Doctor Duvel

I'm like a sommelier, but for beer.

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Location: Upstate New York, United States

Favorite Beers: Orval, Samuel Smith, Duvel, Hennepin, Oude Gueze, Chimay, Dogfish Head, Anchor Steam, and anything made by Trappist monks.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

More beers

OK, just killing a minute here. For the record, Lisa and I wound up sampling a Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale last night, because I liked that IPA so much. Wonderful beer actually. The concept of Pumpkin Ale frightens me, because I generally hate fruit beers (with the notable exception of anything resembling a real lambic--sorry, Sam Adams, you don't count). But is a pumpkin a fruit? Will perhaps post some more thorough notes. For the moment, I'd call it delicately pumpkiny, with some nice subtle complimentary spices--none of the usual barrage of old-spice-cabinet-tasting, poorly integrated, mung flavors. On the contrary, it was fresh-tasting, bright, and uncluttered in its overall profile.

Tasting Victory Brewing's Prima Pils right now because I ran into a thing on Michael Jackson's Beer Hunter site where he referred to it as more or less the second best Pilsner in America and I thought, hey, didn't I see that on the shelf at Marcy Discount Beverage? Can't say I've had a better domestic Pilsner myself. My other favorites are Hubsch Pilsner from Sudwerk (though only on site really), Scrimshaw Pilsner from Northcoast, and, though it's a little over the top, Lagunitas Pils--decidedly West Coast beers those. This is brewed in Pennsylvania, which I'm discovering is an embarassment of brewing riches--see, for instance, Iron Horse, whose staggeringly accurate, refreshing, sour Kriek I sampled at that festival at Ommegang. Anyway, on to the Pilsner:

Really, really pale--Wonderful nose, with spicy hops. Presumably these are Saaz, but they come through pretty strong, almost semeing a little citrusy--are they supplementing them with something from the New World? Or is my impression of, say, Pilsner Urquell's bouquet just hopelessly thrown off by trans-Atlantic travel? Anyway, it's a bright, spicy, lemony aroma regardless. It's absolutely crisp, clean, and focused on the palate. My usual gripe about Pilsner's is they can be a little fluffy, or just have negligible substance in this regard. Here, not so: It's quite dry but the palate has a delicate nutty malt, with a firm, relatively lingering, almondy finish. Not too damn bad.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

You make it sound so tasty and good but when it comes right down to it, it's still beer. Sigh... Forwarded your blog to Zeb - he'll appreciate it more than me.

Miss y'all tons!

Carlyn

1:18 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

You know that Jerm is getting in to home brewing (per your suggestion). You should start a group blog commenting on beer (you can easily add members) and then you might have posts more often than once a month.

8:43 PM  

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