Saturday, October 27, 2007

Alesmith (Summer) Yulesmith

With the hops probably dwindling away in my Alesmith Yulesmith Summer release, it was time to open it up and get the double hoppy goodness that awaited. This would actually be my first experience with the Summer version, released every July, though I had the Winter Yulesmith imperial red ale last year. The guys at Alesmith have pretty much perfected the art of a pillowy, rocky head in a double IPA. The smell is really citrusy, piny, with a bit of that earthy kind of foliage aroma too. Somewhat of your standard double IPA aroma more than not. Oh, there's some caramel malts detectable too. The taste blasts concentrated hop oils and a competing sweetness before leaving an earthy bitterness in the back of the mouth afterwards. It has a medium body, not crazy syrupy but close. It's a nice double IPA overall, even though I'm beginning to get somewhat tired of them (unless I come across a fresh Pliny on tap). This one gets a 4.1 from me on BA, and for reference, the Winter '06 version got a 4.45.

I was also able to score some nice beers this week in anticipation of a fun Winter break which starts for me on December 13th. I was able to grab a couple bottles of the 2006 Alaskan Smoked Porter that a local store still had, while also getting a couple bottles of the 2007 version that was just released. While I was at it I also picked up a 6 of the 2006 Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Ale since it sounded like a nice winter sipper (have never had a bigfoot, and the only barleywine I've had was Old Guardian, which I liked). I guess I've been a little reluctant to get into barleywines.

In addition, my big stout lineup is growing very nicely. It looks like I'll really be able to take a serious look into the world of imperial stouts soon. The ones I've acquired are...
1. Three Floyds Dark Lord ('07)
2. Founders Breakfast Stout
3. Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout
4. Alesmith Speedway Stout
5. Stone Russian Imperial Stout
6. Port Brewing Santa's Little Helper ('06)
7. Port Brewing Old Viscosity
8. Bell's Double Cream Stout
9. North Coast Old Rasputin
10. Stoudt's Fat Dog Imperial Oatmeal Stout
*Italics denote ones I've sampled before

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