Last Weekend's Beer, Today: West Coast Edition

Eno Sarris, November 30, 2015

The East coast has risen up and created another place for people to talk about last weekend's beer. That's okay with me. I'll look at those to think up trade offers and the like. 

We can link the two coasts differently, somehow, if someone has a better idea. Maybe we should consider reporting our weekends on the appropriate side of LWBT, right? Or we should combine the reports in the future.

In the meantime, drink great beer, as much as possible. 


Russian River Sonoma Pride Dauenhauer Wild IPA
Kona Koko Brown
SanTan Mad Czar Russian Imperial Stout

By avoiding Wednesday, we'll avoid this moment, which isn't fair. Took my three-year old to Russian River because that was the only way to make Thanksgiving work. He ate a whole pizza and stood on my head while farting. I drank most of what I wanted from a sampler and bought way too much Russian River to go. (Get in touch with me, I've only promised two of the three trade packages away yet).

I ended up starting the day with a few sips of the Dauenhauer Wild IPA, which was a fresh bright Brett/Wild IPA that might be better with age. In the meantime, it's a fun way to explain what Brett is to family members. I might hang on to the two other bombers in order to check the aging process. 

I had Michael Donato's favorite, the Koko Brown, and was so happy that it was my dinner beer. What a perfect smooth brown sweet beer to pair with sweet potatoes and turkey and stuffing and corn something or other and bean casserole. It wasn't so thick that it all became a ridiculous sludge that was pulling you down, so deep, into sleep.

In fact, I drank the right amount, in amount and thickness, and ate only one page of dinner, so that I could have one slice each of the three types of pies. Point is, I wasn't sleepy on the way home, and so I rewarded myself with a Mad Czar. It's a hard style, and it didn't have as much body as some of your RISes out there, but it was still an enjoyable beer, and a pat on my own back for doing what we do on that day in November, out of love for our family members.


Russian River Blind Pig IPA
Lagunitas IPA 
St. Archer Mosaic IPA 
Russian River Supplication Sour 

The Blind Pig is like the first West Coast IPA, which is amazing when you put it up against Lagunitas IPA, as we did on a lazy long holiday Friday. The Pig is fresher and brighter and maybe not as sweet, but they are very comparible beers. To the point where you might understand a history where one influenced the other. 

I left the house only once -- to buy Bourbon County Brand Stout, really -- but I came home with a St. Archer Mosaic that I thought was their Mosaic session, which is the only St. Archer I've made a mental note of. Turns out the IPA is just super sweet and actually too fruity and dank, making me think that Mosaic is a better dry-hop than boil-hop beer. I loved the smell, but the body actually made me think of the cat piss that the anti-Mosaic crowd howls about. 

TREETYOURSELF was my evening/weekend mantra. I mean, you drove that child north so that they could all play with him, so you deserve to do yourself right this weekend. So, Supplication, with your nice warm wood, yet lighter feeling than Consecration, you warmed me to bed that night. 


Sleepy Dog Tailchaser IPA
Russian River Pliny the Elder DIPA
Alpine Duet IPA
Central Waters La Petite Mort BA Weizenbock

The first was from an Arizona brewery that just started canning, but it was an unfortunate first because I don't like Fat Tire and the review for the beer stated just "Fat Tire." Maybe that was harsh -- Tailchaser was a little more fresh and refreshing, so it didn't just dusty up your mouth like the Tire. But it wasn't a joy to drink. 

Hot Pliny the Elder Take: it may not be the best beer you've ever had, but if you can clear your mind, and put it up against the beers yaou're having, it's one of the best beers you're having right now. Especially fresh, this beer actually has some of the bright fresh fruit juice feeling that we're looking for in a lot of today's beers, while still being a piney traditional west coast DIPA. 

I thought the Duet could stand up to the Pliny, maybe, mostly because I needed to drink another beer before I got to the dark stuff. But it's not the same kind of beer, even if it's as good. Just not as thick and strong. 

What's fun about the Mort is that it's barrel aged and thick and boozy and full of wood, but it didn't start with a stout or a porter. It started a little bit lighter, and so the mouthfeel is a little bit thinner. Which is great. Especially if everyone drops out and you're the one holding the bottle. And you could have been at the Stanford Notre Dame game if you'd just efforted a little more of your three year old son had just said yes, yes he'll go to the football game with you. Especially then.


Firestone Walker Easy Jack Session IPA
Regal Brau Thirsty Miner Stratum DIPA
Russian River Pliny the Elder
Russian River Sanctification
Sleepy Dog Wet Snout Milk Stout 
Russian River Consecration

I've already written about Easy Jack, and I've already written about Pliny, and going to Russian River, and all of that. I have not said these words before: don't drink a Thirsty Miner. Maybe the one I had wasn't fresh, in which case, it's just too big, too lemony, too sweet. If it was fresh, this thing is just a malt lemon honey alcohol explosion that convinced me to pour out the second half. Untappd says Los Angeles, the bottle says Wisconsin, my taste buds said the trash. 

I think I might like the all-steel Sanctification best of the Russian River sours. The Consecration is like your favorite Cabernet Sauvignon, but there's a lot of wood there. If you go with Sanctification, you taste excellence in sour making. 

I was about ready to say no more Sleepy Dog, but the Wet Snout was interesting. It was't as sweet or thick (5.7% ABV) as many milk stouts, and that made it an easy drink. It also cut a swath between some powerful beers, whih is a good sign. I could have been upset that it was the second-worst beer of the day, instead of being impressed that it was the second-worst beer of the day.

Consecration is the bomb. It, and Sanctification, have to be in my top three, but that's ridiculous. So they're both in my top five, which is ridiculous, but maybe more believable.

Russian River, I love you. Thanks for a great weekend, and, thanks to trading, more great weekends to come.