Jack’s Abby Barrel-Aged Mole Framinghammer

One of the benefits of blogging by my bay window is that I get to see all of the deer walking by. It’s even better when the bunnies are on the lawn. Anyways, beer time.

ABV: 12%

Style: Baltic Porter

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Big, bold, black, and aged in bourbon barrels with cocoa nibs, chili peppers, and whole cinnamon sticks. The lengthy conditioning period in the barrels creates a silky smooth chocolatey mouth feel enhanced by the use of oats and brown sugar during the brew process. Noticeable sweetness gets balanced by roasted malt and hop bitterness. Additional flavors include bourbon, oak, and spice.”

Random: I could go for a Mexican hot chocolate right now.

The brew poured with a half a finger of tan head that dissipated almost instantly. It left no lacing on the glass and no crown either. The body was a dark brown that was almost black, with no visible carbonation. The nose started with a lot of cinnamon and nutmeg. It had some shaved dark chocolate as well, but no chili peppers. There was some smoke too. The taste had a lot more depth than the nose. It started with the same shaved dark chocolate, but the cinnamon was more muted, although present. Chili peppers gave it a slight warming note and some vanilla came through next. The bourbon barrel was at the perfect level and didn’t overwhelm the other flavors. The alcohol was so well-hidden that this beer was ridiculously dangerous. It had a lengthy finish with cinnamon and dark chocolate. All of the flavors worked so well together and having it at 55 degrees was the perfect temperature. I have no idea how much this beer cost since it was a gift, but I would pay a decent amount of money for this one. This is worth searching out.

Untappd Rating: 5.0/5.0

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Jack’s Abby House Lager

Jack’s Abby is now available in Pennsylvania too, so I get it a lot more easily than I used to. I still want to make a trip out to the brewery, but I haven’t had a chance yet. I’m thinking that maybe when we go to Maine next, we can detour to the brewery on the way up. This was a beer that I picked up in Pennsylvania awhile back.

houselager

ABV: 5.2%

Style: Munich Helles Lager

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “House Lager pulls inspiration from the numerous country lagers, or landbiers, found in Franconia. It’s sweet and golden with a full malty body that comes from using a traditional German malt variety. A special beer for year-round enjoyment.”

Random: This beer comes in at 18 IBUs and is available year-round.

The brew poured with a one finger, pure white head. It went away quickly, but left no lacing on the glass. Instead, a small crown was left on the straw yellow body. It was clear and had moderate carbonation. The nose was filled with warm pilsner malt and a slight honey sweetness. The taste was sweet with wildflower honey. It had pilsner malt as well and a touch of mineral water. The body was thin and crisp with moderate carbonation. It had a quick finish with wildflower honey. The pounder can was $1.54, which broke down to $.10 per ounce. This was a simple, but very drinkable beer. If you’re looking for a beer to convert a macro drinker, this would be a good choice.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

Jack’s Abby Vanilla Barrel-Aged Framinghammer

I’ve finally gotten through my backlog of reviews. I also took a week off from drinking and reviewing. I think that I’ll have something special tonight to celebrate getting through all of these reviews. This beer specifically is one that I was very excited to try. Anything that is barrel aged tends to be in wheelhouse and I don’t think I’ve ever had a barrel aged beer from Jack’s Abby.

vanillabourbonframinghammer

ABV: 10%

Style: Baltic Porter

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Big, bold, black, and aged in bourbon barrels with vanilla beans. The lengthy conditioning period in the barrels creates a silky smooth chocolatey mouth feel enhanced by the use of oats and brown sugar. Noticeable sweetness gets balanced by roasted malt and hop bitterness. Additional flavors include bourbon, vanilla, and oak.”

Random: This beer is an April release.

The brew poured with a one finger, khaki colored head that dissipated at a moderate pace and left some lacing on the glass. The body was a dark brown with no visible carbonation due to the color. The nose had bourbon, leather and tobacco with tons of smoke. The taste was filled with oak, bourbon and smoke. It had a caramel note too. I also picked up some toasted malt and some booze. It had a thick body with light carbonation. The finish was lengthy with booze, oak and smoke. I enjoyed this beer quite a lot, especially because it was free. If I saw it on the shelf again, I would pick it up to see how it aged.

Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0

Jack’s Abby Calyptra

I had no idea that Jack’s Abby started canning. When I saw this can on the shelf at Half Time in New York, I was positively shocked. I’m a huge fan of canning beers, so having a solid brewery that only brews lagers putting a session IPL out is great.

calyptra

ABV: 4.9%

Style: American Pale Lager

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “This hoppy lager is brewed with two intense and aromatic hops, Calypso and Citra. It’s an easy drinking brew that balances dominating fruity, citrusy, and tropical aromas with a sessionable malt body.”

Random: I like the shade of purple on the can. It makes it jump off the shelves.

The brew poured with a half a finger of white head that dissipated quickly and left some lacing on the glass. The body was mildly hazy with lots of carbonation visible. The nose had a lot of tropical notes, obviously from the Calypso hops. I picked out mango, pineapple and then a grapefruit flesh note from the Citra hops. There was no malt on the nose. The taste was more towards grapefruit pith than flesh, which was disappointing. I also wished it had more tropical fruit on the taste. I picked up dried mango, but no pineapple, which I was looking forward to. There was also lemon and lime flesh in the background after a few sips. It had a really light body with high carbonation. The finish was instant with lemon pith and dried mango. A single can of this was $1.67 ($.14 per ounce), which is a great deal. If only I enjoyed this beer more and it had more tropical notes, it could be a go-to.

Untappd Rating: 3.0/5.0

Jack’s Abby Hoponius Union

After completely finishing my Netflix queue, the other half and I are watching (in her opinion) more interesting things lately. We recently watched “Monsters University,” which I loved and “the Monuments Men” which played to my interest in World War II and history in general. I think I’m going to have to find some boring documentaries to throw on the queue soon. Anyways, I picked this one up from Half Time. Let’s see how it was.

IMG_3274

ABV: 6.7%

Style: American Pale Lager

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Hoponius Union harmoniously combines lager yeast fermentation and West Coast IPA hops. Our India style Pale Lager is like a traditional IPA but with a twist – it’s fermented cold and aged for extended periods. A blend of classic American hops creates a huge tropical fruit and citrusy hop aroma. A dry finish accentuates the pleasant bitterness and hop profile. Hoponius Union uses locally sourced ingredients.”

Random: My team is going to be absolute crap this year. I’m listening to the Twins/Tigers game and the Tigers seem like they are going to be really, really nasty this year.

This beer poured with a huge, three finger, off white head. It dissipated slowly and left lots of lacing on the pint glass. The body was a cloudy, dusky orange color with high carbonation visible. The nose was really bright with grapefruit and then tropical fruit. I specifically picked up mango. The taste was just as bright, except Mandarin oranges came through on it. It also had some grass, but was really bright and really clean. The body was on the thin side with moderate carbonation. It had a long finish with moderate bitterness and citrus. For $2.19 a bottle, this broke down to $.18 per ounce, which was a great deal for a beer that I would swear was an IPA. I would definitely have this again and I am so excited that they’re finally in Philly.

Untappd Rating: 4.5/5.0

Jack’s Abby Smoke & Dagger

According to the beer news, Jack’s Abby is coming to the Philadelphia market, which means that I can get their beers with more frequency, especially since I live just over the border of Pennsylvania now. I’m definitely excited for this. This beer is one of their year-round offerings, so let’s see how it fared.

IMG_3241

ABV: 5.8%

Style: Rauchbier

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Cloaked in mystery, this dark black beer skirts the line between a schwarzbier and smoked porter. The use of a small percentage of traditional Beechwood smoked malt adds complexity and balances the liberal use of chocolate malt. Notes of roasted grains, beechwood smoke and coffee accompany a full bodied and sweet chocolatey malt character. Smoke & Dagger uses locally sourced ingredients.”

Random: I tend to really like their labels.

This brew poured with a one finger, thick, tan head that dissipated at a moderate pace and left some lacing on the glass. The body was a dark brown with moderate carbonation. The nose had smoke and roasted malts. The taste had a lot of smoke and ash, which was pretty intense. There were some roasted malts, but smoke dominated on this one. There was a touch of caramel sweetness at the end too. The body had medium thickness with high carbonation. It had a quick and sweet caramel finish with ash. This beer was $2.19 a bottle, which broke down to $.18 per ounce, which is a pretty good deal for a quality beer. Given the flavor and the price, this was a solid beer, but nothing that will blow your mind. I’d have it again.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

Jack’s Abby Mass Rising

I hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving. Mine was nice, although I wish I had Black Friday off. The food was really good and I was stuffed afterwards. On Black Friday, we made leftover turkey sandwiches. Anyways, this was a beer that I picked up awhile back from Half Time. Let’s see how it was.

IMG_2902

ABV: 8%

Style: American Double/Imperial Pilsner

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “In the spirit of our local history we are revolting against the status quo. We are writing our own story by fueling the fire surrounding extra hoppy beers. We infuse Mass Rising with increasing amounts of American hops during the kettle, hopbock and dry hopping processes. Together, we have taken a journey to redefine the term ‘lager.'”

Random: We DVR “Jeopardy” and before this week had over 60 episodes to watch. We’re now in the 40s.

This brew poured with an incredibly thick and creamy, ecru colored head that dissipated slowly and left lots of lacing on the pint glass. The body was cloudy with high carbonation and was a golden-yellow color. The nose had crisp notes of hops with grass and lemon peel and herbs. The taste was much like the nose. It was incredibly crisp and light for the style, with lots of grass and light hops. Lemon peel and herbal notes transition into light bready malt. The body was shockingly light with generous carbonation. It had a long and clean finish with grassy Saaz hops. This beer was exceptionally good and flavorful and had a really nice hop profile. I would definitely have this beer again. If only it was distributed to New Jersey.

Untappd Rating: 4.5/5.0