Skyview (5272) - Papoose Jct, Minnesota, USA - FEB 28, 2008
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
On draught at the brewpub in downtown Duluth, Minnesota. Pours a clear copper amber brew with a thick white head that quickly dissipates to a white ring. Aroma of sweet grapefruit zest, some pear and lime juice, grassy hops, and a touch of mandarin oranges. Taste is medium bodied, light carbonation with flavors of multi-grain malt, grapefruit zest, some pine, and a touch of tangerine. Finish is semi-sweet, a little smoother than most other IPAs I’ve tried with a herbal aftertaste that lingers after the finish.
Stine (1634) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - FEB 24, 2008
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Pours thick and burnt orange; hazy with a thick raft of beige. Aroma is lively with fruits and firm caramel sweetness, and a type of pungent saltiness similar to caraway; mandarin oranges, raspberry and pear skins lend a unique composition to the fruit character. Cardamom, sawdust and some dried grass play loudly at random intervals, but the fruity sweetness and bitter resin tends to dominate. Flavor brings more of this somewhat balmy and waxy vinousness, giving lots of tannic and acerbic flavors, reminiscent of many of the pale ale interpretations coming from Willimantic. Bitterness comes off a bit harsh and dull, like flax and sesame seed; pine resin imitates aerosol with the influence of alcohol rather than providing a cleansing earthiness in the back of the mouth. Mandarin oranges are still quite punchy throughout. As it begins to turn more pleasant, a warm haze of unpleasant butterscotch, salts, and melted butter sweetness settles in to spoil it. Palate is prickly and somewhat sharp; medium in body and overly bitter, with lots of grassy hops and herbs in a dry finish. Not a bad offering by any means, but very difficult to drink or to enjoy.
auerbrau (3180) - Peace Dale, Rhode Island, USA - FEB 18, 2006
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a hazed browned orange, with a creamy head of oak. Creamy rich aroma of sweet sugary hops, full of lime juice, fresh grated ruby red grapefruit and a waft of fresh mountain pine. Fantastic aroma. Not too strong, though. Flavor is a pandoras box of fresh oranges, mandarins and tangerines, reduced and drizzled over a grainy bite of malt. Very sweet, clingy and drinkable. A bit of that hop buttery note on the finish, with a long creamy smack of grass and cilantro. A touch of chewiness. Long aftertaste of apples and bitter resin. A top IPA!