Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Harpoon Sweet Spot Review

Name: Harpoon Sweet Spot
Style: Blonde Ale
ABV: 4.8%
IBUs: 26

Here we have another brewery that has made it's appearance here in Minnesota and it's a brewery that I've heard quite a few times and seen a few times when I was on the East Coast earlier this year. I give to you Harpoon Brewing. The bottle even comes with a message on the back that  addresses the residents of Minnesota with a heartfelt message about how they're excited to finally be in our market.

So I'm starting things off with their Sweet Spot Golden Ale, with the declartion that this is beer where "Smooth meets Complex." A bold claim considering that I've always considered blonde ales to be some of the more simpler styles out there when it comes to flavor

Appearance - Fairly clear yellow color with a high amount of visible carbonation. The head starts out fairly foamy and remains so for the most part and the lacing left behind is somewhat on the spottier side.

Aroma - Pale malts and grassy/earthy notes with some mild floral hops thrown in. Honestly, it smells like a Pilsner at first glance.

Taste - Pilsner & pale malts upfront with some grassiness in the middle. In the back, I'm getting some light floral hops and some mild bitter hops on the aftertaste, which lingers around for a moment but is otherwise quite dry.

Complex, this is not. Smooth, it most certainly is. Yes, despite the fact that this reminds me more of a Pilsner than anything else, this manages to be drinkable if nothing else. So if you see this, it's worth checking out.

Harpoon Sweet Spot - 8/10

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Off Color Growl Review

Name: Off Color Growl
Style: Quadrupel
ABV: 9.5%
IBUs: 28

Been a while since I looked at Off Color Brewing, but I stumbled across this last week and I figured that I should give this a review because my beer library is seriously lacking in the Quadrupel department.

Which brings us Growl, Off Color's Quad Ale. I'm not sure what inspired them to give it this name, but I do see mice in monk robes surrounded by a pile of bones on the label (Never thought I'd be saying that sentence ever!) In any case, let's check this out.

Appearance - Cloudy dark brown color with no visible carbonation. The head is quite thin and dissipates after a few moments and there's no lacing left behind

Aroma - Strong candied caramel malts with some Belgian yeasts and light cloves. I'm also getting a hint of toffee here as well.

Taste - Much like the nose, you've got strong caramelized malts and potent Belgian yeasts. On the back end of the palate, I'm still getting that maltiness but I'm also picking up on a light spicy zing and dark plum-like notes, the latter of which makes up the aftertaste, along with some light floral hops.

What can I say? This is an awesome beer and one that provides a good amount of variety to back it up in the flavor department. Once again, Off Color manages to impress me, which means I should really seek out more of their beers in the future. For the time being, this'll do just fine.

Off Color Growl - 9/10

Monday, December 26, 2016

Toppling Goliath King Sue Review

Name: Toppling Goliath King Sue
Style: Imperial IPA
ABV: 8%
IBUs: 100+ (Per Toppling Goliath website)

I hope you all had an awesome holidays, because I most certainly did! In any case, I have a late Christmas gift for everyone and that is Toppling Goliath's King Sue. Originally released last monday, it disappeared off of store shelves almost as quickly as they appeared. In fact, I gave up hope of finding it for quite a while.

That was until the store by my place of employment informed me that they'd be getting a limited shipment and put me on the waiting for it. After I got off work a few days ago, I managed to secure a bottle and now here we are.

What's there to say about this beer? Well, from what I've gathered, it's considered one of the most highly sought after Imperial IPAs on the market and that it's supposedly "PseudoSue on steroids." Well, I'll be the judge of that either way.

Appearance - Hazy dark orange color with a light amount of visible carbonation, The head is quite foamy and there's a good amount lacing left behind along the sides of the glass.

Aroma - Rich citrus hop and grapefruit notes that remind me of mosaic hops. I'm also getting some light caramel and toffee malts in here as well.

Taste - Strong citrus hop and mango notes upfront with a solid toffee malt backbone in the middle with a bitter sweet resin/bitter finish.

So is this beer essentially PseudoSue on Steroids? In my humble opinion, it shares way more in common with PseudoSue than it doesn't; So to put it bluntly, it is, especially when you consider the flavor profile. In fact, my only gripe is that for the price I paid for a bomber of this, I could've gotten a 4-pack of PseudoSue instead and still would've gotten the same great flavor.

With that said, it's still a great beer and the bright flavor profile will certainly please any seasoned Imperial IPA fan. Despite what I said in the last paragraph, this is still worth checking out should you get the chance but if both King Sue & PseudoSue are available, go with the latter.

Toppling Goliath King Sue - 9/10

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Bent Paddle Climate Generation Review

Name: Bent Paddle Climate Generation
Style: Black IPA
ABV: 6.8%

Bent Paddle has recently started issuing limited releases in 750ml bottles and amongst those beers is a Black IPA by the name of Climate Generation. The name comes from the Minneapolis-based organization of the same name, Climate Generation.

As you might've guessed from the name, they're an organization dedicated to raising awareness of climate change. The name also makes sense considering that Bent Paddle has always been about protecting the environment, especially with that whole PolyMet mine thing, which I still think is a terrible idea.

Appearance - Pitch black color with a slightly tan colored foamy head, which leaves behind a ton of lacing.

Aroma - Strong chocolate orange & roasted barley notes with some mild piney hops. It smells a lot brighter than it looks

Taste - I'm getting some strong chocolate orange and roasted barley notes with a hefty chocolate malt backbone. The back end of the palate and aftertaste are quite piney hop forward along with some light citrus hop notes.

It's a bit brighter in terms of flavor for a Black IPA, but it's a very well put together beer that just so happens to go toward a good cause. Even if you're not typically a fan of Black IPAs, I feel that the hop profile outweighs the roasty profile to warrent trying out.

Bent Paddle Climate Generation - 8.5/10

Funkwerks Nelson Sauvin Review

Name: Funkwerks Nelson Sauvin
Style: Saison
ABV: 7.5%

A new brewery has recently appeared on store shelves here in Minnesota and they go by the name of Funkwerks. While the brewery itself does make wild ales, their primary focus is making Belgian-style beers....or Belgian-style sours if you want to be picky.

For this review I have their Nelson Sauvin, a single hopped Saison made with Nelson Sauvin hops and Muscat grape juice. If I didn't know better, I'd say they're trying to draw in some wine drinkers.

Appearance - Cloudy and hazy bright yellow color with some mild visible carbonation. The head is pretty foamy yet soapy at the same time but with a good amount of lacing left behind along the sides of the glass

Aroma - Strong Belgian yeast notes mixed in with some cloves and some floral hop and white grape notes.

Taste - Belgian yeast and clove notes upfront with some moderate white grape and floral hop notes on the back end of the palate. The aftertaste on the other hand is surprisingly bitter for just a split second and is otherwise very dry.

I am reminded of Dogfish Head's Noble Rot, which had a similar concept except this is meant to be more of a beer and not necessarily between that and wine. With that said, it's a solid beer that manages to please. If you're looking for a Belgian-style beer with a slight twist, then this one is for you.

Funkwerks Nelson Sauvin - 8.5/10

Friday, December 23, 2016

Ballast Point Watermelon Dorado Review

Name: Ballast Point Watermelon Dorado
Style: Imperial IPA
ABV: 10%
IBUs: 90

A few months ago, I reviewed New Belgium's Heavy Melon, which was easily the worst craft beer I've ever had and went on a rant about how watermelon beers should absolutely not be a thing in craft beer. I even pleaded with craft brewers to stop utilizing watermelon in their beers but I highly doubt that my words will move them.

Naturally, I got some feedback; Some of it supportive and others telling me that either the bottle I got was infected or that I was "just having the wrong watermelon beer." The beer which I got the most suggestions for is Ballast Point's Watermelon Dorado. Now the original Dorado is quite good and I consider it to be one of my favorite offerings from Ballast Point, but adding watermelon to it seems like a dicey choice to me.

Appearance - Hazy orange color with a mild amount of visible carbonation. The head is quite foamy and the lacing left behind is abundant and sticky

Aroma - Watermelon with some citrus & bitter hoppiness, backed up by a nice caramel malt backbone. This smells....surprisingly unterrible!

Taste - Potent watermelon and citrus hops upfront with some bitter hoppiness and a hefty caramel malt backbone in the middle. In the back I'm getting more watermelon & bitter hop notes, while the aftertaste is a light watermelon sweetness.

I'm not going to lie, I was expecting to absolutely hate this but this one is actually....quite good. The watermelon melds surprisingly well with the overall flavor profile and the watermelon used in this actually tastes like watermelon.

Contrary to my previous statements, Watermelon Dorado proves to beer drinkers that you can make a watermelon beer work under the right circumstances. I still prefer the original mind you, but I certainly wouldn't turn this down if I were to be offered it again.

Ballast Point Watermelon Dorado - 8.5/10

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Empyrean Long Route Peanut Butter Porter Review

Name: Empyrean Long Route Peanut Butter Porter
Style: Porter
IBUs: 20

Today I've got an interesting beer from Empyrean Brewing called Long Route, and it's a porter made with peanut butter. I haven't had many beers from Empyrean, with only one review on this website, and a couple of times at JL Beers based on my Untappd checkins.

Appearance - Pitch black with a thin white head that is mostly filmy. The lacing is quite abundant, however.

Aroma - Strong peanut butter smell that makes up the bulk of the nose, but I am getting some light lactose, chocolate malts and roasted barley notes in here as well. However, it's still mostly peanut butter.

Taste - Strong peanut butter notes on the front of the palate and throughout. The back end of the palate opens to some moderate lactose and chocolate malt notes with a light roasted barley flavor. In the aftertaste, the peanut butter flavor gains a bit more steam and finishes with a nice kick.

Well, they're not lying about the peanut butter because it's here in spades. However, I feel the overall flavor feels more like a milk stout than a porter because the roastiness is just not that strong here and I think it comes across as somewhat overpowering. It's still a drinkable beer but this wouldn't be my first choice for a peanut butter porter.

Empyrean Long Route Peanut Butter Porter - 7/10

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Steel Toe Wee Heavy Review

Name: Steel Toe Wee Heavy
Style: Scotch Ale/Wee Heavy
ABV: 10.9%

I've spent about 3 years trying to obtain this but to no avail. Whether it be my geographical location or simply due bad timing, I have never been able to get a hold of Steel Toe's Wee Heavy. That changed earlier today when I spotted it on the shelf and, to me, it was spotting a Sasquatch. In any case, I'm very excited to try this out and see what the fuss is all about.

Appearance - Cloudy dark brown that borderlines on black except along the edges of the glass. The head is starts out thin and tan but settles into a ring along the rim and there's no lacing to speak of.

Aroma - Peated malts and chocolate with some mild floral hops. I'm also getting some smoke along with some roasted barley.

Taste - Strong peated malts upfront with some chocolate sweetness and more peat in the middle, while the back end of the palate opens to some mild boozy and roasty flavors.

Nice, peaty and smokey; All the components are here and they come together wonderfully, if it is a little too boozy for my liking. Nevertheless, this is definitely one of the best Scotch Ales I've had in a long while and it proves to be another hit from Steel Toe. If you see this, check it out!

Steel Toe Wee Heavy - 9/10 

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Swag Brewery Hard Cider Soap Review

It's time to look at the final soap sent to me from Swag Brewery, except this time it isn't a beer soap but a Hard Cider soap. That's right, due to the upswing in craft ciders in recent years, they're finally acknowledging cider fans out there by offering a cider soap that is brewed with craft cider.

I'll admit that while I consider myself a craft beer aficionado, I do enjoy the occasional cider, in special regard to 2 Towns Ciderhouse, which I will try to get around to reviewing at a later time. For the time being, this'll be my first cider-related post.

When I first opened this, I was greeted immediately to a powerful aroma of cinnamon, apple pie, nutmeg and a light malt booziness. Honestly, I'm reminded more of a Yankee Candle than it did as a soap.

Upon application, I'm still getting that powerful cinnamon and nutmeg aspect with some sweet apple notes and light malt/booze aroma. The apple and cinnamon are the strongest here still, but there's just a hint of that hard cider in here.

What can I say, it's a solid soap and it reminds me of a spiced hard cider, plus it smells awesome as well. Like the other soaps, this one is certainly worth buying, whether it be for yourself or someone else.

Stay tuned this weekend, because I've got a special review lined up for this weekend!

Should You Buy This? - Yes

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Central Waters Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout Review

Name: Central Waters Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout
Style: Imperial Stout
ABV: 9.5%

While 2016 has been a mixed bag for a lot of people, this year has treated me pretty well: Started a career, got a new car, visited Disney World for the first time ever and, most importantly, I got to try most of the Brewer's Reserve offerings from Central Waters.

Which brings us to their Bourbon Barrel Stout, an Imperial Stout aged in bourbon barrels. Out of all the ones I've had so far, this one has been the hardest to track down but here we are and it's ready to drink! Good thing too, considering that temperatures are currently right around zero

Appearance - Pitch black with a thin brown head with some very spotty lacing left behind.

Aroma - Rich oak and vanilla notes with some strong chocolate malts and bitter hops. I'm also getting a light cherry undertone, but that is more than likely coming from the hops being used.

Taste - Strong oak and chocolate malts upfront. In the back I'm getting some vanilla and more oak notes with some mild bitter hops and some mild roastiness. The aftertaste is mainly chocolate malts with a light hint of oak.

Once again, Central Waters delivers on making an excellent barrel aged beer. With just the right amount of bourbon and oak thrown into the mix, this is an exceptional Imperial Stout that is absolutely worthy of your attention and serves as a reminder to me that Central Waters has one of the best bourbon barrel aging programs of any brewery out there.

Central Waters Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout - 9.5/10

Monday, December 12, 2016

Modist Smoove Review

Name: Modist Smoove
Style: Amber Lager
ABV: 5.5%
IBUs: 26

A recent trend I've noticed in breweries as of late has been the rise of Crowlers, a giant can of beer from a taproom that is filled in front of you to take home for personal consumption. I've had a couple crowlers before but I thought they were nothing more than taproom-exclusive offerings, when you consider Minnesota's liquor laws.

However, imagine my shock when I was visiting Zipp's in South Minneapolis when I came across some of Modist's crowlers in the beer cooler. Well, if it's a way for smaller breweries to get their product to a wider audience I'm all for it. So today we have Modist's Smoove, a salted caramel lager which I briefly looked at when I did my write up on Modist a couple months back. With that said, it's time to give this beer a proper review

Appearnace - Fairly clear dark orange/brown color with a mild amount of visible carbonation. The head takes on a reasonably foamy off white appearance with a good amount of lacing left behind.

Aroma - Caramel malts and salt mixed in with some potent lager yeasts and light hints of chocolate.

Taste - Lager yeasts and caramel & toffee malts upfront, the latter of which linger throughout the palate. In the back I'm getting some mild chocolate roastiness and that saltiness & light floral hops which show up on the very back of the palate.

It's got a good flavor profile and, true to it's namesake, is quite smooth; Plus it puts a nice twist on the amber lager style. While I think this would be better off as an ale, revisiting Smoove for a second time will definitely make me come back for more in the future should this continue to be a regular offering of theirs. If anyone in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area should happen to come across this, be sure to check it out!

Modist Smoove - 8.5/10

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Swag Brewery Tropical Lager Beer Soap Review

It's time to review the next beer soap sent to me by Swag Brewery and this time around, we have a Tropical Lager-based beer soap. Unlike the previous soap, my wife didn't mistake this one for a hockey puck (If you follow me on Twitter, you'll know what I'm talking about.) Like ususal, I went for my morning workout, despite all the snowfall we got, and then I got back home, eager to try this out.

Upon unwrapping this, I was treated to an aroma of mango & pineapple, mixed in with some papaya and orange slice. This smells more like a PiƱa Colada than anything else but it isn't unlike any tropical-style lagers I've had before in terms of aromatics.

When applied, I still get that mango/papaya/pineapple aroma but I'm also getting some of that light sorghum/beer aroma. It is worth noting though, that the tropical aspect overshadows the beer aspect as it should. I do have a day job after all that doesn't revolve around writing about beer (yet.)

Oh, did I mention that this product is gluten-free? Well it is!

This soap is more along the lines of what you'd find at Bed Bath & Beyond compared to the last one when aromatics are considered, but there's a bit of that beer element to remind you that this is still very much a beer soap. Plus it smells flat-out awesome!

So like the Breakfast Stout soap before it, this one gets a definite recommendation from me.

Should You Buy This? - Yes

Flying Dog K9 Winter Ale Review

Name: Flying Dog K9 Winter Ale
Style: Winter Warmer
ABV: 7.4%
IBUs: 30

Time to try out a winter seasonal from Flying Dog with their K9 Winter Ale, a winter warmer that is made with cocoa nibs, vanilla and....cardamon? It's an interesting choice of additions for a winter warmer but it also makes sense at the same time!

Appearance - Hazy dark brown color with no carbonation. The head takes on a tan color with a pretty thin appearance, but the lacing is quite good.

Aroma - Cocoa nibs and vanilla, mixed in with some cardamom and hefty chocolate and toffee malts. I'm also getting some light floral hops in here as well.

Taste - Pretty similar to the nose. You've got cocoa nibs and vanilla upfront, with those cardamom and chocolate/toffee malts in the middle while the back end of the palate is made up

I've always been a fan of Flying Dog's wares and this beer is another example as to why I enjoy their offerings. All the parts of this beer come together very nice in what I consider one of the best winter warmers I've had in a long time. If you're looking for a good winter warmer, you're not making any mistakes by trying out K9.

Flying Dog K9 Winter Ale -  9/10

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Swag Brewery Breakfast Stout Soap Review

It's Christmas time, which means buying gifts for your family and making out as many credit cards as humanly possible in the process! I'm here to assist in that process by looking at some products that were sent to me by Max from Swag Brewery. First I'll be venturing into familiar territory by looking at a few soaps that were sent to me plus some beer-infused hot sauces that I will be trying out this weekend. I first reviewed Swag's soaps three years ago and I enjoyed

First up is a Breakfast Stout inspired soap, which is made with beer and coffee grounds and reminds me of a hockey puck. In fact, after I tried it out this morning, my wife asked me why I left a hockey puck in the shower.

When I unwrapped this, I got some very distinct coffee, lavender and peanut butter like aroma. In fact, it almost reminded me of taking a whiff of a peanut butter porter. Upon usage, I was definitely getting more of that lavender and coffee aroma, along with some oatmeal notes and an aloe vera cooling sensation. So it was probably the mix of ingredients that was convincing me it was peanut butter I was smelling when it really wasn't. It's also worth noting that this soap will not make you smell like beer.

So is it worth it? I think it is simply because I think it smells awesome and it's a good gift idea for the craft beer lover in your life. Stay tuned because I've got a couple more soaps to review as well as a beer-infused hot sauce review round-up coming up.

Should You Buy This? - Yes

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Summit 30th Anniversary Barleywine Review

Name: Summit 30th Anniversary Barleywine
Style: Barleywine
ABV: 11.5%
IBUs: 50

Summit is wrapping up it's 30th year in business by releasing the last beer in their 30th Anniversary Series and they've decided to end it on a high note with an English Barleywine. In fact, they released an English Barleywine around this time last year called Old Blaggard but this is totally different beer altogether. Plus this is also the strongest beer they've released to date, beating out Old Blaggard at 11.5% ABV.

Appearance - Mildly hazy dark orange color with a light amount of visible carbonation. The head is quite thin but it leaves behind some pretty good lacing.

Aroma - Strong caramel and toffee malts with some mild bitter & floral hops, along with some roasted barley and just a touch of dark fruit.

Taste - Strong caramel & toffee malts upfront that linger throughout. With some moderate floral and bitter hops towards the middle & I'm getting bit of rum raisin here too. The back end of the palate is more of that maltiness that was present in the front, along with some light roasted barley. The aftertaste is mostly mild bitter hops and light toffee sweetness.

With a strong malt profile and nice moderate hop profile to back it up, this marks the second time that Summit has nailed the English Barleywine-style. On top of that, even at at 11.5% ABV, there's no boozy flavors to speak of at all, which is no small feat by any means. Like many of their releases, it makes me sad that this is a one-off beer from Summit because this is one of the best beers I've had from them in quite a while. So if you so happen to see this, try it out before it goes away forever.

Summit 30th Anniversary Barleywine - 9/10

Monday, December 5, 2016

Lagunitas Stoopid Wit Review

Name: Lagunitas Stoopid Wit
Style: Witbier
ABV: 6.3%
IBUs: 50

It's been over a year since I've reviewed anything Lagunitas. In fact, when I last had anything from them, Heineken had just bought 50% of the company for $500 million. At the time, there were fears that they'd be releasing watered down products and that the overall quality would take a nosedive.

So what's happened since then? Well, they're on tap in a lot more bars (their IPA in particular) but they've also released a ton of new beers in the past year. So much so that it's hard to keep up with them, so that's a good thing...right?  Anyways, we have their Stoopid Wit, which is a hopped-up Belgian witbier and takes its name from another Lagunitas product, Hop Stoopid Imperial IPA, which I'll get around to reviewing at a later date.

Appearance - Hazy dark yellow color with a high amount of visible carbonation. The head is nice and foamy and there's tons of lacing left behind.

Aroma - Malted wheat with some moderate citrus and piney hop notes. I'm also getting a fair amount of pale maltiness in here too and some mild Belgian yeastiness

Taste - Strong piney and citra hops on the front of the palate with some malted wheat & mild Belgian yeast notes towards the middle. In the back is where I'm seeing that pale maltiness along with that piney/citra hop profile with the citrus being a bit stronger than the piney aspect.

It may be a lighter style, but everything comes together in a nice way. In fact, this almost reminds me of having an IPL, which to me is a good thing. So if you see this, it's for sure worth checking out!

Lagunitas Stoopid Wit - 8/10

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Evil Twin Imperial Biscotti Break Review

Name: Evil Twin Imperial Biscotti Break
Style: Imperial Stout
ABV: 11.5%

Another Evil Twin Imperial Stout? Why not! This time around, I've got their Imperial Biscotti Break, which is brewed with coffee, almond and vanilla. Why it's named after the Italian cookie is beyond me, but it may have something to do with the almonds since they are usually in Biscottis.

Appearance - Black with a foamy dark tan head with some abundant lacing.

Aroma - Chocolate malts & roasted barley with some light coffee grounds and mild vanilla sweetness. I'm not getting any of those almonds, at least not yet.

Taste - Chocolate malts and coffee grounds on the front of the palate with some mild vanilla sweetness towards the middle, along with some almonds, which finally make an appearance. In the back, I'm getting more of that coffee and hop bitterness & some more vanilla notes. The aftertaste is also on the bitter/roasty side, with just a hint of almond to cap things off.

This is a pretty good Imperial stout, and the vanilla and almond add a nice subtle dimension to the overall flavor. On top of that, the price I paid at $10 for a four-pack make this a pretty good deal. All those factors make this very easy for me to recommend.

Evil Twin Imperial Biscotti Break - 8.5/10

Sam Adams Chocolate Bock Review

Name: Sam Adams Chocolate Bock
Style: Bock
ABV: 5.8%
IBUs: 11

This past Thanksgiving, I bought a Sam Adams sampler pack for our holdiay guests as it's always been a crowd pleaser in years past and I decided to snag a couple of the more interesting beers for reviewing purposes. The beer we've got is their Chocolate Bock, which is a Bock made with milk chocolate. I've had a few bocks before but never one like this before so let's check it out.

Appearance - Very dark brown color with a mild amount of carbonation along the sides of the glass. The head starts out with a good amount of foam but settles to a thin filmy appearance but the lacing is quite plentiful.

Aroma - Rich milk chocolate & lactose-like notes paired with some caramel malts and light roastiness. I feel like I'm smelling a chocolate bar.

Taste - Rich milk chocolate and lactose notes dominate the front of the palate and continue lingering to the very end. Towards the middle, I'm getting some moderate caramel maltiness while the back has just a touch of roastiness. As for the aftertaste, it's more of the milk chocolate flavor with just a light hint of toffee.

I've had many beers from Sam Adams in the past but this is definitely one of the more interesting beers I've had from them. At the same time, this has also one of my personal favorites from them and it's a damned shame that this is only available in a sampler pack and not in six-packs. Think Odell's Lugene but lighter and a bit more lactose forward. As such, it's definitely one of the best Bocks I've had in recent memory and this is absolutely worth checking out.

Sam Adams Chocolate Bock - 9/10

Friday, December 2, 2016

Mankato Mint Stout Review

Name: Mankato Mint Stout
Style: Stout
ABV: 6.9%
IBUs: 38

I recently came across an interesting winter seasonal from Mankato Brewing and that is their Mint Stout, which is brewed with Peppermint and Spearmint. To date, I've had one mint stout and that was South Shore's Bourbon Barrel Coffee Mint Stout. At the time, I thought it was an interesting concept but it wasn't pulled off as well as it could've been. Nevertheless, I promised myself I would try out that style again if I ever saw it and now here we are.

Appearance -  Pitch black with a foamy but fizzy brown head that fades away after a few moments, save for a light ring around the glass. There's also no lacing left behind either.

Aroma - Strong peppermint and moderate spearmint notes upfront, followed by some roasted barley and chocolate malts. I'm also getting a light hint of smoke and mild hoppiness.

Taste - Peppermint and spearmint dominate the front of the palate, with the latter being the strongest. Towards the middle I'm getting that roasted barley and chocolate maltiness, both of which linger in the back of the palate, along with that light smokiness and hop notes. The aftertaste is mostly chocolate and roasted barley with just a hint of peppermint.

I have to say, I am quite pleased with this and the peppermint and spearmint elements really help this stout stand out without being too overwhelming. As such, I think this is much better executed than South Shore's offering was. If you're looking for a different take on a stout that's executed properly, look no further than Mankato's Mint Stout.

Mankato Mint Stout - 8.5/10

Thursday, December 1, 2016

New Feature: Beer Reviews by Brewery

To all my readers,

I appreciate all the support you've given me throughout the years and I am thankful for that. Since I started up this blog, I've amassed quite a collection of beer reviews and haven't really thought about categorizing them until quite recently when I was having trouble myself trying to find a specific review. 

So after hours of organizing, I have finally created a page that lists all of my beer reviews in alphabetical. There's still a couple kinks I need to work out but at this point, I feel comfortable enough to post the page, which you can find here:

As always, thank you for your continued readership.

- Nick