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Trillium Brewing Just Got 5 Hop Cones in the Source: Hot in those MA Streets

If you are like me, you are sick to your perineum of hearing about hoppy beers from the Northeast.  Every other week it’s some new whipped egg yolk looking DIPA pitched with London Ale III strain or something unclarified with tons of messy ropes like cum in a hot tub. I get it, everyone wants their own Huddy Trooper riff. Usually the coat tails are gripped so defiantly that it is hard to separate the cone from the chaff and the prospect of taking a fedex flyer on hoppy beers from across the continental U.S. is not an inviting prospect.

These Trillium beers though, God damn.

Without qualification I can say that these are absolutely worth your time and I would be shocked if your unknown local brewery crafting beers out of a revamped Red Robin on some shitty third owner brewpub system are making anything like this.

beers taste better bokehed

beers taste better bokehed

At the outset the innumerable list of hoppy beers from Trillium appear samey in execution,  but each shines in a distinct fashion. Melcher street is the more herbal and grassy companion on this Massachusetts stroll through dandelion fields.  This is a stern east coast response to the likes of Societe’s Pupil.  This pushes for angiosperms, conifers, and apricot on the closer.

trub a dub dub

trub a dub dub

No matter where you stand on the haze vs. isinglass debate, Melcher street tastes phenomenal and finishes creamy with a long sappy resin like a freshly stained deck. I can’t wait until someone with better distribution bites this style and does it marginally worse because I need this to be sitting on shelves, no courier intermediary needed.

the meringue whip

the meringue whip

Sleeper street is aptly named for much of the Trillium canon at this point.  Sure you see ISOs for these, but I usually wait for the galvanized steel of hoppy beers to cool before I go treading upon unproven paths. This beer is not as good as Melcher but it still shows a capacity for variety within even the style that doesn’t usually get praise for nuance or depth.  This has a kind of menthol and minty Sazerac 18 kind of woodiness going to it.  There is a leafy oiliness to the mid palate and it feels earthy but still wholly refreshing like a woodruff shot or a fernet branca spritzer.

poppin shots at them MA haters

poppin shots at them MA haters

So in sum, this is a throwback of sorts to the Hoptimum era of massively resinous IPAs but ensconced in the framework of the frothy turbidity of the modern era.  It’s like when Brendan Fraser emerges from the past in any one of his movies where he is a guy who is emerging from the past to adapt to new circumstances.  Pick one.

SHIT JUST GOT REAL

SHIT JUST GOT REAL

But is that DIPA game strong tho? A resounding affirming head nod shatters my c1 in this regard.  Upper Case is hands down my favorite offering from them and it heismans others squarely in the collarbone by taking the messy DIPA framework that HF Double Galaxy presented and presses it to an oddly refreshing realm.  Usually these are hardly what you would reach for when you seek satiation.

“We hear you guys are digging our hop forward beers…so we busted out another double IPA to celebrate our 2nd anniversary. UPPER CASE has a delicate, dry pilsner malt character with a smooth, soft, doughy mouthfeel from the raw wheat, oily hop resin which all serves as a canvas for this twice dry hopped 9% double IPA. Overipe mango, pineapple and passion fruit aromas leap out as the beer is poured. The impression of tropical fruit also takes the lead in the flavor which is layered further by white wine, pine resin and grapefruit zest. Hopped primarily with Mosaic with supporting roles played by Galaxy, Citra and Columbus. We figured there will be considerable interest, so brewed 3 batches!”

I mean, god damn it.  Sure this is not as balanced as the “perfect” DIPAs like Kern River Citra or HF Ephraim, but it is a novel entry into a sort of almost farmhouse meets ultra hopped 2 row realm.

just look ffs

just look ffs

I know your local realm has fresher, awesome DIPAs.  No one is contesting that, but it likely doesn’t have this guava and pine explosion, it doesn’t have this grapefruit puree pressed through autumnal foliage, the ride on mower sits absently longing for the grow season, and this beer is the reductio ad absurdum of those devices.  Absolutely top notch.

honorable mention

honorable mention

Not to appear one note: brewmaster Jack has been turning out some tasty beers as well.  I was not as huge a fan of this as the adamantium hard lineup from Trillium, but it is still very tasty.  You get grapefruit pith, mandarin oranges, pressed pineapple juice and a nice mineral clean finish without excessive oils.  If you have a MA guy, have him also toss some of this Brewmaster Jack action your way as the whole region seems to be in a hoppy arms race where only the consumer is the victor.

Get that deep cone pump, throbbing oils, zygotes straight tumescent at full bud.

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Armand’4 Geuze Herfst (Fall), Dropping 32 euros on a bottle of beer Herfst so good.

How negligent can this website get? I reviewed Spring, Summer, and Winter of the Armand’4 series and straight up neglected to provide you with this banger: HERFST. Just so this is clear, here is how I would rank these Armand seasons: Zomer, Lente, Herfst, Winter. IN THAT ORDER. Well taking the bronze in such amazing company is nothing to be a sad panda about. Let’s get puckered in today’s review, for the geuze haters.

Love HERFST. Gueuze scars.

HERFST
Brouwerij Drie Fonteinen
Belgium
Gueuze | 6.00% ABV

A This has a huge generous billowing cloud of carbonation that is cummulus to the fullest. It is light orange at its center with light yellow and gold edges. It boasts a slightly unfiltered appearance. It’s like a 6 year old at CVS, you don’t want to touch him but you know he is a little sticky and filthy. The lacing is substantial as well, it leaves little party streamers on the edges of the glass with gracious aplomb.

With every season you expect a normal geuze, BUT THEN YOU GET AN AMAZING SUPER SOUR SOAKER. Dnt be fukn stpid Gooby.

S: Not surprisingly, it is stick and filthy. There are sour and sweet tart notes are blended with hints of granny smith apples underneath. I don’t want to go out on a limb but I am going to say a Skittle reduction is at play here. Compared to the other seasons, this has a funk and earthiness to it like the landscaping section of Home Depot. There is a great wet dog meets soggy alfalfa aspect that integrates with the acidity in a fantastic way.

T There is a pleasant sweetness for a split second with a latent backroundhouse to the bitter zones immediately thereafter. Its a sucker punch which leaves your mouth a bit dry but welcoming more if only for the strange assault. It’s like getting socked in the armpit, you aren’t mad youre just a little perplexed and glad it wasn’t worse. It provides a mild hop bite and this toes the line closer to an extremely funky saison but this provides an incredible acrimonious punch to the tart zones.

This is a huge beer, but small and restrained at the same time. It is a paradigm of delicate imbalance.

M: This is very light and dries in a refreshing fashion hitting that gumline deep and hard. It reminds you of an advanced cousin, the one who learned compound cussing earlier and gave you Too Short cassette tapes. Its like the tiny asian fighter who you underestimate who delivers fast swift blows that disorient and surprise your mouth. It is clean, crisp and damaging to your bitter zones. It is concurrently musty, funky, and also coats with a nice wheaty aspect to it.

D: This style is in my opinion fantastic for hot weather and, if you have some water on hand, a great companion outdoors on the beach or a boat. If you like very mild lagers then you will disagree but then you are also a raging pacifist and it is unclear how you ended up reading this review in the first place. The juiciness and earthiness of this perfectly captures the spirit of fall: straddling the heat and acidity of Zomer with the somber earthy tones of Winter.

32 euros PLUS shipping from Belgium? This is why we can’t have nice things.

Narrative: 47 years of service. Francine Manzana gave that caramel apple pop company the best years of her life and she was terminated “for cause” for reading a Patricia Cornwell novel when she wasn’t clocked out. Francine wasn’t going to take this lying down. She knew the secret behind the tartness in those pops, and she had full intention on taking this issue public. With her box of belongings from her desk she strode over to the quality control center only to find that Loretta was out. “I will make them feel the tart bitterness of abandonment, just like they showed me.” With a few calibrations she reset the dials and the mixture began running an entirely new batch of Caramel Apple pops through the line. Her acidic personality boiled inside with a deep complexity. She stared at her spiteful reflection in the bubbling pool of acidic green glucose. The wafts of the additional citric acid stung her eyes and nostrils. Francine smiled and tossed her mystery novel into the simmering goo, for she had an unemployment officer to speak to.

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Drie Fonteinen, Tuverbol Lambic, TuverBOL so Hard, But First Tuvers Gotta Find Me

First, mad props to my Irish overseas homie for this one, you know who you are. I always was curious about this uberlambic, so wait, it’s a lambic but it has 10.5% abv, what’s going on here? Sounds like a sorority date rape potation if I ever saw one. The confusion sets in…before the doctor…can even close the door…OH I FEEL THIS LAMBIC KICKING IN [C:/endLivereference.exe]

It's like a regular lambic with a cold air intake, bolt on headers and a cat back exhaust, it doesn't gain much but what it gains IS SO ILLMATIC.

Man, today’s content feels a little weak, might as well pad things out with some pictures, business as usual on this shitty beer site, right?

Initially I thought the prospect of a 10.5% lambic sounded so hard and I was wilding out backflipping like Tony Stewart up in this bitch.

Drie Fonteinen, 2007 Tuverbol, 10.5% abv lambic

A: Well, so far so good, it looks like a lambic, with carbonation lower than a 64 impala. If Doesjel is the baby, this is the abusive father of uncarbonated lambics. The radiance is alluring though, nips all blasting with interest like the freezer aisle.

When I tasted this, I was like aight den, then the alcohol and chardonnay finish kicked in and shit got real.

S: The smell is on the rails too, looks like next stop Lambicville, you get a lemon zest, mild funk that is like the straw at a pumpkin patch and you’re pretty sure that there’s preteen piss in there, but in a musky alluring way that a tiger would find palpable.

T: Wait what. What is going on here? This isn’t lambicville at all, it’s more like Silent Hill. The zesty sour notes are gone and in its place is this sweet but entirely creepy old man who keeps talking about something “rustling [his] jimmies” which is offputting but interesting at the same time. You get a tannic chardonnay presence that isn’t drying but doesn’t really care if you check into its spooky old inn either. The wispy vapors leave some oakiness and grassy notes but ultimately subside into a ghostly almost chlorine aspect mixed with dry white wine character. The alcohol is well integrated and just shakes chains and makes a moaning sound.

It looks like a cute little lambic and OH SHIT IT IS RUINING ALL OF MY THINGS-

M: Ultimately you go upstairs and find a bloodsplattered journal from Dr. Mouthfeel and you find out about his palate experiments that apparently went horribly wrong. Town is cursed yadda yadda, the mouthfeel is actually my favorite part of this beer. If this is 10.5% then sign me up for Sigma Kappa because this might as well be a Peach Bellini. The alcohol just hangs out and slaps people on the back and provides a good old times. There’s a bit of brackish drying and some white grape notes but those are incidental to the refreshing crisp character of this beer. It’s pretty cutty through and through.

Sometimes I feel like something is just not made for my palate. Pic related.

D: This is exceptionally drinkable, particularly for this 10.5% abv. If that is above 10% alcohol, then 50/50 Eclipse has something to learn about genteel manners and how to court a palate. You just dont grab for the inner thigh sweet zones, a soft handed dance of lemon, grapefruit and must integrates the inevitable groping much more coherently. Gotta massage the lambic oils, fuck, things got massageatistic real quick there.

Ultimately there is nothing wrong with the embrace of a 10.5% sweet lil belgian treat, even if you know it will someday rip your face off.

Narrative: “Fer fucks sake Taylor, give it a rest and come have a brew with your Uncle Skeeter!” Taylor Pierre was not taking nicely to his exchange family and, despite their kind notions, his host family in South Carolina was not what he expected. At first he thought that the quasi-coastal weather would be perfect for his high school experiment harvesting live cultures for his ale projects- “GODDD DAMNITTT, PEEURRR! You just missed the sickest slam, Rockster just put the damn near people’s whole arm up on CENA!” Aside from IMDB, Taylor PEEURR was unsure of the logistics of this brutal foreign sport and instead preferred orienteering and Pétanque. He lumbered into the living room/dining room/den/conservatory and wrestled with his size 0 jeans and adjusted his 3/4 sleeve cardigan in the sticky southern climate. “And then, watch watch, so McMahon is gonna be like ‘the fuck you ain’t gonna complete your CONTRACT!'” his host “Uncle Skeeter” insisted on wearing his class of ’94 letterman jacket and rubbing the varsity wrestling letter for good luck and would not have his favorite sport impugned with inquiries into its legitimacy or credence. “AND THEN…wait…OH FUCCKKKK…I thought Rey Mysterio was IN RETIREEEMENTTT!” the swill known as Camo left a lasting impression on his adolescent memoires and he sobbed gently while thinking of Bordeaux fields later that evening.

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Armand’4 Oude Geuze Winter, Now is the Winter of Our Geuzecontent

So, whenever one of these seasons come out I sigh to myself and know that I am going to have to get a complete ass reaming to land one of these expensive, rare bottles. Thanks a lot Belgium, WAY TO BE A HOMIE. Anyway, so this is the last in the series, but I am Tarrantinoing this shit and you will get FALL later on, to keep you guessing how this shit ends. CLIFFHANGER LIKE STEVEN SEGAL.

It must be winter because my nips are blasting.

Brouwerij Drie Fonteinen, Geuze, 6.00% ABV

I know who Sylvester Stallone is. Let’s get down to business.

Bump this shit:

A: This beer has a murky orange depth to it that isn’t like the other happy seasons, this is a pissed off geuze that is suffering through a winter of discontent. The carbonation is out of control, in a literal sense. When I pulled the foil off, there was a bit of white residue on the cage and as I was examining the c- BOOM! The cork hit my ceiling and then bounced off the floor. Something about being shipped thousands of miles to be greeted by my disfigured grill just set this season off. The carbonation looks like a malfunctioning dishwasher, suds for days, huge frothy bubbles, baristas getting mad winter boners up in this piece.

It's winter but this beer is unnaturally darker than the others, paradoxes abound.

S: There’s a mild musk and I get notes of persimmon, lemon notes, there’s a kinda char like smoked turkey, and decomposing leaves. For such strange elements, it works. It isn’t the most uplifting season in the series but it seems refined and poised in a way that energetic ass Zomer couldn’t satisfy this mature tastezone.

T: This doesn’t have the huge citrus acidity blast and feels more like the “older” season of the four. There’s this strange pumpkin/allspice aspect to it that lingers with the huge apricot aspect and finishes with a strange metallic allspice aspect. I have a hard time organizing all the elements because they seem to be shouting over one another and clamoring for attention.

They sent me geuze from Belgium, I sent my credit card to the grave.

M: I don’t know if it’s this beer or trying to figure out who A is on Pretty Little Liars but this shit is confusing. I get the normal goozie aspect with the acidity and delicious dryness you’d expect from Armand but the barrel comes in and imparts a deep icy touch that comes off with a mild bitterness and makes it rain with a cascade of adjectives. Ultimately, it is less drinkable than the other ones in the way that a Rush album is less listenable than a Pennywise album in that the complexity is mind boggling.

D: This goozue is my least favorite of the seasons but that is like saying that the Ferrari California is the most underwhelming in their supercar lineup. Still destroys so many other contenders and stands out with an awesome original taste and finish. It was thoroughly enjoyable but didn’t get drained as quickly as I don’t remember the other variants disappearing but it is still phenomenal and worth that…uh…$80…(34 euros,…plus shipping from belgium…carry the zero…uh…) fuck it. It is beer and this was certainly worth the cost of entry. What else are you gonna do? See 21 Jump Street with 4 different chicks? Fuck that, buy goozeu.

It's a slow gentle realization to come to terms with how good this beer is.

Narrative: Frostbarrow Helmchill was a noble Nordic lord who watched over his icicle harvesting operation with impunity and scorn. He hated the family business that he was born into but with the Norwegian economy being what it was, who could afford to earn less than 50,000 krones a year what with the 83% income tax and all. All of his finest workers had left to start black metal bands, shred metal, gothcore, post-indigo shred, or speed subhammeroncore bands. In the mountains of Norway, the work ethic was tempered by months and months of relentless winter and Frostbarrow lived within his cold shell. He retired to his chilly flat and looked upon his unicycle, classical guitar, purple tae kwon do belt, and fruit dehydrators. Inside the gentle repose of his stoic ice cabin, he could enjoy winter in the manner that he saw fit: a litany of strange pursuits. Outside it was cold and bitter, replete with pale women and shameful dentistry. Inside this haven, he could embrace the steady drip of the icicles and look upon his 8 string guitar and know that a colder winter will soon descend upon the masses, sending the need for pristine icicles through the roof. Economics were not Mr. Helmchill’s strong suit.

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Armand’4 Zomer, Such a Huge Zomer for this, Geuze, srsly.

OH SHIT ANOTHER TOP 100 BEER? You have got to be kidding me. Tis the season indeed, hot in the streets, killing the mixtape scene right now.

Anyway, here’s an expensive ass rare beer from Belgium. For a change.

I think I am getting a Zomer just looking at this.

Ok so this is another one of those 40 euro bottles that cost another $25 to ship to the U.S. that everyone is so jazzed about, and well, it’s basically a perfect geuze. That is all there is to it. Werf it.

Armand’4 Oude Geuze Zomer (Summer) 6% abv

A: This beer is radiant and downright beautiful. The carbonation is a bit obnoxious, but I guess being put in a box and being shipped from Belgium to Colorado to California and then greeting my ugly face leaves something to be desired and the reaction was substantial. Accidentally all the carbonation. But the beer itself has a brilliant yellow gold sort of hue and a deep cloudiness that just cascades sheets of bubbles like a malfunctioning dishwasher, you aint even mad tho.

A beer to share with your son. Not even mad tho. Amazing.

S: I got a huge floral aspect to beer that feels like laying on a cotton blanket in a poppyfield or some other shit that dryer sheet commercials depict my life to be. There’s a nice apricot and tart lemon and its like rays of ethereal light up into my nose holes. It’s like opening the Ark of the Covenant and discovering delicious fruit instead of hateful hessidic rage.

T: The taste is incredibly layered and complex, let me eat the oat pieces and try to get the marshmellow ratio up to explain this. Ok so you get this funky like hot basement musk that turns into sweettarts immediately then washes into an acidic note like a harsh white wine but in a delicious citrus way. It just really shines in this department and leaves very little to be desired except a bit more fruits, but hey, go get on Toucan Sam’s shit for that, it’s perfect in nearly every other way. What do you want from this beer you ingrate?

Alright so pricey perfectly executed geuze isn't your thing? How about a mouse? There you go, ingrate.

M: The mouthfeel is interesting in that it, literally, burns my lips with acidity. The tingle is similar to when I drank Goose Island Rare and there was that hot flash of tingling on my lips, except this time it was the liquid sun spraying summer all over the place. It expands with a Faulkner depth and clarity that subsides into a dry sourness, also like Faulkner, ba dum tish.

D: This is exceptionally drinkable and I kinda regret taking this whole 750ml to my domepiece. These bottles usually go for like $90 so I guess I don’t win the sharing badge, but, it’s still exceptional in every way. I played Battlefield 3 feeling all like it was summer and my lean frame was embracing the verdant hillside, skipping and tossing marigolds aloft. Shit was so cash.

This absolutely gets the Seal. Top 5 geuze. Go get you one.

Narrative: Summer in Morris, Illinois had a special radiance to it. The rays felt like they were delivered especially for each resident as a golden shaft from Helios himself. The residents went about their business, yet each and every one of the 13,636 residents knew that a special radiant love waited to embrace them right when they stepped out the door to embrace that Illinois soil. Skip Masterson looked up to the sun and smiled nodding knowingly as he headed to his job at the Dresden Power Plant. The residents looked not unlike the opening scene of Beauty and the Beast, a man doffed his cap to Skip while carrying a wicker basket of baguettes and a fresh pitcher of lemonade. Just another picturesque morning in sweet Morris. The summer sun welcomed the Lyondell Chemical Company trucks into town and the children skipped and frolicked in the glow of the summer sun, running after the ammonia sulfide inside the trucks, playing with toy guns and playing pitchpennies into a tin can enjoying the sweet glow of a perfect metropolitan suburban life. Summer was a gift from god and embraced each resident with a sweet fulfilling handshake that pulls in for a comforting hug.