Valley Brew Cervesa Picosa Ahumada Roja

RATINGS: 25   MEAN: 3.59/5.0   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.43/5   SEASONAL: Spring   EST. CALORIES: 180   ABV: 6%
This is our Smoked Chili Red Ale produced each year for Cinco De Mayo. The chilies used are Chipotle, Puya, Mexican Negro and Cascabel. The beer has a big smokey nose and the heat level is mild but well balanced.

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bitbucket (2165) - Kirkland, Washington, USA - DEC 1, 2007
(Old rating discovered in a dusty pile of forgotten notes, and I wish the notes on this one were more complete.) Thanks to aspidites for this!. This is just a really nice red ale with a smoky nose and an understated chili spice finish. One of the few chili beers where the chili actually works WITH the beer. It would be nice if a few more brewers could do the same math.

kp (10882) - Woodstock, Georgia, USA - SEP 1, 2007
Date: 07/24/2006
Mode: Bottle
Source: Tasting

amber, whispy beige head that swirels into creamy lace, malt aroma with a nice spicy edge, hot chili flavor on a dry smokey malt base, a balanced and smokey chipolte beer
-------- /> Date: 07/18/2007
Mode: bottle
Source: tasting
Score: 3.2 to 3.5

clear amber, sweet peppery aroma with a good balance between the strong pepper and some sweet caramel in the background, lots of pepper flavor, lingering heat, hint of sweet malt stays in the background, much more pepper than before

Aroma: 7/10; Appearance: 8/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 7/10; Overall: 13/20
Rating: 3.5/5.0
Drinkability: 6/10
Score: **+/4

MI2CA (1340) - Noblesville, Indiana, USA - AUG 15, 2007
12oz handbottled by the man himself May 07, thanks Steve - First aroma I get is the bubblegum yeast I would expect from a Belgian dubble or quad. This is followed by some sweet caramel malt and finished with roasted peppers and smoke. Pours cloudy chipotle red with a huge head that quickly fades leaving good lacing. Something about the shade of red that I really like. Flavor is full of roasted peppers that pretty much overpower everything else. That’s ok with me since I love hot roasted peppers. The spiciness is there no doubt, but it isn’t "hot". Palate is spicy and dry, a little chalky actually. I had this with my burrito that also contained a lot of different peppers and it was great. It is truly amazing what talented brewers can do.

daHammer (60) - Smyrna, Georgia, USA - JUL 18, 2007
Malty aroma with smoked peppers. Low hop and yeast aroma. Reddish brown, clear color. Frothy head right out of the bottle that quickly settled to a thin off white head with moderate head retention and lacing. Malty start can’ not hold up to the hot pepper onslaught that washes over a low hop background. The hot pepper sensation ends fairly quickly and is quite pleasant! Medium light body, moderate carbonation with hot pepper finish. A very interesting beer!

shp555 (2024) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - JUL 18, 2007
Pours an amber color with an off white head. Aroma is very woody/smoky, and chillies. Flavor is lots of hot peppers, smoky, and a light bitter finish. The chillies cause a nice burn, overall not too bad would eat with some nice mexican food.

Oakes (17684) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JUL 8, 2007
It didn’t come out of the bottle too well. Way too much foam and fizz. Eventually settled into a hazy amber. The aroma has a citric, slightly phenolic tartness...presumably what TAR alluded to has spent the subsequent five weeks becoming more pronounced as the beer has clearly continued fermenting. Underneath of that is a complex chile character punctuated by an insistent chipotle smokiness. Flavourwise...ok it’s got a lot of carbonation and some footy yeastiness, which definitely muddies things up a bit, especially the malts, which come of as a bland caramel-earth two tone. Then the chile steps forward, bringing again the complex chile of a proper mole oaxaqueño. There is lingering smokiness and some capsicum warmth at the end...mild but pleasant...I could go for more, personally. There’s some malt behind it...the earthy aspect of the malts is uninteresting of itself but plays well with the intense earthiness of the chiles. It’s a great mix of chiles - I appreciate this a LOT on that level - and it’s entirely possible the surrounding beer is well-thought-out but probably a bit too yeasty/overattenuated for its own good.

ClarkVV (6708) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - JUN 28, 2007
UPDATED: AUG 15, 2007 12oz bottle from KrausenJockey, opened on 5/26/07 but accidentally not consumed until 5/27/07
It was a case of getting a little too ambitious and I opened this one and then passed out before I could enjoy it. Thankfully A) I didn’t drink it then, as I probably would have not remembered this lovely beer so vividly. B) The beer was wonderfully conditioned and was in perfect shape, with a lovely appearance, despite sitting out for 20 hours with the cap off.
A deep reddish-chestnut brown beer with violet and crimson hues and a beige head that is large, well-retained and full of lacing.
Dry, crunchy malt gives glimpses of earthiness, dusty chocolate-toffee and light breadiness. Some sweet caramel hits the nose through the middle and then disappears in to a lightly spiced, moderately smokey (chipotles) finish that is neither too mild, nor too aggressive. With warming, the nose incorporates even more malt sweetness, mostly light caramel and even a pinch of some fruitiness. Medium to medium-high strength of aroma that craftily downplays its hand in the pepper department. No alcohol noted, no flaws.
A thin layer of bready malt appears at first sip, but is quickly absorbed in to a soft caramel sweetness that is flecked with hints of dry chocolate. I don’t know what creates it, perhaps the interplay of malt and pepper, but there is a transitional flavor in the middle, that is neither fully malt, nor pepper. Almost fruity, like strawberries or cherries or something. Pinches of vanilla are thrown in and then finally the pepper flavor hits on the finish, starting slowly and building to a highly flavorful and enjoyable spiciness, with light smoke and a touch of juiciness even.
What strikes me the most about this particular chili beer, after having many of them, is that it’s in no way done for novelty (or if it is, it dosent seem like it). It’s not a "HA! Let’s make a crazy hot chili beer!" where the brewer obviously forgets to still make a beer and gets extremely carried away with the chili. Nope, here there is a beer with plentiful malt character up front, passing to a complementary (assuming you like chilis) flavor on the end that balances the sweetness up front. Delicious and near perfectly done on the level of heat so that it can appeal to those not so in to spices. Other than a touch of nuttiness and/or breadiness, I didnt get the huge yeastiness that Jeff mentions. This was phenomenal on a hot day and easily the best chili beer I’ve had to-date.

after4ever (8025) - Mukilteo, Washington, USA - JUN 17, 2007
12-ounce. Thanks, Aspidites! I really flipped for this beer. Especially because so many other brewers try to make a good chili beer and either fail or just make a boring beer. Pours deep hazy amber with ruby highlights. Towering fluffy tan head. Sweet peppery nose--you really pick up the ribs of the bell pepper, that salady vegetal note. Super complex and tangy mid-palate with all kinds of plant life blending across it: cereal/malt sugars blending with peppery sweetness and heat, alongside sharp spicy hops. Really an amazing mixture of flavors that is better enjoyed than discussed, because the vocabulary of beer tasting can’t quite capture it. At least my meager version of the vocabulary can’t. Big capsicum kick on the finish and the clingy aftertaste, Wonderful stuff.

SoLan (1550) - Florida, USA - JUN 11, 2007
Courtesy aspidites. Dark amber/brown with a huge, spongey tan head. Not much going on in the nose- hints of smoke and a little pepper that grows as it warms, some leafy vegetation, also. Flavor has a strong malt backbone, light to moderate smoke, heat is mild but builds to medium by the end of the glass, and plenty of pepper flavor- red, black, chipotle. Awesome earthy, peppery, lightly smokey and spicy finish. Medium body, balanced carbonation, easy drinking. I’m a chile fanatic, so I’d like a little more heat, still an excellent brew.

boboski (1095) - Alabama, USA - JUN 10, 2007
UPDATED: JUN 11, 2007 Cloudy, deep orange pour. The body has hints of red that resemble the coloration effect that dumping in pulpy tomato juice might have. A towering, fizzy beige head with orange hues settles at a medium pace to a thick ring around the edge of the glass. Salty notes coalesce with pepper and light smoke that wafts calmly by in the initial stages of nosing. Toasted grain notes shine through the spicy affront, much to my delight. It’s those notes that keep this sensory exploration interesting yet grounded. The lush vegetal nature of the peppers, coupled with malt, stems an onslaught of appetite-induced saliva; time to sip sip away. The flavor is more of the same at first, lightly smoked peppers and salty grains. Yeastiness is a thickening factor in a plate that quickly becomes surprising. Hot pepper spice lights up the corners of my mouth in the finish, drying and leaving a chalky trail of smoke in its wake. Carbonation is medium-low, and just a touch more would be desireable to eliminate some of the syrupy nature of the palate. Otherwise, this is a bright and vivid, and certainly entertaining experience. An absolute palate-wrecker, but a fun one. This would pair wonderfully with a simple dish of steamed greens and cheese enchiladas.

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