The Beer Release Round Up, 2/7/2014

Blake Smith, February 07, 2014
  1. Thanks Jebbies! for this one: Chillwave (Double IPA) from Great Lakes Brewing. "Chillwave Double IPA is hop-forward with a balanced blend of Mosaic and Nugget hops, and a flash of honey malt." This will certainly help to warm up those "Great Lakes' surfers" that this beer is meant to commemorate.
  2. Night Shifts' Marblehead (Style+: 100, BAR: 0.51) gets canned! This Amber Session Ale not only sounds delicious (maybe a bit on the sweet side) but is made using locally sourced ingredients from Marblehead, MA.
  3. Allagash will be offering their Saison year-round starting in March. Interesting move by Allagash, as this beer currently sits #33 (Style+: 104, BaR: 2.26) on their own brewery's BG leaderboard. Could offering this style year-round help improve it's numbers? Maybe due to the increased availability?
  4. "Science...a good excuse 2 brew & drink more beer" - Harpoon Brewmaster, clearly the basis for their Barrel-Aged Brown IPA.
  5. Big news regarding Founders KBS: "KBS will be released starting April 1 for our distribution footprint. Stay tuned for our taproom and local release details." The leaderboards record this one as being first released in 2009 (BAR: 3.77). It's pretty incredible to see how fast this one has moved up the leaderboards: See KBS 2013 (BAR: 11.53.)
  6. Huge Arker (Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout) from Anderson Valley Brewing Company began showing up withing limited distribution at the beginning of this week. "'I believe the deep "alligator char" used in our American oak barrels truly compliments the full-bodied, roasty nature of this imperial stout,' says Jimmy Russell, Wild Turkey Master Distiller."
  7. Here is the first Quingenti Millilitre (Barrel-Aged) release from Stone: Guardian's Slumber. It's one beer, with "3 prospective labels" at the moment. I'm expecting this to perform much better than Crime & Punishment, though Southern Charred was pretty tasty. Aside: I was speaking with another fantasy BeerGraphs manager and mentioned Stone's barrel-aging expansion program, as one of his many reasons to make them his tier 1 brewery.
  8. Speaking of Stone, they too have released a session IPA, Go To IPA. So to recap from previous round ups, Firestone Walker, Stone and Sierra Nevada (who I just recently read about) will all be releasing & distributing session IPAs. Founders, Victory, and many others have already been doing this in previous years. I find it ironic that these 3, all of which were paramount in the America IPA style, are playing what looks like "catch up". EDIT: saw last night that Goose Island too! will be releasing & distributing a Session IPA.

Hopocalypse [Green Label] (Style: 103, Bar: 5.85)

Appearance = 4.5/5

From a growler to a Teku glass. Pours a hazy amber, auburn-cooper color. Medium lacing. Beer is filtered, visible clarity.

Smell = 4.5/5

Pineapple. Grapefruit, citra hops present. Pine. Some sweetness towards the end. Aromatics start to brighten up once the beer has begun to warm up.

Taste = 5/5

Tasting pineapple and grapefruit. Getting that good piney-resin taste that I love. Nice caramel, crystal malt residual sugar on the back end, that was th only real malty-ness I got from this one. A little bready, if anything. As it warms up, I'm tasting almost green apple in this one. I think it's better served a little on the warm side. 

Mouthfeel = 4/5

Medium carbonation, this did not foam as much (maybe due to the growler) but by no means flat. Very balanced & drinkable considering the style. Some alcohol flavor lingers on the back end, I can see past it.

Overall = 4.5/5

If "the end is beer," than this was worth it.

Huge thanks to the Drake's crew for putting together a great release party this past Saturday. It was hectic as many of these things, but the staff was very friendly and helpful. And yes, the beer too was highly enjoyable. Hopefully those of you that could make it did. Cheers to the Hopocalypse and unofficial kick-off to SF Beer Week.

Thanks to user Blink on Wiki Commons for the header image.

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