Posted: October 23, 2014 in B. Nektar Meadery, Cider, Reviews
So, the last post I had was actually post number #1600. I’m still really happy that I’ve stuck with this whole blogging thing. I’ve tried so many amazing beers and cider and being able to document them lets me keep track of what I liked and what I didn’t and most interesting of all, how my tastes have changed. So, let’s see how this one was.
Trivia: According to the brewery website, “B. Nektar Meadery was founded in 2006 by Brad and Kerri Dahlhofer, with the help of their good friend Paul Zimmerman. Brad has been an avid homebrewer since 1998, making beers, meads, ciders and wine for his own enjoyment. When Brad and Kerri got married in 2005, he made a mead to toast with at their wedding and received great reviews from the guests. Jokingly, he said that he’d someday open a meadery. Paul, a long-time friend and fellow homebrewer, soon began making meads along with Brad in the Dahlhofers’ basement. Their meads quickly began winning awards at homebrewing competitions. In the summer of 2006, Kerri was laid-off from her job. While sipping a glass of vanilla cinnamon mead made by Brad, she thought, ‘why not try to sell this?’ It was then that the three decided to take their mead making to the next level. In the spring of 2008, Brad too fell victim to layoffs, and the three worked night and day to prepare for their opening. After nearly two years since its inception, B. Nektar finally opened it’s doors on August 2, 2008 (National Mead Day).”
Random: Even though this is distributed in Jersey, we picked this one up at Half Time because we had never seen it before.
This cider poured with no head on top of a clear, green tinged body with lots of carbonation. The nose was filled with ginger and green apples. There was lemon apparent after a few sips. The taste was light and crisp with ginger and green apples and some light cinnamon. I picked up some honey as well and lemon zest. The body was light with a lot of carbonation. It had a quick finish with ginger. This cider had some potential, but the ginger and apple transitioned awkwardly. For $6.29 a bottle, this was also on the expensive side. It’s not one of the best ventures I’ve had from B. Nektar. I wouldn’t have it again.
While we were on vacation in Delaware, we picked up this Dogfish Head brew. I can’t go to Delaware without picking up something from Dogfish. Anyways, let’s see how it went.
Style: American Pale Ale
Trivia: According to the brewery website, “The vivid rose hue of this imperial Pale Ale comes from a combination of Munich and Caramel malts and a touch of red rice from Louisiana, birthplace of musician and collaborator Julianna Barwick. Julianna, who builds ecstatic choirs by looping and layering her voice, helped choose the ingredients for Rosabi and visited coastal Delaware to brew a test batch. Citrusy Simcoe and Centennial feed Julianna’s love of hops, and the star of the show is her go-to ingredient: wasabi. What’s hoppy? … Wasabi. The Japanese root adds bittering and herbal notes similar to hops, with its subtle heat creeping in after the kick of carbonation.”
Random: For the first time in recent memory, I got home before the other half did today.
This beer poured with a huge, four finger egg white head that dissipated slowly and left lots of lacing on my Dogfish Head glass. The body was a deep copper color with moderate carbonation visible. The nose was pretty hoppy with a lot of floral notes and some caramel malt. I also picked up some horseradish. The taste started with a lot of floral hops that were bordering on perfume-y. There was light red rice and some horseradish root as well. Grass came through as well. It had a weird herbal note, perhaps from the wasabi? It had some cracker as well. Alcohol was very apparent on the beer. The body was medium thickness with moderate carbonation. The finish was quick with the herbal and spicy notes from the wasabi. This beer was a big let down for me. The floral hops did not mesh well with the wasabi and the weird herbal note was just off putting. I wouldn’t have this again.
So, I’m in the second to last week of end of quarter. I worked 13 hours today, a day which should have been relatively easy and short. It was neither. I’m finally home and the other half and I are watching “The Good Wife,” which is the best show on television. Anyways, here’s another beer that I picked up directly from the brewery. Let’s see how it went.
Style: Pumpkin Ale
Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Roadsmary’s Baby is a traditional pumpkin ale with a Two Roads spin, it’s aged in rum barrels for added complexity and depth of flavor. The result is a smooth drinking ale with notes of pumpkin, spices, vanilla, oak and a touch of rum.”
Random: I have a lot of pumpkin beers in waiting to review. I’m very excited for them.
This brew poured with a finger and a half of white head that dissipated quickly and left no lacing on the glass. The body was a cloudy, chestnut color with light carbonation and sediment visible as well. The nose had pumpkin, nutmeg and cinnamon with rum barrels. The taste was heavier on the rum barrel with some vanilla as well. There was light pumpkin, nutmeg and allspice present as well. The body was on the medium side with generous carbonation and some booze warming at the end along with rum and vanilla and spice on the finish. This was a really good pumpkin beer and the aging in the rum barrels really helped it. My only complaint was that it needed a bit more pumpkin and spice. If you see it on shelves, grab a bottle and give it a shot.
This was a beer that we picked up when we were at the brewery in Connecticut. I had it in the tasting room in one of the samplers that we got and decided to bring a tall boy home for reviewing purposes. You can add this to the list of beers that you can’t get in Jersey. So, if you want to try it, be prepared to head to New York or Connecticut to get it.
Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Brewmaster Phil Markowski has taken a ‘bahn’ less traveled to create our version of the classic Bavarian wheat brew –perfect for the warming temperatures. Beautifully cloudy with a generous head of foam, a wonderful fruit aroma and a dry finish, our Hefeweizen is a refreshing version of the original; with just a little bit more of everything.”
Random: I am a bit upset the Giants lost yesterday. It would have made it a bit easier for the Eagles in the division.
This brew poured with a two finger white head that dissipated slowly and left some lacing on the glass. The body was a hazy dark yellow color with heavy carbonation visible. The nose had notes of banana and clove with bubble gum. The taste was much of the same with pronounced banana, coriander and clove and wheat. After a few sips, some lemon came out as well. The body of the beer was a bit thin with lighter than expected carbonation. The finish was quick with wheat and lemon. This was an alright beer, but it was too thin and needed a bit more spice to it.
After the other half came home, she decided she wanted a cider. I put this one in the fridge, which means that the only cider that we haven’t tried from McKenzie’s is their original cider. I guess next time we head up to the area (which may be in November since we got tickets to Ingrid Michaelson at the Tarrytown Music Hall), I’ll have to grab that one to finish the set. Anyways, I think this was marketed as a summer cider because of the use of lemon in it. Let’s see how it was.
Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Pucker up! You’re gonna love this little tart. Lazy Lemon has a burst of citrus without the acidic bite, giving long, carefree days a zesty punch of refreshing flavors. Serve chilled, kick back and enjoy often.”
Random: I’m hoping to get out of work early today and spend some time with the other half, who is off today. Lucky!
This cider poured with absolutely no head on top of a clear, light yellow body that had a slight green tinge to it. There was no visible carbonation. The nose was light with an aged apple smell and very light lemon. The taste had green apple juice along with lemon rind. The dominant flavor on the cider was definitely green apple. It needed more lemon to bill it as a lemon cider. The body was moderately thick with light carbonation. It had a quick finish with green apples. it was $1.79 a bottle which translates to $.15 per ounce, which is a good deal. Despite that, the cider was alright, but nothing I would buy again.
This week, the Eagles were the night game and played the Giants. I decided to open a special beer that I picked up in Delaware. I had previously tried its predecessor, Victoria Ale at Monk’s Cafe in 2011. I had been looking for this one for a few years and brought the bomber home.
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Trivia: According to the brewery website, “The Victor Ale was inspired by its feminine-named predecessor, the Victoria Ale. With chardonnay grapes to make the Victoria Ale unique, our brewers decided to use red grapes for the Victor. Over one hundred pounds of cabernet franc grapes were crushed on site and added directly to the mash. In addition to a generous portion of Pilsner malt, Victor is hopped with Fuggles and Hallertau and fermented with a wine yeast strain. With a focus on the subtle wine-like character of the grapes, the 9.0% ABV brew maintains a copper color, wine yeast influence and a medium body with a tart and spicy finish. Allagash Victor Ale is brewed to benefit the St. Lawrence Arts Center, perched at the crest of Munjoy Hill in the Portland’s East End.”
Random: I think the black uniforms worked for the Eagles.
This beer poured with a two finger white head that was very slow to dissipate and left lots of lacing on the glass. The body was a cloudy, dark chestnut color with light carbonation visible. The nose had Belgian yeast with light spice and red wine grapes. The taste had a lot of yeast along with green apple, pear and red wine grapes. It was relatively dry. It had some sweet, raspberry notes as well. The body was on the thicker side with generous carbonation. The finish was long with yeast and grapes. This was a well-done beer that incorporated wine grapes, which I’m a huge fan of. This wasn’t the best beer that I’ve ever had from Allagash, but I did enjoy it, despite the high price tag.
This is the last backlogged post, which is nice. It means that I can go back to the pipe dream of updating once a day and reviewing more beers. Anyways, this is the last Shiner beer that I have in the queue to taste. If I remember correctly, this was also the first ale that Shiner put out. Let’s see how it was.
Style: American Pale Ale
Trivia: According to the brewery website, “A mature individual stands 9.5 inches tall and weighs 12.0001 ounces. Renowned for its assertive temperament and hoppy characteristics. It has a distinguished heritage, being the product of high alpha Bravo and U.S. Golding hops, as well as two-row barley malt with a blend of Munich and caramel malts. Note the Wild Hare’s handsome red pelt and distinctive neck band, which helps distinguish it from others out in the wild. The beer enthusiast is its only known predator.”
Random: The Jets are losing, but not by as much as I thought they would.
This beer poured with a one finger white head that dissipated quickly and left no lacing on the glass. There was a crown left on the body. The body was a clear, copper color with lots of carbonation visible. The nose had some lightly toasted malt with grass and some hop notes. The taste had a lot of citrus in it. There was tangerine and orange along with green apple. There was grass and moderate bitterness as well. The body was on the typical for the style with high carbonation. It had a long finish with generous citrus notes. This wasn’t one of the best pale ales I’ve ever had, but it went down easily. If someone handed it to me, I would have it again.