Troegs Splinter Gold, Nugget Nectar Aged on REAL GOLD; psyche, just a rare Wild Ale.

In keeping with the theme of elusive old walez, might as well finally put a nail in this coffin and review Splinter Gold once and for all. This fucking asshole used to sit in the mid-80s on the top 100 for years just taunting tickers, elusive and brewed once in 2009, just a complete ticktease.

Thankfully, Masterski called a hit on this bitch and retired it, and all of those assholes who would wring their hands at night could rest at ease knowing this ethereal phantom was finally passed on to the afterlife. OR SO WE THOUGHT.

Then this year Troegs dropped another 750 bottles, 1 per person and the world’s collective nutsack split open at the seam. This dropped the same week as Cali Brandy Huna, so the boards were torn in half like a Cyrax fatality. DO I SUCK ON FLORIDA’S TOES OR GIVE PENNSYLVANIA A DEEP TISSUE MASSAGE? How do I debase myself the most effectively? Well fear not, I am here to review this shit for you. Rest at ease: this beer is better than Cali Brandy Floridy Hunaphie HunaweissStout. You chose wisely.

Some people shoot for gold, cant land blue, and then settle for Black. It is the Splinter failure trajectory in which there is only sadness.

Some people shoot for gold, cant land blue, and then settle for Black. It is the Splinter failure trajectory in which there is only sadness.

Tröegs Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States
American Wild Ale | 12.00% ABV

The transformation of Scratch #3-2007 to Splinter Gold has been a slow rest in oak wine barrels dosed with brettanomyces. During a two-year aging period the horsey flavors of the brett combined with the Westmalle yeast used during primary fermentation to create a complex blend of flavors. Bone-dry and 12% abv, Splinter Gold is highly carbonated.

A: Well, at the outset this isn’t a particularly attractive beer. This could just as easily have been called Splinter Dirty Penny. The hues are more of a bronze and deep amber. I was expecting some straight up sunshine in a can like how Brute comes out and starts irradiating titties. Ok so it isn’t gold, but this does have crazy attenuation and the cork almost busted the fuck out, taking its lil Black Note instruction/autoeroticism manual with it. Love those lil manuals, explaining why the rare beer you just got is worth it. It’s like “Fedex already dropped this off Troegs, I know what I have, stop pandering to me for fucks sake.” When I don’t get the lil book, I start a BAD TRADER THREAD. Because fuck that, it is PART OF THE TRADE, tiny books and all.

This beer feels refined, exotic, musky, and could probably fuck you up faster than you realize it.

This beer feels refined, exotic, musky, and could probably fuck you up faster than you realize it.

S: The initial waft is a lightly floral carnation meets orange peel sort of affair, some glad Plug-In yellow scent, then things start getting a lil muskier like when someone begins a story with “well once at the YWCA-” you know shit is gonna get sticky and steamy real quick. THe oak is there, there’s also that weird “abused wife” sort of white wine that showed up in Pinotlambicus/Oui Oui/Confession, if you know what type of beaten wife I am referring to. [Note: domestic violence is not funny in any context, the foregoing was to lend a character to the nature of the white wine character and raise awareness.]

T: The nose of this was a white wine spritzer and bretty affair, the taste is a complete right turn of the old beer Garmin. I was expecting some acidic, complex , tangerine dream with brett in the background sitting on the kick drum keeping time. What I got was some weird wine barrel aged imperial tripel, it has the oak, it has the muscat grapes but this weird sweetness and sticky chick o stick sort of aspect as it warms. There is a candi sugar and weird weight to the taste. Everyone was rubbing their beer clits on bedposts talking about how dry this was going to be. The only thing that was dry was my beergina after tasting this.

You may want to go for some low hanging fruit, make some gold puns, maybe a Trinidad James joke here or there.  Let's go further.

You may want to go for some low hanging fruit, make some gold puns, maybe a Trinidad James joke here or there. Let’s go further.

M: Again, this is not a dry beer, nor is it exceptionally “wild” in that loose term that brewers avoid because they want to dominate a less contested category. If they called this a BA tripel, your gumline probably wouldn’t know the difference. If you want a DRY beer, try something like Hill Farmstead E., that is drier than labias at a Dr. Who convention. This is a sort of honey, white wine, sticky bomb. It isn’t exactly HEAVY like an Allagash Interlude, but it is kinda like a bretty semtex on the inside of your mouth. The abv is fucking invisible and the carbonation is almost on a champagne level, really helping matters, but just don’t drink this too warm. Shit goes from delicious pinot grigio fun day to apiary mistakes: wood edition really quickly.

D: This is exceptionally drinkable and the ABV has dropped all of its points into stealth kills. You could sip on this while grading student papers and OFFICER THE CUFFS ARE ON TOO TIGHT I DONT EVEN KNOW WHAT ASKFM.COM IS. Seriously, incredibly drinkable but not exceptionally tasty as it warms. The age old advice that most beer assholes give is THIS WILL IMPROVE OVER TIME. But, who knows, maybe it wont. Maybe you are afraid of having an opinion or stating something contrary to a breweries’ interests. This is a good beer, relative to the asking price though, other options will get you just as wild with less ale.

9 out of 10 beer nerds wont know what these are. I am ok with that.  We need them in basements contributing to databases, not out there grinding on normal people.

9 out of 10 beer nerds wont know what these are. I am ok with that. We need them in basements contributing to databases, not out there grinding on normal people.

Narrative: The cuffs clicked tightly around Jonah Epstein’s wrists as his head was gently lowered into the back of the Dodge Charger. “I told you, I had a couple glasses of Barefoot Chardonnay, I dont KNOW WHAT HAPPENED!” he exclaimed as the officer in front popped a Circus Peanut into his mouth and took a long pull of his cup of Vault. “Quiet you, you think the Pennsylvania state legislature has money to waste with you monkeying around on the phone>” He clicked his nightstick against the screen and Jonah rubbed his wrists against the coarse American musclecar interior. “Listen, I don’t know who called 911, I had a dispute with my stepdaughter, it must have been her, PLEASE, you gotta believe me,” as he pleaded the stale taste of shame and $7 white wine was brought to the forefront of his mind. To think that this entire incident, the false 911 call, the binge drinking and shameful white wine headache, it was all because he would not let his stepdaughter watch Duck Dynasty. “Ok listen, officer, I fucking hate Duck Dynasty, I feel like white trash when I watch it alone, I didn’t want to expose her to that.” The officer reached forward and turned up his shitty Lumineers CD and drowned out poor Jonah’s drunken pleas.


Hill Farmstead Ann, …………………Her.


This is the infamous wine barrel aged saison that I have received no fewer than 4058230985 requests to review. As the grand opening to the saison marathon, I will finally review not only the highest rated saison in the world, but also one of the best beers that I have ever had in my entire beer drinking life. For the uninitiated, this has been heralded as a revelation for the saison style and is an exemplary demonstration of the raw talent seeping out of Hill Farmstead like open prodigious sores. This was a 180 bottle, 1 per person release and if that alone was not enough, shockingly, no one wanted to trade a beer that is damn near perfect. No amount of Daisy Cutter would make it happen. Let’s approach perfection in today’s inherently flawed review.

Let’s get these jokes out of the way: mayonegg, way to place Ann, her? bland, egg, ann hog, is she funny or something? etc.

Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States
Saison / Farmhouse Ale | 6.50% ABV

A: This is almost dead on to the style and presents a milky yellow discountenance with incredibly fine microbubbles that present a huge amount of cling. The carbo looks like tiny beds of golden Roe and lace the glass for almost an instant before crackling away. Ann is turbid and has a sort of watery golden hay look to the body with eggshell white bubbles. The bottle gushed a bit upon opening, but that happened with Norma as well and she was damn near perfect as well so, hard to really fault it on that front. A very beautiful beer, and while not at radiant as say, Ithaca Brute, it has this dirty radioactive property to it, just how you like your women.

Respect Ann.

S: This is incredibly complex and I took my time to let this open up to its full bouquet. If you drink this cold, you are 1) an asshole and 2) doing the saison world a disseervice. I would heartily recommend that you let this breathe up to the low 60’s, and it will offer up a deep upside down Spoderman kiss of honey, lightly lactic lemon zest, a faint wheat profile, a gentle amount of funk like sorting through old Marvel trading cards, and finally closes with a fantastic white grape element. At the outset, this beer strays dangerously far from the typical non-BA saison genre, but is better for it. If the outstretched hand from saison to AWA makes you uncomfortable, go drink a Sanctification and think about what could have been, ain’t no one asking you to the Beer Sadie Hawkins Dance anyway.

T: This is lightly tart at the outset with ripe canteloupe and lemon notes that leave a bit of a drying aspect, this gives way to the malt profile which is creamy and reminds me of a fresh grands biscuits, albeit with honey and light pear up in the mix, if that wasn’t enough, the final sharp chardonnay aspect comes in and starts power sanding down the bitter zones with a sand blaster. The crisp finish makes your palate all pissed and wanting another hit of that sweet saison methadone.

After Ann, whenever someone tries to offer me any other beer, I be like-

M: This imparts a huge white grape and pear skin note that is a bit creamy and brackish almost at the same time, which might be confusing for those who don’t have their sea legs in saison/american wild ale territory, notwithstanding, it is beyond excellent in this respect. The mouthfeel has a milky froth that immediately subsides into a drying chardonnay aspect. Like so many gilded age politicians, it gives and takes away with the same hand and your native american tastebuds are left reeling in its wake: discontent and wanting more.

D: This beer effectively will ruin not only the saison genre at large for you due to its complexity, but it will also in a lesser way ruin beer in general for you. It is kinda like how hooking up with 16 year olds is illegal because it makes hooking up too easy and denatures the value of making out in general. Landing this beer is so hard because it is a cautionary tale as to how drinkable and good beer can be at its apex. This doesn’t present a decadent profile like some complex gueuze or imperial stouts, but it imparts a staggering amount of drinkability and just outright uplifting citrus notes. The abv is not only perfectly masked, it comes across as though this beer is actually somehow good for you. The panacea effect is substantial with a beer that is this approachable. You could give this to a teething infant and it would recognize it as a potent elixir, HP/MP fully restored like staying at an inn. I cannot say enough good things about this beer. It is unquestionably the best saison that I have ever had and amongst the beers that I have ever had.

This is how people usually look when they find out that you drank Ann without them.

Narrative: Ann Portinari has served as a seraphim figure for brewers and beer traders in general. Those tedious days of spraying out tanks and cleaning up spent grain were a silent appeal to power. There is a divine undercurrent to manipulating the properties of life, casting away life sustaining wheat to generate even simpler cultures, using them for an ontological purpose. It is in this fashion that each batch is a silent prayer to Ann, an appeal to immortality in a manner that only Herbert Spencer can truly identify. So much beer has been cast through livers and into drains in flailing attempts at benediction or salvation. Ann drapes her wings lovingly over those drunk assholes on a nightly basis, fumbling through their phones to text ex-girlfriends, she is life giver and destroyer. Some would opine that in malt liquors her presence is not felt. Why when Molson needed her most were there only one set of footprints in the mash? It was during those times that the sweet muse carried them. Ann was an overseer of more than beverages, for in alcoholic drinks, man seeks to abrogate reason and become a god by mashing out on 2 full samplers at Denny’s. No dick pic has been sent without her careful intervention and oversight. In brewing parlance, when one has sparged and sparged in endless toil, she lifts one up to beatific perfection, making all other endeavors seems trivial by contrast. In this respect she is both instructive and destructive, sure that cab is $42, but what are you going to do? Leave your car here and then pick it up before streetsweeping at 7 am? Fuck that, Ann has wrapped her golden shroud around you, do sick burnouts and show the world your value.


Midnight Sun Barfly, The Only Time That You Can Brag About Having Flies

Alright, let’s get this shit out of the way: this beer is not worth seeking out. Let me clarify, it is an amazing stout and you will likely rock a half mast alerection after trying it but, what the market is asking for is simply not worth it. Sure, maybe you live in Alaska and got in on the ground floor, but this 1000ish bottle release is too rich for the blood of the rest of us non-Palins. We all know that I love Arctic Devil, Berserker was solid, so what now of this strange offspring? Let’s take it to the frigid north to investigate Seward’s Folly in today’s review.

More like tradefly. How many bottles of this actually left Alaska remains to be seen.

Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States
American Double / Imperial Stout | 12.60% ABV

A: This has a bit of a lighter slicker sheen to it than the massive stouts you see on this site getting tick on the reg. It looks nice with a frothy blackness that imparts a gentle coating that smiles at you like an amiable concierge, despite your ignoble intentions. You get a bit of crackling bubbles but nothing to whip out a post card for. The mocha coloring seems on point for the style but largely predictable “did you want pink bubbles?” no STFU.

PROTIP: If you feed this to a chimpanzee, he will probably toss his guts on your wall.

S: This nose starts with a black and mild cigar waft like a vacant strip club and melds into a vacant chocolate factory which is equally disturbing. Next up I get some tire, eraser, and sticky Charles Shaw red wine that recent divorcees are so fond of. Again, this just doesn’t strike on all my favorite stoutzones, my stoutrogenous zones remain unfired.

T: This has a much better taste but again, nothing to sell your ’94 Neon Espresso to obtain. This starts with a huge merlot aspect that lets you know, ok, good job barfly you were in a barrel. Then it continues its Community College Drama major and seeks attention via the route of smoked chocolate and sticky tobacco. That’s not the way to win the love of an absentee father. I enjoyed the light stickiness but ultimately this wasn’t what I had spent 8 months busting ale sessions to. It’s like meeting Skrillex in real life and realizing that he is just that fat kid who played D.J. on Roseanne.

You want to like it. You really do. But ultimately, the whole endeavor feels forced and you end up cleaning up the results.

M: This is swift and flows like that river in Huckleberry Finn, I forget which one. The chocolate is drying and the port/red wine aspects come off and stumbling blocks rather than assets to this process. You know when Logan busts out of the weapon X tank dripping wet? That’s how I feel after busting my cock to get this thing and it is a smoky, thin, red wine tasting little monster. It was not bad by any means but, at this price, you expect superchargers or at least a NAV system.

D: This is exceptionally drinkable, hell, you might even be able to trick girls into drinking stouts if they hang out in Santa Monica and enjoy deep juicy red wines and Weeds or some nonsense. Red wine sticks out like a sore labia in this beer and I can’t get past the imposing nature of the adjunct elements. Berserker was all coffee, ok fine, now this beer goes apeshit with a BCBG female grape aspect. It is good, let’s get that clear. Rag and Bone makes great clothes, but both are complete ripoffs in the end.

Is it good? Yes. Is it worth real life? No.

Narrative: Devin Griggs was the most avid fan of YooHoo Chocolate drinks this side of the Prime Meridian. He had sampled the most rare varietals of the cacao potation and nodded in disapproval at the rarest gems. “Watery, chocolate afterthoughts, it is like The Unbearable Lightness of Being in chocolate drink format” he opined to the throngs of 45 people who were also into this shit. Madeline, his assistant surveyed his impressive YooHoo cellar with a calm fortitude as he presented the legendary YooHoo b54 from 1961 with the notorious discontinued “racist label.” In the calm of his den he surveyed the empty bottles and shook his head in disapproval. “Sir?” Madeline poked her head in from the rich teak doors. “Look at these vintages Maddy, each milky discharge a potent entry in the pages of history,” Devin stated as he took a deep pull of his milky chocolate treat, 1995 vintage. “Do you ever feel like it is all a fool’s errand? Just a shot into the dark, the stockpiling of inherently consumable chattel? Perhaps it is a fleeting grasp at immortality in a fading medium, like the lactose itself.” Madeline shook her head and leaned intently upon stacked cases of 2002 YooHoo, the alleged infected bottles. “Sir, ultimately, a hobby is a fleeting outlet and a fading grasp at value in a world of inherent scorn. . .or it is a way to get your D S’ed in a niche market.” Devin licked his milk moustache and nodded in agreement, at Milk Chocolate Drink conventions he had gotten his DS’ed more than Nintendo.


Blueberry madness

In addition to being a generally acrimonious beer curmudgeon, I also home brew. I know, I know, that’s like the sweaty neckbeard pushing his Babylon 5 fan fiction on the masses, stay with me now. Anyway, I am brewing a blueberry lambic that I just racked to the secondary, check it:

Purple Drank.

Inb4 “What vintage is that Jello Biafra CD” or other hiarious background comments.

More reviews to come, still loading slugs up in that Chiquita banana.


Crooked Stave Blackberry Petite Sour, Like Jamba Juice, For Fitness Buffs with Alcohol Problems

What else is there left to be said about this plucky upstart, Crooked Stave. It uses the fabled Rocky Mountain water that we have heard to much about in a different context. Every batch seems to hover around 1000ish bottles which is the sweet spot for breweries these days, as we all know, ask any kid holding onto a Black Note, he will tell you. So lotsa juicy treats popping up in the spring, let’s see if this one puts forward a good foot, or GETS TANGLED IN THE VINES.

In between all the malt calories, who has time for fresh fruit? Crooked Stave has a solution for you.

Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project
Colorado, United States
American Wild Ale | ABV ?

BOTTLE NUMBER 424 of 857, mad points for .RAR skillz

This of course, was aged in wine barrels with blackberries added. Blackberries are so damn expensive that using that as an adjunct alone is a feat in itself. I guess all those membership fees are going to good produce use. These brewers must mash out at Farmers Markets like Belle in the intro sequence of BntB (slang.) Anyway, as you can see, this beer almost comes across like something that could be good for you and the color is downright pretty. There are all kinds of deep fuschia, purple, maroon, and ruby hues that makes you feel like Lisa Frank brewed this one up with unicorn blood.

DAMN YOU ELUSIVE SOUR GEMS, your unavailability is megabusting my balls.

The lacing is minimal and I am glad, get that shit out of the way, this is sour territory and I don’t have time for you expansive nature and lacing, lambics don’t fuck around and this wild ale gets right down to business. The bubbles are super fine and put together some nice floorboards for the acidic tannins from the blackberries to gracefully pirouette upon. The taste is exactly what you’d expect, juicy, drying blackberries all up in your dome piece. The oak and tannins go hard in the paint not unlike Wacka Flocka Flame, leaving your mouth all satisfied and dry with residual tastes of jams and preserves. Mammy let you lick the pie tin because you are a good boy.

Gary Soto once wrote a story about how he ganked this pie and felt like a shithead for it, and I kinda feel bad as well, receiving a beer like this so far from its native Colorado home. Kevin P. is a solid bro for kicking this tart gem into my mix. The drinkability, despite the nice acidic finish is kept in check by the sweet aspects of the berries, so it’s like when two girls are jocking you at the same party, an efficient gradient of acrimonious intent levels shit out. Never happened to you? Drink more sours homie.

I will have to disagree with the label’s bossy tone, telling you to serve it around 45 degrees, yeah maybe if you are afraid of amazing delicious fruit notes, then go be a scaredy cat and enjoy the limited profile of this gem. It reminds me of a more brash version of St. Lamvinus, like St. Lam’s brother that is all into magic tricks or the Eagle Scouts. Ultimately this beer is like getting a sloppy smooch from the Smuckers’ curator, and you are edified as a result.

At first I was all like, I ain't drinking no sissy girl colored sour beer, but when it turned into a robot teradactyl and decimated a gigantic monster, it had my attention.

Narrative: What the post-Platonic school of thought never contemplated was that, for every being in the aether, for every corresponding form of each berry ever made, there is a berry heaven. While not sentient, each blackberry in 300 b.c. Macedonia exerted a Will and Representation and, upon consumption, filled a nothingness with each other berry. Michael Park was a total asshole in his life. He would take the last slice, borrow your boardshorts and never give them back, and constantly talk about how amazing the shitty ass Miami Dolphins were. But now he is dead. He awoke in a field with his blackberry Virgil and accompanied him through chamber after chamber of descending berry sins, each one more acerbic than the last. Finally he came to the acidic Lapapa Berry, crushed in three stills for all eternity for its endlessly sour nature, for crimes against palates. “What the fuck is this? Seriously, there’s juice everywhere and it stings my eyes, why have I been brought here?” Michael wiped the sticky pulp without the slightest sense of reverence to the clear parallel to Judas or clever analogs to Italian literature. “Blerghh slergghhh YOUUU AREE A SOURRR ASSHHHOOLLEEEE” Virgilberry gurgled out and pushed him into the press, the iron and oxygen from his mangled body adding a calcium boost to the hellberry slurry.


Avery Brewing Company Muscat D’Amour, If You Love Chardonnay, You Will Love This Lil Muscat

So Avery has had a few ups and downs on these barrel aged beers and some I would without hesitation tell you to buy them, like condoms at Warped Tour, others I have a tough time aligning myself to because I am just a slovenly low brow beer swiller with no capacity for fermented grapes. Let’s take a look at this beer and see if any Statutory Grape takes place here.

For those times when wine seems too classy but beer seems too delicious.

Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
American Wild Ale | 10.78% ABV

Oh that .78%, you’ll feel it. Actually you won’t. This is an incredibly crisp and gentle wild ale that imparts its alcohol like a Yakuza strangler knocking you out. Hey, you could have just provided the access codes, alas, I digress. So this is not unfamiliar territory at first, a chardonnay aspect, light malts, a lazy apple juice meets Martinellis aspect with minimal lacing. I am not getting all fussy about the appearance because, truthfully, this is a genuinely beautiful beer. There isn’t that old qualifier where you go “but she has a great personality” or some shit, it is like a gentle old IPA that you trust with your secrets and practices making kisses with.

The smell is like a bachelorette party at a wedding doomed for failure. There’s some sassy spritzer resfreshing notes of lime and salinity like the vodka sodas from the bridesmaids, and a deep muscat grape, white grape, Chardonnay, and apple that beckons to the old folks with their time worn traditions and irrelevant opinions about vagina shaving. Ultimately, a luscious bouquet. The tannins give this INCREDIBLY dry aspect to it that is like eating too many atomic warheads that starts nailing my bicuspids on the reg.

I am not a huge white wine fan, but I love Avery's barrel aged stuff, I cannot deny that I love this beer, NO MA'AM.

The taste is incredibly juicy, dry, mildly tart, oaky, but incredibly tannic. Just start whipping up some Chilean Sea Bass if you pop this beast, the pairings will be a marital aid for the entire household. The label says this beer is “a lovely amalgamation, awash with the delicate expressions and subtle nuances of soft malt, ripe muscat blanc grapes and savory brett.” I would say that is the eHarmony dating profile of this beer that upplays some aspects and fails to underscore some obese drying aspects. This is unmistakeably beer, which I am stoked on, but it also has a huge vinuous aspect, which actually works well, as well.

This beer confused me at first, but once I understood the nuances it became incredibly fulfilling.

This reminds me of an “imperial Temptation” if that makes sense. The drying is bigger, the brett is bigger, the oak is more burly, and the kisses are more furious. If that is up your alley, consider my alley completely occupied.

There is a lot going on here but if you stick with it, you will see the mastery presented.

Narrative: Sofia took a deep sip of chardonnay and exhaled watching the Marlboro 100 smoke dance blue in the moonlight and contemplated the course of the next 35 minutes. Here she was, chapter 9 into Nicholas Sparks’s The Notebook Dvd, but she was still entirely unable to contemplate the potential for intercourse with Chad, whose first name was unmistakably irritating. The deep pulls of Barefoot and Yellowtail brought no guidance and merely muddled her divided conscience. Finally, in a moment of clarity she exhaled and saw a verisimilitude of a Velasquez painting and realized the fleeting nature of life, the bacchanalian rebirth of grapes, and the pomegranate seeds or Persephone slipping through her fingers every day. “SKIP TO CHAPTER 21” she commanded to a supplicant Chad, his memory foam mattress left besmirched with alarm. “That’s…chill…” she spit Chardonnay kisses deep into his mouth and rose above the trite romantic exploits, for in this moment, the IKEA foam and shitty movie posters could not denature what was essentially an exercise of incongruence. It was Sofia’s duty to empirically sample enough Chads to black out those sections of the Punnett Squares for the time in life when it really mattered. It wasn’t the best grad school essay, but it was true.


Allagash Vagabond, A Beer for All Those Highbrow Jack Kerouac Ne’er-Do-Wells

Not unlike the Allagash Ghoulschip, I had been seeking this beer out for quite some time as well, what with its fancy packaging and paper and whozeits and whatsits galore. This beer is a complex hydra and I will attempt to cut off some heads in today’s review.

Vagabond Ale is right, details inside.

Allagash Vagabond Wild Ale, 10% abv,

A: This beer has really charming deep plum and mahogany, the radiant hue invokes melodies rhapsodical and fair. The carbonation is gentle and lackluster, the lacing phones it in and does not show up for work, even though you know it was partying the night before in the bottle. Figures.

At first I was all jazzed based on the appearance and smell, but then-

S: Holy complexity Batman. I get a caramel, plum, merlot, syrah grape, and a mild hint of wet hay funk on the backend. I have no idea how this will taste with an olfactory offering this complex. It’s like the Pontiac Aztek where you don’t know exactly what to do with it.

T: This really pains me to say this, but the taste is really intolerable. I traded big to land this and I want to power through this but I feel that I may have received an off bottle. The initial taste is a light plum crispness like a farmers market- wait, it is passing over my other zones and wow. It goes to a strange place of old halloween Rolos, then finishes with a huge strange salinity like soy sauce. I dont want it to be the case and I respect Allagash immensely but as I sit here waiting for the beer to warm I am left wondering if it is my fault, did I lead the beer on? Was it what I was wearing? You get a deep tartness initially and a red wine aspect that is incredibly pleasurable and then it just goes Thelma and Louise out of nowhere.

In this beer's defense, it is very intredasting.

M: The mouthfeel is light and crisp like biting into a juicy, albeit very salty fruit. The mouthfeel has a bit of acidity on the backend of the palate, but overridingly the taste of weird phenols or something. Again, if this bottle is off, disregard this review but man, this feels like the Aston Kutcher of the beer world punking the shit out of my palate. It reminds me of this one time when I went to Universal Studios and ate grape soda and chili and go too hyphy on the King Kong ride and ended up throwing up in the backseat of my dad’s Cutlass Supreme. The taste in my mouth after throwing up, that is what this reminds me of. Not even mad tho.

D: Well given the foregoing, take a quick guess as to how gung ho I was to knock off a 12.9 oz bottle of this. As it warmed the stakes became higher with more delicious fruit and currant aspects and even more hateful salty aspects. I came into this thinking it would be akin to Consecration or the ilk, but, this was quite different. Not my favorite beer of all time. “But you don’t have to take my word for it” – Reading Rainbow.

You don't fuck with the Wu, and you don't fuck with Vagabond ale.

Narrative: I do not want to cobble together an offensive narrative for this beer because Allagash deserves better than that. Instead, I will provide you with a Lil B’ video. Allagash Aint Got No Felonies, Brews Like Bill Bellamy.


Portsmouth Brewing Wheat Wine, When You Can Make Wine This Good With Wheat, I Ain’t Even Trifling With Grapes

I wish I had a crazy anecdote to tell you about this one but, it was a sheer stroke of luck that this was sent to me. Mad props to Ryan S. for pulling this elusive beast into my cellar not unlike so many neighborhood children before it- I digress. So this is the famed Portsmouth brewery that rolls out the Greatest Kate that I am aware of (Mary-Kates dont count) and this is their beastly Wheat Wine. Let’s get it.

If all those mid-30s divorcees would drink wheat wines, maybe we would have something to discuss beyond Lane Bryant and Better than Ezra albums.

Portsmouth Wheat Wine, 11% abv

A: The appearance looks like a rubierer barleywhine with an almost deep orange at the edges. The carbonation was light and wispy with no lacing to speak of. The sheeting on the glass leaves this nice pallor of clear armor that you know protects the rageful abv deep inside. The microbubbles look inviting and you just want to split splash around in that co-ed foaminess. Braces kisses for all.

This beer was mesmerizing and complex.

S: I get a huge initial sweetness that reminds me of a candy coated date or a sticky caramel plum. The wheat is subdued and you could trick the shit out of someone and just tell them that it’s a barleywine with a ton of Maris Otter malts and THAT ASSHOLE WOULD PROBABLY BELIEVE YOU.

T: The taste has no wheat aspect to speak of and pulls the mask off and the big real is the barleywine sweetness and brandy character. The sweetness goes to work on your palate’s gentials while the sticky malt base restrains the ball gag. Secretly, you enjoy the abuse, but your palate has too much dignity to admit it. There’s some incredible sour notes in the middle that reminds me a bit of apricot and again, honeycomb, it finally finishes with a juicy clementine juiciness and the assault is over.

Once I found out that this was a barleywine in disguise, I was like-

M: The outside is candy but it aint sweet, the AR-15 is on the passenger seat. The coating isn’t intense and really the hops are the only notes who overstay their welcome when the party is clearly over. The lingering citrus notes almost make you forget the panoply of tastes you just took head on. Godspeed you Black Palate.

D: This is sticky, abusive, hoppy, and then gone. It is a bit too cacophonous to be a long term girlfriend as the fights just become too frequent and the periods of rest are just interludes wherein this beer will ask you what you REALLY meant concerning previous statements. As it warms, the beer gets more and more abrasive and complex, like each head of a hydra awakening, you, let’s just say your tongue is gonna need some fucking argonauts because this beer is not for the weak willed. Me and this beer are homies, but I def. put it on limited profile on Facebook.

They gave me a wheatwine, I TOOK THEIR FUCKING MINTS.

Narrative: “Hey, it’s me Devin, thought I felt a vibrate and, no? Ok, Metro PCS is weird, just call me back, it’s like a…15 to ZERO ratio haha so YOU’RE IT! BEEEEEP” God, just his voice harrows the core of your soul. Ever since you met Devin, he wouldn’t leave you alone. You were dropping your cousin off at a children’s martial arts tournament and of course, Devin approached you and wanted to show you the appropriate defense from someone with a scimitar. In between your bout, he stumbled into traffic and you saved his awkward gangly frame from being crushed by a street sweeper. Now this persistent asshole thinks you guys are best chums. But hell, he’s an eclectic guy, purple belts in several disciplines, extensive geode collection, a competent fencer, and lauded tobacconist. Sure he has told you all about himself but, you can’t shake that feeling that you secretly wish Devin would get run over by a Fiat, or drown in a swarm of beers. Something hilarious that would bookend his existence, but not make you too sad. You start to feel bad because really deep down he’s a-“HEY! It’s Devin again, YOU SHOULD CHECK OUT THIS LOSER ON CRUTCHES AT THE ICE RINK HE THI-” No. You’ve had enough of Devin.


Avery Recolte Sauvage, Oscar Wilde Ale, It is Tart; but Sassier

Avery keeps rolling out these batches of tiny, super-esoteric batches of beer that people rate extremely highly and I feel like that fat kid pressing his face to the bakery window, just looming on the sweet treats foreboding inside. Finally a friend hooked me up and I gave some Kern River goodness and both parties had tasted the rockies, respectively. This is a beer aged with Cabernet Sauvignon Grapes and then aged in Cabernet Sauvignon barrels. Basically…wine.

An immature palate wanders into the world of wine reviews...

Avery, Recolte Sauvage, Barrel Aged Wild Ale, 11% abv

A: This seriously looks exactly like Juicy Juice. Just straight up grape juice from concentrate. I guess I could make a parallel to some Merlots but really, it looks like a deep purple, no maltiness or carbination, just juice through and through, like Tupac.

There seems to be a bit of a scheme going on here to dupe the beer consumer. Maybe I am the only one.

S: The waft is of a tannic astringency, it goes to the black cherry, then dark grape varietal and lands on an acetyl tartness at the end. It reminds me of a Consecration whose balls have been pressed fully to the wall. If you prefer your testicles wall-mounted, I have a beer for you.

T: Looks like a duck, smells like a duck, wait for it. . .tastes exactly like wine. like a beer that was made with grapes, very little malt and then aged in wine barrels without yeast. Seriously, this is basically a wine with a mild bread profile. I don’t like being tricked into being a mediocre 30 something talking about Nurse Jackie episodes. This shit went Cougartown really quickly. It has a huge acerbic finish not in the cool “oh like a Cantillon St. Lamvinus?” no, like drinking a straight up glass of Kendall Jackson Cab. I look at my one time friend, the beer looking all entreating, tricking me with its vinous foul play.

Above: one of the best RPG's of all time, if you ask me to list the best wines ever, I am at a loss unless Sephiroth is involved.

M: Have you ever tasted Cabernet Sauvignon? Well, shake it up a bit to gain some bubbles and there you go. This is literally 80% wine and 20% hateful potation. The entire glass has a deep violet hue, there’s no lacing, I am way out of my territory here and I fear wineblogs are closing in, airlock is opening, if anyone reads this space station message, just tell them, I have always hated wine. . .in every…way…

D: Well again, this is determined by the nature of your very existence. I feel like I am trapped at an educational mixer with the traditional red wines, those chuckles and heel rocking with the effusive gestures. It is a perpetual “cool” PTA meeting with the notes of tannins that dry a bit and I COULD drink a lot of this, but moreover, I dont want to. It isn’t because it is bad, far from this, it is well executed but…I have the palate of a 21 year old boy. If you give me nice things I will bury them and spike stock certificates in the ground and eat Kraft Macaroni. It is my own shortcoming, not this beer’s.

Ultimately, I have ran out of arguments against wine so I shelter myself with beer to appear more intellectual. This has never happened before.

Narrative: Janice Roth was a recent divorcee, proud in demeanor, light in expression lines, stern in demeanor. Her 6 year-old minx did not trouble her much and she still served respectfully within InGeniDyneDCorp. as a regional semi-vice-personnel overseeing director. A title she held in cold reverence. Janitors would tip their caps in an almost anachronistic reverence of Mrs. Roth and as she piled into her comfy leather highbacked chair she exhaled sharply. “Janey Janey, when did it come to this?” she ruminated to herself as she operated the corkscrew within her desk to open a Chateau Margeaux, not the ’95 the ’96. She sipped the tonic judiciously and looked out the window ingratiatingly upon the foot traffic below. “The man you loved ran away, you have two beautiful girls who adore you, but something feels so wrong-” she knocked the bottle over and watched the crimson liquid gather in stern liquid rivulets. The sum value of her being was collected in this trivial libation. She had been reduced to episodes of the Bachelor and listening to Jason Mraz mixtapes. This was her inherent value after years and years of sacrifice. And then- she gets hit in the crotch or takes a pie in the face to still make this a comedy narrative, right? IS THAT WHAT YOU WANT? WELL TOO BAD SAD DIVORCEE STORY IS TODAY’S NARRATIVE.


2007 Michelob Cherry Lager, I’ll Take You To The Cherry Shop, Let You Lick the Lager Pop

Well Saints alive, what rare vintage have we been blessed with today? You read the foregoing correctly, a delicious Michelob Cherry Lager, aged for 5 years in a lava lamp. Shit is getting real in an around the field.

Some things age gracefully, like a sweet persian cat whos- ok I can't do it, this ages about as well as a Bolivian coal miner.

Michelob Celebrate Cherry Lager, Fruit Beer, 8.5% abv

A: I think it is ironic that they call this beer Celebrate because usually “Michelob” and “2007 lager” are not the things I would begin whipping up the cake batter for. This thing looks like the type of thing that savvy professional bowlers buy for their harem of harlots. It’s like if Sonic Burger started selling alcoholic drinks and their first foray was in ornate packaging. The bottle itself looks like a depleted uranium shell or a marital aid, depending on how freaky you like your shit. No lacing, no sheeting, mild carbonation: drink a cup of grenadine for the haters.

I just don't trust this beer after seeing the bottle and smelling what it is up to.

S: This smells like cherry lime aide and gives a distinct waft of bubble bath. If you you’ve ever chewed a piece of (yipes stripes) Fruit Stripe gum, you’ll know exactly what is going on here. The amount of hating upon the player that is your olfactory system is staggering. The finish is like if an escort spit a Sucrets into your nose holes and gave you a deep Fruit by the Foot smooch.

T: Alright well, you ever have an awkward hook up that shouldn’t have happened, and you regret it, but at least you get breakfast afterwards? Well this is like that except you don’t get breakfast. This tastes like some old fruit roll-ups left in the sun, or perhaps a blowpop dipped in 4Loko, which by all accounts, is far too many Lokos. It reminds me of those sour ropes in the lingering distaste in my mouth that I usually associate with Jody Foster movies.

Just from its appearance alone, you know your mouth is about to get violated.

M: This was a fleeting experience, but I found myself pointing out on the cherry doll in court where the bad man touched my palate. No matter how much imperial stout I drank afterwards, it still hung around like a vengeful roommate, taking all my Crate and Barrel catelogs. Shit was not bitches. I could see Lil B the Based God loving something like this, sipping it judiciously through his well appointed gem-laden grill. But for the rest of us, I can just snort Mountain Dew Code Red and be done with it.

D: Spoiler Alert: I did not want to drink a lot of this shit. It was juicy juice nightmare and I can’t recommend a return forary into this western theater. The cherries were sickening and the lager base didn’t help matter much with a malt complexity. It just shirked there in the courner shaking awaiting for the cherry domestic violence to stop. I can thank my good friend Eric Hammond for this gem. I gave him Funky Buddha Raspberry Berliner, and this is the fruit treat that I received in return. Equitable exchanges.

This should have been obvious from the start, a 2007 vintage lager from Michelob? Shitstorm from the inception.