Tag Archives: hops

Beer Review: New Belgium Ranger IPA

8 Aug

Ranger is probably an overdue beer for me to review, so here it is! New Belgium is one of the best selling craft breweries in the country, and I think they’ve earned it. I am really excited for the day when I get to head out to the beauty of Colorado, and take the tour. It goes without saying, that if your logo is a bicycle, you’ve already won my heart (=

For starters, I love the label of Ranger, it’s very simple. Green is also my favorite color so I’m a little biased, but hey. I also love seeing the fat tire bike anywhere and everywhere.

Ranger pours a very clear golden with nice visible carbonation. When I say clear, I mean it, this beer has no haze, it’s a color that feels crisp. I find that a lot of beers tend to be stronger than they smell, but Ranger is a bit of the opposite. The smell is good, but it doesn’t slam you with hops right away, it’s a bit of a more gentle introduction. You can smell hops for sure, with the light earthy and citrus aromas, but you don’t get a total hopslam. I get a little caramel as well.

The taste of this beer is great. It has a great flavor, hoppy with a bit of caramel, and not a ton of bitterness. It brings the hops, but not overpowering, it’s pretty pleasant. The mouthfeel is good as well, somewhat gentle, it seems to roll around in the mouth as if the feel is mimicking it’s crips golden color. I think the aftertaste could be a bit more bitter, but it fits with the rest of the beer very well.

All in all, Ranger is a great IPA. It’s not my favorite, and it’s not intense, but it’s very pleasant. I think it would be a good option for those who aren’t looking to get hop-slammed. It’s a great all-around beer though, really satisfying. Go buy some and drink it. For real.

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New Glarus: Moon Man

31 Jul

Moon Man is one of my favorite beers from New Glarus. I’m really starting to love the APA (american pale ale) style of beer. I love my IPA’s and am pretty sure they’ll always be my favorite, but the sessionable nature of the APA is quite pleasant.

Moon Man pours a very clear golden. Light carbonation is visible with lots of good bubbles rising, and a fairly small crisp head. It smells great, in fact actually smells stronger than it actually tastes. It has a floral aroma, with maybe a bit of orange or maybe a tiny hint of grapefruit. The floral stands out to me the most. The taste is great, you taste the hops right away but they’re just present, not too powerful or very bitter. It has a good malty bitterness on the backend aftertaste. I could Taste the floral hops, little bit orangey. Moon Man is smooth, rolls right down the throat, very pleasant. It has good carbonation, and fills mouth well, bitterness comes out more if you let it sit a bit.

Overall this is a solid beer, very enjoyable. Good if you’re in the mood for an IPA type beer, but aren’t totally in the mood to get hammered with hops. A solid sessionable offering from New Glarus. I think the claim they make on their website is pretty acurate:

“You hold a session beer with a bright bold blend of five hops that flirt obligingly with the smooth malty backside. Don’t let this one lay around it is brewed to be enjoyed today. Bold and engaging without pretense, because in Wisconsin you do not have to be extreme to be real.
Just be”

New Beer Review: Tallgrass Brewing 8-Bit Ale

27 Jul

I’m finally back on the beer review wagon! I found this gem at Discount Liquor in Milwaukee when Alicia and I went for our anniversary. Well, the first and most notable thing about this beer is the branding. The can is just about the coolest I have ever seen. As a fan of all video games and especially anything retro, the 8-bit stylings are fantastic.

8-bit ale has a soothing citrus aroma, fruity sweet. You can tell there’s hops present, but they don’t overwhelm. It pours smooth slightly hazy golden color. It has a wonderful thick head, even with a slow poor, the first time I poured one I had to wait a while for it to settle, and it stays around.

This is a pretty solid beer, has a really nice gentle carbonation. It doesn’t taste quite as fruity as it smells, which was a plus for me, although you can taste a hint of the melon they claim is there. 8-bit ale is really well balanced, and definitely isn’t an overly hoppy beer. The hops are present and tasty, but it’s not a super bitter beer, very accesible.

I can’t see any reason not to pick this beer up. If you see a 4-pack, or find it on tap, grab it up, you won’t be disapointed.

 

 

 

Sierra Nevade Bigfoot 2012

16 Mar

Wow, it’s been way too long since I’ve posted. Life has been a little crazy, but then again when isn’t it? And it’s not like I’ve ever been great at consistently blogging. Well, I enjoy it anyway, so yeah.

And another wow. This beer, it’s one to remember. Sierra Nevada’s 2012 Bigfoot, their Barley wine. First of all, the design. Sierra Nevada is great, it has that classic look with the banner, and I love the feel. The sasquatch hiding in the woods is pretty epic if you ask me (= I love that there’s a beer named after Bigfoot.

It pours smooth, and should probably have a bigger head than you see in the picture, but I’m pouring from a bottle here, not a tap. In any case it’s a nice foamy head. The beer itself you can see is a reddish-brown, pretty clear, not hazy.

It smells hoppy and strong, and has a slightly sweet pine aroma. It smells great, and fills your nostrils, builds a great anticipation.

Upon first sip, it starts smooth and fills your mouth, and the bitterness pulls your pallet. I’m not even sure how to describe that, it’s like your taste buds are being pulled like puppet strains if that makes any sense. The beer takes over. The flavor stays, wonderfully hoppy, and almost IPA quality but with deep flavors, very complex, with a thick almost stouty texture.

Not only do I recommend this beer, I will be getting more, and trying it each year that Sierra Nevada puts it out. Amazing beer. Oh, and I felt pretty good after just one (=