Belching Beaver Peanut Butter Milk Stout

This was another beer that I had on the Big Island. While Val and I were there, we took a trip to Volcano National Park. There was a lot of smoke, but not a huge amount of lava. Obviously since we went, that situation has changed a lot. Anyways, let’s see how this beer was.

ABV: 5.3%

Style: Milk/Sweet Stout

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “America’s Favorite Peanut Butter Milk Stout: this silky-smooth beer put us on the map. Troy came up with the idea of combining Peanut Butter with our Beaver’s Milk Stout and he nailed it. Don’t let the dark color fool you, this beer is delightfully easy to drink with cascading aromas of roasted peanuts, dark chocolate and coffee. We appreciate your continued support for helping make this style our #1 seller.”

Random: This is a year-round offering from the brewery.

The beer poured with a thick, one finger, tan head. It dissipated slowly and left a lot of lacing on the glass. The body was a dark brown color with no visible carbonation due to the dark color. The nose was filled with roasted malts, peanut butter and espresso. There was a touch of lactose as well. The taste was even better. It was like a peanut butter cup version of a beer. There was lots of authentic peanut butter with dark chocolate shavings and espresso. The body was on the thick side with a lot of carbonation. It had a lengthy and sticky finish with peanut butter and chocolate. This beer was outstanding and I would definitely have it again.

Untappd Rating: 4.5/5.0

Ola Brew Kauai Ginger Cider

I didn’t do much reviewing of beers while on my honeymoon, but this is one that I got in while I was on the Big Island.

ABV: 6.2%

Style: Cider

Trivia: According to the cidery website, “PROUD TO BE COMMUNITY OWNED. At Ola Brew Co. everything we do is made possible by a passionate community of over 400 stakeholders, employees, and friends—most of them living and working right here in Hawai’i County. This year we’re calling out to our community to help make the Ola Brew experience even better without relying on capital from big banks, corporate sponsors, or out-of-state VCs. The plan is to begin serving food from an onsite kitchen, add a deck with outdoor seating, triple our brewing capacity with more fermenters, and to purchase four times more organic fruit and grain from local farmers. Sounds great, right?! With your help we can make it happen and keep Ola Brew Co. community owned!”

Random: I’m really starting to enjoy fresh ginger.

The cider poured with less than a finger of white head. It dissipated by the time I took the picture, but left a small crown on top of the yellow body. The body was cloudy with no visible carbonation. The nose was filled with fresh apple juice and lots of fresh ginger. The nose was intense for sure. The taste was similar to the nose. The ginger came through first and was very pungent. The apple juice came next with some yeast as well. The body was on the medium side with a lot of carbonation. It had a quick finish with ginger and apples. I enjoyed this cider, but it was a bit one-dimensional.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

Santa Monica Inclined IPA

When Val and I flew to our honeymoon in Hawaii, we had a layover for a few hours at LAX. We flew out of Philly first thing in the morning on St. Patrick’s Day and got to LA. There was definitely an interesting crowd at the airport that day that we watched during lunch, where I ordered this local brew.

ABV: 7%

Style: American IPA

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “We Are A Group Of Guys Who Share A Mad Love For Great Beer And The City Of Santa Monica. Our ‘Beach Brewed’ Philosophy Embodies The Spirit Of The World-Renowned Santa Monica Lifestyle Past, Present, And Future.”

Random: There was no information about this beer on the brewery website.

The beer poured with a half a finger of white head. It dissipated quickly and left some lacing on the glass. The body was slightly hazy and bright orange in color. There was moderate carbonation visible. The nose was piney and had a lot of pine sap. There was some tropical fruit, specifically mango, that came through. There was also a significant malt characteristic that I wasn’t expecting. The taste started with a lot of malt that started the sip off very sweet. It transitioned into grapefruit pith and flesh and a light amount of mango. The body was on the lighter side with a lot of carbonation. The finish was lengthy with sweet malt. Although I had no problem drinking this beer, it just wasn’t an impressive IPA.

Untappd Rating: 3.0/5.0

Fantome Dark White

Last time Val and I went up to Half Time, I saw this lonely bottle on a shelf and needed to bring it home.

ABV: 4%

Style: Saison/Farmhouse Ale

Trivia: According to wikipedia.com, “Fantôme (Brasserie Fantôme) is a small brewery in Soy, Wallonia, Belgium. Founded in 1988 by Dany Prignon, it produces Saison, a type of farmhouse ale. The brewery occupies a modest stone farmhouse on the main road through the village of Soy in the Marche-en-Famenne district of Luxembourg province. Founded in 1988, Brasserie Fantôme has gained international attention and a cult following among lovers of craft beers. Owned and run by Dany Prignon, Fantôme is known for its unique variations on the Saison style of farmhouse ale, often involving the use of herbs, spices or fruit juice. Within the craft beer community, Fantome saisons are considered highly desirable and have developed a significant audience in the United States and United Kingdom. Ironically, while their complex, earthy, and herbal flavors have caused them to be sought out by connoisseurs outside Belgium, Fantôme’s products are difficult to find and not well known in the country of their origin. The name of the brewery stems from a legend of the nearby town of La Roche-en-Ardenne, which asserts that the ghost of the long-dead Countess Berthe de La Roche can still be seen walking amidst the ruins of the town’s castle. There is a small bar adjacent to the brewery that is primarily open on weekends and for special occasions. Tours of the facility can be arranged by reservation as well.”

Random: I’ve had this beer on my must-try list for years now.

The beer poured with a huge, five-finger, tan-colored head. It took forever to dissipate and left a lot of lacing on the glass. The body was dark brown and hazy with lots of floaties visible. There was moderate carbonation as well. The nose started with a lot of fruity yeast with dates and prunes. I picked up some brown sugar and molasses along with some sweet caramel. The taste was filled with Belgian yeast up front. It transitioned into almonds, caramel and dates. Brown sugar came through next. The spice came through at the end, which finished up the sip very well. The body was on the medium side with lots of carbonation. It had a lengthy finish with spice and Belgian yeast. I picked this bomber up for $17.99, which broke down to $.82 per ounce. It was definitely pricey, but worth every penny.

Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0

Fordham The 11th Sour

I am not a big fan of the Summer. I hate the heat, especially when it’s that really humid type of heat. I also work in a warehouse that isn’t air-conditioned. It’s super fun this time a year when you can feel how thick the air is in the warehouse itself. I tend to look for lighter beer during the Summer to try to get through the heat.

ABV: 3.8%

Style: Berliner Weissbier

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “The first Sour batch ever brewed by FoDo Brewing. This ale is a kettle sour that uses lactobacillus, fermented on house ale yeast and then aged on concord grapes. Typical to any sour, this ale is pleasantly flavored and zings your tastebuds over and over.”

Random: It’s been a long time since I had a beer from Fordham.

The beer poured with a half a finger of white head. It dissipated quickly, but only left wispy lacing on the glass. The body was a bright orange that was slightly hazy with lots of carbonation. The nose was relatively mild for a sour. It had some mineral water and some caramel malt. The taste started with some tartness and white grape juice. There was also some very lightly toasted malt present as well. The body was incredibly light with just enough carbonation. It had an almost instantaneous finish with light tartness. A bottle of this was $2, which came to $.17 per ounce. I wasn’t a big fan of this beer. It was really lacking in the flavor department.

Untappd Rating: 2.0/5.0

Highway Manor Eagles Underdog Sour

Val and I went to Memphis Taproom awhile back (before the wedding) after looking at our rings at the jeweler. The Eagles were in the playoffs and of course, were underdogs. Thus, all of the dog masks during the Eagles games. They had never won a Super Bowl and one of the dates available in February at our venue was Super Bowl weekend. I said that with our luck, if we picked that weekend, the Eagles would be in the Super Bowl. Needless to say, they did make it to the Super Bowl, but this beer was on tap at Memphis Taproom to celebrate them making the playoffs.

ABV: 7%

Style: American Wild Ale

Trivia: The brewery is in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania.

Random: There is no information about the brewery story on their website.

The beer poured with a quarter finger of white head that dissipated almost instantly. A small crown was left on top of the body, but no lacing was left behind. The body was a dark orange with moderate carbonation. It was also quite hazy. The nose was filled with deep funk along with bright unripe citrus notes to counter the funk. The taste was definitely tart and had a lot of kumquat and grapefruit and quickly went into funk. The body was on the lighter side with a lot of carbonation. It had a lengthy finish with citrus. I liked this beer a lot, but I don’t think I’ll ever see it again since there is no information on the website or Beer Advocate.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

Off Color Market Rate

I’m finally getting through my backlog of beers and am almost a month ahead in posting. It makes life so much easier when I have posts scheduled, so I don’t have to worry that I’m going to miss one.

ABV: 6.5%

Style: American Wild Ale

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “At some point John and Dave were born. They did other stuff for a while and then they figured out they were better at making beer than at the other stuff. So that’s what they do now. They met while both studied at the oldest and most respected brewing school (of the two…and by the brewers that went to the one) in the US, the Siebel Institute, in 2008 and the brewery was envisioned while they both interned at Metropolitan Brewing afterwards. Most of Off Color’s business plan is based off of Doug and Tracy at Metro knowing what they’re doing, so you should go buy some of their beer too. After cutting their teeth at larger breweries, the two somehow convinced enough otherwise-very-smart-people to invest enough money for them to buy some big shiny things to make their own beer in. So that’s what they do now.”

Random: This beer is now retired.

This beer poured with a half a finger of white head that dissipated as soon as I took the picture. It left no lacing on the glass, but did leave a small crown on top of the bright yellow body. It was hazy with no visible carbonation. The nose started with a lot of funk and quickly went into ripe strawberries. It was a pleasant combination. The taste was more of the same. It had a lot of brett and funk and tartness, but was quickly followed up by tons of ripe strawberries. The body was on the medium side with a lot of carbonation. It had a medium length finish with strawberries. I aged this beer for awhile, I forgot how much I paid for it, but this was another quality beer from Off Color.

Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0

Ettaler Benediktiner Weizen

Val and I went to a German restaurant in New York City and I was looking for a German beer that I hadn’t reviewed before, so I settled on this.

ABV: 5.4%

Style: Hefeweizen

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Wheat beers have a tremendous variety of flavors. Maybe that’s why they are so popular because they show what you can brew from just 4 raw materials. The Benedictine wheat beer is brewed in peace. The original Ettaler cellar yeast produces from the naturally cloudy, amber-colored beer a pleasant fruity aroma of banana and some raisin. Since the Benedictine wheat beer was so popular that the local brewing capacities in Ettal were no longer sufficient, we decided in 2011 to brew the beer with our cooperation partner in the traditional Licher private brewery Jhring Melchior under our supervision and according to our original recipe to let. At which of the two locations the beer is also brewed; Original recipe, the exclusive use of Ettaler cellar yeast and the monastic supervision of the brewing process ensure the unmistakable taste of Benedictine wheat beer.”

Random: Google translate is the best.

The beer poured with a quarter finger of white head. It dissipated slowly, but didn’t leave much lacing on the glass. The body was hazy and a bright orange color with lots of carbonation visible. The nose had all the notes that I’ve come to expect from the style. It had banana, wheat, clove, bubblegum and yeast. There was some coriander and apple as well. The taste was also that of a typical hefeweizen. It started with tons of wheat and banana. Bubblegum notes were there, but subdued. It didn’t have as much spice as I would have liked, but still had some clove and coriander. Green apple came through next. Pear notes finished up the sip. The body was medium thickness with lots of carbonation. It had a quick finish with banana. I liked this beer and it paired well with German food, but it wasn’t my favorite of the style.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

Other Half Green City

This is a beer that I had on tap at one of my favorite craft beer bars in New York City, The Ginger Man. Let’s see how it was.

ABV: 7%

Style: American IPA

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “In 2014, Sam Richardson, Matt Monahan and Andrew Burman founded Other Half Brewing Company, a local brewery in New York City with a simple mission: to create beers that they wanted to drink from a company that they wanted to be a part of. Their vision was to build a passionate team that brewed great beers in the state of New York—done so with effort and thoughtfulness—to represent the ‘Other Half’ of the industry. Today, the Other Half team crafts beers in their Brooklyn brewery. They’re dedicated to collaborating with breweries both in New York as well as across the world in an effort to constantly move the industry forward while elevating the craft. The Other Half team believes that local breweries play an important role in their communities which is why they partner with these other likeminded brewers and brands in local nabes across the country and the world—but always return to their home state of New York and their Brooklyn taproom.”

Random: This beer is now retired.

The beer poured with a one finger, pure white head. It dissipated quickly and left some lacing on the glass. The body was completely hazy and bright yellow in color. There was a lot of carbonation visible. The nose was very hoppy with lots of pine and tropical fruit. I picked up a lot of pineapple. The taste had a lot of hops with pine notes, pineapple and grapefruit. There was only a small amount of malt in the flavor. The body was on the thicker side with a lot of carbonation. It had a sticky and lengthy finish with tropical fruit. I enjoyed this beer a lot and anytime I get to have an Other Half beer is a treat.

Untappd Rating: 4.5/5.0

Cape May Brothel Madam

I’ve never been to Cape May, but I definitely have a reason to go down there now that there’s a brewery. I hear it’s also nice during Christmas with all of the historic houses lit up.

ABV: 9.5%

Style: American Wild Ale

Trivia: According to hauntedplaces.org, “Housed inside an 1880’s mansion, this historic inn was formerly a bordello and gambling parlour before its conversion to bed and breakfast accommodation. Guests staying in the Princess Louise Room have reportedly come across the apparition of a brothel madam, who has been seen and heard in the early hours of the morning. Others staying in adjacent rooms claim to have heard the whistling of a train, although the association of this recurring noise with the building is not clear.”

Random: This beer is named after the ghost that is in the Queen Victoria Inn in Cape May, New Jersey.

This beer poured with a half a finger of white head. It dissipated instantly and left no lacing on the glass. The body was very hazy and a bright pink color. There was no visible carbonation due to the cloudiness. The nose was filled with Brett and funk. It had a touch of warm berries as well. The taste started with a lot of yeast and Brett with some vinegar tartness. The same berry note came through with a touch of leather as well. The alcohol bite was apparent, which took away a bit from the flavor. The body was on the thicker side with generous carbonation. It had a lengthy finish with funk. I picked this up for $17.99, which came to $.82 per ounce. I thought this beer was good, I just wish the booze was dialed down.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0