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He’Brew / Cathedral Square St. Lenny’s



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RATINGS: 111   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.49/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
Brothers and sisters, I’m pissed! As one tends to do over beers, I’ve been talking smack with my longtime colleague and friend Brian Neville, brewmaster at St. Louis Missouri’s Cathedral Square Brewery, a disciple of Belgian-style creations. Collaboration perhaps Adam Louis birth Shmaltz Brewery? Like angel trumpets from heaven, he decreased the project shall be called, "The Immaculate Collaboration". He further proclaims we must do a monk-inspired version of our beloved Bittersweet Lenny’s RIPA with Belgian yeast, naming it "St. Lenny’s." Mouth agape, I cry, "Dude, you bogarted my shtick!" That’s what friends are for, I guess - great minds drink alike - and for now, it isn’t my brewing (that’s Paul, Richie ad Mike), my art (Matt) or my punchlines (Brian) - but after nearly 17 years, it is in fact my own brewery (alone with the whole Shmaltz Brewing tribe). L’Chaim!

Please note this is the version brewed by Shmaltz (HeBrew), not the Cathedral Square version.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
cbfobes (2803) - Quad Cities, Illinois, USA - JUL 26, 2015
Bomber picked up at the $5 clearance bin, tick. Pours a dark brown red with a HUGE head, like this thing exploded, pretty annoying actually, are is more sweet than anything else, rye and spices show through, flavor has a spice front end with a sweeter finish, really no hops at all, meh.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (1504) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 30, 2015
From what I can tell, St. Lenny’s is Shmaltz’s “Bittersweet Lenny RIPA” fermented with Belgian yeast. I don’t believe the base brew was changed, as it is as much the malt and rye bomb as the regular edition, though the hops seem much less pronounced here. It’s also possible that what I’m drinking is a rather older bottle since I’ve had it on tap and it’s seemed a little more complex and robust. The Belgian character really doesn’t come through, but this is still a very interesting brew when viewed as an American Double IPA.

I poured a 12oz bottle into the official Shmaltz snifter glass. There was no freshness date. It came in a mixed 4-pack for $10 ($2.50 per bottle or $0.21 per ounce).

Smell: Malty sweetness; some vanilla; lemon lollipop. No Belgian esters.

Taste: For a supposedly hop-centric brew, there’s a lot of sweetness to this beer. It’s remarkably vanilla and woody-tasting, almost as if it were barrel-aged. Sweet amber malt mostly, some lemon flavor akin to hard candy (which is usually an indication of oxidation). The bitterness is so dank it’s almost cloying. Some notes of sticky resin can be found. There’s a fairly sold rye spicy bite on the finish, though it’s not as strong and bready as I’ve encountered before. It’s a little disappointing that there isn’t much in the way of noticeable Belgian characteristics that are often associated with the yeast esters. Perhaps a touch of perfume-like flavor and aroma; I think they’re actually obscured by the rye. As an eccentric variation on the DIPA style, this works.

Drinkability: Shmaltz knows how to make big beers drinkable and St. Lenny’s is no exception. The mouthfeel is quite big with lower carbonation and a bit of sticky sensation to the texture. Belgian yeast tends to create for a very spastic mouthfeel, but this feels more like an English barleywine in its delivery. At 10% ABV the alcohol is there as far as warmth, but it’s in no way distraction or overtly “boozy.” It finished remarkably clean, too, which is quite nice. I’m glad this is now available in 12oz bottles as it’s an ideal serving size.

Score: 8/10

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
jimhilt (2490) - Bow, New Hampshire, USA - APR 19, 2015
Pours a five finger white head that fades slowly to thin layer. Hazy amber color. Medium carbonation and medium body. Pine hop nose and flavor is balanced with the pine hops and malty caramel. Higher ABV is hidden. Lingering bitter finish. $4.95 for a 22oz bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, MA.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
shrubber85 (9462) - Greenville, Indiana, USA - MAR 4, 2015
Bottle. Alcohol, berry/apple and caramel malt aroma. Hazy dark amber with nice light tan head. Sweet light berry, caramel malt and moderately strong bitter herbal alcohol flavor. Good body. Okay but pretty boozy.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 20/20
SDalkoholic (2274) - Linda Vista, California, USA - FEB 21, 2015
Bottle from Sprout’s: Aroma is bold with a heavy whiff of sweet malts combined with a fragrant yeast that suggest banana, clove, and a trace of green mint. Appeared a dark golden honey color and had a decent foam cap that left behind a trusty lacing down my pint glass. Flavor delivers a zesty tang of yeast while the malts taste bready. Bomber was $6.79 and it only made me love HeBrew beers even more than I already preach about their stuff.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 14/20
Patrickctenchi (5218) - Cox’s Knob, columbus, Indiana, USA - FEB 20, 2015
Bottle: Pours slightly hazy copper-amber with a minimal off-white head. Aroma is woody, rye, fruity. Taste is strong rye malt, Belgian yeast, Alcohol and grapefruit-peel bitter. Very good rye presentation. Really nice.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
radagast83 (6106) - Fairfax, Virginia, USA - JAN 30, 2015
22oz bottle from my local Total Wine. Aroma was lots of dried fruits, sweet dates, raisins. Flavor was lots of boozy roasted malts, dates. I won’t say this is a boozy mess, but it was a lot of sweet sugars, light nutty notes and plenty of booze in this.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Stuedmaster (315) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 19, 2015
22 oz. bomber from Holiday Wine Cellar. Pours an orange/amber with a fat, billowing, off-white head that leaves lacing. Aroma of hard candy, rye, hay, bubblegum, dark bread, slight toffee...very complex. Taste is malt forward with plenty of hops to balance, Has a fruity character, the hops lend a citrus quality. Tastes more like an American amber ale/barley wine hybrid with rye, due to the high alpha hops used and the general mouthfeel, not as soft and rounded as a Belgian. Overall quite good and easy to drink for 10% abv.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
Blairgus (3571) - California, USA - JAN 7, 2015
7 Jan 2015, bottle. pink/amber, almost clear - slightly darker than the cathedral version. nose is more rye up front, rich, big alcohol, grapefruit citrus. med body and moderately fizzy. sweet alcohol, rye malt, lots of alcohol. pretty good. not as sweet as the cathedral version and much more rye. i think i prefer this version. i like the sweetness of the cathedral version but i prefer the rye of the Hebrew version.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
UXO (1002) - CANADA - JAN 7, 2015
Pours clear medium amber with two fingers of light tan head diminishing gradually to a thick cap, excellent lacing. (5/5) Nose is caramel malt, light pine and citrus, some bubblegum and mixed boozy fruit. (7/10) Taste is moderately strong sweet, moderately strong bitter, moderate sour. (8/10) Medium body, prickly to moderate sustained carbonation, off-dry smooth and bitter finish. (4/5) Quite interesting - lots of malt, but not to the point that it overwhelms. The hop bitterness and the rye sharpness come into play very quickly after the initial caramel sweetness, and though it’s not a hop bomb, there’s lots of it. Malt-forward, perhaps, but not malt-dominated.Tastes a little better than it smells, I’d say, with a nice rye note coming through in the finish. The higher carbonation works well here, too, and the high ABV is very well integrated. Sort of reminiscent of Arrogant Bastard, but a rye version. L’Chaim indeed! (16/20)

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