TChrome (1415) - Bedford, Texas, USA - NOV 10, 2005
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Beer pours nice reddish amber color with a well retained beige colored head. Aroma is sweet like caramel with a dash of vanilla also some hops in the background. Flavor begins with nice sweet malt accented by a bit of nuttiness, this flavor sensation is promptly gunned down in flames by a significant Cascade hop barrage. This is not necesarily a bad thing, and I think the finish is quite reminiscent of fresh Bigfoot. Why was this beer classed in English Strong? It seems much more of an American Strong to me.
Probiere (992) - Iowa, USA - OCT 29, 2005
2.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 11/20
There was a sweet, candy sugar and caramel sweetness to this beer, but it was almost entirely overpowered (except when it warmed to near room temp) by the resiny hops. I have become really cynical of late about what seems to be a spate of beers of myriad styles all held to mediocrity by generous hopping with C hops. Seriously, people. If it’s an English Strong Ale, it isn’t cute or edgy or over-the-top to chuck Centennials or Cascades in it. It’s stupid, and it turns what could be any number of very pleasant beers into near-IPAs with clashing malt profiles. Suffice it to say, this beer with some milder English hops would have been a real treat. As it was, it took some serious concentration to finish the bottle. What malt notes I could find were of biscuit and weak sweetened tea.
porterdude (170) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - OCT 24, 2005
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle. A clear copper colored pour, with a thin off-white head. A great aroma piney and citrusy hops. A sweet caramel malt flavor with a bit of roasted hints round out this beer. The hop/malt balance is a bit off, with the hops dominating this beer and making the roasted flavor of the beer a bit odd tasting, but otherwise a decent winter beer.
jimmack (1222) - Nutley, New Jersey, USA - OCT 11, 2005
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
22oz. bottle. Hazy amber color with a small beige head. Citrus hop aroma with a bit of pine. Flavor was a sort of dull version of the aroma. A bit hoppy with some biscuity malt.
willblake (2647) - Bel Air, Maryland, USA - OCT 10, 2005
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: MAR 13, 2006 10.09.05 Bomber, thanks to Glenn at HW open house. Aroma is amarillo and centennial and tea. Now, had I known this was an English strong and not an IPA I might have made more sense of the tea notes I was getting. Bitter and empty. Pineapple and pine. Oxidized to the brink of cardboard not a great mix with cat pee. Dry and stark. Reminds me of something from Rogue, but I can’t remember what.
Second attempt at this beer, strangely, also from Glenn at HWOH. This time, I loved it. I’m not sure if it’s a better bottle or if my palate has changed over the last six months, but I really enjoyed this. I hadn’t recalled having tried it in the past, so I took fresh notes:
Dark golden. Sweet, strawberries, wood, mulch. Is this a big ASA or mildly malted BW, I’m not sure. Very nice with excellent balance of sweet backbone and dry hopped goodness. Centennials stand out, amarillos are subdued. Lots of grapefruity citrus, some perfume. 7-4-8-4-16, previous score: 6-4-5-2-12. I wonder if the last bottle was a bad one.
jcwattsrugger (11076) - Florida and, New Jersey, USA - OCT 9, 2005
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
bottle-pours a light tan head, color is golden. Aroma is hops. Taste is hops, mild, good carbonation.
Mangino (1027) - Mississippi, USA - OCT 5, 2005
3.3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
On Tap @ Elysian- Pours a dark orange color, small off white head, nice lacing. Aroma is sweet and piney, oranges. Flavor is very hoppy, tons of pine needles and alcohol, warming with a dry finish.
glkaiser (1214) - Seattle, Washington, USA - SEP 14, 2005
3.1 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Dull Amber color....you can definitely taste the strong alcohol content. Sharp hop taste with just a little sip....but with a deep malt finish. Not as deep of taste as I expect a good winter beer to have. Might be why they’re serviing it in September....
JFGrind (1837) - Glenside, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 12, 2005
3.2 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
I picked up my bottle at Sam’s Liquors in Chicago. Just like JMerritt and Cornfield it cost under $2 for a bomber. It was a West Coast holiday ale in the vain of SNCA, hoppy not spicey. Amber color with tan head that contained a few large bubbles. I believe I found a good deal on Bifrost but I also think the bottle had lost some quality and that landed it in the bargain bin @ Sam’s. I’ll be drinking my other bottle of Bifrost sooner than later.
JMerritt (1775) - Macomb, Illinois, USA - AUG 9, 2005
1.9 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 3/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 7/20
Purchased at Sam’s Wine and Spirits for around $1.50 for a bomber. Pale orange with a frothy, uneven head. Lemongrass, alcohol, sour grapes and medicinal aroma. Off-putting caramel flavor, stale graham crackers and sour apples. Very alcoholic, with moderate carbonation. Wow, was this stuff awful. Looking at the other ratings, maybe my bottle was off, but it looks like I purchased it the same time and place as Cornfield. WIll have to re-rate again.