Sunday, May 30, 2010

A Beer Post

Things are quite backed up at work. I am going to try to get some work done today before El and I head over to NC State for a show. University Theatre's annual TheatreFest is presenting murder mysteries based novels of Agatha Christie. Today is A Murder is Announced. A friend and coworker of mine is in the cast. We have tickets to the Sunday matinee and then reservations for dinner. Before I get to work though, I thought I would sneak in a post about beer.

Yesterday, El and I was paid a visit to our favorite beer and wine shop. It has been a few weeks since we last paid a visit, and in the meantime, the store has been rearranged a bit including expanding the number of beer taps from six to ten. I heard Friday was a big night and two of the kegs were already kicked. Therefore, I wasn't able to try all ten beers on tap, or even all of the remaining eight, but I gave it a good try.

First up was Vanilla Java Porter from Atwater Block Brewery in Detroit, Michigan. Porters and stouts are similar styles, and with its strong coffee flavor, the Vanilla Java Porter reminded me of Highland Black Mocha Stout. I didn't really get a vanilla flavor from the Vanilla Java Porter. Scott, one of the co-owners of the local shop, says he tastes berries in this brew, but I didn't catch that either.

Next was North Coast Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout which not only has a very long name but is the second Russian imperial stout on my beer list, the first being Victory Storm King Stout. Russian imperial stouts tend to be big brews with lots of flavor. Old Rasputin has a very dark pour and a strong flavor of roasted malts.

My third beer was another brown brew. This one being an English brown ale. According to the company's website, Ellie's Brown Ale from Avery Brewing is named after the deceased chocolate lab. Luckily, Ellie's Brown doesn't taste like a dead dog. It does taste like a standard English brown ale similar to the standard of the style, Newcastle Brown Ale.

Moving from brown to red, the next beer was Mermaid's Red Ale from Coronado Brewing Company in California. Red beers can be all over the place. Mermaid's wasn't particularly memorable, but that might have more to say about my state by then rather than the quality of the beer.

Finally, there was a light and fruity brew. The Bruery is a located in Placentia, California. Their Orchard White is a witbier. I have covered Belgian-style wheat ales to death. According to the brewery's site, Orchard White is spiced with coriander, citrus peel and lavender. I would say the brew did have a nice flavor including what I assume is the flavor of coriander.

FYI, about eleven hours have now past since I started this post. The show was very entertaining, and no, I didn't get any work done today.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Our Nuturing Mother

Yes, yet another post on beer. This one covers two brews from Mother Earth Brewing which is located three counties over in Kinston, North Carolina. If you are wondering, Kinston is the county seat of Lenoir County. (For those playing at home: Lenoir -> Wayne -> Johnston -> Wake, and Raleigh is the county seat Wake County as well as being the state capital of North Carolina.)

For some back story, El and her mother had a May Day party on the first day of May. El made a ton of cool appetizers and also picked out some great wines. I was tasked with selecting beer for the party. El and I stopped by our favorite local wine and beer store where I picked up a few different beers, two of which were from Mother Earth. One was Endless River which is Kölsch-style ale. I have enjoyed Kölsches from Reissdorf and Sünner which are both from Germany. I have also tasted a few American versions of the Kölsch which I might cover in future posts. I enjoy the style. Endless River is a standard example of the style which I also enjoyed.

The other brew from Mother Earth was Weeping Willow Wit which has a very alliterative name. As we all know, I like wheat beers, and Weeping Willow is no different. According to the company's webpage for the brew, there is suppose to be a secret spice, but I have no idea what it is. (The description on the bottle label mentions coriander. Perhaps I should figure out what that tastes like.)

As for the other two beers, El actually ended up picking those, and they were both from Left Hand. I previously discussed their Milk Stout. The other beer was Juju Ginger Ale. I don't particular care for the taste of ginger. Juju Ginger smells and tastes like ginger. Let's just say I didn't care of it and leave it at that.