G’Knight Imperial Red IPA from Oskar Blues was a bit of an eye-opener. I’m not usually that impressed with red ales, but this one nailed a sweet spot with a nice dash of hops giving a hint of mango and basically succulent flavor. I really look forward to trying this again.
Hot-Jala-Heim Beer With Bite, from Horseheads Brewing : this features Jalapeno & Anaheim chili peppers. It seems like a German Weisse with a peppery nose and with noticeable heat on the finish. This is no Ghost Face Killah, but neither is it entirely subtle. That may be true of the Stone Smoked Porter with Chipotle, which is basically a Smoked Porter with a hint of pepper on the end. I think I prefer this one as a direct chili pepper beer. Incidentally, it went well with Chicken Florentine.
Kastell Cuvee du Chateau 2010: vintage beer, a Belgian Ale that has been bottle aged for four years. At 11% alcohol it has a good chance to age for a while. It pours a dark amber like peanut brittle. The nose is somewhat bread-like, perhaps from residual yeast? On the palette, it gives rich malt in the Belgian trippel/quad style, but nectar-like. This is as much like a wine as it is like a beer, but as it lingers on the palette the continuing malted caramel dispels that notion. There are hops on the end, but very subtle.
Urthel Samaranth Quadrium Ale, a very solid quad with a rich wine-like consistency and sippabilility. The yeasty malt shows the Dutch response to the Belgian ale. You could almost chew this, and it stands up to food like a big Napa Cab. Softly hopped with a long finish.
Weyerbacher Vipidis Lupulus whacks you right in the mouth with heavy hops, right after capping its glass with a huge off-tan head that lasts a long time. The nose gives citrus and bread aromas. On the palette it starts with fruit, maybe mango, but turns swiftly to resin and grapefruit. Yes, it’s piney but on the bitter side even of that profile. This is an Imperial or Double IPA, unfiltered, so be careful pouring the last bit from the bottle, there’s quite a bit of yeast in the bottom, and this isn’t like the Orval bottle that traps the yeast. All in all, it’s a hophead’s ale, but the hops really aren’t in balance with the rest. There are other Weyerbachers, like Last Chance IPA, that I prefer to this one.