Stone IPA

Stone India Pale Ale
ABV: 6.9%
Volume: 12 oz
Glass: Tulip Goblet
Purchased at: Hopewell Valley Wine and Liquor
Consumed on: Friday, February 15th, 2008 at 10:55 pm

first impression: A quickly dissipating head and a slightly unfiltered, hazy appearance gives a mixed bag of anticipation, but I’ve had this beer before, and know what I’m in for. The grapefruit is amazingly present in the aroma, and the color, while not the most interesting or poetic, is certainly not unappealing. The taste is remarkable. It warms, and travels down the chest with a trail of hops. It is a beer with a taste history to it. You can remember the flavor for minutes after, and it is a great flavor. Wonderfully bitter with heavy malt undercurrents. It is an exemplar of an IPA.

Malt is roasted, toasty, and weighs heavily on the flavor.
Hops are resinous, very flowery, and brimming with grapefruit and lemon.
Yeast/Bacteria reminds one of a stack of stone slabs, a hint of surface water but not odoriferous or negative in impression.
It is tasty, heady, commanding, intoxicating, present, heavy, and delicious.

Color is pale, orange, single noted, and without real depth.
Liquid is just a bit hazy and quiet.
Head is gone, but the lace is remarkable present. Hangs more on the glass than the volume itself. Quite white at the start.

Sweet in a slight way, but more bitter
Bitter is the overarching sentiment here, and it delivers in droves. It’s not ruination, but it’s not far off, IMHO.
Sour notes come with the bitter and citrus components.
Beatifully balanced in hops and malt.

Body/Mouthfeel is full and long lasting.
Texture is slightly cloying, not in a sweet way, and not like a stout, but it does not dissipate quickly.
Carbonation is crisp but not visually active.
Finish is quite bitter, and nicely so.

Second impression: Overall, this is a great beer, a fantastic example of an IPA, a strong exemplar of Stone’s lineup, and just a pleasure to have. One of my favorite beers, by far.

Great Divide Hercules Double IPA

Glass: tulip
Purchased at: Joe Canal’s, Lawrenceville, NJ
Price: $7.29
Size: 22 fl oz
ABV: 9.1%
IBU: 85
Estimated Calories: 400 C
RateBeer Rating: 99

Aroma 10 out of 10
Intensity: Strong
Balance: Sweet
Impression: Nice

Malt Flavor: Sweet Toast Nut Caramel
Hops Flavor:
Floral Herbal Spice
Syrup, maple, nuts, grapefruit
Notes: One of the best aromas I’ve encountered – fills the room.

Appearance 5 out of 5
Color: Copper
Clarity: slightly Dull
Head Retention: Persistent
Notes: One of the best head retentions I’ve seen in quite some time. Lacing is remarkable. Color is deep and very good looking. Body is not perfectly clear, but I imagine that’s by design. There is no mention of bottle conditioning.

Flavor 10 out of 10
Intensity: Strong
Balance: well balanced between Sweet and Bitter
Impression: very Nice
Malt Flavor:
Grain Bread Sweet Toast Nut Caramel
Hops Flavor: Floral Herbal Spice Resin Citrus
Other: Grapefruit, orange peel
Notes: quite spicy – could stand up to the most potent foods and flavors.

Palate 5 out of 5

Sensation: Creamy Slick Drying and Warming
Body: Full
Carbonation: Lively and visible

Length: Long
Intensity: Strong
Balance: Bitter
Notes: The finish is superb. The carbonation is present and active. The mouth is affected and warmed all over.

General Impression: 20 out of 20
Craftmanship: Excellent
Freshness: Fresh
Personal Taste: Loved
Notes: One of my all time favorite beers – remarkably drinkable, smooth, bitter, sweet, and tasty. Beautiful to behold, and nicely crafted. Aroma is enticing. Price is reasonable for the product, and the finish keeps you interested. A superlative beverage.