Review: The Traveler from Adelbert’s Brewery

L.A. gets some Shiner beer and a bit of Jester King and now add Adelbert’s Brewery from Austin. A Mini Texas craft invasion.

Let’s see how The Traveler, a Belgian a Style IPA tastes…

Caged and corked. Making me work for it. This IPA pours a dark orange with lots of foam. The smell is primarily pine. Crisp tree and forest. The bubbly initial taste has that in the mix but then some Belgian banana notes start creeping in along with a tropical dried fruit taste. There is a lingering bitterness but it is light by West Coast standards for sure. Certainly a beer that progresses from flavor to flavor.

It does the job of wanting me to try more of their line-up for sure.

from the Austin Beer Guide – Twisted X Brewing Co.

There is Tex-Mex cuisine and if you order a pint from Twisted X Brewing, 2
The labels are fun and playful despite being filled with barbed wire and the beers are mostly on the light side! With one hoppy exception.

Here are the lagers that struck me as the ones that I would sample first….
Siesta Prickly Pear Lager
“A summer seasonal based on Twisted X. “Bloody Butcher” red corn from Richardson farms provides a slight hint of color. Prickly pears from the fields of Texas provide the rest of the color and add a fruity cactus flavor. Siesta is more carbonated than our other beers and this adds to its summer time drinkability. It has 5.5% alcohol by volume. We vote to reinstate the Siesta tradition, sit back, take a snooze, relax and ride the Texas heat wave with a refreshing Siesta.”

Senor Viejo
“This Schwarzbier has been “imperialized” (alcohol content increased) and then left to age in tequila barrels (used Jack Daniels barrels which are then used by Republic Tequila to age there tequila to Repasado or Anejo styles). Aging this unique beer in tequila barrels adds subtle flavors of vanilla and oak while the tequila adds a mild citrus/agave sweetness. At 8.2% alcohol by volume Senor Viejo is our strongest, most seasoned beer.”

from the Austin Beer Guide – Hops and Grain Brewery

Our second stop in our swing through Texas is Hops and Grain. They have two canned beers. A pale ale and an alt. One of the first canned alts that I have seen.

But what really got me interested is their Greenhouse series. Here is how their website describes it, “The Greenhouse is a breeding ground of sorts. A place where all new ideas are invited, style guidelines thrown out the window and happiness abounds. The Greenhouse is our 3 bbl pilot system and in the Greenhouse we grow all sorts of things. Some of it we sell, some of it we keep but we always serve it in the tap room first.”

Oh and they are part of the sustainability movement too. So I like them all the way around.

from the Austin Beer Guide – Adelbert’s Brewery

Our first stop in Texas is Adelbert’s Brewery…

…in Austin. They have been brewing with Bohemian Floor Malts and a multi-step decocotion method since 2010 and these are the beers that jumped off the computer screen and got me thirsty.

“Scratchin’ Hippo is a dark reddish-brown ale brewed in the style of a traditional, rustic artisanal French farmhouse ale, Bière de Garde. Complex flavor profile with a prominent malty sweetness and earthy character.”

Philosophizer is a “hearty flavorful reddish orange beer with natural spices, clean hops, and a dry finish.”

Maybe, if a trip to Austin happens, I will be able to buy a pint at the Alamo Drafthouse and watch a movie with an Adelbert beer.

In the Tap Lines for December 2012

Every December here on this very blog, I highlight a holiday/Christmas/winter warmer every day up until Christmas. Some of these beers aren’t available here in Los Angeles but your holiday travel plans may take you near one of them that you can taste.

~ e-visits to three breweries from the Austin, Texas area
~ video reviews tackles two new beers from The Bruery
~ Three suggested beers to buy this month
~ I will tap the Firkin and give my opinion on the craft beer world
~ … and Session # 70 will converge bloggers onto a single topic
~ plus many more posts about new beers, beer products and breweries

Here are two events to get your November started in the Los Angeles craft beer world:
1) December 1st – Mohawk Bend features Oregon’s Ninkasi Brewing all month
2) December 6th – Beachwood BBQ in Seal Beach will be hosting a Firestone-Walker 16th Anniversary event

Commercial Suicide

from Jester King in “weird” Austin, Texas comes one of the best beer names that I have heard this year… Commercial Suicide.

It is an Oaked Dark Mild. A somewhat forgotten style with a twist.

“A true “session beer”, Commercial Suicide is an authentic English dark mild with notes of caramel, coffee and chocolate. A portion of each batch is aged in medium toast American oak barrels, lending very subtle toasted, oaky notes to the finished beer.”

Live Oak Brewing

Our southwestern swing continues with Austin’s Live Oak Brewing. They focus on authentic European style beers like….

Primus – Winter Seasonal
Our new winter seasonal, Primus (pronounced, “pre moose”), is a dark, rich German-style Weizen beer (beer made with wheat malt) fermented with a very particular strain of brewers’ yeast that gives this beer it’s unique spicy and fruity character. The unfiltered beer has the characteristic clove and banana flavors familiar to HefeWeizen drinkers but with a darker and richer roasty malt character that is typical of some German-style Bock beers. The alcohol strength will be around 8%. Available November – January

Liberation Ale – Winter Seasonal
With about 6.0% ABV, this one will surely warm the ol’ gullet during a cold central Texas winter – both days! Our India Pale Ale (IPA) is light in color and strong in hop character. Dry hopping with Cascade hops, gives this winter favorite a delicious citrus note reminiscent of a Texas Ruby Red. Yes, it’s warming but you don’t need to be huddled around the furnace to enjoy this one! IPA fans really love this ale during a beautiful Texas winter on the porch or indoors.

North by NW Brewing

On Sundays in May, I will post a snapshot of a southwestern US brewery along with a suggested beer or two to try. I will give you a sneak preview of one brewery now.

North by Northwest Brewing in Austin, Texas.

Duckabish Amber
Pilsner, Caravienne, and Chocolate malts give this beer its beautiful, deep amber color. It is soft and creamy and balanced by Horizon hops.

Pyjingo Pale Ale
Brewed in the style of the great ales of the Pacific Northwest, this complex combination of Pilsner and Caravienne malts and Horizon, Cascade and Amarillo hops make it a great session beer.

Okanogan Black Ale
This rich, malty dark ale is reminiscent of the smooth ales produced by the Weltenberg Brewery in Northwestern Germany. The Pilsner, Caravienne, Munich, Chocolate, Black malts and Roasted Barley give this great dark ale a creamy, roasted malt flavor, which is perfectly balanced with Cascade hops.

Austin Drafthouse

If you are lucky enough to be in Texas, then luckier to be in the Austin area. You should check this place out. Not only do you get special screenings but beer and food while you are watching the movie. Instead of day old popcorn.