Brewso (238) - Mt Kisco, New York, USA - AUG 16, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
One of those great beer moments. I was in Chicago and had a short while to run into Sam’s and stock up. On the way out I decided to stop in at GI since, like everest, it was there. I glanced at the impressive chalkboard listing of taps and siezed immediately on the Palisade. The bartender happily handed over a half pint of this aromatic IPA explaining that it was too limited for growlers. Sweet and full, this IPA is quite satisfying but runs a bit short on the finish which is dry with not quite enough of a malt blanket. Great brewpub- I will be back.
after4ever (6688) - Brier, Washington, USA - AUG 26, 2006
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Draft at Brouwer’s Cafe Hopfest ’06. Gold color. Some light white head, but not so overly much that you have to worry about wiping your lip or other inconveniences. Minimal lace. Fruity, almost berry-like nose--it’s a hop fragrance but absolutely fruit in nature. Just not citric. Smooth, mid-carb body. Light malt attack, crisp clean finish. Clean easy drinking. I’d drink this full-time; you wouldn’t even have to pay me.
Jokes (1453) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 11, 2004
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Hazy golden body with an inch-thick white head. Piney hop nose with a sweet caramel base. Big, hoppy aroma dominated by pine, with light hints of citrus. Otherwise, not very fruity. Sweet caramel and lightly toasted grains give heft but don’t provide much depth. The body is fairly rounded and full, but could be creamier. The flavors show the harsh bitterness of the hops and the warmth of the 7.3% abv. The sweetness pokes through at times, but isn’t dominating by any stretch of the imagination. I’m not always a huge hophead, but this is tasty despite being fairly unbalanced. Hoppy, bitter and enjoyable. Far better than the Midway IPA its based on.
FlacoAlto (3849) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - AUG 5, 2004
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Sampled on tap at the Goose Island Clyborne location
This beer comes with a prodigious, thick, finely beaded, cream colored head. The beer itself is a hazy copper color. The aroma is quite interesting with notes that are earthy, citrusy, and something I can only describe as ganja-like. There is no malt found here, the funky ganja hops rule the day. The taste is quite smooth and creamy with a bit more citrus character than the nose suggests. There is of course a solid bitterness in the finish. The stinky ganja that is in the aroma is only subtly in the taste, but it still is enough to add a really interesting component to this beer. There is a subtle malt backbone here that is just enough to hold up the hops, but not be noticeable itself. As the beer warms up a bit I get notes of grapefruit, pine-tar, and a malty sweetness, which is the only malt note noticeable above all of the hop character. This beer is really quite different in character from your typical American IPA, it is much more earthy and not nearly as citrusy as nose. I really like when brewers do single hop beers, it really helps to define the character of individual hop varietals for me.
Sampled on Cask at the Goose Island Clyborne location
Much smoother than the tap version (lower carbonation). This one is also quite clear (perhaps a hint of haze) and a pretty copper color and a pale cream colored head. There is still the funky ganja notes from the hops, but the hops have mellowed considerably and meld in a much more balanced way with the malt. I get some creamy notes of vanilla that I did not notice in the tap version. There is still a solid bitterness in the finish, and I get notes of citrus (more specifically grapefruit), and pine in the flavor. There is a lasting, lingering hop character here, the bitterness sticks around from sip to sip. This is most definitely what I expect from a cask beer, still the base beer, yet noticeably different from the tap version. Hard to say though which one I like better.
NobleSquirrel (3438) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 6, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
wow was I lucky. The website for GI said this wasn’t on tap, but it was. Smelled dreamy with the hops taking center stage. Pretty color of orange that suggested the I2PA, but not as hopped or alcoholic. Personally, I felt it was better than the IPA. Nice small head that quickly dissipated, like an I2PA. On first taste, did not get the bite that I expected, and taht’s a good thing. It was smooth and creamy, even a bit dreamy. Excellent citrus elements, with the malt poking through once and again. Quite a good beer to sit and sip. Every time I saw one delivered to another table, I envied the patron who was about to be served this rare treat.
bitbucket (2160) - Kirkland, Washington, USA - AUG 26, 2006
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Draft at Brouwer’s Cafe Hopfest ’06. Clear light amber with a short, somewhat lacy white head. Light aroma of oranges, fruit and toffee. Taste starts sweet and also features oranges, fruit and toffee. Light, somewhat watery body with a dry finish.