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Odell's Mountain Standard Double Black IPA

Jan. 27th, 2013 | 09:45 pm
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: good. Pretty big, craggy. Good retention, lots of lacing.

Aroma: good. Malt, some dark fruit.

Taste: very good. Malt dominant and quite like a porter but with some hop bitterness too. Stout standbys coffee and dark fruit are dominant with some of the usual ale qualities too. Fun, and dangerously drinkable, given the 9.2 ABV! One of the BA bros claims there to be mint and lime zest notes, and as pretentious as he is, I can't disagree.

Mouthfeel: excellent. Very smooth with medium-light carbonation that seems stronger if you give it time.

I like this! Sure, I've had better brews, but these days it's pretty rare that I get something different that's still drinkable.

Cost: $11.5 for 4 12oz bottles, making it $0.24 per oz.

BA public: 93/100 A, My score: 92/100 A-

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Great Lake's Commodore Perry

Jan. 24th, 2013 | 11:17 pm
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: Okay. fizzy with medium retention. Odd.

Aroma: Good. Yeast, hops. Not too strong.

Taste: Good. Somewhat piney hops with a hint of grassy flavor well balanced with a caramel malt. Fades to a malt-dominant flavor.

Mouthfeel: Okay. Medium-high carbonation with medium body.

Likeable and worthy, but not that great.

Cost: $8.99 for 6 12oz bottles, making it $0.12 per oz.

BA public: 88/100 B+, My score: 84/100, B

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Yuengling Traditional Lager

Oct. 14th, 2012 | 12:17 am
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: okay. Moderate size, somewhat poor retention.

Aroma: poor. Grass, malt, and urine. Yup, it has that cheap beer pee water smell. Eww.

Taste: okay. Really no hop presence, but sweet caramel-ish malts with an old sourness that can only be known as the result of lagering. Actually has some honest flavor. It gets worse with warmth but not as bad most cheap beers do.

Mouthfeel: okay. Medium big-bubbled carbonation with a medium-light body.

Really not bad for cheap beer, but it tastes like cheap beer. You can do so, so much better. But this brew has a huge following. From a BA Bro review: "This is the oldest brewery in America and adored by college students all across the Atlantic, from Florida to New York. We are talking cult status, where the Northeast would be a viable market, yet there is still no interest from the brewery. Go figure." I can say with experience that its reach has extended to Ohio. Fun fact: Massachusetts does not carry Yuengling brews. Reason is: Yuengling brewed throughout prohibition, and MA is too stuck up to forgive them. Fucking lol. A bit of research claims that they brewed near-bear at 0.5% ABV during prohibition. I'm willing to believe that they brewed a stronger beer during prohibition, but I have nothing to back up my assumption, besides Massachusetts's odd ban.
I guess I can understand its following if you assume that people think beer should smell like pee and are repulsed by brews that smell good. Yeah, I said it.
Oh, and it's pronounced, "Ying ling."

Cost: $7.0 for 6 12oz bottles, making it $0.1 per oz. Or at least that's what the internets said. Mike bought me my twelve-pack, despite my refusal.

BA public: 78/100 C+, My score: 71/100 C-

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Three Floyd's Zombie Dust

Oct. 10th, 2012 | 11:00 pm
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: very good. somewhat small, good retention, excellent lacing.

Aroma: excellent. Lovely aromatic pineapple and grapefruit with bubblegum and pine notes. Really a treat to the nose!

Taste: very good. Big juicy grapefruit with malt sweetness. Big hops, pretty big malt too. Not all that bitter, making it welcome and drinkable. This is another showcase of the FFF approach to balance: make everything big!

Mouthfeel: very good. Pretty heavy carbonation, medium bodied. I think I would've liked a tad less carbonation. EDIT: I noticed later that if you pour hard and let it go flat, the mouthfeel becomes syrupy and a bit chewy. Yum!

This brew was pretty hyped, and it didn't disappoint. I hear it was either narrowly distributed or so popular so fast that you can only find it at one bar in Chicago and the Three Floyd's brewpub. I got mine at the brewpub. And I just discovered even more hype! Read on!

BA public currently rates it at 100/100 with 651 reviews! Wtf!? It's even #14 on the list of on their extremely competitive list of best beers in the world, which currently puts it one spot below my favorite beer! WTF!? I mean, sure it's the best Pale Ale I've ever had, but I don't really care for Pale Ales!

Cost: $35 for case of 24 12oz bottles, making it $0.12 per oz. Surprisingly cheap... if you disregard the drive to Munster, Indiana.

BA public: 100/100 A+, My score: 96/100 A

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Troegs's Troegenator Doublebock Beer

Oct. 2nd, 2012 | 11:24 pm
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: okay. Small, recedes somewhat quickly. I'm not pouring this in a normal pint glass as I'm on vacation, and it is pretty high alcohol, but still, it ain't much.

Aroma: good. Woodsy musk and some cherries, but not very strong.

Taste: very good. Alcohol with some good strong malt and a pretty well balanced hop presence. Imagine a big balanced but somewhat malt-dominant beer, then add cherry-like alcohol. That's Troegenator.

Mouthfeel: excellent. Medium carbonation with a creamy full body. Yum!

"Doublebock" means doppelbock. The original name is pretty much a cognate, so I'm calling it that, despite the label.
Overall, this is pretty damn good, but not great. But it does get you drunk. Yep.

Cost: $12.0 for 6 12oz bottles, making it $0.17 per oz.

BA public: 87/100 B+, My score: 87/100, B+

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Breckenridge Brewery's Vanilla Porter

Sep. 8th, 2012 | 11:08 pm
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: okay. Somewhat small, somewhat poor retention.

Aroma: good. Chocolate, caramel, and sourdough. Nuff said.

Taste: very good. Strikingly strong vanilla that only gets stronger on the finish. My first drought was a flavor smack in the face that demanded to be interpreted. Sort of a vanilla with bit of dark fruit and generous caramel. Sort of sour. The vanilla gets tad annoying quick. I'm giving it "very good" remarks mostly because the flavor is strong and unique. I don't really like it.

Mouthfeel: Very well carbonated: the bubble sting is there without detracting from the flavor. Medium bodied.

This is something Dad brought home from volleyball. His weekly volleyball outings wind up being something of a beer exchange, as others are welcome to store brews in his cooler as well as take brews from it, and remaining brews are taken home. Point being, I have no idea how old this bottle is. But.... my opinions are pretty consistent with the Beer Advocate public. edit: one of the BA Bros nailed a flavor: cream soda! Daggum, this tastes of cream soda.

Funny how this is my first review from Breckenridge Brewery, seeing as I spent a week in Breckenridge snowboarding.

Cost: $9.99 for 6 12oz bottles, making it $0.14 per oz.

Score: 80/100 B-, My score: 82/100 B-

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Left Hand's Milk Stout Nitro

Sep. 6th, 2012 | 11:17 pm
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: very good. You have to pour very hard to coax a head out of this, but when you do, you're rewarded with a massive head with great retention. The brew already tastes flat, so why not pour hard!

Aroma: very good. Coffee, toffee, and hint of molasses.

Taste: good. The flavors aren't very big. Coffee, milk/cream, maybe some oats. Nice lingering mild coffee on the finish.

Mouthfeel: very good. Oh so creamy! It's about as close to chocolate milk as beer can get. Microscopic-bubbled with little-to-no "carbonation" (it's a nitro... so "nitrogenation"?), and medium-light otherwise.

I've really, really like this beer. It's not that great, but it's so drinkable! It's so drinkable, I eagerly finished a whole six pack before I took the time to make a review, and almost did it again!
I'm giving this two scores, one as a critic judging its technical qualities unbiased, and one as a fan who's a sucker for sweet, drinkable brews.

Cost: $10.99 for 6 12oz bottles, making it $0.15 per oz.

BA lumps this together with the carbonated version, Left Hand's Milk Stout, so take their rating with a grain of salt.

BA public: 88/100 B+, My score: 85/100, B. My opinion: 91/100, A-

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New Holland's Dragon's Milk

Aug. 11th, 2012 | 01:16 am
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: okay. Small. I poured it hard and got little out of it. Well, I can't blame it for a high ABV stout.

Aroma: very good. Vanilla, oak, and alcohol. Fun!

Taste: very good. First off is the very noticeable alcohol. It's not hidden. The taste, otherwise, consists of vanilla, oak, and a bit of cocoa, and, well... alcohol.

Mouthfeel: good. Medium-full with medium-light carbonation. Actually not as dry as expected from the notable alcohol content.

I'm a sucker for a high ABV beers, even when they're not that good. This beer is fun, enjoyable, but not that good. It could easily trick someone into thinking that it's amazing who doesn't know better. And that's not necessarily a bad thing, since this would easily convince plebeians that craft beer has exciting things to offer.

BA qualifies this as an American Stout at 10% ABV. Wtf, that's an Imperial Stout. I'm counting it as such.

Thanks to Frankie for the bottle, whether taken willingly or unwillingly!

Cost: $15.99 for 4 12oz bottles, making it $0.33 per oz.

BA public: 87/100 B+, My Score: 89/100 B+

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Sierra Nevada's Hoptimum

Jul. 24th, 2012 | 11:34 pm
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: good. Nicely sized, sparkly like champagne light bubbled, but retention is actually not horrible.

Aroma: very good. nice big hops with a bit of an earthy, slightly grassy, and maybe even skunky quality. Before you get alarmed at the "skunky" comment, know that the aroma is overall very good, it's just that there's something barely perceptible and odd in there.

Taste: excellent. Big meaty hops with a enough of a malt backbone to keep it drinkable. Pine, citric notes, toffee from the malts, grapefruit on the finish, and maybe even bubblegum notes when you swish it around, this is pretty complex! The alcohol is quite noticeable but welcome.

Mouthfeel: very good. Medium-full body with medium-light carbonation. On the dry side, otherwise.

This is a pleasant surprise! Complex, big, and strong, this is how I like my beer! Good work, Sierra Nevada!

Cost: $9.99 for 4 12oz bottles, making it $0.21 per oz.

BA public: 91/100 A-, My score: 93/100, A

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Southern Tier's 2x Stout

Jun. 30th, 2012 | 09:58 pm
posted by: xcheeseman in johnlikesbeer

Head: okay. Smallish, foamy with pretty good retention.

Aroma: very good. Earth and coffee. Medium pungent. Someone on BA pointed out burnt cream and fuckyeah, there's notes of burnt cream.

Taste: very good. Nice coffee and malt up front with a bit of milk in the middle and finishes with a bit of sourness. Nothing striking, nothing weird - this is both good and bad, depending on your aim.

Mouthfeel: excellent. This is where this beer excels. It is a milk stout, and the mouthfeel doesn't disappoint. Full; creamy and chewy as can be - there is no doubt that lactose is abundant in this beer. Carbonation is medium.

Overall this is pretty damn enjoyable. Sweet, nothing off-putting, and that damn creamy mouthfeel makes this straight-up yummy! The critic in me says it could be better, and it certainly could, but that doesn't mean I can't enjoy it!

Cost: $9.99 for 6 12oz bottles, making it $0.14 per oz.

BA public: 85/100 B, My score: 88/100, B+

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