I haven’t had a Great Notion beer in awhile but SoCal has been getting quite a few beers from the PDX brewery that I thought the time was right for some dynamite, or lack thereof.
You will read about where I bought it later today, but here is the review from me and two fellow tasters…
This was not a well loved beer. One gave it the lowest rating she had given a beer and the other found it not to his taste. Me well, I found toasted coconut big time with a neapolitan ice cream aroma. There was some tropical notes but more strawberry. It was almost like a sour stout in which the ABV over 11% does not really show.
It may be another while before I have another pastry stout
Time to crack open the impressively packaged Imperial Double Mash Stout from MacLeod Ales…
This is a gentle giant of a beer. Pours dark brown in color with just a few, fast dissipating bubbles on top. I get cherry, chocolate and a slight nutty taste at first. This is a smooth beer. The ABV is not showing. As it warms, I get Dutch chocolate pudding with a bit of coffee bean bitterness.
When I saw that the classic Black Tuesday was going to be put in 16oz cans, I was happy. I will be even happier when they come in adorable little 10oz bottles.
So, I typed that intro before I received a mega bounty of Black Tuesday 2020 which included cute little 10 ounce cans of three different variants!
You’ve got your maple, vanilla and Port barrel-aged versions but those will wait until November. Can’t rush a beer that hasn’t been rushed.
First, let’s talk the original. Almost drank it straight out the can like a libertine. It is boozy. But not as hot with alcohol as I feared. There is a burn. At 19+%, there is going to be one. But this drinks smooth and might well smooth more with extra aging. I get raisin and fig and big bourbon notes swirling. I can totally see why other flavors would appeal as additions to this.
It may be passé to say that we as beer fans need to hew close to our roots but there are relatively few beers that I believe need to be tasted each year. Black Tuesday is one of those beers.
Chapman Crafted is nearing the four year mark and they are doing it in a plain, VANILLA way with an Imperial Vanilla Stout. Take a closer look at the stat box, I love that the third flavor note is celebration.
We are living in a to-go curbside contactless world which sucks for browsers like me. But maybe the new Stout Bottle Shop will have a nice robust online shoppe for me to wander through from the seated position. Good to have outlets for both customers and the breweries.
We are at the end of the five part series of reviews of Partake Brewing, and we close with the Stout.
This beer garners the silver medal even though it is more a porter or brown ale. It has good flavor and is less watery than the rest. There is a bit of coffee taste as well as a slight tinge of cola. A bit of minerality in the finish that could be toned down but overall decent.
Firestone Walker can do a wide variety of beers but even with that skill, there are some flavors that I do not associate with them. Pils, sure. IPA for sure. Sours and Wild Ales for damn sure. Barrel-aged of course but chocolate cherry stout? No doubt they will pull it off but I like that they are doing something off their Central Coast path. And canning it too.
I have been eyeing the Jamesons whiskies aged in casks formerly home to IPA and Stout but since I am not a big Whiskey person, the prospect of buying a full bottle without a sample first seemed like too big of a flyer.
But, I stumbled across little sample bottles and that was an easy purchase. Of the two, the Stout seemed to have more of a residual beer flavor to it. But if handed both blind, I would have had a really hard time picking which was which.
It is an uncanny valley thing. You know when something looks fake and tastes fake but the closer you get to the look and taste will leave people weirded out even more. I would have needed to get a citrus or pine hop note in the right quantity to have been happy and the same with the Stout, I really needed to have some Black Patent Malt note tucked inside.
For me, the Stout version seemed more on that road than the IPA version but not by a galloping head start for sure.