Archive for the ‘Belgian India Pale Ale’ Category

Hugh Malone Ale 2011 by Allagash Brewing Company

331 beer bottles, cans or growlers on the floor...

As I sit here in my tuxedo with a top hat looking all dapper tasting another beer…tuxedo you say?  Yes, I figured since this is the end of my journey to try a unique beer a day for 365 days, why not get all dressed up for the occasion?  My wife should be appearing in her ball gown soon enough and with my three cats (yes three…and no…I’m NOT that crazy cat person) sitting besides me waiting for me to finish typing so they can rip into some ocean whitefish or tuna & egg (yum!!!), this should be one momentous occasion.  As we get ready for the pour, the fireworks start, the strippers dance seductively, and the soothing tones of Steel Panther rip through the air as they launch into ” Eatin’ Ain’t Cheatin’ “, a nice love song.

Into one of my favorite pint glasses, East End Brewing Company (love the slogan on here…buy a good friend a good beer…), goes beer #365.  That beer comes from the great state of Maine and is called Hugh Malone Ale 2011. Brewed by Allagash Brewing Company in the nice city of Portland, this Belgian IPA has an ABV of 7.8%.  I gaze into the glass admiring the golden color and the huge off-white head…you really have to like head done right…and this is done right.  Oh yeah…it left some really nice lacing behind in the glass.  I took a whiff…yum…citrus.  Orange, pineapple, grapefruit (ruby red variety), and even a bit of lemon all tickled my nostrils.  Add in a floral scent and that very familiar Belgian yeasty thing and there you have the nose…in a nutshell.  I have to be honest, my mouth was watering and I couldn’t wait to taste it.  It started with an orange rind like flavor and bitterness.  I also got pineapple juice mixed with a nice bread like flavor.  There was just a touch of pine here.  It finished bitter and a bit dry.  It had a nice medium body with quite the ample amount of tight stinging carbonation.

This was quite good and as the last beer on my this long journey, it was a pleasure to drink.  This is getting the KingBob stamp of approval for sure.

Rating: A

And as the lights dim and the beer empties out of the glass, I realize that my royal quest to drink a unique beer a day for 365 days has finally come to an end.  It has been quite the experience over the last year.   A year filled with highs and lows and of pain and sorrow and couple that with getting in touch with my inner feminine feelings…those deep, deep down inside…wait a minute…what the hell am I talking about???  All this was really about was drinking beer…good beer (and some crap beer too) from all around the world and beyond and to that end I was successful.

And now for stats…I love stats…don’t you?

Stat #1 – When I started this a year ago I weighed 157 pounds.  This morning I weighed 158.2.  A paltry gain of 1.2 pounds…not too shabby…so much for developing a beer belly.  I have to be honest, I did ride my bike quite often along with walking and staying active kept the pounds at bay.

Stat #2 – The average score from the ratings was 2.86…just slightly under a B. Here is how I assigned a score – A+ = 5, A = 4, B+ = 3.5, B = 3, C = 2, D = 1, and the big fat F = 0.

Stat #3 – I had beers from 22 countries and 28 different US States and from 160 different breweries.  The most beers from any one brewery was from Dogfish Head with a a total of 19 beers.  The most from any one State was 54 from Pennsylvania and the most from any one country excluding the USA (303) was 15 from Belgium.

Stat #4 – There were  95 beers I rated B, 75 beers were rated C,   64 beers were rated B+,  48 beers were rated A,  38 beers were rated D,  26 beers I rate A+10 beers were rated F, and 10 didn’t receive a rating due to illness.

Stat #5 – I had 331 bottles or growlers sitting in my basement…the others were either draft beers or bottles I didn’t keep for one reason or another.

Stat #6 – I spent $1571.66  on the beers for an average price of $4.43 per beer.  11 beers were gifted to me .

Stat #7 – I consumed 78 different styles of beer with IPA’s making up the most style consumed at a nice round number of 57.

Stat #8 – The blog received over 130,000 hits.

Stat #9 – And the last stat, although it isn’t a good one.  I got sick 1 time from consuming too much beer and that was after I finished off a growler of Red & Black by Dogfish Head.  That was a rough morning after.

And now it is time for thanks…

Thanks to everyone who visited and commented and put up with my, at times, nutty banter (I hope I didn’t offend anyone…that was never intended…unless you are fans of the Red Sox!!!  I kid of course!!!), thanks to my unofficial proofreader and former co-worker Ralph, thanks to my co-worker Ronaldo for the inspiration from his 365 photo project, thanks to all the other beer bloggers I drew inspiration from (Drew at http://365beers.wordpress.com/ , Scot at http://blog.twobeerdudes.com/ , Gramity at http://www.beerisseur.ca/ , Cavie at http://cavalierbeer.wordpress.com/, G-LO at  http://boozedancing.wordpress.com/ ), and thanks most of all to my wife for putting up with me during the past year of beer drinking…she truly is a saint!  And if I missed ya…thanks to the missed as well!!!

Cheers to you all!!!

And with that, my journey comes to an end.  I truly had a great time doing this but I am also very happy it is over.  I hope I was able to at least give you some inspiration to get out there and try some good craft beer.

After all, life is too short to drink crap beer and as Ben Franklin once said (or maybe he didn’t), “Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy!”

PS –  I will post from time to time when I have a beer that really rocks my world.  I also think I might start a blog (or just add to this one) trying to have a beer from every state in the US, after all, I only hit 28 and there are 22 other states with beer to drink!

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Monk's Revenge by Terrapin Beer Company

Hey look at that…rain…all day and tomorrow.  That is exactly what we don’t need right now with the ground as saturated as it is and the river and stream levels practically overflowing.  Looks like I will have to be keeping a sharp eye on the old sump pump…with beer in hand that is.

Beer #282 is Monk’s Revenge by Terrapin Beer Company.  Haling from Athens, Georgia where the B-52’s also call home, this Belgian IPA has an ABV of 9.6%.  Wow…with that ABV it will be a fun time in the old Love Shack tonight!

The color, oh the lovely color of this brew was a regal golden amber.  Looks pretty, don’t it?  Alas, there was no head to speak of.  It smelled quite spicy, like pepper, and booze.  Yeast and apricots or peaches rounded out the nose for me.  Sweet was the order of the day here up front in the taste.  Towards the back the spiciness and an orange rind like flavor make themselves known.  Mix the whole thing up with a nice bitter bite.  The body was medium, the carbonation was kicking, and the alcohol didn’t hide itself very well at all.  This was a sipper for me.

This wasn’t bad but if I drank one too many of these, my duties watching the sump pump would have been sorely affected.  Rain, rain go away…come on back in about 4 months…then again rain in 4 moths would likely be…snow…yuck!

Rating: B

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Longshot Friar Hop Ale by Samuel Adams

Another Longshot series winner tonight, beer #136 is Longshot Friar Hop Ale by Samuel Adams.  This is a Belgian IPA with an ABV of 9%.  This winning recipe comes from Richard Roper of Georgia.  Lets see  if it is as good as last nights Blackened Hops.

It said it was a Belgian IPA, so why not use a Duvel tulip for the pour.  Look at that amber orange color but wait…where is the head?  Alas…it was not to be found here…shame.  I swirled and sniffed…spicy, yeast, orange, caramel malts, and alcohol (slightly).  Lets taste, shall we?  Hmm…bitter, like orange peel, slightly sweet, some sort of spice going on in here, boozy…*sigh*…not doing it for me tonight at all.  It lingered, a bit too long with the sweetness and bitterness…and it wasn’t all that pleasant.  Medium body and highly carbonated… it felt harsh in the mouth.  Took me a while to finish this…not overly drinkable for me.  It didn’t get much better coming down to room temperature, well, maybe slightly.

This was not nearly as good as the Blackened Hops.  If this was one of the Longshot winners, I wonder what some of the losers tasted like.  Sorry Richard, this wasn’t for me.

Rating: D

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