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.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

What the hell

And one more before I go read King Lear. Since I was figuring out IPA the other day, I grabbed a bottle of Acme IPA (Northcoast Brewing Co.) from Marcy just for old time's sake. Was one of my all-time favorite 4.99 a six-pack Trader Joe's beers. Quite pale, slight orangeish cast. Very dry and crisp and hoppy. I remember this being a bigger bodied, fatter IPA--I wonder if it's changed in the last 18 months or so. The nose is hoppy, but not overwhelmingly so--maybe more on the Cascade end than the Cenntenial or Chinook end. This is good, but I have a feeling it's a little beaten down from the trip east--I do remember it as being a little bolder in the overall impression. Interesting how much locale and shipping affect beer. Overall, the east coast beers I've found have been remarkable enough that I haven't missed too many west coast beers. And many of them ship well too--the Stone beers are very, very hardy--Anchor is if you spot a new shipment. But paler beers and lighter beers and beers that are really dependant on subtle aromatics can take a beating, can't they? Which is why, if I ever see, say, Hubsch Pilsner or Northcoast's Scrimshaw here, I probably won't bother. Lagunitas, on the other hand, I really do miss. Fun beers those.

On a marginally related note, if anyone reads this blog, do you remember how good Fat Tire used to be?? The first bottle I had was unreal. This was back when they had a "don't drink till" date and were bottle-conditioned. I had a twenty-ounce-or-so bottle Trina kindly brought from Colorado and it was just marvellous. I think they dropped the hopping rate considerably, that they thus damaged the overall balance, and that the maltiness went from very dry and tight and delicately toasty to being sort of flabby and slightly cloying. I also think it used to be more attenuated. Blast. But a lot of their other beers are still great.


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