Mix Tape 8 & Centennial IPA

Mix Tape 8 from Brewdog is one of my favorite beers!  It is such a complex brew, or in the words of the head brewer Stewart Bowman, "fucking complex!"  You can definitely tell it was aged in whisky barrels.  Outstanding to say the least!  Ratebeer agrees rating it an overall 99 at an ABV of 14.5%.  I don't know what a 12oz bottle of this costs in the states but living in Japan and now England I pay around $15 a bottle, worth every penny!  Please pic one up and try if you see it.  For a full description click here.


The next one I had tonight was Founder's Centennial IPA.  Tried this one on tap at the local pub/restaurant in town and was delighted.  Had a nice hoppy but citrus flavor.  Great floral aroma.  This IPA rated a 99 as well on Ratebeer.com with an ABV of 7.2%.  Another good IPA to have on hand for a relaxing pint after a long day on the job.

Wanna give a shout out to no label brewing in Katy, TX.  Awesome place to go sample some of their brews.  Picnic tables, food trucks, cigar stand, live music etc.  Great set up and you will absolutely have a great time hanging with friends, shootin' the shit.  FYI, their Don Jalapeno Ale is so damn tasty!  Wow!  Wow!

Definitely relaxed after having both, although we shared the Mix Tape 8.  I highly recommend both of these great beers!  


CAPT California Blk IPA

Trying the CAPT California Blk IPA tonight from Ruhstaller in San Jose, California.  I picked this one up soley on the look of the label.  Hadn't heard of this brewery yet but it rated well on Ratebeer.  My first sip and it instantly tasted familiar.  Darker in color but I definitely got a Green Flash West Coast IPA taste to it with a darker finish.  Started looking into the brewery for some more background since this was the first I heard of them.  Here is a little history from the Ruhstaller website or you can follow the link by clicking here...

Brewing beer is what we were made to do…it’s what we were born to do…it’s what we did best until the government came and killed the best thing we had and replaced it with itself!

The leading brewer of this era was Captain Frank Ruhstaller. A Swiss marksman who emigrated to Sacramento as a young man, helped found the largest brewery west of the Mississippi, and at the age of 35, in 1881, opened his third Sacramento brewery, his crown jewel: The Ruhstaller Brewery.

It was Sacramento’s, and arguably California’s, first premium craft brewery – producing Steam beer 15 years before Anchor Steam was founded.

Captain Frank Ruhstaller embodied the Spirit of California.

I thought that was pretty interesting.  Reading about CRAFT BEER breweries and how they began or how they produce is much more facinating that reading about ANHEUSER BUSCH.  I am enjoying the journey of learning more about brewing and craft beer and definitely love tasting!  

Hedgie wanted to be photographed with a great brew.

Beers of Europe and a few tastings...

Took a little drive to the Beers of Europe store in Norfolk today.  Nice little drive, big store.  I pretty much walked straight to the American craft beer section.  I have found a few European beers I like but nothing compares to the diversity of the American craft beer movement.  Here is the outside of the store and just one of several isles.

Spent a while in there checking out the selection and rating beers on the ratebeer app.  Have to choose wisely as the exchange rate is ridiculous.  I don't spend my money on shoes or handbags I spend it on good beer.  So here is what we came out with...

20 Beers...

These were my picks...

Can't wait to crack this one open.  Had it once before at the actual brewery and I know it is worth the money I spent on it.

And here is what 20 good beers cost with the 'ole exchange rate...

Here are the few we tried tonight...  

Dominon Oak Barrel Stout.  This one is brewed in Dover, Dele Delaware believe this is my first brew by Old Dominion.  I was very pleased with the first try.  Very  nice stout, not too potent, very smooth and sweet!  Ratebeer gave this gem a 95 with a mild ABV of 6.1%.  I would definitely purchase this one again and I would like to try some of their others given the chance.  This was the only one available at the store.  

I really have nothing to say for taste #2 of the evening.  It was super cheap so we thought "what the hell" and threw it in the basket.  The aroma itself made me nauseous.  One sip and this "Buddy" was poured down the drain.  There is a reason Ratebeer gave it a 2.  

I have been hearing good things about Odell's from other beer connoisseur friends back in the states.  The beer store I frequent has had a couple options lately and Beers of Europe had a couple as well.  I had not seen this one before so I tossed her in!  I have not tried an Odell brew that I did not like yet, this one included.  Ratebeer gave Cut Throat Porter a 95 at an ABV of 5%.  I have not had too many porters yet but was delighted with this one.  I had thought it to be pretty similar to a stout, not quite but still good.  Very smooth, rich flavors but on the light side.

2 out of 3 was not bad.  Rarely do I find a beer I will just pour out but sometimes it happens.  Got to at least give them a shot.  

Do you have any recommendations for me? Hard to get my hands on just anything living overseas but I do what I can.  Rather scoop up some delicious beers than buy a new pair of shoes or a handbag.  I throughly enjoy trying new beers.  I just need to develop my palette a little further and get a acquainted with how each spice or different ingredient tastes on its own.  



pumpkin, spice and beer beer beer

Tonight I decided it was time to taste the 3 pumpkin beers I scooped up at my beer store.  First up was

BrewDog Pumpkin Head

.  Love the label to start, pretty rad.  The beer has a nice spicy aroma with a pretty autumn caramel color.  There is a nutmeg with a slight citrus taste from the start,  with a pumpkin taste more on the end.  Sometimes these types have like a sting or bite of spice but this one was softer on the throat, smooth.  


gave this one a 48 and it comes in at 5.1% ABV.  Might be nice to have again on Halloween and Thanksgiving.

I made Thai pose with the brew because well, she is too cute and she too loves craft beer!

Next up is

Flying Dog Imperial Pumpkin Ale

.  This one did not have much of an aroma but it did have some flavor!  Chilled for a bit so the first couple sips did not have much flavor.  After holding the beer for a few and then tasting again it had much more spice flavor.  Again I say that temperature is key.  Craft beers like these should not be super cold.  We usually keep them on the counter and just do a flash chill before drinking.  Not too cold, not too warm, but just right.  Like Goldie Locks!  


gave this one a score of 93 with an ABV of 9%!  Love me some BrewDog but between the two this one wins.  Still one more to taste!

Last up is Brooklyn Brewery Post Road Pumpkin Ale.  This one has the strongest spice flavor of all.  I think next time I would limit myself to tasting one per night but we split them so they are small tastes but with bolder flavors.  I feel full of spice and pumpkin!  This one is a 5% ABV and


gave it a low 46.  I would have to try it again without having 2 prior pumpkin beers.  I didn't finish it, I will say that much.

Cheers to good beer!  Hope you all have a HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

What are your favorite pumpkin or fall brews?!

Breakfast Beer? Why certainly!

I hadn't ever been much of a fan of


beer but recently have had a couple that tickled my tastebuds in a good way!  Another good "go-to" IPA would be their Rogue 7 Hop IPA.  I was hesitant at first because their Yellow Snow IPA was a flop in my opinion but was delighted to find it had a nice smooth taste.  It is rated an 89 on


 and at a nice 8% ABV.  Actually rated a little higer on


with a 98 overall.  Pretty cool it is brewed with all 7 hops grown on the Rogue Farm.  Try it out!

Next on the list of Rogue's good tasting brews is their Chocolate Stout.  First tasted this greatness at a little restaurant in town across from the beer store we buy our craft brews at.  Let me first say it is amazing on draft!  It is kept at the perfect temperature for this flavorful beer.  Temperature is important with craft beers.  Super cold is not always what you want.  Screw those "blue mountains!"  This beer has such a great aroma and so many great flavors.  


gave this baby a 99!  It is listed as a sweet stout with a 6.3% ABV.    

Rogue's description:  Ebony in color with a rich creamy head. An earthy flavor of oats and hops that gives way to a rich chocolate truffle finish.

My description:  The chocolate and maple flavors hit your tongue and you will want to pour this beer over your pancakes on a Saturday morning!

If you buy a bottle off the dry shelf (not in a cooler) I recommend maybe a 10 minute chill in the freezer then opening and pouring.  At least that is what we did to try and get close to the temp it was on draft and it seemed to work the best.  


Have you tried it? What did you think?