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ScottR

BEER! What's in your fridge?

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What I read was the essential oils in hops (lupulin and myrcene, I think) act as an anti-bacterial and prevent the brew from spoiling over time. One of those does that more than the other and the other is more about fragrance. I suspect that most of the IPAs that arrived in India were fairly malty and bitter, not that is a terrible thing. I also suspect that the flavors of fresh hops was discovered over here during the craft brew explosion, which led to the development of all the new hop varieties and new flavors and the hop bombs that are so popular.

That is my suspicion, I have no research to back it up, but I bet it's not far off base.

SR

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I ran across this for the first time today. It reminded me of an Imperial IPA a bit. Very smooth mouthfeel and nice hop followed by a heavy malt body. 9.5% abv as well so going to have to be careful.

Just realized it might be hard to read that label. Beer is Odell Brewing Co. Mountain Standard Double Black India Pale Ale.

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I'm going to have to look that one up. I have loved everything I have ever had out of Odell. That also answers a question I had for you, which was can you get Odell in your area. When I was in the Kansas City area this past weekend, I was picking up some Boulevard offerings that I haven't seen down here and came across a story that Boulevard was celebrating its 25th anniversary with a silver anniversay celebration brew made in conjunction with Odell, who opened their doors the very next day.

I'll be keeping my eyes open for that.

By the way that appears to be a heavily figured maple box in the background of your shot. Is that something in progress?

I'm heading off for Vegas in a few hours....trade show for work. I know, it's a tough job, but somebody's got to do it - right?

Hopefully I can find something new to try out there too.

SR

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I got a late start on liking Odell's beers. The first time around for me I got some six packs that were all bad. They included 400 Lb Monkey and 90 Shilling among others. At the time

I did not realize the product itself had gone bad and just assumed I disliked Odell's beer. It took a couple beer festivals and cautious re-tasting to discover that they really do make

some great stuff.

I always keep my eyes open for new arrivals but this is the first one I have seen from a brewery I knew and trusted in quite some time.

The box in the background is a jewelry chest I am building for my friends daughter. It is hopefully in the last stages of finish. I am hoping I can let it cure for a few weeks and then wet sand and assemble. The box itself is maple and mahogany, the interior trays are walnut. Surprisingly, I ran across that heavily figured maple at Home Depot. Bought the 3/4"x6"x8' board for somewhere around 20 bucks. Ever since running across that gem I look at the maple bin every time I visit that store.

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I've been traveling a lot lately and am just now getting to some of the stuff I brought back from the Kansas City area.

Here's a really good Emperial IPA from Boulevard called Double Wide. It may be the first one I've had that describes the malt as caremel and toffee and I can actually taste caramel and toffee. So smooth!

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I may have to update my sixpack to hold Pliny, Sculpin, Double Wide, Odell IPA, Double Jack, Little Sumpin' Extra........and all those others that were in the original 6.

SR

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Thia was another I brought back from MO.

After a few days in Vegas drinking Lagunitas, Green Flash and Stone on tap, the 400 lb. monkey I drank to warm up was rough. I knew I couldn't drink this after hoppy beers though......

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This is a highly rated quadruple Belgian strong brown ale from Boulevard.......and to me it tasted like a fermented fruit cake. Kind of sweet and attractive at first taste. And I just didn't get into it much after that. I will say that at 10.5% abv. it was enticing me after the second snifter......but I couldn't finish it.

SR

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And here are a couple more my son sent me home with. First up was Deschutes Black Butte Porter. I've decided I like porters, but rarely more than one at a time. The strike me almost as an after dinner drink.

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And then this Deschutes Obsidian Stout. I was told these are best in cold weather, so I waited and it got into the low 40's this weekend. I gave it a fair test.

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But I don't think stouts are for me. I saved this one and put it in the brisket I'm smoking this weekend instead of the coffee I normally use.

Then I opened a bottle of Lagunitas Hop Stoopid and all was was right with the world again. While not quite on a level with Pliny, the flavors are similar and this is a very very good double IPA.

SR

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I ran across this for the first time today. It reminded me of an Imperial IPA a bit. Very smooth mouthfeel and nice hop followed by a heavy malt body. 9.5% abv as well so going to have to be careful.

Just realized it might be hard to read that label. Beer is Odell Brewing Co. Mountain Standard Double Black India Pale Ale.

Thank you sir for bringing this to my attention. I found it outstanding. I do believe that black IPAs will be my concession to the dark and black beers for winter thing.

I had two of these at 9.5% followed by an Odell IPA ......and was pretty much ready for bed.

SR

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Scott, your posts have inspired me to buy a fancy new beer tasting glass. And some new beer to test it out, of course.

I got Deschutes Obsidian Stout. Now this is my jam! It's smooth and rich with a great coffee and chocolate flavor.

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Cool glass! These short stemmed things are fun to hold and drink out of. There appears to be a little guy with big hands trapped in it though. :D

SR

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Years ago, back when I brewed, I made a Barley Wine for my wife to celebrate her getting accepted into law school. Barley wines have high alcohol (this one was around 11%) and can age. I brewed it in 94 and bottled it in 95 (they take a while to ferment). The other night we drank the next to last bottle. Damn it was good. Why did I stop brewing? How often do you get to drink a 19 year old beer and have it be good?

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Years ago, back when I brewed, I made a Barley Wine for my wife to celebrate her getting accepted into law school. Barley wines have high alcohol (this one was around 11%) and can age. I brewed it in 94 and bottled it in 95 (they take a while to ferment). The other night we drank the next to last bottle. Damn it was good. Why did I stop brewing? How often do you get to drink a 19 year old beer and have it be good?

That's a good point.

I'm betting the only reason most beers get that old is because they are not good. Perhaps that's why they call what you made barleyWINE.

SR

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I had a pretty good week fro trying out new stuff. A buddy of mine had to go to Chicago land and brought back a variety pack of Great Lakes Brewerey brews. We were introduced to that brew house by another buddy who is originally from Cleveland, the home of Great Lakes Brewery. After a little online checking I find that this is a highly rated brewerery.......and I soon found out why.

First up was Dortmunder Golden Lager--Dortmunder style lager. Very nice, but not the lager flavor I normally think of.

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Next up was Elliot Ness amber lager. This was not nearly as dark as the picture makes it look....but still pretty dark for a lager. It may have been the best lager I've ever tasted.

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Burning River American Pale Ale. Very tasty, Cascade hoppedands similar to Sierra Nevada but perhaps a tad more robust.

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Edmund Fitzgerald Porter, and a fine porter it is!

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SR

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And yesterday I picked up this little gem from Oskar Blues, whose brewpub a had the pleasure of spending an evening at a few years ago.

Deviant Dales IPA.

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Note the way they spell coloRADo....I wonder if Brett has run across these.

SR

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Got to try a couple of local brews the other night: No Name's 11 Amp IPA and Fort Bend's Thundrbolt IPA. I liked the latter best even though it was a challenge to pour. Half a bottle into the glass caused the head to overflow....both halves of the bottle. And yet once it settled it was quite tasty.

In honor of some beer truck graphics we're doing I picked up the Odell flagship: 90 Shilling Ale. This is very good and nice to look at too. I still prefer Odell IPA to it......but I prefer that to most everything; it's one of my very favorites.

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And I found the Lagunitas Little Sumpin' Wild. This is a Belgium IPA and also quite tasty, but I prefer American west coast style IPAs I am coming to learn. Lagunitas IPA and Little Sumpin' Extra are very hard to beat.

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SR

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I traveled to Missouri over the Holidays and picked up a few items that I haven't seen yet in Houston.

Two Brothers Heavy Handed India Pale Ale. I found this to be maltier than I expected from something claiming to be heavy handed and wet hopped. It is nicely balanced and tasty enough though. I'd certainly drink it again, but probably won't buy it again.....there's too many I like better.

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Boulevard Single Wide IPA. This is great stuff! Fairly complex and hop forward with grapefruit shining through, without being overbearing. I will certainly buy this again and it goes high up on the list.

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I got some reading material for Christmas......apparently my interest in craft beers and IPA is not a secret.

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I've read a few chapters of the IPA book which is written by the master brewer at Stone. It seems his research has found that IPA was not invented to survive the trip to India. The style already existed. It was found that the style did survive the trip better than other styles (which were also shipped and a fair percentage survived the trip as well) and it became the most popular type to be shipped to India...possibly because of the tropical climate--pale ales being more refreshing than porter and the like. It also seems that 90% of Britain's beer exports in the latter half of the 1700's and early 1800's went to North America as opposed to India. I'll have to read further to see what happens next. I do know the next stop will be in Burton on Trent, which is where our good friend Wes Venebles lives....or did when we last heard from him a year or so ago.

SR

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Also for Christmas, I got a nice bottle of Boulevard Silver anniversary ale. It is released in conjunction with Odell who slod the their first keg the day after Boulevard sold their first keg, twenty five years ago. This was a nice malty strong ale that went down quite easily.

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And I brought back some of Bell's outstanding Two Hearted Ale.

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SR

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The wife and I tried a cool little restaurant here in Hollywood, and I got this wonderful stout. It's Firestone Walker's Velvet Merlin oatmeal stout, and it has every bit of the roasted coffee and chocolate notes that I love so much. Highly recommended!

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My son recently said the same thing about Velvet Merlin. Firestone Walker makes great beer!

Interestingly enough, just yesterday I was reading one of those books pictured and learned that the first name for that beer was Velvet Merkin....and some folks were morally outraged enough that they changed it to Merlin.

SR

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That is the one I read that in. That is a really good book, actually. It's well written, easy to read, full of fun factoids and even better- he has two recomendations to try for every style and sub-style and a list of a half dozen more for each if you can't get your hands on his first choices. There are also a number of features on breweries that are really interesting. Firestone Walker was one of those included.

I just finished learning about barleywines......Scotch ales are up next.

SR

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Scott,

your taste in beer is excellent.

As far as personal favorites, we have a brewery here in Huntsville that I really like called Straight to Ale. They have a couple of 'big' beers that I'm a fan of. In particular their Unobtanium, which is a bourbon barrel aged old ale, and Laika, which is a bourbon barrel aged russian imperial stout.

Besides that, I like a number that you have listed in this thread. I like just about anything by Stone, their Double Bastard and Lukcy Basartd (yes, I spelled that right) are both excellent.

I like a pretty wide variety, but my favorite styles are barleywines, RIS's, imperial IPA's, old ales, and Belgian quads.

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I'm going to have to pull out that Beer Courses book. I think they actually recommended that Unobtanium in the chapter on barrel aging.

SR

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