Sunday, October 30, 2005

Aaron On Beer

So many of you know that I've been trying as many different beers as I possibly can in order to find inspiration for beers I want to make myself as well as find beers and styles I really like. As a result, I often times browse the shelves at Albertson's and Cork And Bottle in search of a beer that speaks to me. As a result, I've discovered that I really like dark beers; the darker, the better. Below is a listing of some of the beers I've tried as well as my thoughts on them.

Bison Chocolate Stout
This was one of the first beers I tried during my journey, and it's still one of my favorites. My first thought when I tried this beer was damn, that's chocolatey. It has a strong taste of unsweetened chocolate and a hint of creaminess.
Young's Double Chocolate Stout
My reasoning for getting this beer was this: if regular chocolate stout is good, double chocolate stout must be twice as good. Unfortunately, this beer didn't have as strong a chocolate taste as the other chocolate stouts I had, though it did have a stronger cream taste to it than the Bison or the Rogue. A good beer, though it would have better competed with the Bison and Rogue if it had a touch more chocolate taste to it.
Widmer Bros. Hefeweizen
Not content to just try darker beers, I decided to try this beer in an attempt to find a tasty lighter beer. It has a rather crisp wheat taste to it which reminds me of the Pyramid Apricot Weizen I'm so fond of minus the apricot. Unfortunately, my experience with this beer was somewhat marred last night when we decided to make skittlebrau with it.
Rogue Chocolate Stout
After I try a beer, I usually check Ratebeer to find suggestions based on a beer I liked. After I tried the Bison Chocolate Stout, one of the reviews said that Rogue's chocolate stout was even better. I had the opportunity to pick one of these up not too long ago, and damn. Like the Bison Chocolate Stout, it had a very strong and bitter chocolate taste to it. It's hard to make a direct comparison between the two since I tried the Rogue a while after I had a Bison, but both were comparable in taste and style.
Rogue Mocha Porter
I'm actually drinking one of these right now:). Based on my positive experience with their chocolate stout, I was convinced to pick up a six pack of this mocha porter. Although similar in taste to the chocolate stout, it seems to have more of a coffee taste to it than a chocolate one.
Abita Purple Haze
I picked this one up on a whim, thinking it'd have a taste reminiscent of my beloved apricot ale. Unfortunately, I found myself disappointed with this offering. Although it has a distinct raspberry taste to it, the beer itself has very little flavor to it.
Stella Artois
I decided to pick some of this up after reading how much Will liked it. I must say, though, that I was rather disappointed with this offering. It didn't have much of a flavor to it, nor did it strike me as much better than the likes of Miller and Bud. Perhaps I'm being too harsh comparing it to such godawful beers, as I was able to drink the 12 pack of it that I bought. However, I still walked away unimpressed.
Oregon HoneyBeer
I picked this beer up during a rather disappointing trip to Cost Plus. I call the trip disappointing as I also bought the aforementioned Purple Haze and a bottle of what was quite possibly the worst beer I have ever drank. Although marketed as being "Brewed with honey", the only time I ever tasted honey was when I burped after drinking this tasteless concoction. Much like Coors Light, its sole taste was that of soda water. Truly a disappointing brew.
Firestone Double Barrel Ale
One can't go to school in SLO without trying a local offering. DBA has a bitter taste as it should, but it also has kind of a funky taste to it that I can't quite put my finger on. A pretty good beer, but not my favorite Firestone brew.
Firestone India Pale Ale
Tried this one at the brewery itself. A very bitter beer, as is to be expected from an IPA. It almost has a lemon taste to it. I was surprised I liked such a hoppy beer (though I like pale ales, they can sometimes overwhelm me with bitterness), but it seemed well done.
Firestone Walker Reserve
This is Firestone's dark beer, which (surprise, surprise) was my favorite Firestone beer of the ones I tried. It had a bitter, burnt taste to it as most dark beers do, though it isn't the darkest beer I've had.
Random 14% ABV beer
I don't remember the name of this one, but had to mention it anyway. This was the third beer I picked up from the dismal Cost Plus trip and the aforementioned Worst Beer Ever. I originally bought it because I had to know what a 14% ABV beer tasted like. Unfortunately, now I know. The alcohol taste was overwhelming, and the beer itself tasted bitter and sweet at the same time. I somehow managed to choke it down (probably because the damn thing cost $5). Because of this beer, I will probably never buy another beer from Cost Plus again.

So there you have it. I'm pretty sure I've drank more types of beer than this, but these are the ones that I remember well enough to comment on. I welcome any and all suggestions for other beers I should try.


Blogger Luke said...

you should try Miller. it's pretty easy to find and its a pretty good beer ;)

10/30/2005 7:17 PM  
Anonymous Will said...

That's a pretty interesting study you have there. I'm sorry to hear that you weren't impressed with the Stella Artois, though (My friend Nathan and I split a 6-pack this weekend and I still love the stuff ;-) ). To this day I've still only tried about 10 different beers, but my current rankings are:

(1)Corona Extra (with lime)
(2)Stella Artois

Anyway, we'll have to try something new on our next schindig. Hope all is well.

10/30/2005 10:25 PM  
Blogger Aaron *@ said...

As far as the "big three" are concerned, Miller's my favorite, though it still isn't very good. Newcastle, on the other hand, I like. It's got an interesting taste to it. Victor tells me I turned you on to it, Will, though I don't remember ever drinking it in your presence.
As for our next shindig, Lucas and I threw around the idea of going to the brewpub in Hanford. Luke said he went there with his family and enjoyed it, and I've been wanting to go there since I saw them start building it several years ago. Just a thought if we're looking for something new we could try when I'm back up there for Thanksgiving.

10/30/2005 10:37 PM  
Blogger Luke said...

and the dollar theatre perhaps?

10/31/2005 7:49 AM  
Anonymous Will said...

Sounds like we've got ourselves a plan...just let me know when.

I don't remember telling Vic that you got me liking Newcastle (Now that I think about it, it was actually my friend Ryan)...but you DID make me a fan of the Pyramid Apricot, which would have been #4.

10/31/2005 5:46 PM  

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