as tasty as it was!

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Kim goes with the Loonie Kuhnie Pale Ale and Carolyn the Silly Simcoe (which was actually a Belgian Pale Ale, not an IPA like she thought)

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I start out the day with the Creme Brule Java Stout and Heath the Aldebaran Double IPA. Both were tasty, especially the Creme Brule

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The current draft list, they'll also make sandwiches and stuff for you, if you ask nicely

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From this shot you can see the bar and the brewery equipment thrown in behind it. Not too fancy, but it gets the job done

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First stop of the day, Kuhnhenn Brewing, a place that makes both wine and beer, and makes some of the top ranked stuff in the world. All that from a family that used to run a hardware store in the same building until the Lowe's and Home Depot's closed them up. Thanks hardware superstores, us beer guys appreciate it!

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After leaving the Detroit area, we stopped off at a few more places before heading into Indiana. First up was a place we were really excited to visit after trying some of their brews at Extreme Beer Fest up in Boston. The other places we stopped at I'm sure you all heard about before.

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and yeah, Larry Bell proved that! Lots of grapefruit and other citrus flavors along with a nice caramel backbone, big pine presence and some good alcohol warmth to show you who's the boss!

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This update was hard work, and really made me miss the places we stopped at, so I think I want a beer from there tonight. Luckily I managed to get a guy to trade with me at DLD and I obtained a Bell's Big Head San Diego Style Ale, a double IPA that Larry Bell brewed to show California that not all good IPAs have to come from there.

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and we shall end this night much like we did back in 2006, at the keg!

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While I chose to go with one of the top 100 beers, Behemoth Blonde Barleywine

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Heath went with the brewpub exclusive Blackheart and Carolyn the new Topless Witch

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The tap list, with a few guest taps as well as the usuals and some brewpub exclusives

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We arrived late enough that the place was pretty cleared out and we could sit in the bar area. But we also arrived just as last call was going on, so only room for one round

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In this shot I don't have to worry about making sure heads aren't in my way

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Final stop of the evening before the hotel, Three Floyds in Munster, which will look totally different tomorrow during the day

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and after seeing my shirt and knowing my love for hops, the bartender kindly offered me a nice sample of HopSlam which I couldn't turn down, it's too fricken good!

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At certain times they have bands, tonight was one of those nights. They were jazzy

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more random eccentricness, a clarinet bowling ball lamp

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Time to enjoy some brewpub exclusives, Heath the Wild One, a wild ale, and me the Poolside Cherry Wheat, a cherry wheat ale, both fantastic

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and a look at the taps

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A look at the tap list

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The Eccentric Cafe looks like a cross between an attic and the Adventurer's Club. Lucky us, we got seats at the bar

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OK, now back to Bell's

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but before we head in, gotta pick up a few purchases at the General Store before it closes

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Yup, we're at Bell's Eccentric Cafe in Kalazamoo!

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Next up, a place that proudly raises the US flag, the MI flag, and the Bell's Flag

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Located across the parking lot is the merchandise shop AND a tattoo parlor right next to it. Good thing we don't live closer, we'd already have Dark Horse logos branded onto our bodies. Instead we'll suffice with t-shirts and pint glasses

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Love the menu!

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To drink along with our meals, I go with the Crooked Tree IPA and Heath the Special Reserve Black Bier

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Lots of mugs cover the ceiling and walls, and each one has an owner who knows exactly where their mug is kept

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The current tap list

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It may look at Deliverance from the outside, but inside it's pretty cool

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and served in this crazy trailer

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First up, Marshall, MI's own Dark Horse Brewing. Beer is brewed in this Wacky Shack

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Beers from the past week or so..

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It was quite good! The taste showed signs of chocolate and even a little coffee (not enough to turn me away), and as it warmed up the scotch flavor really came out strong and the coffee turned up the intensity on the aftertaste. It is a very good beer but not one that I would pay $12 for again [which was a deal from what I understand]. This was also beer #200 since I started tracking them last summer =)

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Today, for lunch, Harviestoun brewery's Ola Dubh 30-year reserve. An old ale aged in whiskey casks

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It was, simply put, a beast. An extreme beer in taste, malt, hops and alcohol. Very similar to Hop Rod, though I do prefer it a bit more. This was a real killer to drink since it was so thick and heavy, but the pleasant blend of rye malt and intense hops made it enjoyable

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Last night, the Bittersweet Lenny's RIPA from Mendocino Brewing. a double IPA with rye malt that is, I believe, kosher! and its a tribute to a dead jew.. yay dead Jews! ;-)

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Fantastic as expected.

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I always have some of this stuff lying around..

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Heavy on the candy aroma and taste, ultra sweet and thick like honey. Slightly above the 50th percentile for dubbels, this is one of the few that lets the alcohol be known

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Another Clipper City beer for me, this time its the Holy Sheet abbey ale, a dubbel.

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It was loaded with hops, and unlike Hop Rod, there just wasn't as much malt sweetness to produce a superb beer. Still a very good one, but it falls short of its brothers.

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Next is Red Rocket Ale from Bear Republic, purchased at Green's in SC

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An absolute textbook example of the style. Yeast, banana and clove in an easy drinker. Hefe doesn't get much better.

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First up, the winner of my hefelympics, Ayinger's Brau Weisse.

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Saturday brought us to the main reason for the trip, to pick up bottles of Three Floyds' Dark Lord Russian Imperial Stout on the one day a year in which it is released to the public. Had the bottle Heath gotten from Deuane last year not been among the top 5 beers we've ever tried, we wouldn't have been going, but quite frankly it was firmly seated in the top 3, so we knew we had to obtain more bottles for ourselves. So, time for us to battle against 4000+ other people to obtain our 6 bottles each that we're allotted of the 12,800 bottles made. Let the fun begin!

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This will hold us over until we reach our next stop back in Michigan.

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if for nothing else, the cheese curds!

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Heading out to our next destination we pass a Midwest staple and have to stop at Culvers

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We've still got room for more beer! Sure, the event was crazy and way too crowded, and needed better organization, but the other beer people vibe was kinda cool. I think we would have enjoyed ourselves more if the Dark Lord sale was done ahead of time like online or something and the whole day could have been spent doing other stuff, like hanging out drinking and talking with other people, and not so focused on just getting the beer. Plus it'd be nice if the eBayers wouldn't be allowed in. We'll probably skip DLD next year, but in time we'll head back. Hopefully they find a way to make the day work better

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The line for the brewpub exclusive Oak Aged Dark Lord was too long for us to want to wait. Huge crowds, long lines pouring out into midways with no idea what is wher... it's official, Three Floyds is the Kings Island of the Beer World. Time to find out what line to get into to leave!

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and tried to make the day more fest-like and had guest offerings from other top breweries, but the event was poorly organized with no signage at all about what was where. We never figured out where the Russian River or Lost Abbey stuff was, or even what Three Floyds stuff was being offered. I didn't see the merch either, just a sea of people and lines everywhere.

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They had bands set up inside the brewery too, as well as random lines to stuff

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It is done, and only took 1 hour and 40 minutes once the place opened, not including the 2 hours prior that we stood in line! We have obtained our stash of Dark Lord for the year. I feel bad for those beer enthusiasts who didn't get any, but it's crazy how early you have to show up.

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Behold! The 6 tables to purchase Dark Lord and other Three Floyds beers at

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I can see the front of the line! Only a few more minutes left in this line!

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1 hour and 20 minutes later we're inside the brewery

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Big decision, which to drink first, Masala Mama IPA or Wisconsin Belgian Red

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Gotta get some Wisconsin Belgian Red while the getting is good!

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As we pass by the Beer Advocate tasting table, we decide to enjoy a few samples

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Officer Sassy will enforce the line for us

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11am and the gates are opened, unleashing a sea of crazed beer geeks and entrepreneurial frat boys, looking to make some big bucks by selling the stuff on eBay, upon the brewery to purchase bottles

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The line gets a lot longer thanks to the local media hype. Locals who figure this beer would taste like Guinness would show up not knowing anything about the stuff, how much it costs, or even that you needed cash on you

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While here amongst the crowd we partook in some sampling, like more Kate the Great, another top 3 beer in our books

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Back to Three Floyds on Saturday around 9am to get our spot in line. Looks a little different than it did the night before

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Good job on that mega section of the update Derek. I know that took you a lot of time.

 

Yes, we made it back from Dark Lord Day safe and sound, a few pounds and cases of beer heavier.

 

While I still have plenty of other beer to drink before I want to get into any of the new stuff that we bought out there, there is one beer that I've been wanting to try more of since we first tasted it at this years EBF.

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As for the beer itself, its a bit of a mixed bag. It's a big, beefy, and boozy mix of pine, spice, thick malts and alcohol that imparts an almost medicinal feel as it warms, which I'm not a huge fan of. Kind of disappointing until I realized that this beer is almost 14%. It literally drinks more like it's in the 8-10% range and that is very impressive. Well done Dark Horse. Well done indeed...

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You don't normally see wax topped 12 oz bottles but Dark Horse goes all out with these guys. Unfortunately, they are also a pain-in-the-balls to get off!

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A close up of Mr. Scary Tree Monster Guy on the label. Or maybe it's Treebeard from the Lord of the Rings? I don't know...

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Straight from Michigan and Dark Horse Brewing, it's their Double Crooked Tree. This is naturally a jacked up Imperial version of their staple Crooked Tree IPA.

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Glad you had fun a DLD. I think the guy in the fedora in the one picture is a co-worker. Major tool. MAJOR.

 

As for me, I'll sit here and drink my New Glarus, and Dark Horse. Three Floyd's just irritates me. The whole thing is big hype for a better than average imp. stout. IMO. But it's about the fun with the crowd. I had other friends go this past weekend just to hangout more than anything.

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