Kicking off March with a new edition of Tuesday Tastings, featuring a random motley of brews.
10 Barrel Riding Solo
Appearance: Very clear, honey orange color, with an ample off-white head. Very lacey with nice legs.
Smell: Tropical, citrus aromas with prickly pear. A little bit catty, and a bit of peppery spiciness. All hop-forward in the aroma, becoming a bit more “raw” as it warms up.
Taste: There’s a weirdly “rough” bitterness to the hops, spicy and resiny and a touch woody (stems?). (All of which I attribute back to the “throwback” Comet hop.) Woody bitterness carries throughout, overlaying a cleanly malty pale ale base. The hops go up the nose a bit.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a woody-ish aftertaste, a lingering bitterness.
Overall: Interesting showcase of Comet hops, perhaps more of an IPA than a Pale but that’s where the trends seem to be going.
This Imperial IPA is 8.5% abv and 72 IBUs, and Iron Goat says:
Ah ‘The Impaler’. This, not-too-over-the-top, imperial holds a special place in our hearts. It was our first big-boy brew. The Impaler comes from down under and hits you in the nose first with a fistful of Galaxy hop aroma and then follows up with a strong malt profile. Despite its name the Impaler’s malt perfectly balances the alcohol and the hops giving only the slightest suggestion of its double nature.
Appearance: Brown-glass amber color, cloudy, with ample effervescence building a light tan colored head.
Smell: Weirdly fruity hops (Galaxy), that are sweet-ish and a touch woody. Malts are nice and clean, but the fruit in the hops is one I simply cannot place.
Taste: Pleasant malt and alcohol kick, and full of Galaxy hop character—fruity, woody, makes me think “hop juice.” The beer is not terribly redolent when drinking but it makes its presence known. Smooth and clean drinking.
Mouthfeel: Medium-full body, with a smooth, creamy finish.
Overall: Not bad at all (not being able to place the fruit aroma bugs me), this is pleasantly drinkable for its strength.
Saranac Our Pumpkin Ale
We add a perfect blend of real spices right into our copper kettles: cinnamon, allspice, cloves and ginger. Just ask our Brewmaster’s wife, Mrs. Kuhr! Our brewing recipe uses the same spice ratio as her homemade pumpkin pie. Jim couldn’t get enough, so he had to brew a beer just as tasty!
We use LOTS of real pumpkin to brew this beer (nearly 3,000 pounds). We add it right into our mash cooker with our specialty malts. The amount of pumpkin takes up over 10% of the total weight of the mash. That makes for a delicious real pumpkin flavor!
Appearance: Came in a 32-ounce jug (they are calling their growler). Clear, deep amber orange in color, with a crisp off-white head.
Smell: Classic pumpkin-spiced amber ale on the nose, all the way. Squash and brown sugar, mild cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice.
Taste: Similar to the aroma—a classic pumpkin amber ale profile. A little on the “sharp” side, over filtered perhaps? Nice flavors coming through, with good maltiness, and the spices are subtle and not overpowering. A bit of caramel and minimal earth hopping.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied but thin, a bit too filtered and it’s on the fizzy side.
Overall: A classic example of the style with some nice flavors.