Best Beers of October 2023

Some months there is a clear front runner for best beer of the month. Not October, so instead of closing my eyes and picking at random, here are the four beers that intrigued my tastebuds the most.

In no particular order:

  • Firestone Walker Credit Czech – malty and smooth
  • Riip Beer Pineapple Panacea – pineapple smoothie
  • Institution Ales Fall Seasonal IPA – multiple layers of flavors
  • Offshoot & Stone //Dolphins.Escape.Bikes IPA – filled with competiting fruit notes

Spooky Review – Fall Seasonal IPA from Institution Ales

We finish off the spooky beer reviews with the appropriately ghoulish label for Institution Ale Co. and their Fall Seasonal IPA which has been given the three descriptor treatment as Dank, Citrusy, Balanced.

Pours a very clear Halloween orange in the glass. First notes are of fruit punch and softness on the palate. The aroma is very, very red berry. Tastes much less than 7.1% abv for sure. Tilts more pale ale to me. There is a bit of woodsy, earthy bitterness in the background like a scarecrow.

Sean Suggests for October 2023

This month, gonna do breweries that have locations in Huntington Beach since I will be there for a brief weekend stay.

Green Cheek Pull’n Levers – 5.3% – “A New Zealand-Style Pils w/ Super Sauvin.”

Riip Beer Co. Pineapple Panacea – 7.3% – “hazy ipa with pineapple. straight from the “fountain of juice”, this elixir is certain to ease your mind and refresh your soul. healthy doses of  cascade.”

Beachwood Mocha Machine Picoso – 9.2% – “It’s our multi-award-winning Imperial Coffee Chocolate Porter roasted with coffee from Portola Coffee but with an added twist of Saigon cinnamon and spicy chilies.”

In the Tap Lines for October 2023

Fall is probably my favorite season even though the biggest holidays of the year (my birthday and Christmas) do not fall (sorry) inside its months. The switch from SoCal summer to milder temps and the Festbiers just make me happy. Enough about me, let’s get to what will be covered this month…

~ e-visits to (3) breweries from Richmond, Va.

~ special featured reviews of fall seasonal beers

~Heads-Up on Los Angeles Beer Events

~ Three suggested beers to buy this month. One light, one medium and one dark

~ A Book & A Beer reads Silver Nitrate by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

~ A Podcast & A Beer listens to Strike Force Five

~ Sports & A Beer returns with re-aligning college football

~ New Beer Releases and Best Beers of the Month

~ I will tap the Firkin and give my no holds barred opinion on the craft beer world.

Best Beers of October 2022

Time to reflect on the beers that I drank in October that have come back to haunt me. By haunting, I mean, why did I not buy more?

We do not get a bounty of Wet Hop beers in SoCal much like we don’t get Christmas beers. Not as many hop farms here (though growing thanks to Sow A Heart Farms) and not much snowy cold weather for Xmas ales.

Preface aside, the Radiant Beer Co. fresh hop, The Speed of Now captured that bright, rubbing a hop cone taste that I prefer in the style.

Also a shout out to new Pasadena brewery, Wild Parrot. I really liked the Doug Heavy Lager which proves that mistakes can turn out unexpectedly.

But my winner was a beer that I did not have high expectations for, Kujo Cold Brew Coffee Porter by Flying Dog. It was on the usual warm shelf of my Trader Joe’s (whose beer shelf is a shell of what it once was, thanks Glendale). I am not a cold brew coffee fan but took a flyer and was rewarded. Nice chocolate and coffee mix with just the right viscosity.

Review – Ommegang All Hallows Treat

If anything screams Halloween, this treat from Ommegang Brewing does…

My first two words for this beer are sweet and sweet. This is a Halloween treat yo’ self for damn sure. The beers pours pitch black and initially has a big chocolate aroma. Flavor wise, it is a mix of milk and dark chocolate and quite roasty. For me, the peanut butter promised on the label us too faint. As it warms, more peanut aroma and taste arrive, but it is not peanut butter.

Sean Suggests for October 2021

IPA is ubiquitous. Cannot avoid it’s shadow of many sub-styles. With Halloween approaching, let’s get spooky into hops.

Indie BrewingPowerful Arrangements IPA – 6.5% “Our new Pink Boots society West Coast IPA. This Dank, fruity, and floral IPA is citrus forward with some dank undertones for your enjoyment on any day. Don’t miss out on this Pink Boots brew!”

Kern River Brewing Camp Nelson IPA – 7% “Tucked away in the Southern Sierras is a small enclave called Camp Nelson. Here you can ride your bike through Giant Sequoia trees, relax along the Tule River and forget about your troubles for a while. In the Fall, when things slow down, there is nothing quite like te sounds and smells of this place. We brewed this Nelson Sauvin hopped beer as a tribute to this bold, yet delicate place. Enjoy this limited release beer and make time for the simple things in life!”

Barrel HouseBig Sur DIPA – 9% “Big Sur, a masterpiece of colossal redwoods, treacherous cliffs, and dangerous surf breaks. With nearly 70 miles of rugged coastline and frigid sharky waters, adventure here isn’t for the faint of heart. Introducing BIG SUR Double IPA, brewed big to stand up to life’s most rewarding adventures.”

In the Tap Lines for October 2021

header_attractionsI am a strict seasonalist.  No PSL before October. Partially due to being in LA where fall arrives late and we only get a sprinkling of fresh hop beers.  So hold off on your Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Let’s enjoy October first,

~ e-visits to (3) breweries taken from the pages of Modern British Beer
~ special featured reviews of autumnal beers
~Heads-Up on Los Angeles Beer Events
~ Three suggested beers to buy this month. One light, one medium and one dark
~ A Book & A Beer reads The Children’s Bible by Lydia Millet
~ A Podcast & A Beer listens to The Great James Bond Car Robbery
~ Great Beer names and Best Beers of the Month
~ I will tap the Firkin and give my no holds barred opinion on the craft beer world.

Best Beers of October 2020

Sadly, no pumpkin beers made the list for best of the month, thankfully no winter seasonals did either. In the bronze and silver spots are the Gaviota Coffee Ale reviewed on this very blog at the beginning of the month. I still remember that bright green coffee bean flavor. Next is a beer I had yesterday, Tiki IPA from AleSmith. This beer popped with coconut aroma in a way that other tiki themed beers haven’t and then it settled into a well done IPA.

The winner though is Black Tuesday from The Bruery. So smooth and surprisingly not needing to age to get to that point. Just a lovely bourbon barrel beer just in time for the fall.

Sean Suggests for October 2020

This month, let’s go big. The way this year is going, might as well have a blowout, so Trick or Treat Yo’ Self.


Tarantula Hill Sleep Now in the Haze – 8% – “Tropical Juicy Hazy Double IPA with a great Citra and Vic Secret hop profile, creating a smooth drinkable DIPA.”


The Bruery Pistachio Mustachio– 10.3% – “Inspired by a beer in our coveted Black Tuesday Box – we took the Pistachio Vanilla concept and went full pastry stout with it. Deep rich vanilla flavors with a hint of pistachio are sure to tickle your senses.”


Bell’s 35th Anniversary Expedition Stout – 11.5% – “Expedition® Stout is the longest brewed Imperial Stout in the US. First brewed in 1989 to be robust enough to hold up to time and travel, we couldn’t think of a better beer to honor for our 35th Anniversary. We’ve brewed a special, stronger version for your cellar, your travels, or those special occasions of your own.”