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Beer of the Week: Henry Weinhard’s Woodland Pass IPA

Beer of the Week - Henry Weinhards Woodland Pass IPA

Henry Weinhard’s Woodland Pass IPA

Today I’ll be writing about the Woodland Pass IPA from Blitz-Weinhard Brewing Co., located in Oregon. This was my first encounter with a beer from this brewery, in fact I’ve never heard of the brewery until this point (most likely due to where they distribute because they are located on the West coast).

I recommend checking out their website—It does a nice job of telling the story behind the brewery and explaining “the basics of beer” in a really simple way but with nice visuals.

The bottle reads “brewed with cascade hops from the 44th latitude” and “a full-hop IPA with a hint of caramel sweetness.” I definitely got the latter when tasting the beer. It starts off with a sweetness that quickly moves into the hops and finally finishes with some bitterness that lingers on the palette.

Tasty Mug Review

Appearance: Pours slightly hazy copper color about a one inch head (a small amount of which retains while drinking the beer). It also has excellent lacing.  
Smell:
The sweet, malty smell overpowers the hops in the aroma, but you can still pick up on the hops slightly.
Taste: Starts with a sweet flavor (hints of caramel) that quickly transitions into the hops (with hints of pine) and then finishes with a bitter taste.
Mouthfeel: Smooth, good carbonation, light to medium bodied.
Overall:
Smooth and drinkable, a bit bitter on the finish but because of the sweet spin on the taste it’s a nice take on an IPA that I definitely enjoyed sampling. This would be a good beer for newcomers just starting out on craft beers.

Tasty Mug Rating: 3.33 / 5

Additional Information

Style: American IPA
ABV: 6.0%
IBUs: Unknown
Original Gravity: Unknown
Malts:
Caramel malt
Hops:
Cascade hops
Availability: Year-round
Food Pairings: Spicy foods, nachos, cheese, poultry, burgers “with all the fixin’s”
Glassware: Pint glass or mug
Temperature: Best served at 45° – 50° F
Calories: Unknown

If you happen to stumble across this one let us know what you think.

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Beer of the Week: Southern Tier Pumking

Southern Tier Pumking

Southern Tier Pumking

The featured beer this week is Southern Tier’s Pumking. This my number one favorite pumpkin beer of all time, and it still claims 1st place in my book for 2012, even after comparing it to about 15 different pumpkin ales.

Pumking is an Imperial Pumpkin Ale that comes in at 8.6% ABV and can pack a nice punch but the alcohol is balanced out extremely well with the flavor of the beer. It’s been brewed since 2007 according to the Southern Tier website, so they’ve had a handful of years to really fine-tune this brew.

My opinion in a nutshell – the bottle reads: “As the first drops touch your tongue a magical spell will bewitch your taste buds making it difficult to escape the Pumking.”  I have to say, I couldn’t agree more.

Tasty Mug Review

Appearance: Pours a golden orange with a decent foamy head. It has generous lacing that lasts as you consume the beer.
Smell:
Pumpkin is definitely a dominant aroma in this beer (it’s like liquid pumpkin pie), along with some spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg.
Taste: Malty, sweet and balanced, you can pick up on several flavors in this brew including pumpkin, caramel, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. 
Mouthfeel:
Has medium carbonation and a medium body. Very smooth and tasty.
Overall:
My favorite pumpkin beer several years running. No doubt that the pureed pumpkin in the brew contributes to the awesome taste that Pumking delivers.

Tasty Mug Rating: 4.38 / 5

Additional Information

Style: Pumpkin Ale
ABV: 8.6%
IBUs: Unknown
Original Gravity: 19° Plato
Malts:
2-row pale malt, Caramel malt
Hops:
Kettle hops: Magnum; Aroma hops: Sterling
Availability: Autumn Seasonal (comes out in August)
Food Pairings: Thanksgiving dinner (poultry), pumpkin pie or other desserts
Glassware: Goblet
Temperature: Best served at 40° – 48° F
Calories: Unknown

What’s your number one favorite pumpkin beer??

 

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101 Beer Kitchen

Sampling beers at 101 Beer Kitchen

Sampling beers at 101 Beer Kitchen

Last week I finally had the chance to check out a new gastropub here in Columbus – 101 Beer Kitchen. If you live in the area and can make a trip to try it out, you’re in for a real treat!

The theme of the restaurant is rustic food and craft beer. The food is quite tasty – it’s made from scratch with fresh (and often local) ingredients. Customers have 101 beers to choose from – 20 on tap and 81 bottles (with maybe a few more here and there if you sit at the bar and chat up the bartender). The bartenders, by the way, really know their stuff. I found them very attentive and knowledgeable, and they humored my tasting requests when I initially couldn’t decide what type of beer I was in the mood for that evening.

The Dining and Drinking Experience

Housemade Mac & Cheese with Andouille Sausage

Housemade Mac & Cheese with Andouille Sausage

Friday night proved to be the happening time to show up at 101 Beer Kitchen. My friend and I arrived around 7pm, and by then there was quite a line out the door, and a fairly long wait. Luckily we scored a couple seats at the bar (which is the best seat in the house for a beer blogger anyway!). Menus of beer and food were readily available, and the bartenders were attentive and helpful at suggesting what to order both from the beer and food menus. After much debate I decided on their Housemade Mac & Cheese with Andouille Sausage for my main course. As you can see it was a pretty large serving, but all of my leftovers definitely got eaten. Aaron was our primary bartender that evening and kudos to him for all of the suggestions!

My beer line-up for the evening consisted of:

  • Sixpoint – Sweet Action (Cream Ale 5.2% ABV)
  • Three Floyds – Robert The Bruce Scottish Ale (Scottish Ale 6.5% ABV) Great with spicy food! I had this with the tater tots.

And at this point the beer drinking turned into an informal Evil Twin Brewing sampling event. For those of you that have never had a beer from Evil Twin Brewing – each beer you try is going to be a very unique taste experience.

  • Evil Twin Brewing – Evil Twin Femme Fatale Brett (American IPA 6% ABV)
    Fruity, sweet and hoppy. The fruity, sweet taste hits upfront and there is a prominent sour finish.
  • Evil Twin Brewing – Evil Twin Christmas Eve At A New York City Hotel Room (2011) (American Double / Imperial Stout 10% ABV)
    Lighter body than you may experience with other stouts, and poured with a decent head. Carbonated, and fruity like a cherry as well as woody/oaky.
  • Evil Twin Brewing – All Occasions IPA (American Double / Imperial IPA 8% ABV)
    Definitely a hoppy aroma like an IPA should have. Had a strong bitter finish.
  • Evil Twin Brewing – Evil Twin Hop Flood (American Brown Ale 7% ABV)
    This reminded me of a Märzen. The name implies it would be hoppy but tasted primarily malty over all else.

The Story Behind 101

Wondering what the 101 stands for? The name “101” has several meanings behind it – the couple that owns the restaurant (Jessica and Thad Kittrell) were married on 10/1, the restaurant opened on 10/1, and 101 also matches the concept behind their brand – a simple, back-to-basics educational approach to beer and food.

Summed Up

The owners dreamed of opening their own restaurant for several years, and I have to say now that it’s here, it’s turning out to be quite the success story. If you go on a popular night out and don’t want to deal with crowds, I do recommend waiting until after 8pm. 101 Beer Kitchen is open until 11p on Friday and Sat nights (10pm on weeknights) so you’ll still have several hours to peruse the booze. You can also call ahead which will give you priority seating (but you’ll still probably have a wait at prime times).

Housemade Tater Tots

Housemade Tater Tots

If you aren’t sure what to order once you get there, just ask – you’ll get some good recommendations. I also highly recommend ordering the loaded housemade tater tots as an appetizer – you won’t be disappointed!

I’ll definitely be making my way up north again to check out what they have on tap at the moment, and to try out more of the great food on the menu!

To visit 101 Beer Kitchen, head to Dublin (they opened in the spot that used to be a Hoggy’s if you’re familiar with the area).

Address:
7509 Sawmill Road
Dublin, Ohio 43016
614.210.1010

Hours of Operation
Mon. – Thurs. | 11am – 10pm
Fri. -Sat. | 11am – 11pm
Sunday | 11am – 9pm

If you have a chance to check them out – let us know your thoughts (or what was good on the menu!).

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Beer of the Week: Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin Ale

 

Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin Ale

Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin Ale

Weyerbacher’s Imperial Pumpkin Ale is one of my top 5 favorite pumpkin beers of all time (although Southern Tier’s Pumking is still my number one favorite). Weyerbacher, however (which has been one of my favorite breweries since the very beginning stages of my infatuation with craft beers) is a very strong contender in this category.

Kickass bottle cap!I do have to say that this brew had the most kickass bottle cap out of all the pumpkin beers I tried this year – I purchased two different 4-packs at different times and only one of them had the “jokerized” branding. In fact I bought the second 4-pack just because I thought it looked so cool (there are after all many important considerations that come into play when deciding what beer to buy!)

Tasty Mug Review

Appearance: Pours a hazy dark copper with “fizzy” sound like if pouring soda. Head is very brief and minimal.
Smell: Rich and spicy like nutmeg and cinnamon.
Taste: Malty, spicy, and like roasted pumpkin or pumpkin seeds with a some hoppiness and a slightly bitter finish.
Mouthfeel:
Medium body (but lighter than would expect for the ABV, especially compared to Pumking), smooth, and carbonated.
Overall:
One of my top 5 pumpkin ales but it just can’t beat out Southern Tier’s Pumking. It’s still an awesome ale and can be enjoyed by all, perhaps even along with a slice of pumpkin pie and whipped cream!

Tasty Mug Rating: 3.45 / 5

Additional Information

Style: Pumpkin Ale

ABV: 8.0%
IBUs: Unknown
Original Gravity:
Malts:
Unknown
Hops:
Unknown
Availability: August-November
Food Pairings: Desserts or poultry
Glassware: Pint Glass
Calories: Unknown

What do you think of Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin Ale??

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Upcoming Event: Brew Review

2nd Annual Brew Review

2nd Annual Brew Review

Calling All Beer Lovers
Come one come all! If you live in Columbus, like beer, and want to support a good cause check out the Brew Review event happening THIS Friday – November 16th at 6pm!

Brew Review is a casual evening tasting craft beers, enjoying hors d’oeuvres and listening to music. The tickets you buy for the event provide fundraising for Creative Living. Creative Living is a non-profit organization encouraging independent living for adults with severe physical disabilities by providing wheelchair accessible housing and assistance and by creating a supportive environment for people to learn, work, live and contribute to the community.


Brews for a Good Cause

Want to know the brews on the menu? An almost-complete list of the tasty beers available for sampling are listed below:

  • Samuel Adams Boston Lager
  • Samuel Adams Winter Lager
  • Samuel Adams Whitewater IPA
  • Sierra Nevada Pale Ale
  • Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA
  • Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale
  • Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold Lager
  • Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter
  • Great Lakes Commodore Perry IPA
  • Xingu Black Beer
  • St. Peter’s Organic English Ale
  • St. Peter’s Winter Ale
  • St. Peter’s Old Style Porter
  • 3 Monts Golden Ale
  • 3 Monts Amber Ale
  • Marston’s Oyster Stout
  • Scrumpy Cider
  • Anderson Valley Boont Amber Ale
  • Mount Carmel Nut Brown Ale
  • Finch Brewing Threadless IPA
  • Rogue Dead Guy Ale
  • Lagerheads Bed Head Red
  • Brooklyn Brewery East India Pale Ale
  • Hofbrau Original Helles Lager
  • Full Sail Amber Ale
  • Penn Brewing Kaiser Pils
  • Lost Coast Tangerine Wheat
  • Smuttynose Old Brown Dog
  • Brewery Ommegang Ommegang Witte
  • Murphy’s Irish Stout
  • Paulaner Hefe-Weizen


Event Information:

Brew Review
A night of craft beers with Creative Living

Date and Time:
Friday, November 16, 2012
6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Location:
Grange Insurance Audubon Center
505 W. Whittier
Columbus, Ohio 43215

Grange Insurance Audubon Center is located on the Scioto River just south of downtown Columbus.

Tickets:
$35 per person
Purchase your tickets
today!

Want to invite a friend or follow the event on Facebook? Check out the Brew Review Facebook event page.

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Beer of the Week: Thirsty Dog Barktoberfest

Thirsty Dog Barktoberfest

Thirsty Dog Barktoberfest

This week’s beer is Barktoberfest from Thirsty Dog Brewing Company. Barktoberfest is listed as a traditional German Oktoberfest made with German grains, yeast and hops.

I’ve been a fan of Barktoberfest since I first tried it a year ago, and my opinion remains the same. Poured from a bottle into 6oz pilsner tasting glass, it poured with minimal head compared to its sampling partners (Hofbräu Oktoberfestbier and Otter Creek Oktoberfest) but had the crisp, carbonated mouthfeel typical of most Oktoberfest beers. I think one of the reasons I favor this particular Oktoberfest beer over others is because it has a slightly different spin to the typical taste an Oktoberfest brew (and I’ll admit I’m not a huge fan of the Märzen style in general).

Tasty Mug Review

Appearance: Pours a clear copper with minimal head
Smell: Malty, sweet and earthy
Taste: Has a caramel, bready taste
Mouthfeel:
Light to medium bodied and creamy, smooth, crisp and carbonated.
Overall: I find this beer very drinkable – I’m preferential to sweet and malty beers and this one definitely hits the mark. Great for sitting around a campfire on a cool fall evening.

Tasty Mug Rating: 3.7 / 5

Additional Information

Style: Märzen/Oktoberfest
ABV: 6.0%
IBUs: 15
Original Gravity: 16° Plato
Malts:
Not listed
Hops:
Not listed
Availability: Seasonal (Fall)
Food Pairings: Not listed
Glassware: Pint Glass or Mug
Calories: Not listed

Try Barktoberfest for yourself and let me know what you think!