BeerCritic


Bell’s Oberon Wheat Ale

Glass: weizen

Purchased at: Issac Newton’s, Newtown, PA

Price: $5.00

Size: 12 fl oz

ABV: 6%

IBU:n/a

Estimated Calories: 160 C

RateBeer Rating: 82

Aural: quiet opening, little carbonation, easy pour

Aroma 7 out of 10

Intensity: medium

Balance: sweet

Impression: nice

Malt Aroma: whole wheat flour, nut, light caramel

Hops Aroma: dust, dirt, grass, coriander, lemon

Other Aroma: apple

Notes: A very nice aroma – not overpowering, but enjoyable, sweet, demure.

Appearance 4 out of 5

Color: amber

Clarity: cloudy

Head Retention: thin but persistent

Lace: poor

Notes: A very nice example of an American wit. Good color, nice yeasty cloudiness, like a sunset. Head is present but thin.

Flavor 8 out of 10

Intensity: medium

Balance: sweet

Impression: nice

Malt Flavor: wheat, sugar, rye, peanut
Hops Flavor: dust, rind, coriander, lemon, orange
Other: apple

Notes: A very tasty, if light, flavor. What many might call a good lawnmower beer, but by no means a killer beer.

Palate 3 out of 5
Mouthfeel

Sensation: creamy

Body: light

Carbonation: faint

Finish

Length: short

Intensity: faint

Balance: sweet

Notes: A crisp, quick finish is my least favorite part of this beer – it’s refreshing, but with a short lived refreshment.

General Impression: 16 out of 20

Craftmanship: very nice.

Freshness: fresh

Personal Taste: liked.

Notes: It was enjoyable, delicious and simple, but many other wits and belgian styles would be my choice when spending $5 on a 12 oz bottle.



Victory Golden Monkey
06/21/2008, 4:33 AM
Filed under: Abbey Tripel (trappist), Victory | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Victory Golden Monkey Tripel Ale with Spices
ABV: 9.5%
IBU: n/a
Volume: 12 fl. oz.
Glass: shaker
Purchased at: Sherwood Liquors
Consumed on: February 27th, 2008, 10:12 pm

sensory first impression: A very pretty beer with quirky advertising. Overwhelming fruity scent, which I like. No head or lace to experience, but I don’t miss it, since the olfactory is so nice. I poured twice – first time clear – second time because I felt I had missed out on the bottle conditioning yeast. Whoopsie! the second yeasty pour made it downright cloudy. It’s like sandblasted glass now. Nice bite, lots of flavor – I taste bacon, and I smell banana. I’m not crazy about smoke in beers – see my future review of Triumph’s Rauchbier, for example, but this is balanced pretty nicely. There’s lemon and plums and orange and apple — lots of apple — and banana. Nice bite and texture, and the presence is divine. This is a special beer.

Aroma/Olfactory:
Malt is smoky and full of a fruit bowl of taste influences.
Hops are herbaceous, mellow, and leafy. Very nice balance here. In the hands of an amateur, this would be a mess. Hail Victory.
Yeast/Bacteria doughy, earthy, leafy, and reminds one of an aquarium. I just jumped in. Did I mention this is 9.5% alcohol by volume?
Banana seems omnipresent, and I love it. Paprika? Ginger-licious. What an amazing depth of flavor.

Visuals/Appearance:
Color is pale and a solid block of gold.
Liquid is cloudy with yeast.
Head/Lace is nowhere to be found.

Taste/Flavor:
Maltiness/Sweetness is heavy in smoky sweetness – like a banana infused sausage, but delicious.
Hoppiness/Bitterness is light and very balanced.
Sour from the smoke, but in an affectionate way.

Palate/Tactile:
Body/Mouthfeel is quite full and cloying.
Texture is creamy, slick, and thick
Carbonation is softly present in the background.
Finish is long lasting but muted. The cloying aspect amplifies this aftertaste, which is wonderful.

Overall second impression: What a wonderful beer. It wasn’t the first thing to reach out and grab me, but I’ll be sure to keep it on the top of my list when I’m looking for something special to sip, enjoy, and savor. What a treat.



Brewery Fonteinen Schaerbeekse Kriek Blended Lambic

Glass: flute
Purchased at: Circle Liquors Super Saver, Pennington, NJ
Price: $15.99
Size: 25.4 fl oz
ABV: 6%
IBU:n/a
Estimated Calories: 310C
RateBeer Rating: 99

Aural: interesting cork opening, high carbonation, simple pour

Aroma 10 out of 10
Intensity: strong
Balance: very sharp (incredibly sour)
Impression: nice

Malt Aroma: roast
Hops Aroma:
marigolds peppers orange
Other Aroma:
cherry
Notes: what an amazing aroma. overpowering with sour cherry content and context.

Appearance 5 out of 5
Color: brown
Clarity: deeply cloudy,

Head Retention: poor
Lace: poor
Notes: An absolutely stunning color, depth and presence. No head at all.

Flavor 10 out of 10
Intensity: strong
Balance: bitter
Impression: nice
Malt Flavor: roast
Hops Flavor:
grapefruit
Other:
cherry
Notes: What an amazing, surprising and wholly sour flavor. Knocks you down with intent and determination. A beautiful flavor with dark intent. This beer wants to take a bough of arrows and send each of them deep into your heart, and you still love it so! It is a fruit based flavor that wants to convince you of IPAs. it’s phenomenal.

Palate 5 out of 5
Mouthfeel

Sensation: drying
Body: full
Carbonation: medium
Finish

Length: long
Intensity: strong
Balance: bitter
Notes: what an amazing palate and finish – great depth to the bitterness and sourness of the palate.

General Impression: 18 out of 20
Craftmanship: excellent
Freshness: quite fresh
Personal Taste: loved
Notes: It is dominated by sourness and acidity, but it is interesting to no end as a result. It is not sweet or cloying, but you are overwhelmed by the things we associate with sweetness — cherries, grapes, and melons (rinds). So nice.



Abbaye des Rocs Grand Cru Belgian Strong Ale

Glass: Large Tulip
Purchased at: Circle Liquors Super Saver, Pennington, NJ
Price: $8.99
Size: 25.4 fl oz
ABV: 9.5%
IBU: n/a
Estimated Calories: 400 C
RateBeer Rating: 99

Aural: opening is explosive, but contained over a few minutes of caution. carbonation is very active and audible, pour after calming is beautiful and quiet.

Aroma 8 out of 10
Intensity: medium
Balance: sweet
Impression: inviting

Malt Aroma: grain bread sweet toast nut
Hops Aroma:
earth floral herbal
Other Aroma:
fruit cherry, peach,
Notes: inviting, nice, fruity, mild

Appearance 4 out of 5
Color: dark
Clarity: quite cloudy
Head Retention: poor
Notes: head dissipates almost instantly to absolutely nothing. The body is quite beautiful though – murky, cloudy, and reminds you of what it might be like to swim in the dirty seas of countries that have no concern for pollution. Scary, in a way.

Flavor 9 out of 10
Intensity: strong
Balance: between sweet and bitter. Interesting.
Impression: nice
Malt Flavor: rice, Italian bread, whole wheat toast, walnut
Hops Flavor:
soil, dying flowers, tea
Other:
cherry, celery, peas
Notes: A very interesting, dark taste. Full bodied, deeply flavorful, and not easily drank. Alcohol is expertly hidden.

Palate 5 out of 5
Mouthfeel

Sensation: sticky, warming
Body: full
Carbonation: highly carbonated, like seltzer
Finish

Length: long
Intensity: medium
Balance: more bitter
Notes: A bit of ash, yeast, and tea in the finish. Again, quite interesting mix of fruit, texture, and color.

General Impression: 17 out of 20
Craftmanship: excellent
Freshness: fresh
Personal Taste: liked quite a bit
Notes: A once in a while treat – not one of my favorites, but glad to have tried it as a specialty.



St. Bernadus Abt 12

Glass: Trappist
Purchased at: Circle Liquors Super Saver, Pennington, NJ and Canal’s Lawrenceville, NJ
Price: $4.25 or less
Size: 11.2 fl oz
ABV: 10%
Estimated Calories: 200 C

Aroma 10 out of 10
Intensity: Strong
Balance: between Sweet and Sharp
Impression: very Nice

Malt Flavor: toasted Grains Bread Toast Nuts Caramel Toffee
Hops Flavor:
Floral Jungle Spice
Other:
Fruit and lots of it
Notes: This is beautifully aromatic – one of the finest aromas I’ve ever had the pleasure to enjoy in a beer.

Appearance 5 out of 5
Color: brown
Clarity: Cloudy
Head Retention: Very, very good.
Notes: My original tasting was a gusher, but my subsequent tasting gave no such issue. An absolute standard for the type. Dark fully opaque body, with a long lasting, consistent bright white head.

Flavor 9 out of 10
Intensity: Middle
Balance: More sweet than bitter, but fairly well balanced.
Impression: Nice
Malt Flavor:
Grain Bread Toast Nut Tea
Hops Flavor: Earth Herbal Citrus
Other: Fruit and lots of it
Notes:  The flavor is nice, and the fruity backdrop is a well balanced and delicious setting.

Palate 4 out of 5
Mouthfeel

Sensation: Warming
Body: Medium
Carbonation: Faint
Finish

Length: Long
Intensity: Medium
Balance: more Sweet
Notes: This is quite enjoyable as a standard of the Belgian Abbey Trappist style.

General Impression: 18 out of 20
Craftmanship: Very, very good.
Freshness: I think that this second tasting was fairly fresh.
Personal Taste: Liked, quite abit.
Notes: A lesson — always enjoy a beer well within its intended tasting period, or suffer the consequences of enjoying at a later date.



Ommegang Hennepin Saison Farmhouse Ale
05/04/2008, 1:12 AM
Filed under: Ommegang, Saison [farmhouse ale] (tulip) | Tags: , , , ,

Ommegang HennepinABV: 7.7%
Calories: estimated at 150 C
Volume: 12 fl oz
Glass: Tulip
Purchased at: Circle Liquors Super Saver, Pennington, NJ
Price: $2.50
Consumed at: home

Impression: A nice creamy yellow color, ends hazy in the pour due to style, bottle conditioning and large particles. A nice white head with good lace. Seems just a bit chemical or metallic in flavor. Usual fruity notes are missing from this Belgian style. Awash in oceanic carbonation. Reminds of champagne, but without the hit of alcohol. Flavor isn’t very forthcoming, but spiciness is there. Not a bad beer by any means, but it is mostly about texture, which is uncommon. I didn’t enjoy this very much.

Ommegang HennepinAroma: 6 out of 10

Visuals: 3 out of 5

Taste: 6 out of 10

Palate: 4 out of 5

Overall: 14 out of 20

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Ommegang Rare Vos
05/03/2008, 4:51 AM
Filed under: Ommegang | Tags: , , , , , ,

Ommegang Rare VosABV: 6.5 %
Calories: estimated at 150 C
Volume: 12 fl oz
Glass: weizen
Purchased at: Circle Liquors Super Saver, Pennington, NJ
Price: $2.50
Consumed at: home

Impression: Thick white head goes down to nothing quickly on top of a cloudy orange body. Amber tinged. Banana and fruit aroma is fairly common in this Belgian style. Slightly watery body is disappointing. Good aftertaste, but immediate impression is watery. Spicy finish. Flavors include peppers, coriander, banana, flowery hops, sandy yeast, and generally spicy presence.

Rare Vos focus on bodyAroma: 8 out of 10

Visuals: 4 out of 5

Taste: 8 out of 10

Palate: 3 out of 5

Overall: 14 out of 20. I liked the flavor, visuals, and aroma, but it was all just a bit lacking in impact.

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