Sunday, February 3, 2008

Super Bowl Suds

To kick off the Super Bowl I figured why not share a beer with the sis? Figuring that since she's a NY Giants fan maybe it was time for a special beer. She had not been introduced to sour beers and she jumped at the thought when I mentioned Lost Abbey Red Poppy as she's heard me talk about it so much. We split a bottle and this was the first time I've had this beer from the bottle. I was able to pick up a little more character from it than the previous two times I've had small samples from the tap. What I didn't notice before is that along with the beer's aroma of lactic sourness there is also a real mellow funk behind there too. The taste was pretty similar to before with the overall cherry presence (though not sweet at all) mixed in and mostly overpowered by the sourness. I like this beer but I would like a touch more cherry for the price tag of $15 per 375mL, but that's just me. Cherry is what seems to be the special ingredient but I don't feel it stands out enough to make this beer as unique as I thought it should be. If it could just get up to the Cuvee de Tomme cherry level, then we're talking. Nevertheless an enjoyable sour beer.. I would die happy if I could ever make one as good as this.

At halftime I poured a Bell's Two Hearted Ale to go with my Costco pizza. This IPA has a big reputation in the Midwest and East Coast, and generally people will list it as one of their top 3 favorite IPA's. I scored a bottle last Summer and was not impressed at all. Well, after having this bottle I realize that one I had last Summer was past its prime. This bottle was fresh and what I expected a beer that people rave so much about to taste like. It reminds me a lot of the Stone IPA with a very floral and earthy hop aroma, but Two Hearted has a nice dose of citrus peeking through with that. The taste has a bit of that juicy IPA quality and I found this to be a really really good beer. I had to bump up my previous grade of 3.9 (which was probably pretty generous) to a 4.4, or BeerAdvocate grade of A.

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