October 21, 2008

Jolly Pumkin Artisan Ales - ES Bam Hoppy Farmhouse Ale

What: Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales - ES Bam Hoppy Farmhouse Ale
Style: Saison
Vessel: Tulip Glass
Price: $9.99 (750 ml)
Where: Home
When: October 21, 2008
Rating: 4
Comments: Yet another pick up in Chi-town. I poured this beer a little aggressively and man did it foam up. There is a lot of head to this beer and a lot of lacing on the glass. It's a very aromatic beer - musty, a little funky and yeasty. The flavor seems to start very leathery and then ends with quite a bit of sour apple. It is a little thin tasting. I'm finding that I'm not the biggest fan of Saison style beers. It's a well crafted beer, but not one of my favorites. Having said that, I'd happily try other Jolly Pumpkin beers.
Ratebeer Link: http://ratebeer.com/beer/jolly-pumpkin-es-bam/84761/

October 20, 2008

Southern Tier Brewing Company - Tripel

What: Southern Tier Brewing Company - Tripel
Style: Tripel
Vessel: Tulip Glass
Price: $6.99 (22 0z.)
Where: Home
When: October 20, 2008
Rating: 4
Comments: Another beer picked up on the Chicago trip. For a 9% beer, this was amazingly alcohol free in the taste department. It has a strong malt flavor at the beginning, smoothed out by a little crispy hoppiness at the end. Not a bad beer, but not anywhere near my favorite tripel. Seems like a pretty basic beer.
Ratebeer Link: http://ratebeer.com/beer/southern-tier-tripel/40410/

October 19, 2008

Bear Republic Brewing Co. - XP Pale Ale

What: Bear Republic Brewing Co. - XP Pale Ale
Style: American Pale Ale
Vessel: Pint Glass
Price: $6.99 (22 oz bottle)
Where: Home
When: October 19, 2008
Rating: 2
Comments: This is a great beer! I picked this up in Chicago and decided to crack one open while watching the Colts game (disappointing loss). What a smooth carmel-y beer. A great carmel flavor with just enough hop to make it a little bitter (and tasty). When I first pulled it out of the fridge I thought it was a bit over carbonated, but I let it sit for a bit and it really opened up and the carbonation dissipated. There was a bit of sedimet in the bottom of my glass when I had finished it, but it wasn't enough to deter me. Other than the Colts loss, this was a great drinking experience!
Ratebeer Link: http://ratebeer.com/beer/bear-republic-xp-pale-ale/7710/

October 15, 2008

Pikk's Tavern & Hot Shotz Update

Well, I've been to Pikk's about four times since they've opened and I'm a big fan. The first several times they didn't have their taps installed and they were running two taps out of a cooler set up. We went back with some friends and sat in the dining room (not at the bar for the first time) last Friday and they had their full tap list available (word of warning - their tap list on their website wasn't current as of mid week last week).

The chef came out and chatted with us once while we were sitting at the bar and I was very impressed. He hails from a steakhouse background but wanted to do more creative cooking. In this all from scratch kitchen he gets that opportunity. I'd say the menu is a bit random (seems like they're trying to please everyone by offering a little bit of everything), but I haven't had anything that I didn't like. The mufaletta sandwich was awesome and the pork chops were the best I've had in Indy. That, along with a killer beer selection, will make Pikk's a top destination for me. They also have great specials during the week. I don't remember all of them, but I know on Monday they have $1 canned beers (nothing exotic - PBR, Old Style and one other I can't remember - Schlitz, maybe?) and $0.50 mini-burgers (which are awesome). I'd say if you're in the area you should check it out.

On the other hand I went into Hot Shotz last night to check out the new scene. If you're looking for a beer mecca, I'm not sure this is it. The tap list was good, but the bartender was clueless about beer. I was happy to see they had quite a few people in the place (and a lot of employees working to get up to speed). I don't know that I'll be going to Hot Shotz very much - while the food was OK, they seem to have moved away from their gastropub offerings and are going with more standard bar fare. Not necessarily a bad thing, but they've lost some of the magic they had in their old space.

Anyone else been to either place? I'd love to hear your thoughts

Moylan's Brewing Company IPA

What: Moylan's Brewing Company IPA
Style: India Pale Ale
Vessel: Tulip Glass
Price: $3.99 (22 oz. bottle)
Where: Home
When: October 15, 2008
Rating: 3
Comments: On a recent trip to Chicago to cheer on a friend running his first marathon (way to go Joe!), we stopped by Sam's on our way out of town to pick up some beers I didn't think I could find in Indy. As a fan of IPA's, I grabbed quite a few bombers of different IPA's at different price points. This one was the cheapest. For a beer at this price point, it was really good. If it were readily available in Indy, I'd add it to the rotation (although it doesn't seem like I have a regular rotation).

I was drawn to this beer because it was an IPA, and because of the awards it's won. It's won various medals in the CA state fair and several WBC medals. It's a good IPA, but not with overwhelming citrus hop flavor - it's more pine-y than citrus-y. It's crisp and smooth with a fairly strong hop finish. If you can get your hands on some, I'd give it a whirl.

Ratebeer Link: http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/moylans-ipa/1577/