Midnight Sun 3000, Consecration+Abacus = Snow Mexican Barleywine

I think it is pretty well-established that Arctic Devil is an amazing beer. Berserker continues to impress, and Barfly is a distant reminder to some of the beta n00bs, but even the 2012ers know about it. On the face of things, Midnight Sun shouldn’t be dropping balls, barleywine or otherwise, on limited releases. This beer is a clear exception. This beer dropped more balls than an evangelical 8th grade choir. So what went wrong? This beer was essentially the last 10 minutes of Into the Wild in beer form, someone tried to do something adventurous in Alaska and ended up dying from poison.

Just how I like my barleywines, with a 3 finger head, wait wut-

Just how I like my barleywines, with a 3 finger head, wait wut-

Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
American Barleywine | 13.20% ABV

Before I pound this O-ring like a dried persimmon, let’s hear the company description so the lulz can resound throughout your shitty studio apartment:

“In this ridiculously wonderful world we’ve created, we make beer- one batch at a time. As the scientist in us demands, we number said batches. And while every batch of our beer is special for us – providing a fresh start on a new day, establishing an experimental opportunity, bringing together our minds and spirits, projecting our company forward – each batch also scores time.

To celebrate our 3000th batch, we present a Belgian-style Barley Wine, simply called 3,000. Luscious layers of flavor begin with barley, wheat and rye malts followed by triple-hoppping with a single varietal. Fermentation, using three distinct yeast strains, achieves complexity in character and, of course, alcohol. This special batch was transferred into red wine oak barrels for eight months to age gregariously yet gracefully. After bottle-conditioning, this exclusive beer is ready for immediate enjoyment although it can be lovingly cellared for future festivities.”

A: Ok first order of business, look at this barleywine and tell me if you think that attenuation is appropriate for the style. Does it look like a barleywine? Does it look good? The look of this beer reminds me of an all extract shitty brown ale homebrew that your buddy makes you try. The head is excessive and almost makes me scratch my chin and accuse infection but we will allay those concerns for the time being. Does this beer look like other world class barleywines?

Oh wait, it is a BELGIAN barleywine, so my critique gets to dodge a bullet. I remember when some people were calling this the second coming of M, just like BA Hifi batch 2 is the second coming of Wooden Hell, except BA Hifi is still pretty awesome and this is Merlot and taint esters.

Mixing a barleywine with shitty cabernet ISN'T NORMAL.  Not even one more hybrid like this. Not one.

Mixing a barleywine with shitty cabernet ISN’T NORMAL. Not even one more hybrid like this. Not one.

S: Speaking of taint, the smell of this thing is offputting not only for the style, but in general. No one makes roe ice cream for a reason, some tastes don’t merge well. I am going to list some smells descriptors and you check yes if you want them in a barrel aged barleywine: merlot, cranberry, lemon rind, tangelo, blackberry, wet leather, post-menopausal tears, toddler laundry (non-soiled), pennies. If you said yes to any of those, you must be Cicerone level 5: contrarian belt. There is very little barleywine going on here and its like someone took a perfectly good bike and retrograded it to be a really inefficient baby carriage. I don’t want a bouquet of out of place fruits atop my pile of belgian esters, get that shit out of here, you don’t see successful breweries alike Stone taking malty beers and putting them in shitty red wine bar-…oh. OH.

T: This takes all of that tannic afterbirth and adds this coinstar machine maltiness whose jankiness can only be represented in scientific notation. There is a copper, burnt malt, scorched boil water (if you have done this, you know the hell and sticky disgust it creates) baked beans, Kendall Jackson Merlot, some interloping fucking leather tastes, and finally closes with a shitty Bartells and James red grape sort of taste. Now go dig through those used needles and find me the barleywine in this trainwreck. Just drink a cup of grape juice, lick a Jansport and save yourself some time.

I don't know what kinda crazy shit goes on up in Alaska, but this beer might be a glimpse into the world north of the wall.

I don’t know what kinda crazy shit goes on up in Alaska, but this beer might be a glimpse into the world north of the wall.

M: This is the gassiest barleywine ever and is needlessly bubbly on the palate. Then it imparts those horrible tannins and its like a mister spraying Yellow Tail weak ass wine all over your gums. You end up dry but violated with this fucked up stickiness all over you like fountain water from a two star casino.

D: Not very, the biggest impetus pushing me along was the fact that this was a bitch to trade for. Even still I drainpoured most of this. You know you have a quality barleywine when you start contemplating the calories and wondering if eating glass would somehow be better for your body. I love Arctic Devil, Moscow was solid, but this is some Gitmo experiment barleywine water boarding. Ruined a malty treat for all of us with bruised red grapes no one asked for. However, in Alaska the men to woman ratio is extremely skewed, so maybe this is the female Pinot Noir up there, when they get off from their logging duties or shift at the beef jerky company they sit down and laugh in a glottal fashion while sipping this and watching Cougartown or some shit.

You CAN make a hybrid of some mishmash shit, but that doesn't mean that it will turn out good.

You CAN make a hybrid of some mishmash shit, but that doesn’t mean that it will turn out good.

Narrative: Rampage Jackson clutched the fountain pen with uncertainty and listened to the lawyers go through the terms of the negotiation. “Ok, so clauses 2 and 7 stipulate that Rampage is still “Bad Ass” and “universally feared” but Viacom New Media will acquire him as a cooking host for a variety of tasks and spots.” Rampage wiped the sweat from his massive ebony brow, reading the various clauses on oso bucco and balsamic reductions. “Wait tho, so I am not fightin nobody? I just be like cooking?” he asked puzzled and a man with Tom Ford glasses and offensively large bicuspids laughed to the floor to ceiling glass windows of the conference room. “HA! Yes Mr. Jackson, you will be an incidental novelty talent to a series of unscripted life shows, and doing semi-fictionalizations of “Kitchen Disasters” all the while still remaining Rampage Jackson, I hope that is clear?” the slick talent agent rattled off. “But wait, I am good at fighting, and combat, why I gotta be making pastries and shit? Why try and make me into something completely different?” There was a certain lucidity to his voice and the men leaned forward with curious expectancy. “I mean like, why take something huge and awesome and emasculate that down to something totally irrelevant and worse? I mean you are just ruining what I am all about, turning it into something else simply for the sake of being irrelevant. Shouldn’t the point be to be entertaining and not just shocking, seems to Rampage that if you ain’t pleasing the public then-” the men gathered up the signed forms and there was much glad handing. Bravo was about to turn out another hybrid reality show that was intellectually debasing and horrible to all involved. Just another day’s work for those cultured gents at Bravo.


@tiredhandsbeer Entropic, Entropy is not a human issue, Entropy is matter of course

I WOULD LIKE TO DECLARE THIS TO BE THE MOST DRINKABLE BEER THAT I HAVE EVER HAD. Live Oak Hef has officially been moved to second place. I drank this entire 32oz growler in ~40 minutes while playing Crysis 3. Srs bzness.

Before we even get started in today’s review, you should turn this shit up while you read this review:

So what do we have today from the Tiredest of Hands. My hands are usually super tired from fapping all the time, but I think discussing entropy warrants that we address something higher than just torquing it. This is a draft only offering from one of my favorite breweries who seems to be seeping from their saison roots and dominating other styles not unlike when Hill Farmstear dropped Damon and everyone lost their shit. So what do we have today? This is listed as an American Pale Ale, but I feel that this is a misnomer given the complexity and execution of this beer. But then again, In statistical mechanics, entropy is often related to the notions of order and disorder. THIS SHIT IS STRAIGHT DISORDERED AND MISCLASSIFIED.

20130309-100945.jpg From disorder comes something inherently ordered and simple in execution, call Zeno BECAUSE I FOUND A PARADOX

Tired Hands Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States
American Pale Ale (APA) | 5.50% ABV

A: Holy hell look at the radiance on this gentle beast. I did not even look this up before I just went balls deep pouring into globes, not even sparing a single fuck. The carbonation is amazing but not excessive like those crazy Fantome or Upland Lambics, just enough to drop a snap crackle and even some pop notes. Crazy pop notes. AH shit, purge “pop notes” from your memory, I dont need another fucking phrase yelled at me at beer releases.

I looked up and saw this was listed as an American Pale Ale and was all like huehuehuehuehue

I looked up and saw this was listed as an American Pale Ale and was all like huehuehuehuehue

S: This has an incredible lemon zest and coriander waft to it, there is a lemon meringue and brackish cleanliness to it that smells straight fresh out of the shower clean. If Polo Sport made a beer, it would be this, so fresh and so clean clean. There is a light hop presence but I am talking like sliding your hand up a thigh in the movies gentle, incredibly restrained. This straight up is not a pale ale, I will just say it, much less an ultra hopped AMERICAN pale ale. To be clear, this beer is amazing, but I feel it is misclassified. If you walk into this expecting some pine and grapefruit zombie dust bomb, FUCKING THINK AGAIN.

T: This carries itself with a graceful lemon and light wheat profile but again is so subtle in execution that picking out the notes from the malts themselves is like picking fly shit out of pepper. There is a lemon pledge meets tangelo finish in the taste and the finish has this amazingly refreshing brackish saltiness to it that almost reminds me of a gose. The faint tartness, lemon, and clean finish makes this beer lean harder on the “belgian table beer” meets gose taste to it. If you have ever had Stillwater Premiere or a grisette, it is like that. You get this sort of baby saison impression that is far removed from the APA world.

This gentle beer is a crazy sniper, before you realize it, growler is gone, and you are out rustling cattle in downtown Baltimore.

This gentle beer is a crazy sniper, before you realize it, growler is gone, and you are out rustling cattle in downtown Baltimore.

M: This is incredibly frothy and clean in the mouthfeel. It washes away completely without any residual lemon tastes, and only a faint hop presence. Seriously, if we are still talking 90’s colognes this is seriously like Davidoff Cool Water of the refreshing beer world.

D: I said it above and I will reiterate it here, this is the most drinkable beer that I have ever had. The abv is masked perfectly and that saltiness washes away begging for another huge swallow. Bird enthusiasts get all excited when I be talking about big swallows. Seriously though, in the same way the Live Oak hef has that amazing honey/lemon thing going on, this has a light saltiness and acidity that makes you able to burn through these growlers with a swiftness.

This may not be the strongest beer, or the most complex, but God damn if it doesn't get me dripping wet.

This may not be the strongest beer, or the most complex, but God damn if it doesn’t get me dripping wet.

Narrative: Paul Regis was the most uplifting person in Kraft’s marketing team. His off-yellow suits and dapper oiled hair made all of the receptionists swoon in the Pizza Pocket division. “And so you see, the losses in the Spongebob Mac and Cheese are actually offset by the Phineas and Ferb fruit snacks!” he declared with a refreshing confidence. The investors nodded and took deep pulls from their lemon water, compliments of Mr. Regis. In the breakroom, he would provide that reassuring nod and listen with quiet solemnity at the most trivial concern from the hispanic secretaries. “And so Celia never replaces the toner and I be like, ‘maybe you need to print adouble asided'” and Paul would make anyone feel that their stupid ass complaints were valid. Paul was not the most complicated individual, but he was just the person to talk to if you had a lighthearted concern that needed confiding.