Stone – Sublimely Self-Righteous

Posted: October 8, 2010 by Overclocked in Order It Again!
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I figured it’s time for another blog/beer review

When I think of an Ale, stout is not normally what comes to mind. Yes, I know a stout is technically a type of ale but I think of an ale as amber to medium brown. Tonight I sampled the Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale by Stone Brewing Co. Far from medium brown and worlds away from amber, this dark ale surprised me.

Stone describes this as their 11th anniversary ale which was such a hit that they brought it back for “Limited Year-Round Availability”. Not a bad decision. The bottle looks nice – I’m a fan of the “painted on” labels (not sure of the correct terminology here but you know what I mean). They could have done without the novel on the back of the bottle but, it’s just a bottle. What I care about is inside.

The beer is dark, rich and produces a frothy head, which settles slowly and clings to the glass. Simcoe and Amarillo hops are immediately noticeable on the nose – floral and smooth. Both types of hops can produce a slight citrus scent but i’m thinking most of it is masked by the malty aromas that also comes forth from the brew. The first taste is mostly hops and smooth malt, the malt coming in towards the end of the taste and lingering slightly with the aftertaste. I can get hints of rich sweet caramel and chocolate aromas on the next few tastes. Delicious.

At this point i’m genuinely surprised. I was first expecting your standard “ale”, then upon pouring, realized that this was probably going to be closer to a stout, THEN upon tasting, I get a little of both worlds. IPA and Stout combined? Apparently this beer is rated at 90 IBUs. Very impressive considering it does not taste like a mouthful of grass and flowers. Stone did a great job on the grain bill. They balanced 90 IBUs (which is approaching double and triple IPA territory) with a good malt and body presence. Dry hopping is used in this recipe and that can lead to an excess of floral flavors and bitterness building up on the palate simply because this beer is so ‘big’. A small price to pay in my opinion.

Yes, I would definitely get this again. Definitely a sip and savor type of brew.

Beer Stuff:

  • Malt: 2-row; 6-row?; chocolate malt; black patent; crystal (all estimated)
  • Hops: Chinook (bittering); Simcoe, Amarillo (aroma and dry hopping)
  • IBU: 90
  • SRM: Who knows? It’s black!
  • ABV: 8.7%

Bewitched and Brewed With Pagan Spirit

Posted: October 5, 2010 by Overclocked in Uncategorized

Ahh yes, it is that time of year again. The time of the pumpkin beers has come!

My first “real” pumpkin ale – Southern Tier Brewing Company’s Imperial PumKing. The 22oz bottle reads:

Brewed in the spirit of All Hallows Eve, a time of year when spirits can make contact withthe physical world and when magic is most potent. Pour Pumking into a goblet and allow it’s alluring spirit to overflow. As spcie aromas present themselves, let it’s deep copper color entrance you as your journey into this mystical brew has just begun. As the first drops touch your tongue a magical spell will bewitch your taste buds making it difficult to escape the Pumking

Well they certainly got the pumpkin right with this one. The immediate aroma is that of pumpkin pie and something that I cannot fully identify, almost coffee like, maybe a dark caramel malt? Upon tasting, the pumpkin flavors roll in along with the spices and bitterness. Holding the sip for a moment to taste gives you a chance to really identify the pumpkin pie flavor and again, that coffee-like caramel flavor appears.

I can say that I am not a fan of the hops in this brew. Magnum hops are used for bittering and they don’t hide. It is a clean bitter taste, not grassy, just not my cup of tea. Adding to the bitter taste/feel is the 9.0% ABV. Oh yeah, this is an Imperial ale after all. (Which may or may not be a good thing. Wait, who am I kidding? It’s fuckin awesome.) With this punkin’ ale, there seems to be more pumpkin than spice. I can barely make out the cinnamon and I don’t really get much of anything else. No nutmeg, no allspice. I guess it could just be me…

This brew seems to really get that pumpkin flavor across but also seems to be lacking in the spice department. I’m not disappointed with this beer but it’s not at the very top of my list. I doubt I’d go out of my way to get it again.

Beer Stuff:

  • Malt: 2-row pale; Caramel
  • Hops: Magnum (bittering); Sterling (aroma)
  • IBU: 20-30 (my estimated guess)
  • SRM: 10-12
  • ABV: 9.0%

*On a side note – as awesome as the title is, it’s not mine. I stole it off the bottle.

If Dogs Could Fly..

Posted: October 5, 2010 by Overclocked in Order It Again!

Would they also deliver me some beers? Man’s best friend, gliding on furry dog-wings with six-packs lashed to their backs? I think it would be a wonderful world…

Flying Dog “Doggie Style” Classic Pale Ale. If I could sum this brew up I think, “deliciously full flavored and hoppy” would do. A “beginner’s IPA” could also suffice.

I recently discovered this tasty pale ale after diving into the world of home brewing. While researching different styles of beer to brew at home, I came to the realization that for the homebrewer, ales can be easier to brew than lagers. More on that later.

I figured, if i’m going to be brewing mostly ales, I might as well start trying a few. I had always enjoyed lagers and their crisp clean taste, not realizing that there were plenty of ales with a similar “clean” feel. I had seen Flying Dog before but never really paid attention to anything other than the zombie-like cartoon dog on the front. I figured I’d try my luck and picked up a sixer of the doggie style pale ale. I knew nothing about this beer (or much about pale ales for that matter) other than the nice little “scale” on the pack which is supposed to represent how malty or hoppy the beer is. This one falls about three quarters of the way up from malty, closer to the hoppy side. Now for the details.

A good pour into a room temperature glass will produce an “ok” head – not astounding but not disappointing. The head will dissipate within a few minutes alluding perhaps to a pleasant mouthfeel without being “chewy”. They did get the ‘pale’ right on this one; A nice pale amber and almost reddish-copper in color. I’m guessing 10, maybe 12 SRM.

A noticeable floral aroma is present with a good sniff which will include a slight maltyness as the beer warms. The first taste is a burst of floral flavor with good bitterness. The bitterness isn’t a smack in the face but it is pronounced thanks to the dry-hopping with Cascade hops. The malt flavors follow but still allow the hops to show through. A very slight sweetness from the Crystal malt lingers but not for too long. I think the mouthfeel from this brew is perfect – just enough body while still clean at the end. As you drink up, the bitterness and floral notes remain on your tongue, kept in check by the relatively dark Crystal malt.

I thoroughly enjoyed this brew. Flavorful and pleasant hops balanced by sweet caramel malt with just enough body. Definitely on my list to brew myself.

Beer Stuff:
Malts: Pale 2-row; 120L Crystal
Hops: Northern Brewer (bittering); Cascade (aroma) (dry-hopped)
IBU: 35
ABV: 5.5%

Time to Harvest this Moon

Posted: September 30, 2010 by Sko DZ in Blue Moon Brewery

As I stated in the last post,  I got a variety pack from Blue Moon Brewing Company and the next one to be reveiwed is Harvest Moon.  This one is a pumkin ale which are among my favorite.  It may be because they only show up once a year but every fall I seach out every pumkin style beer I can get my hands on. 

So the Harvest Moon has a great color to it, a light amber color which when the foam head froms it gives all those little bubbles an orange tint.  But color means nothing when it’s in my mouth …(insert Michael Scott)… What I really like about this guy is the all the spice.   The pumkin flavor is very sublte and can be lost if your tongue isn’t looking for it behind the all spice and nutmeg.   Upon sipping the beer the first thing that hits is the all spice/clove combo which is then mellowed by the nutmeg (and if your looking for it,pumkin) that then stays on the palet for some time.   This proved to be very enjoyable beer, not my favorite Pumkin out there but I’d come back to it if I saw it around.      Sko DZ

A Pale Moon Rising

Posted: September 28, 2010 by Sko DZ in Blue Moon Brewery, Order It Again!

So I figure I got to start writing about these beers I’ve been drinking.   Spending time thinking about the best way to write about them is doing me no good.  So I’m just going to write.  And if it’s witty… that’s a bonus.

So last night as I watched the Bears butt heads with the Packers in what was a grueling grudge match ( But no fear friends the monsters of the midway arose victorious 20-17, Bear Down! ) I was able to try Blue Moon Brewery’s  Pale Moon fall seasonal. This link will do you no good as this one beer seems not to be listed…. It was part of their fall season variety pack, so don’t be surprised if more from Blue Moon doesn’t show up shortly.   

So the Pale Moon is described as a Belgium Style Pale Ale,  long title, which is both a strike for and against the beer.   Belgium beers always get me excited because it’s an excuse to throw just about anything into the beer.  On the other side of this coin is the Pale ale . . . and I am always weary of ale of a pale nature.  This is due in part to the overly floral notes.  Pale Moon however did a wonderful job of keeping the daisies in check.  The beer comes off dry at first taste followed by those floral notes I was talking about, but not to worry, as I did for just a moment, the taste smooths out revealing the spice and coriander.   Look I finally got around to describing the beer…  which was very tasty.  Now this is not a beer I would drink while eating wings; if the ladies where coming over and finger food of the cheese and fruit type was on the menu this could be the beer for the occasion.  Or matched with a hearty fall dinner with harvest foods present, it is a fall seasonal beer after all.

This one goes in the order again category.    Sko DZ

What’s in your Scheme?

Posted: September 20, 2010 by Sko DZ in Bike Thoughts

So I had this thought during mile 13 of a 20 mile run I did the other day.      Yeah I did that…Meh did slightly less…

I was surfing around the other day on a local bike shop and they were showing off their bike of the week. 


So this is not the bike I saw but one that I could link in this post… I hope they are not done making adjustments on this bike, ouch.   What this bike has in common with the one I wanted to link is the paint scheme.  So this is not a knock on Trek’s Project One where for a price you can change the one thing that does nothing to enhance the performance of the bike.   Nor am I knocking the guy who paid the price to have a bike that is unique to his personal style; that price btw is $31.50 which is shadowed by 755.99 for real looking flames.   My question is why would anyone want their bike to feature flames???  Do you want people to notice your hot new ride?   Are you aluding to the notion that if you could just reach 88 mph you would/could travel through time?  Or perhaps you want your bike to reflect how your legs feel to the local group ride so they slow down?   It just seems like a silly choice to choose to pay extra money and time to achieve.  So this got me thinking…. if someone is willing to pay to have flames on their bike, another company must have already tapped this market and made a production bike with flames as a standard.  Surely they should have?  Right?    I looked and looked and I found one that is close enough for comparison.  And here it is . . . .

So lighting instead of flames but it achieves the same effect.  Your $5,000 road bike mimics a $300 kids bike, I’m going to put that in the “you lose category”.   Sko DZ

Edit -9/21/2010

Thought about this on my ride today,  what would be a cool paint scheme?   Make the Seat stay/top tube/seat tube look like a flux capasiter,  Slap OUTATIME on the down tube, “Working to achieve 1.21 Gwatts” on the Chain Stays, throw some of those spoke lights in blue on the wheels, and bam you got a bike anyone would be proud to ride.    Yeah, I watch Back to the Future this past weekend.

The Water May be Sweet …

Posted: September 16, 2010 by Sko DZ in Bars with Beers

All righty, post number 1 is under way.  Lame to type that … so moving on.   Last night we were kicking it at the Sweet Water Tavern in NOVA (Fancy talk for Northern VA) because the person that lives in that area had no idea where else to get a drink.   Meh.  Nice place, chilled at the outside bar (inside is lame cookie cutter eatery that is not eligible to live the high life as their cheapest burger is 10bucks), and had a few brews.  Of the beers I tried the Black Stallion oatmeal stout was the stand out;  thick and creamy, hints of coffee,  and only got better as it got warmer.   The lager is also worth a mention,  it says it’s fruity and there is orange citrus flare;  just don’t coming looking for a full body on this girl.  She dresses nice, she looks nice, heck even smells nice, but then you get to the prize and the 5’11” girl you’ve been chasing only weights 60pounds and she hid it well.  This has been a long way of saying it lacked body.  Order it for that 4’11” girl you brought, it’ll be a good fit.

Also, on the menu is an Oktoberfest and as it is the season I would have liked to have one of those. When asking about when I could get one of these I was told, “well when we sell out of the IPA, then we will tap it.”    Screw that it’s Oktoberfest season and Oktoberfest should be on tap and if you have to sell out of one to put out another it’s called a beer special, a sale, a deal, reduce the price to move it quick.  It’ll work, promise.

Feeling so early 00’s

Posted: September 13, 2010 by Sko DZ in Uncategorized

Here I sit at my laptop drinking coffee and bogging.  Insert upbeat theme song, this sitcom is greenlit boys.  Words on beer and bikes to come . . . so I’m gonna go get a beer.  Sko DZ

And So It Begins …

Posted: September 13, 2010 by Mr. Meh in Uncategorized

Hello reader!

Today is they day, 2 dudes decided to start a co-authored blog to write their incredible and witty reflections on booze and bikes.

In the next couple of days … weeks, we will be pulling together a format for the blog and start planning some excited specticles to write on.