Beer Review: Berkshire Brewing Co - Drayman's Porter

Brew Style: Porter
Brewer: http://www.berkshirebrewingcompany.com
ABV: 6.2%
BrewNewb Opinion: Good Beer

Perhaps I'm a little bit biased, being from MA, and loving the Berkshire mountains and all, but then again - maybe the beer they make is just plain awesome! 

Bought a pint of this, poured, as always, into my Sam Adams perfect pint glass. Poured very dark, nearly black, which piqued my interests. The foam was thick, didn't stick around very long. 

Smelled of sweet vanilla. It was a mild understated scent, I was surprised at how thin the scent was. 

Coffee is the front end of this beer, it's the taste that hits the hardest in the beginning, finishs with the chocolate. The hops are light, a perfect balance to the sweetness. Carbonation is very slight, does not interfere with the complex flavors.

Very nice beer, great selection if you like a nice porter.

Beer Review: Berkshire Brewing Company: Dean's Beans Coffeehouse Porter

Brew Style: Porter
Brewer: http://www.berkshirebrewingcompany.com
ABV: 6.2%
BrewNewb Opinion: Great Beer!

I love a nice thick porter. I love the brown sweet scent, the way it pours like a flat soda, the thick creamy froth of the head, and this brew does NOT disappoint. 

I bought a pint of this, brought it home and poured it into my Sam Adams perfect pint glass. It smelled like a iced coffee, with a mild grain scent, hints of cocoa.

The head is truly impressive, thick and fluffy, and dark like that of a root beer float. 

The taste was smooth and crisp. Coffee and caramel, vanilla and chocolate, with a smooth finish. Very well balanced beer, and a good choice if you're itching for a coffee porter. 

Price was nice too, a pint was less than $5.

Beer Review: Shipyard XXXX IPA

Brew Style: American Double / Imperial IPA
Brewer: http://www.shipyard.com
ABV: 9.25%
BrewNewb Opinion: Decent beer

I love a good presentation, and I thought the foil wrapping around the cap was a nice touch. I was rather surprised to notice, after cracking the cap, that it was actually a twist off. I don't know why this struck me as odd, and frankly I never really thought much about the fact that I apparently associate twist off caps with crappy beer, much like wine that comes in screw-cap bottles. 

It isn't an association I established consciously, and perhaps it's not a fair one. However, I can't seem to help it. There is no good rational reason for it, except that all the crappy beers use twist offs. Maybe in my head, the good beers decided not to, to further distance themselves from their crappy counter parts... Who knows. 

Anyway, this beer poured from the pint bottle into my Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass, a nice amber peachy color. This frothy head with a good lacing. 

The smell was a little surprising. It was a bit too complex, with too many hoppy smells coupled with the smell of the alcohol. (Which is hard to avoid at 9.25%!)

The taste, like the smell was a little bit of a disappointment to me. I love a solid IPA, but I feel like they tried to do too much with this one. Too many flavors, and too much ABV. I tasted mostly caramel malt and alcohol that completely dwarfed the various hops. I would have liked to see them use either fewer hops, for a strong hops flavor in one direction or another, or less alcohol. 

All in all, not a bad beer, though it's not what I expected out of an IPA. Perhaps a barleywine?  


Be Hoppy IPA by Wormtown Brewing - @WormtownBrewery FANTASTIC beer!

Brew Style: IPA
Brewer: http://www.wormtownbrewery.com
ABV: 6.5%
BrewNewb Opinion: Excellent beer!

My now #1 favorite beer of all time, and another great beer from my home state of MA! This beer recently dethroned Jack's Abby's Hoponiuos Union (which I still love, by the way!) as my very favorite brew. 

I cracked open this bottle, and sniffed. LOTS of charcter coming through that bottle neck! Hints of floral and citrus hops got my mouth watering. 

I poured into my Sam Adams pint glass, it poured a hazy orange, nice head that stuck around a good long while. As the bubbles in the body settled, I noticed flakes... Now, I'm no stranger to craft beer, but I've never seen the like. 

It's tough to see in the pic there, but those flakes on the bottom where pure white. Now, I'm not afraid of lees, it's actually quite good for you, but I was little unnerved by this. 

However! I'll drink just about anything. Secure in the knowledge that it's likely some yeast... thing... funny kinda fermenting side effect... And hell, it's stewed in alcohol, so it's likely not going to be toxic. I drank it. It was fine. 

The taste of this ambrosial nectar is sweet floral and citrus hops at first, backed by a caramel bready backbone. Great balance, excellent piney hoppy finish. Went down nice, wasn't heavy... GREAT beer. 

Hoponius Union - Excellent beer!

Brew Style: IPL 
Brewer: http://jacksabbybrewing.com
ABV: 6.7%
BrewNewb Opinion: Excellent beer!

It's a well known fact that the dark IPA has been my favorite brew for a long time, until I was introduced to the IPL. 

This beer is a lager with the hoppyness of an IPA, and quickly become my #2 beer of all time! 

The beer pours a nice golden yellow and has a thick frothy head giving great lacing on the glass.

It smells like an IPA with a citrus flavor, and yet like a malty lager. 

It's bready like a lager where the IPA would ordinarily be dry. Excellent flavor, great hops, and as we all know is important to me, burps like an IPA!

The bad news, it only comes in a four-pack. The good news, they're all pints! Interesting bottle too.