Most of the time, I don’t get to try a lot of different beers at once. This is partly so I don’t get ill; mixing beer styles can be as unpleasant mixing other kinds of alcohol, but it also is economics. Who can afford to spend all that cash?
However, when going to the coast on a family vacation, we have an exception to the rule. I was to be surrounded by people who oppressively cared about me! Call it an excuse if you wish, but what the hell; I got a few different beers to try, took notes and photos, and here we go!
I kicked Friday off with some Green Flash Imperial IPA. The label says it has Summit and Nugget hops, and they give the beer a heavy grapefruit nose and some bite on the back that really stuck with me. Happily munching on my Mom’s monster cookies, I noticed that this beer got more piney as it warmed up. The flavor got so strong, I thought I was drinking evergreen tea. Pine does not go as well with oatmeal-raisin-chocolate cookie items, so I finished this beer rather quickly. Perhaps some beers should be served in certian portions. If this beer turns into a tree that fast, maybe it would be better served in twelve ounce bottles.
The second beer comes to Portland by way of Japan from a Portland expat, or so the fine people at the Belmont Station tell me. This beer, Baird’s The Carpenter’s Mikan Ale, had an odd fruit fermentation aspect; the bottle tells me there are citrus flavors, but I don’t believe that. More like something between a banana and a tangerine. It stopped short of cloying by introducing a dryness at the very end, I presume from the fruit but I’m not sure. This is the trouble with tasting a flavor I’ve never had like mikan fruit; I have no idea where it’s subtle contributions to the beer kick in, and where the yeast or malts would take over.
As the evening is wearing down and everyone else is talking about coffee, a drink I have no experience with and no real drive to drink, I finish with the Eel River Triple Exultation. I was looking forward to this beer, because it was from one of the few breweries I liked at the Organic festival. The Triple Exultation is an old ale, but it was a hell of a lot sweeter than I thought it would be. Usually, old ales have some alcohol warmth to balance out their sweetness, but this beer not so. It’s all malts, and that puts the beer off balance.
Still, it was a good way to start off the weekend. More tomorrow!