Thursday, December 30, 2010

Bell's Cherry Stout and Java Stout

Bell's Brewery is in Comstock, Michigan.

Cherry Stout - A stout brewed with cherry juice.  The bottle describes this as "A mysterious dance of tart Michigan cherries with the dark, roasted malts of a big and bold stout."  This 7.0% ABV beer pours dark black with red apparent on the edges, and with a tiny dark brown head that rapidly dissipates.  The aroma is deep, dark, roasted malt, black coffee with a bit of cherry in the back, there is the sensation of a dark chocolate covered cherry in the smell as well.  The taste is an extremely dark, roasted coffee malt followed immediately and surrounded by cherry tartness.  It is like taking a swig of good cold coffee and biting into a dark, tart cherry at the same time.  As with the smell, there is also an effect of a dark chocolate covered cherry on the palate as well.  The aftertaste is mostly cherries.

Java Stout - A stout brewed with fresh roasted coffee beans.  This 7.5% ABV beer pours absolutely black with a quarter inch of brown foamy head.  The aroma is massive coffe, it is like smelling a fresh iced coffee at a coffehouse that freshly roasts, grinds and brews all their coffee drinks.  There is both a hint of sweetness and a bit of tartness around the edges of the aroma.  The taste is creamy, coffee, coffee and more delicious fresh roasted coffee taste, with a slight bitterness on the finish (the bitterness being more a stout beer bitterness than coffee bitterness).  This beer is amazing.  If you like coffee you will love this beer.  It has the  most delicious creamy mouth feel as well.  What a stunner, this blows any other coffee stout I have ever had way out of the water.

http://www.bellsbeer.com/

Grain Belt Premium

Grain Belt makes "The Friendly Beer."  Now brewed by the August Schell Brewing Company of New Ulm, Minnesota.  It was originally brewed in 1893 by the Minneapolis Brewing Company.  In the 1960's it became Grain Belt Breweries and was sold in 1976 to G. Heileman.  In the 1980's Grain Belt was taken over by Minnesota Brewing Company who brewed it until 2002 when Schell's took over.

The beer pours a light golden with a quarter inch of white fizzy, foamy head.  The aroma is sweet, slightly floral, and a hint of tropical fruit.  The taste is sweet and fruity, but light.  Grain Belt is fairly unique in its taste for a lager. This beer brings back a lot of memories of the Twin Cities, from drinking it at bars or parties, to driving over the Mississippi River in Minneapolis on the Hennepin Avenue Bridge past the old, large iconic Grain Belt sign. 



Miller High Life; Miller Genuine Draft

"The Champagne of Beers"  The original flagship from the Miller Brewing Company of Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  The Miller Brewing Company has been around since 1855 and has been brewing the High Life since 1903. 

This beer pours a clear golden in color with a tall fizzy white head that dissipates fairly rapidly and leaves some light lacing on the glass.  The aroma is somewhat sweet, green apples, metallic.  The taste is light, slight wet grain, a touch sweet, light green apple, very light straw, and a light bitterness on the finish that has a hint of metallic. Much better than a Bud Light.

Somehow, this beer never tastes better than when it is from the little 7 oz. pony bottles.

"If you've got the time, we've got the beer."

Might I suggest that you visit the High Life Lounge in Des Moines, Iowa?


Miller Genuine Draft - Pours a very clear and light straw golden in color with a slight head of pure white foam that leaves moderate lacing down the glass..  The aroma is a decent malty grain for an American adjunct lager, corn, and a lightly floral grassiness.  The taste follows the aroma, slightly watery.  There is a crisp carbonated finish.  This comes off a little less sweet, and a little more flavor than High Life.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Millstream Brewing Co. Schokolade Bock; Big Honey Hefe

The Millstream Brewing Co. is out of Amana, Iowa and has been in operation for 25 years.

Schokolade Bock - This beer pours very dark brown and is translucent only around the edges.  It has a quarter-inch of very light brown head.  The aroma is dark cocoa and coffee.  The taste is deep, rich, dark, roasted coffee and chocolate.  The taste is big, but the beer drinks light and is much more dry than sweet.  This beer is a delight.

http://www.millstreambrewing.com/


Big Honey Hefe - This is a wheat ale brewed with honey.  The beer pours a cloudy brown-orange in color with a small and thin head of off-white to light brown foam.  The aroma is fresh banana bread, plain and simple.  The taste is sweet, wheat malt, and massive yeast esters of banana.  If you want to drink the beer equivalent of banana bread, here it is.


Simpler Times Pilsner and Lager

These are from Trader Joe's.  The can says the Simpler Times Brewing Co. of Monroe, Wisconsin which would indicate that these are brewed by the Minhas Brewery.

Pilsner - This beer is 5.5% ABV and pours pale golden in color with a thin and rapidly disappearing head.  There is not much aroma, a bit of sweet and a bit of metallic bitterness.  The "taste" is a light sweetness followed by a nice bitterness, but there is really not any flavor involved.  This beer is all mouth feels (crisp, carbonation, slight sensation of sweetness and slightly metallic, bitter finish) and no taste.

Lager - This beer is 6.2% ABV and pours golden in color with a large, foamy head.  The aroma is also quite light, mostly just an aroma of hop bitterness and minerals.  The taste is massively sweet, background of green apple and a bit of metallic bitterness.  This beer smells much more interesting than it tastes.  I would definitely take the Pilsner over this any day.

La Playa Cerveza

This is from Trader Joe's and comes in at 4.6% ABV.  It is, in fact, made in Mexico.

The beer pours pale golden in color with a fizzy and rapidly dissolving head of white foam.  The aroma is wet grain mush, green apples, and another fruity note I can't quite put my finger on.  The taste is like the smell of rotting fruit in a tropical setting, both sweet, sour, alcoholic and slightly putrid all at the same time.  This is an odd beer and not all that great.  It would go best super cold paired with extremely hot and spicy food.

Name Tag Classic Lager

This is from Trader Joe's.  It is 5% ABV and says it is by the Name Tag Brewing Co. of Monroe, Wisconsin.  Monroe indicates it must be contract brewed at the Minhas Brewery.

This beer pours golden in color, with a fizzy white head that rapidly dissolves.  It is well carbonated.  The aroma is bright, a bit of apple fruit, a bit of sweetness, a touch of grain.  It drinks crisp, light without being overly watery, a bit of grain, some light apple and a slight touch of hop bitterness.  I think this was about $2.99 a six pack from Trader Joe's, so for that price, it is a decent drinkable American adjunct lager, but it is not nearly as good as the comparably priced Big Flats 1901 from Walgreens.

I think the name and the look of the can are amusingly generic.





Saturday, December 25, 2010

Ridgeway Brewing Lump of Coal Dark Holiday Stout

From the Ridgeway Brewing company of Oxfordshire, England, this stout comes in at 8.0% ABV and I aptly try it on Christmas day.

"Much More Than You Deserve for Xmas This Year"

This beer pours, no pun intended, coal black, with a finger of light brown foam.  The aroma is fairly subdued, a bit of coffee and a hint of black licorice.  The taste is fairly subdued as well.  Sweet, but not cloyingly so, alcohol and some dark roasted malt.  For a stout, this is sadly quite flavorless.  Perhaps that is why it is a lump of coal.

From the bottle:  Yet another bummed out holiday?  Lump of Coal Dark Holiday Stout is liquid consolation.  It's a deep, rich, sweetly rewarding stout to take the edge off that grim family gathering., that cheerless annual festival of alienation.  This brew is as dark as it gests, as black as the lump of coal you'll be getting for Christmas.  Because, let's face it, you've been pretty bad this year.


Trader Joe's Bohemian Lager

This beer pours dark honey golden in color with a quarter inch of head that dissipates fairly quickly.  It is 5.0% ABV.  The aroma is somewhat sweet, like creamed corn, just a touch of lager funk and hop bitterness.  The taste is better than the aroma.  It does taste like a European lager, but a very light and watered down version.  There is a touch of grain and straw and some hop bitterness on the end, but none of the flavors are very forward.  Overall, "meh."

Trader Jose - Light, Premium Lager and Dark

This is the Trader Joe's store brand line of Mexican beers.

Light - This beer pours light to medium golden in color with an inch of fizzy head that dissipates fairly quickly but leaves some lacing down the glass as the beer is consumed.  The aroma is some grain, some lager funk and a bit of hop bitterness, and a little bit of sour metallic.  The taste is corn and lager funk and just a bit of hop bite.  The mouth feel is slightly watery but also provides a sting of big carbonation.  This is much better than most light beers.

Premium Lager - This pours just like the Light, although it may be a tad darker golden.  The aroma is similar to the Light, but better.  There is more grain, more hops, some straw and no sour, metallic notes.  The taste follows the aroma, just a touch of sweetness.  It has the big carbonation of the light, but is less watery in mouth feel.  I would like to combine what is best about this and the Light into a single better beer, but for lower priced store brands, these are pretty good beers for what they are.

Dark - This beer pours dark brown, still just translucent, with a bit of amber and an inch of fizzy head.  The aroma is sweet, some roasted malt and dark, dried fruit.  The taste is roasted malt, a bit of coffee, a tinge of sweetness.  The taste is good but fairly light, the mouthfeel is bitingly carbonated and just a touch watery.

Zlaty Hrad Extra Strong Beer

This is from the Van Pur Brewery in Rakszava, Poland and is 7.0% ABV.

It pours a very dark golden in color.  The aroma is strong, of grain, and strangely, root beer.  The taste is the same as the aroma and is slightly sweet.  The root beer notes are a bit strange and unique, but overall this is a decent strong lager as most of them are either too sweet and/or the alcohol overwhelms everything else.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Rogue Maierfest Lager

Rogue is out of Newport, Oregon.

This beer pours a dark golden color, with an inch of foamy head and ample carbonation.  The head dissipates and leaves almost no lacing as the beer is consumed.  The aroma is intensely of grain and straw, with a slightly spicy bitterness.  There is a full flavored taste of grain and straw with just enough bitterness to balance.  The finish is dry and smooth at the same time.  This is like a German lager.  This is one of the best American lagers I have ever had.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Big Sky Brewing Co. Heavy Horse Scotch Ale

From the Big Sky brewery of Missoula, Montana.

This beer comes in at 6.7% ABV and pours a dark to medium brown to dark ruby in color.  The aroma is sweet, heavy malt with a bit of port wine.  The alcohol is apparent.  The mouthfeel is very pleasing, smooth and creamy.  The taste is nutty, roasted malt, not nearly as sweet as the aroma.  There is just enough hops to provide balance but the malts predominate.  There is a touch of alcohol apparent at the finish.  The aftertaste is nutty and pleasing.  This is a nice, strong Scotch style ale.

http://www.bigskybrew.com/

O' Fallon Brewery - Sticke It to the Man Sticke Alt; Wheach

The O' Fallon Brewery in O' Fallon, Missouri. 

http://www.ofallonbrewery.com/

Sticke It to the Man Sticke Alt - This is their take on a German style Sticke Alt beer.  The name is a great play on words. This beer pours dark brown, translucent at the bottom of the glass, hints of ruby and slightly cloudy with no head and little carbonation.  The aroma is sweet, malty and almost a bit spicy.  The taste is sweet with some roasted malt.  It manages to be thickly sweet and watery thin at the same time; which makes it easy to drink and hard to believe that this beer is 10% ABV.  I am not too into this one, only because in general I don't personally favor really sweet beers. 


Wheach Peach Wheat Beer - This was voted the 2007 Best Beer in St. Louis by the Riverfront Times.  It pours a bright and glowing yellow golden in color with almost an inch of pure white foam.  The aroma is massive peach nectar on top of malty beer.  It is like peach jam on toast or some kind of liquid peach cobbler.  The taste follows the aroma, it tastes just like peach nectar on top of a nice solid, malty lager. 


August Schell Brewery - Schell's Pils; Schell's Dark

The August Schell Brewery is in New Ulm, Minnesota and they brew a wide variety of beers, both under the Schell's label and as contract brewers.  In addition, they now own and brew the Grain Belt line of beers.  This year is the 150th anniversary of the brewery.  They are the second oldest family owned brewery in the United States.  I think that Yuengeling is probably the oldest family owned brewery.

Schell's Pils - This beer pours a dark honey golden in color with a quarter-inch of thick foam.  The aroma is of slightly sweet grain and aromatic, bitter hops.  The flavor is big, slightly sweet malt and grain, followed immediately by bitter and dry hops that wash over and meld and balance well with the malt.  This is a very flavorful and enjoyable American lager.

Schell's Dark - This beer pours a medium dark brown, somewhat translucent.  There is a tall quarter inch of creamy head that is very light brown in color.  The aroma is caramel, lightly roasted, sweet and nutty.  The taste follows the aroma with a slight burnt sugar finish on the caramel and a very slight nutty bitterness on the end.  This is a solid light brown ale.  If you like Newcastle Brown, you will also like this.


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Big Mug Amber

This is from the Baltika Breweries of St. Petersburg, Russia and is 4.0% alcohol.  It comes in a 1.5 L plastic bottle. 

It pours a pale, washed-out, light brown in color.  There is very little carbonation.  The aroma is surprisingly massive.  There is a bit of sweetness, a lot of grain, hay and straw, and a bit of earthiness, almost smokiness.  The flavor is of massive grain and straw, with a hint of lager "funk".  This is like drinking a granary and straw-filled old barn (minus any manure).  I am really surprised at the massive aroma and flavor of this beer.

http://www.baltikabeer.com/

Gavroche French Red Ale

From the Brasserie de Saint Sylvestre in France.  This French Red Ale is bottle conditioned and is 8.5% ABV.

The beer pours reddish-copper-amber in color with a thick and massive head.  The aroma is somewhat difficult to discern through the massive foam, but what comes through is fruity, a bit like a clementine orange, malty and a bit of perfumy yeastiness.  The taste is subtle and delightful, there is fruit, malt and pastry.  There is just enough bitterness on the finish to balance the malt and yeast.  The yeast is present in the taste but more in a light aromatic background form.  I am not a fan of really forward and super flavorful yeasts, so I am always a little nervous of a bottle conditioned beer.  This one is very enjoyable and drinks much lighter than one would presume from its 8.5% ABV.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Breckinridge Brewery Regal Double Pilsner

This is from the Small Batch Series from Breckinridge Brewery out of Denver, Colorado.  I have to say the bottle is very cool with all its regal lions.

The beer is 7.0% ABV and pours a dark honey golden color.  The aroma is a bit sweet, malty, with a fruity tang of hops in the back.  The taste is of sweet pastry with fruit along with a perfume bitter hop finish.

Capital Brewery Autumnal Fire Doppelbock

This beer pours a dark copper and amber color with hints of red.  The aroma is sweet caramel malt, with the caramel being slightly burnt.  There is also some dark, dried fruit.  The taste follows the aromas with the deep caramel, dried fruit and alcohol merging into a fruitcake like effect.  This is quite a sweet beer with an almost sherry like quality developing as it warms.  7.8% ABV.

The Capital Brewery is out of Middleton, Wisconsin.

Joseph's Brau Brewing Company Oktoberfest

This beer pours copper and amber in color with a thin creamy head.  The aroma is light damp grain and straw and a bit of iodine.  The taste is caramel malt with a bit of crusty bread and a bitter hop finish.  The beer drinks light yet flavorful, with a crisp and smooth mouthfeel.

Peace Tree Brewing Company Cornucopia Farmhouse Ale

The Peace Tree Brewing Company is out of Knoxville, Iowa.  This beer includes the use of local sweet corn, stalks included, in the brewing.

The beer pours a light honey golden in color.  The aroma is foremost of yeast, slightly sour, soap and leather, along with sweet corn and bubble gum.  The taste is like chewing fermented sweet corn with stale Bubble Yum.  Not to my taste.  If you like a yeast forward beer, you would probably enjoy this.  But, if you have read many of my posts, you know that I am not a fan of yeast forward beers.  They just are not to my taste.  Too bad, because I was very intrigued by the description of this beer.

Augustinerbrau Munchen Edelstoff

From the Augustiner Brewery of Munich Germany.  5.7% ABV.  This beer pours a light golden in color with three-quarter inch of foamy head that dissipates fairly rapidly.  There is ample carbonation.  The aroma is of grain and straw with some lager "funk" and grassy hops.  The taste is of grain and biscuits with some straw and grass.  It is crisp with a mildly bitter and dry finish.  A nice German lager.

Before and After Triple Bock

I've heard of double bocks, but a triple bock?  This beer is from the Rinkuskiai brewery in Lithuania.  It is a whopping 12% ABV.  

The beer pours a light copper in color, nearly glowing.  The aroma is sweet, alcohol, fruit, dried fruit and bubble gum.  The taste is very sweet, cloyingly so, alcohol, caramel roll, dried fruit, and again, bubble gum. There is an herbal, grassy note on the end, the hops fighting with the sweetness. There is in fact a dry, bitterness on the finish, but the overwhelming impression is sweet.  This is too sweet for my taste and basically a high alcohol grain swill.  Each sip I say is going to be the last, then down the drain it goes, but so far I am still sipping and not pouring out. This is the Lithuanian version of St. Ides High Gravity malt liquor.



The 2010 and 2013 labels are flipped.

2013:

2010:

New Belgium Brewing Ranger IPA

This 6.5% ABV India Pale Ale is from New Belgium Brewing of Fort Collins, Colorado.  

The beer pours a light and clear amber and copper in color. There is a tall, thick, foamy head of off-white.  The aroma is hop forward, citrus, tropical, cantaloupe and a hint of pine.  The taste has tangerine, grapefruit, ripe melon, and tropical fruit all nicely balanced on a malt background enough to hold it up.  The finish is bracingly bitter.  There is the slightest hint of pine in the aftertaste.  The beer drinks smooth and round with a subtle carbonation. This is an all around solid American IPA. 


New Belgium Brewing Hoptober Golden Ale

6% ABV.  This beer pours dark golden with a touch of honey.  The aroma is fairly well balanced between an almost spicy malt and hoppy fruitiness.  It is hard to discern anything that predominates, it is pleasing all around.  In the taste there is a surprising pronounced pineapple/coconut.  This is like a beer pina colada.  There is a bit of a bitter finish.  The mouth-feel is creamy and smooth.  I find the taste of this beer surprising, pleasant but surprising.  From the bottle:  Five hops and four malts make Hoptober Golden Ale a veritable cornucopia of the earth.  Pale and wheat malt are mashed with rye and oats to create a medium-bodied ale with a creamy mouth feel.  Centennial, Cascade, Sterling, Willamette and Glacier hops form a bonfire of citrus notes, fruity cheers and a bold finale.


Bayern Brewing - Pilsener Lager; Dancing Trout

Bayern Brewing is from Missoula, Montana.       http://www.bayernbrewery.com/

Pilsener Lager - This pours a light golden in color and appears slightly cloudy.  The aroma is sweeter and fruitier than I would expect from a pilsener beer.  The malt is in the background of the aroma but is in the foreground of the taste.  There is a very pronounced maltiness and grain with a bitter hop finish.  The sweetness in the aroma is not as noticeable in the taste due to the bitter finish.  This beer is within it’s “best before” date, but I can’t help wondering if it wouldn’t be better very fresh and on tap.  It declares itself to be an authentic Bavarian lager brewed in strict accordance with the Rheinheitsgebot or German Purity Law, but in actuality pales in comparison to any German pilsener.



Dancing Trout - This beer is dedicated to helping preserve Montana's trout fishing habitat.  It is 5.3% ABV and pours a glowing orange-yellow golden in color with a small white head.  The aroma is malty wheat with some light fruit characteristics.  The taste follows the aroma directly, adds a touch of honey grain and ends with a slightly bitter finish.  This is an easy drinking wheat beer and I would drink it again.


 

Sierra Dorada Lager

Pours a dark golden with ample carbonation.  Not a lot of aroma, smells of crisp apples, a bit of sweetness and a bit of tartness.  Not a lot of flavor either, mostly of apples, a hint of grain, a bit of sourness.  The carbonation is intense and burns the mouth and throat.  The only circumstance under which I would drink this beer is with really spicy food.  Then it would be a good counterpart.  It is not one I would want to sit around and drink by itself.  It is essentially a low to middling quality American macro lager dressed up with a Spanish name and nice looking can.   4.3% ABV.  Brewed and canned by the Black Mountain Brewing Company of Rochester, New York for the Black Mountain Brewing Company of Cave Creek, Arizona.


Carib Brewery Royal Extra Stout

“The Lion Stout”  This beer pours deep black with an inch of foamy light brown head that disappears rather quickly.  The aroma is sweet with burnt caramel.  If a smell can be creamy, this is it.  It smells like a coffee based drink that has a lot of cream, some sugar, and a hint of vanilla and caramel.  The taste follows the aroma but is overwhelmed by the absolute cloying sweetness of this stout.  I prefer drier stouts to really sweet stouts.  This one is in the really, really sweet category.  The Carib Brewery is from Trinidad, West Indies.


Yuengling - Traditional Lager; Premium; Bock; Black and Tan

The D.G. Yuengling & Son brewery from Pottsville, Pennsylvania started in 1829 and is America's oldest brewery.  They have a line of beers, and while I have not had any recently until I was given this one, I recall really enjoying their Lord Chesterfield Ale and their Porter.

http://www.yuengling.com/

Traditional Lager- This beer pours light brown-copper-amber in color.  The aroma is slightly sweet, wet grain, malt, and some hop spiciness.  When you are a kid and smell a beer for the first time, this is the essence of that aroma that imprints on your brain.  The taste is light yet rich at the same time, a very nice blend of hop and malt, toasty, ever so slightly sweet, and a crisp bitter finish.  This is a really enjoyable beer.


Premium - This beer pours golden in color with an inch of pure white foamy head.  The aroma is slightly sweet, grainy, with a touch of straw and lager hoppiness.  The taste is grain, corn, a touch of straw and a touch of hops.  There is  pleasant malty aftertaste.  This is a solid American value lager.  I would take it any day over Bud or Coors, as it is more flavorful than they are.


Bock - This beer pours a medium-dark brown in color, translucent, but not transparent.  There is a small head of very light brown foam.  The aroma is light for a bock, but what is there is dark roasted malt, a bit nutty.  The taste is slightly sweet, but well balanced, dark and roasted malt, with a light tartness, and a moderate bitterness on the finish.  This beer is delicious and dangerously drinkable.  It reminds me a lot of Scottish 80 shilling beers.  Plus, you have to love the old school looking label with a goat drinking out of a chalice of beer.


Black and Tan - This beer pours an extremely dark brown to black, touch of ruby in the light.  There is a sparse head of light brown foam.  The aroma is light dark roasted malt, slightly sweet, a bit smoky, almost peat like.  The taste follows the aromas, less smokey, light dark cocoa.  This is both very flavorful and very light at the same time.  A tasty, but easy drinking beer.





Friday, December 17, 2010

Samuel Adams Latitude 48 IPA; Latitude 48 IPA Deconstructed Series

The Samuel Adams beers are from the Boston Brewing Company, originally of Boston, Massachusetts, but now also brewed in Cincinnati, Ohio and Breingsville, Pennsylvania.This IPA is made with five hop varieties all grown at latitude 48, and Sam Adams has released a series of five different IPA's, each made with only one of the hop varieties. They are each 6.0% ABV.

Latitude 48 IPA - First tasting: The beer pours a dark copper, with a bit of amber, in color, and a small off-white head. For an IPA, the aroma seems very  malty. The main aroma to me is a spicy rye bread, with a bit of tea and tobacco. The taste is rye bread, a bit of floral tartness, grapefruit peel, with a very bitter finish. I guess I was expecting a more American style IPA. This is not hop forward.

Another taste on July 8, 2011, preliminary to trying the Latitude 48 IPA "Deconstructed" series: The beer pours brown-orange-ruby in color, medium dark, but clear. There is a half inch of thick and creamy head that is off-white and leaves medium lacing down the glass. The aroma is a bit fruity, red plum jam over a caramel malt. The taste is light fruit, slightly sweet, a solid, but subtle, malt base with a blisteringly dry and bitter grapefruit peel finish (more bitter than citrus). This is much better than the one I tried previously, but it is more of an English-style IPA (bitter over malt base) than American style IPA (citrus, tropical fruit, pine, hop forward).


Zeus variety Latitude 48 - The Zeus variety's growing region is the Yakima Valley of Washington state. This beer pours orange-brown-ruby in color, a shade lighter than the regular Latitude 48. It has over an inch of thick, billowy head that is off-white in color that leaves light lacing down the glass. This is supposed to be a piney variety of hop, but the aroma is subdued, mostly fruit over caramel malt. The taste is massive bitterness, the pine is apparent in the bitterness although not strong, over a light fruity malt base. The bitterness here is extremely strong, and leaves a tonsil curdling astringency at the back of the throat that is vaguely grapefruit peel.


Hallertau Mittelfrueh - The growing region for this variety of hops is Hallertau, Germany. This beer pours a clear orange-brown-ruby in color similar to the Zeus variety. There is a half-inch of thick, creamy, off-white head that leaves medium lacing down the glass. Not a very aromatic beer. The taste is lightly fruity, citrusy, and floral on a bed of caramel malt with a relatively lightly bitter and dry finish. 


Simcoe - The growing region for this variety of hops is also the Yakima Valley of Washington state. It pours a ruby-orange brown in color, medium dark, but clear. There is a tall half-inch of thick foamy head that is just off-white in color, and leaves medium lacing down the glass. The aroma is tropical fruit and cantaloupe with a slight musty, earthiness on a firm malty, caramel base.  This is the most hop forward aromatic wise of the varieties so far. The taste is a grapefruit bitter tang, fruity, malty and slightly sweet, but with a bracingly dry, bitter finish.


East Kent Goldings - The growing region for this variety of hops is East Kent, United Kingdom. This pours a bright and clear orange-brown-ruby. There is a tall inch of thick, foamy yet creamy off-white head that leaves sticky lacing of medium density down the glass. The aroma is fresh, clean, grassy, flowery, with some plum-like fruit and some light caramel malt followed by a spicy rye note. The taste follows the aroma quite closely. This is bitter, but lightly and refreshingly so. This is a really nice and very drinkable English-style IPA.  The Simcoe was my favorite hop, but this is my favorite beer overall of the Latitude 48's. 


Ahtanum - This variety of hops is also from the Yakima Valley of Washington state. It pours a bright, clear orange-ruby-brown in color. There is a half inch of thick creamy head that leaves medium lacing down the glass. The aroma is fresh and clean, light grassy and floral notes and light apricot-like fruit. The taste follows the aroma, sits on a bed of somewhat sweet caramel malt, and finishes with a medium bitterness. This is fairly similar to the East Kent Goldings, but has a more bitter finish.