Dan, Dan, He’s Our Man….

,Well you know the rest….

Yet another amazing beer tasting, now just a memory…. Thank you to Dan Stein for hosting the Second Annual Beer Day at his delicious Stein’s Deli. It was a doozy. An awesome, hedonistic, sybaritic, decadant doozy….I am gonna go ahead and warn you folks, these notes are nowhere near as thorough as my last big tasting. But I shall transcribe them in all of their hazy glory…I ask your kindhearted lenience on this because:

A.  I was standing the whole time.

B.  The beers were being poured in a literal cyclone around me, and as the saying goes, “if ya snooze ya lose.” Or in this case, if you are too busy being a dork and taking notes, you are gonna miss something awesome…

C.  I attended a wine tasting thrown in my honor earlier in the day, where we went through 10, YES 10 bottles of crazy good wine.  Errr, needless to say my sensory functions were a WEE bit compromised.

Nonetheless, I tasted some of my favorite brews EVER on this misty evening….At the top?

Lost Abbey Duck Duck Gooze: ABV: 5.5% Oh my wow. This beer is absolutely delicious.  A perfectly balanced and structured gueze. Like a well-made wine, everything is exactly in the right place.  Aromatics of hay, freshly cut herbs, apricot, peach, and citrus with some light wood notes. Nice and sour but with a clean, balanced finish. I want this beer. Always.

2008 Three Floyds Alpha Klaus: ABV: 6.5% Oh my, my, my.  I like this one.  Rich nose of toffee, roasted nuts, and coffee.  The coffee follows through on the palate with notes of tobacco & cigar box.  The hop profile nicely refreshes the weight of the nose and palate. One of my new favorite holiday beers. Well done, Three Floyds.

Jolly Pumpkin Lambicus Dexterius: Oh my sour goodness.  You see how my top 3 beers begin with ‘Oh….’ It’s a pattern with me. Get used to it.  I can promise it only comes out with exceptional liquids, beer or wine. A spontaneously fermented beer that Jolly Pumpkin has been working on for 4 years. I would like to THANK the stranger who left this for me as a gift at Cork & Bottle. PLEASE make yourself known.  What an incredible present. Wow, this guy is SOUR. And delicious. But not for the faint of heart.  If you don’t like warheads in your mouth, don’t touch this one with a 10-foot pole.  Bright, fantastic notes of lemon and citrus, mingled with a bit of leather, hay, and funk. Following through on the palate, this mouth-puckerer was the cult treat of the night.

Ok, so those are my top three, here are the rest, which I also absolutely and thoroughly enjoyed:

Avery The Reverend: ABV: 10% Freshly baked bread, apricot. Sweet malty notes on the palate.

Stone Collaboration: Problem is I did NOT see the label, so I’m not sure which collaboration.(I am telling you people, there were bottles flying around everywhere.)Smells like tree bark, wet leaves, forest floor, and smoky tobacco.  And for those of you who know my wine palate, you know these are big yesses pour moi. This aroma profile strike anyone as familiar?

Ommegang Chocolate Indulgence: ABV: 7% Tootsie roll and Ghiradelli chocolate squares!  Not as much on palate as you might think.  But still, this is dessert on a cold night.

Bolita Double Nut Brown Ale: ABV: 9% I really liked how this beer was toasty and nutty, (of course!), with cocoa, but with some interesting sour notes to perk up a normal Nut Brown.

Gouden Carolus Easter Beer: ABV: 10% Well you guessed it.  An Easter basket of candy on the nose, and it tastes like a Peep.  No kidding.

Will Brown’s Belgian Strong Ale: ABV 9.5%: Nice! Glazed puff pastry with caramelized fruit. Great aromatics and flavors.

Avery Ale to the Chief: ABV: 8.75% Really nice fresh apricot and herbal nose and palate.  A nice refresher beer after some of the bigger, burlier beers.

Ninkasi Tricerahops: ABV: 8.8%: Still really liking this beer and its herbal nose. This time I got more citrus and orange peel than last time.

Stone 13th Anniversary: ABV: 9.5%: Clean and balanced aromas 0f pine and citrus.  Nice vibrant hop finish.

Russian River Redemption: ABV: 5% Lots of tree fruit, some bubblegum on the nose with both a tropical and raw grain note.

Three Floyds Behemoth 2008 and 2009: ABV: 10.5% I like the ’09 much better.  Much more hop presence, with good bitterness on the finish to cleanse the palate.  The ’08 is great, but so different, with a concentration of dried fruit and raisins.

Surly Furious: ABV: 6.2% A nice IPA, but not terribly complex.  All the call signs are here, (lots of hoppy citrus and floral notes) just would have liked to see a little more. Maybe I should give it another go sometime.

The Bye-Week Double IPA: ABV: 8%: A mixture of both tropical and tree fruit.  Think apricot, peach, pear, and citrus mingled with notes of mango and guava. Palate smooth and balanced. Well done.

The Bruery Black Tuesday: AHEM! ABV: 19.5%! Holy Moley. Think crazy intensity of molasses, bourbon,soy, and dark chocolate.  The Dark Lord’s cousin.

Midnight Sun: I’m not sure the name. Or the ABV. It was dark. Someone poured it into my glass and said “Here, this is from Midnight Sun.” It was late. It was a nice, hoppy stout that smelled like meat.  As one who does not eat meat, it is from these types of beers and also wines from the Northern Rhone of France, where I derive my animalistic sensory pleasure.  Enough said.

Bells & Van Twee Collaboration Dark Belgian Ale: My last remotely readable note. I’m sorry, this is all I wrote: “Yum! Cherries & Sour. Yes!!” That’s pathetic, I realize, but it was late and I was SURE I’d remember.  Yeah.

There were more. Many, many more, but I couldn’t tell you a bloody thing about them. Good times.  Thanks, Dan!!!

AND THIS….. is how I felt the next day after a unabridged 12 hour euphoric sensory assault….



One Comment Add yours

  1. Ray Grace says:

    Hey Laurie,
    I was trying to figure out what the Stone collab. you tasted was, my best guess is that it’s the Jolly Pumpkin/Nogne O Winter Warmer. I haven’t had a bottle in several months but of all their collaborations that is the closest I can think of.


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