Sunday, September 27, 2009

Lagunita's Brewing Company - Lucky #13

This new brew comes to us from Lagunitas Brewing Company based in Petaluma, California. Lucky 13 is the 13th Anniversary Ale and also part of Lagunita's rotating 2009 Seasonal 22 ounce brews. Lagunita's is well known for producing a wide selection of high-quality uniquely flavored brews. I purchased this bottle from Haggen in Burlington, WA. I'm excited to try it.

Category: Strong Red Ale
ABV: 8.3%
IBU: 76.92
OG* (Original Gravity): 1.085
Malt Types: Unknown
Hop Types: Unknown

The Pour: Pours a dark reddish amber. The head is pale cream colored, slight retention and slight lacing on the glass.

The Nose: Initially very sweet and sugary, caramel notes, slight malt, faint nuttiness, dark pine, some pineapple, smells heavy, extremely sweet. Can't wait to taste it.

The Taste: Light to medium carbonation on the palette, very smooth. Tingly, slightly spicy on the tip of the tongue. As expected it is very sweet, and tastes of cereal and dark malts, very heavy mouthfeel, almost syrupy. Also a detectable amount of bitterness midway through and on the finish. A nice lingering bittersweetness on the back of the tongue lasting long after the beer is swallowed. Slight warming on the back of the throat.

The Verdict: I enjoyed this brew. Its quite heavy and higher on the alcohol content. If you're looking for something unique, hoppy, rich, and sweet, give this one a shot!

*OG (Original Gravity): A measurement of the density of fermentable sugars in a mixture of malt and water with which a brewer begins a given batch. It gives the brewer an idea of how strong the beer will be.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

New Beer: Grandsun of Spot IPA

Ok ok, so a lot of you might be thinking that I've forgotten how to spell here. However, I have not. The correct spelling would be grandson, but this beer just so happens to be part of Full Sail Brewing Company's Summer "Sun" Series. The Grandsun of Spot IPA is just the next in line of the Brewmasters Reserve Series for 2009, a rotating selection of special brewmasters release beers that rotate every 10 weeks or so. Full Sail Brewing Co ( at us from Hood River Oregon and is the brewer of many unique and delicious hoppy brews. Two of my favorites include the winter brew: Wassail and another of the Brewmasters Reserves: Keelhauler. And so here we go, Grandsun of Spot IPA...

Category: India Pale Ale
ABV (Alcohol per Barrel Volume): 6.0%
IBU (International Bitterness Units): 80
Malt Type(s): Munich and Honey
Hop Type(s): Columbus

The nose: Initially very heavy, sweet and sugary, brown sugar and molasses notes, very malty, with a detectable amount of hoppiness. This makes me curious.

The pour: This beer pours a dark orange amber. The head is off-white, slight retention. The malty sugary molasses scents are still apparent, and only when one swirls the glass will the the hops show themselves. Now let's taste it.

The taste: Oh wow. Initial detection is of medium carbonation. Very interesting in that I am able to taste the hops almost immediately. Tastes thin, yet I am able to detect a little sweetness and malt. The hops are apparent throughout and they linger on your palette for a very long time afterwards. I will have to see how the taste develops as I consume more, but I am a definite fan of the IPA. If you're not, this may not be the beer for you. Overall I would say this is a good brew for the lover of hoppy brews!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The First Beer: Pliny the Elder

Allow me first to provide some background information on where this beer comes from. Pliny the Elder is brewed by Russian River Brewing Company, based out of Santa Rosa, California ( This brewing co focuses mainly on: "traditional aggressively hopped California style ales, Belgian style ales, and barrel aged beers." This brewing co distributes almost exclusively to the west coast of the United States, with Colorado and Pennsylvania being the only non-west coast states currently selling beer from Russian River. This brewer is well-known to produce top-notch, unique and rare beers. Oh and also, If you're curious to know who and why Russian River named a beer after this guy, Pliny the Elder, a good resource for some basic reading is wikipedia ( and now for the beer...

Upon opening the bottle of Pliny the Elder, I take a whiff of the aroma, and it smells of sweet pine and lots of big delicious hops.

It pours a clear golden yellow to pale orange. The head is fluffy and off-white yellowish in color. Swirling the glass, deeper aromas come to the surface and I'm getting a much sweeter, dole pineapple, thick and heavy hop aromas. I can't wait for the first sip.

Upon sipping for the first time I let it slide over my palette. Initially I detect a spicy and sweet, slightly fizzy carbonation. Not too heavy on the carb, not too light, just the right amount.

The mouthfeel airs more on the medium side. Not heavy or thick like a lot of Double/Imperial IPA's. A slight bitterness comes to the tip of my tongue midway through, but the full extent of the hops and bitterness aren't apparent until the finish, even then it's subtle. A very refreshing, very drinkable, hoppy medium bodied beer!


So this will be the first post of my new blog. I hope I can build a following on here. I'll be posting descriptions of new beers both foreign and domestic, as well as descriptions of breweries, brewpubs, and general beer locations around seattle and the pacific northwest! Hope you enjoy and thanks for stopping by!