Posts Tagged Rough Draft

What the Ale?

Back at Rough Draft Brewing again and I tried some of their more experimental offerings. First, I had the Rough Draft What the Ale? pale aged in Pinot noir barrels. This one poured a deep golden orange color with tiny head that dissipated quickly. Grapes and malts predominated the smell. The taste was malty sweet and slightly sour. Grapey wine flavors carried through the middle. Medium-light body with light carbonation, it finished with a moderate light wine flavor. It was an interesting beer.

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Then I tried the Grapefruit Weekday IPA. It poured bright golden, similar to the regular Weekday IPA, with tiny bubbles and small loose head. The aroma was slightly sour and citrusy. The taste was tart up front, with some grapefruit and mild hoppiness. The middle was somewhat malty and sour. Medium bodied, it finished tart and citrusy. Not quite dynamic enough for me.

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Sorry about not having photos. For some reason Apple iCloud hides certain ones from upload…

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The Best Week Ever (Day 1)

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Every year, the San Diego Brewers Guild puts on a festival celebrating all the magic and splendor of beer, brining together breweries big and small at multiple events from all over the county. Needless to say, I am very excited to hear there is such an appreciation of beer and the culture that surrounds it. I have not made my way to any of the sanctioned events yet,  but I celebrated in my own way.

SDBW celebration collageI started the party at Rough Draft just down the street from my work. I started with my standard Weekday IPA. Then I had two tasters of their barrel-aged offerings: Emboozlement Tripel and Freudian Sip. These are a couple of big beers. The tripel was surprisingly rich, but refreshing. It was sour, but had a nice malt backbone that smoothed it out nicely. That got me ready for the Freudian Sip strong ale. This was like both smelling and drinking almost straight bourbon. It had some nice malty sweetness in the background, but the bourbon was definitely front and center. I loved it.SDBW celebration collage 2

From there I moved on to a local Mexican restaurant named Emiliano’s, where I had my standard at such a place: shot of tequila and a beer, this one Dos Equis (this is not exactly a beer destination, but still good.) Leaving there, I went down the street to San Diego Brewing, a place I am sorry to say I just started going to not long enough ago. These guys have tons of beer on tap and pretty good food. It’s also a great place to catch a game, if you are into that sort of thing. I went with their Grantville Gold, one of the brews they make there on site. This is a good light beer, though not a light beer, per say. I mean to say it is easy-drinking and won’t overpower other things you might eat or drink. It is also fairly low abv at 4.5%, so you can still have fun after you are done with it.

BNS SDBW bandDone with dinner, I decided to head home for a bit to call it a day. Then my buddy came home and invited me to BNS Brewing with him. Well…what could I say? After all, it is Beer Week. So off we went. It turned out they had some goings on for the festivities as well: Grillfellas BBQ serving up some goodness and a live band. For my beer selection, I chose the Gatling Gun Imperial Stout, which seemed like a good one to go with my grilled chicken apple sausage and chocolate imperial stout mini-cupcake. Yeah, it was every bit as good as it sounds…the stout was warm and smooth, but not boozy, despite its 9% abv. It was very heavy on the chocolate and moved quickly to coffee thereafter. It finished fairly clean, with strong chocolate bitterness and coffee lingering for some time after. It would make a fine nightcap and it did.

I had a great start to SDBW2014 and will try to post here of my ongoing adventures celebrating this most wondrous spectacle.

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Belated Oktoberfest

Rough Draft OktoberfestA little late to the party, after I promised a series celebrating Oktoberfest, I give you one from a great local brewery, Rough Draft. They are starting to send their bottles and kegs out more, so if you see it, pick some up and support the locals! I always do, though I got Rough Draft Oktoberfest Lager direct from the brewery because it’s always better from the source.

This one poured a clean medium brown, with light carbonation and foamy head that stuck around a pleasing amount of time. It did not smell like much; very mild and slightly bready was about all I could smell. The first thing I tasted was a lot of bitterness up front, then that faded to a mildness that was almost no taste at all. There was a slight pick up of malty notes toward the end, but that was about it. There really was no finish to speak of.

Over all, I was slightly disappointed with this beer. I had hoped for some bigger taste, but it just did not materialize.head pic top

I would give 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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