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@Darkhorsebrewco Rum Barrel 4 Elf, a glade plug-in/dryer sheet disaster of a winter warmer

Oh winter warmers, what are we supposed to do with you? At any other time of the year we would just call you an old ale or a barleywine and be on our way. But every fourth quarter breweries toss fucking cardamom and allspice into perfectly respectable beers and spice things up like how Hollywood was adding gay characters into every movie in the 90s. Sometimes spice adds a layer of complexity to a hefty malt profile, more often it tastes like a bakery disaster with nutmeg secreting out your nips balefully. This is the latter. Let’s see how Dark Horse spent all that TV money in today’s review:

The vinyl is inversely amazing when contrasted to the quality of this beer,  And we all know Dre Day is a classic.

The vinyl is inversely amazing when contrasted to the quality of this beer, And we all know Dre Day is a classic.

Winter Warmer, Michigan,
Dark Horse Brewing, who knows the abv? You’ll see its not relevant.

A: This is a murky brown with a turbid center like lake water, frothy carb that looks lively but is secretly just runoff from Beijing factories. In the same vein as that CAPRICHO OBSCURA disaster from Cigar City, this just looks messy, but looks are sometimes deceiving.

this bae gets out of control pretty quickly

this bae gets out of control pretty quickly

S: Smells are not often deceiving and this is a Yankee Candle nightmare. You get some sort of cinnamon meets cardamom, a sickening sweetness like egg nog sublimates into an almost floral aspect that clashes with everything else. I can’t make heads or tails as to what they were going for here: is this a malty big beer with rum underpinnings? It definitely is not that. Is this supposed to be a spice driven holiday extravaganza? It feels more like someone dropped an IKEA spice cabinet into the brite tank. Maybe its a sweet winter treat? well it isn’t really that considering the whole thing has this laundry detergent overtone to it. I don’t know who this is for, people who have a disassociative disorder with their mouths and want to render punishment perhaps. Some people said the rum barrel mellowed out the spice of the base beer, but that’s like how napalm mellows out fire by keeping it in a single area to devastate for a longer period.

Just because something is strange doesn't mean you want it anywhere near your mouth

Just because something is strange doesn’t mean you want it anywhere near your mouth

T: This just continues the punitive aspects of the spice and adds a sickening layer of sweetness like when someone brings you shitty candy from abroad. It is never tuned to your palate and seems grossly saccharine or has like fucking salt or licorice in it. This is all that, except wait, who is getting out of this nightmarish taste Uber? Oh it is fucking clove, here comes this asshole. You know, like those times we have all smoked a black and mild and then craved some skittles, we’ve all been there. Blegh.

M: This is thin and doesn’t linger thank god, it ruins your evening in a perfunctory manner and then does a heel turn and leaves. So I guess I am thankful for that. It doesn’t like fuck your sister and then ask for a ride home, it knows when it is not wanted and is respectful enough to be over quickly. Thanks for that, Dark Horse.

Winter Warmer fanboys repping the block hard piru set

Winter Warmer fanboys repping the block hard piru set

D: If this were any less drinkable it would be a solid object. If barleywine were a super hero movie, this winter warmer would be the guy who gets pushed into a tub of toxic waste and jasmine to create the ultimate beverage villain. I cant not recommend this enough because, it isn’t even infected, they made this on purpose. It was like how the director of Birdemic was like “yup, this looks good, better offer this to people, you know, in exchange for money.” This is a total pile of wet Michigan garbage that has an entire can of FRESH LINEN Febreeze dusted over it. In other words, extra this to Florida traders, they will drink anything as long as it has been in a barrel.

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@rightproperbeer Kick Kick Snare Berliner, the imperial version of BA DUM TISH punchline style ale.

D.C. has DC Brau and several noteworthy beer PLACES, but aside from the Hardywood contingency is solidly RVA.  Bluejacket emerged and seemed like a hot contender but nothing has really set the region’s nuva rings ablaze. Now we have RIGHT PROPER, a place to get Howard University students swerved.  But is it the regional hegemony that can affect the beer world at large? ARE THEY THAT FYCKING POWERFUL?  Let’s reach across the aisle in today’s review

KICK KICK SNARE hitting hard like them 808 drums. 909 drums are full of meth.

KICK KICK SNARE hitting hard like them 808 drums. 909 drums are full of meth.

Right Proper Brewing, Washington DC

3.2% Berliner, dry hopped with citra and cascade

A:  This beer looks beyond yellow into a type of neon radiant yellow 5/mountain dew territory.  It is so faint that is becomes radioactive like wheaty isotopes banging around the glass, emitting substantial carb.  It honestly looks like someone took Gatorade and force carbed it, and I have no fucking problem with that at all.  Put this in a waterbottle for your big mountain bike ride, or whatever michelob ultra drinkers do.  This is like 80 calories a glass, drink it while you deliver UPS boxes on your route, who cares.

LYKE if u cry evrytiem BERLIENRS

LYKE if u cry evrytiem BERLIENRS

S:  This is a touch salty, wheat grist, ironically for all the hoppy promises, the most prominent element is a sort of clean alkaline chalkiness/salinity and a tangerine finish.  Again, this just hits like a radiant sports drink that seems to want to cure the hangover that you haven’t even earned yet.  THIS IS A FORWARD LOOKING BEER, trying to keep you from watching entire Netflix seasons on Sundays.  I can applaud that.

Maybe it needs more body, maybe you are a meercat and dont know what a berliner needs

Maybe it needs more body, maybe you are a meercat and dont know what a berliner needs

T:  This is bready for a fleeting moment and then kicks in the acidity in a real way, lemon and yuzu, key lime and a creamy finish that crackles out of existence like a genie entering a lamp.  It is over so fast you take another huge sip just to grasp at fragments that speed down your throat, each gulp becoming successively more tart and dry.  You get caught in this feedback loop where you keep taking bigger gulps chasing the lemon dragon to get a “real” taste but its so thin you are constantly eluded.  I am ok with that, this does the opposite of overstaying its welcome.

M:  This is dry, acidic, and works with successive swallows to take a run on your molars but never quite brings hard hits.  The whole thing feels like an absence of being, the consumption of beer and fleeting sensations with nothing to grip definitively into beyond light acidity and a juicy finish that crackles like Fundip and disappears.  It doesn’t pull that Golden Road shit where its intensely acidic, it is only a touch too tart for the style and the De Garde acidity seems unreasonable by contrast.  You can drill this without reprisal and it would almost be a full on challenge to get meaningfully drunk on this because you are perpetually hydrating while seeking inebriation.  The sisyphean chase that is ever fulfilling.

HARD AS FUCK LIGHT AS FUCK

HARD AS FUCK LIGHT AS FUCK

D:  If you couldn’t figure this out, it is endlessly drinkable in the way that Candy Crush is endlessly playable, but both ultimately make you feel a touch empty and ashamed of yourself.  You kill an whole 2 liter of this and then look around your life in calm sobriety, none of that laundry got done and you are still moderately sober. Actually, this is a perfect beer to get your life back together because no responsibility or self control is needed.  Go HAM, try to get yourself drunk, if you come from a pedigree of Kuhnhenn and Bruery tier ABV, this wont put a dent in your blast shields around your liver.  Maybe you dont need to eat Totino’s pizza rolls at 3am on a weeknight.  LIFE IS A GAMBLE.