Posts Tagged floral

Running From Taste

Ninkasi Beer Run IPAJust exploring my surroundings some more, I went down to the Pacific Beach area of San Diego. I don’t usually go down there, as it is mostly surfer bros, tatoo and vape shops and a whole heap of trendiness in which I don’t belong. What did belong (in my beer glass) was Beer Run IPA (7.3%abv). This beer poured golden color, with a cap of foamy white head. It smelled floral and bitter. The taste was very bitter, followed by some floral hops into the middle. It was light bodied and lightly carbonated, finishing much as it started: bitter and floral. Not super dynamic for one of my favorite breweries.

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British “Flavor”

New English BrewingNew English Brewing is a VERY small brewery in the Mira Mesa/Sorrento Valley area. Their operation is pretty typical of breweries around here: just a stall in an industrial office park, with a rollup door in front that gives the impression of a self-storage warehouse. There was a British flag on the wall, with the tasting counter straight ahead and the fridge/storeroom behind it. Three tables are all that fit in the very small amount of floor space available.

What they lacked in space, New English made up for in beer selection. They had a lot of different beers to choose from. Not wanting to miss out, I decided to make myself a flight: two casks, a brown and a tripel.

I started with the casked Pure & Simple IPA. It poured a rich golden color, with foamy head that stuck to the sides of the glass. It smelled mild, with slight fruity and flowery aromas. Medium mouthfeel and light in carbonation were the first impressions I got on the taste. The middle was malty with some fruity hops and it finished somewhat dry with mild hops trailing.

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Next I sampled another cask offering: Humbly Legit IPA. This one poured a light golden with creamy, sticky white head. Aromas were floral and grassy; reminded me of springtime. The taste was equally as creamy as the pour led me to believe it would be. No identifiable flavors came through at first, though. Mild malty flavors lasted through the middle of the drink. Virtually no carbonation and medium-light mouthfeel, the maltiness faded to mild and dry sensations, with only a faint flowery hop flavor trailing. Not very strong on flavor on this one.

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Flight

After that, I moved to the Brewers Special Brown. It poured dark amber, with small, loose off white head. It smelled carmelly sweet from a heavy dose of malts. The taste followed right up with sweet carmel and malty sweetness, though more mildly than the aromas led me to believe. There was also a very slight taste of dark fruit underneath all the maltiness. Medium mouthfeel and light in carbonation, it finished very malty sweet and carmelly. Despite all the sweetness, I liked this beer.

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Finally, I made my way to the Troopers Tripple (not tripel as I originally thought.) This session IPA poured very pale yellow with fizzy white head that did not stick around long. It smelled hoppy and grassy, with some light fruit aromas. A strong dose of flowers met my tongue on the taste. I noted the medium mouthfeel and light carbonation next, followed by a malty middle, finishing with more floral flavors, with some fruitiness. It also left my mouth a little dry.

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So, not an overwhelmingly tasty collection of beers greeted me on this visit, but overall I enjoyed this brewery brought.

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Brew With a Twist

Twisted Manzanita Pale AleWell, not really, but it sounded kind of snazzy. This is a new one for me, as I hadn’t really seen them in stores before. This brew is from Twisted Manzanita Ales, a brewery located in “beautiful” Santee, CA, in eastern San Diego county. These guys do can their beer, but I still prefer bottles, despite the purported advantages of canning. I’m always up for trying something new, so let’s get to it.

The Prospect Pale Ale poured a rich golden color with quite heavy carbonation and very thin head that didn’t really stick around long. It is billed as being “citrusy,” though I found it had strictly floral aromas and literally nothing else. The taste was definitely floral up front, with the bubbles adding a refreshing quality to the whole experience. A bit surprising was the somewhat thick mouthfeel for such a “sessionable” beer. It finished very clean with the ever-present floral notes. There was a somewhat unpleasant stickiness after the swallow, followed by a IMG_2123mysterious sourness.

Some of the characteristics were a bit odd. Overall, I would rate this beer:

3

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Rough Draft

IMG_1985There is a local brewery right down the street from my work called Rough Draft Brewing Company. They don’t seem to distribute very widely, but I only started going to their brewery/tasting room a couple of months ago, so their brews very could well be in your neck of the woods.

IMG_1984As you can see, it’s just a pretty nondescript industrial office space. That is mostly the norm, though, for small brewery startups. Inside, however, is where the magic happens.

IMG_1986They display all of their wares in the lobby for visitors’ perusal. Directly behind where the picture to the right was taken is a hallway leading to a couple private party/meeting rooms and the warehouse where they store all the goodies that go into their beers.

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Their tasting room is really well laid out: all the beer making going on right in front of the tasting counter area, with stools and comfortable couches. It’s a cool thing to be able to sit among the making of what you’re drinking. It makes me appreciate the work that went into it just that much more. After all, that’s what craft beer is all about: making and sharing this stuff we all love so much.

The beer selection is pretty good, considering the apparent size of the operation. They usually have about 10 beers on draft, ranging from a blond to a stout and the ever-present IPA. The draft board always includes at least one nitro selection, as well. For this event, they included two others: their second anniversary special called 2nd Draft Manhattan and a casked IPA called Group Project. 

 

First up, I tried the 2nd Draft Manhattan. This one was a strong ale, clocking in at 9.3% abv. It poured a rich caramel brown color, with fine, slightly off white head. It smelled slightly sweet, though that could have been from the cherry they included with it. It also gave sour and grainy scents. The first sip brought all the alcohol this beer had to bear. It mellowed a bit after to the bourbon flavor you would expect in a Manhattan mixed drink. That was followed by a bitterness I did not expect, thought that could have been the masking effect of the alcohol content. It finished bitter with the lingering bourbon booziness leaving a warmth at the back of my throat.

I would rate this beer:

4

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I am a sucker for anything served in a cask, so next I went for their other special brew: Cask Group Project IPA. This one is made with three kinds of hops: Amarillo, Cascade and Citra. Now, I have to admit ignorance when it comes to hops, considering my previous aversion to beers made with a bunch of them, but I couldn’t help myself. This one poured a deep cloudy golden. It actually reminded me of a wheat beer. It had fine off white head that coated the glass evenly.IMG_1991Putting my sniffer to the glass about knocked me over due to the copious hop content of this beer. After that subsided, it actually smelled pretty mild and only slightly floral. Tasting it, I was surprised at the slight sourness. Then all the hops slowly drifted back along my palate to the back, finishing with a hoppy kick. The aftertaste was a bit bitter with some interesting floral flavors.

All in all, not a bad beer. I was impressed by how they were able to pack so many hops into this beer without absolutely knocking out my taste buds.

I would rate this beer:

4

 

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