Gift from my friend Brian Souza. 8% abv. Pours a heavy, hazy, orange color with a thin tan head. Jumping with mango, pineapple, and papaya aromas. First sip is thicker and richer than expected…a full bodied and chewy IPA in all the best ways. Grapefruit and pine resin hop bite lingers forever. Wheat and oats add some balancing malt sweetness. Sneaky masking of high abv with all the delicious flavor. Grapefruit scents and flavors become stronger with each sip. This beer has an interesting combination of dankness, sweetness, and earthiness that I really love. Another killer IPA from Portland, ME. This beer just jumped into my top 100 list. Delicious. Looking forward to visiting and trying more on my next trip to Portland.
8.2% abv. Purchased at Liquor Junction in Reading, MA. Pours a beautiful murky, orange-gold color with a healthy white head. Solid Belgian lace. Mango, apricot, pine, and orange rind on the nose. First sip is shockingly smooth with no alcohol presence at all, which is scary for a beer as big as this. Some warming in the belly after 4 or 5 sips. Pine and spruce flavors get stronger with each sip. Some zippy spiciness at finish from high alcohol and huge hop profile. Orange and lemon candy flavors with some caramel and bread roll malt flavors. Rock solid all the way through. This one has it all, the look, the aroma, the huge taste.
Aeronaut Brewing Company, Hop Hop & Away, Somerville, MA
A gift from my friend Derek O’Brien. Batch 384, can dated 10/26/17. 4.6% abv. 42 IBUs. Made with citra and mosaic hops. As always, super cool can art by Raul Gonzalez III. Pours murky gold with a inch thick fluffy white head. Grapefruit, mango, and orange zest on the nose. Surprising first sip is popping with citrus flavor…this is no ordinary session IPA. Touches of dried apricot, fresh cut grass, and apple skin. Smooth, drinkable mouthfeel, but plenty of hop bite to keep it interesting. Bitterness is balanced well by a rye bread and caramel sweetness. An excellent session beer for a summer bbq or to quaff over the holidays. Brewed in Somerville, MA, so drink local!
Bissell Brothers Brewing Company, Nothing Gold, Portland, ME
8.2% abv. Brewed with citra, amarillo, and equinox hops. This is the hoppiest beer made by Bissell Bros. Pours an opaque dirty orange color. Citrus aroma bursts out of the can with an amazing combination of pink grapefruit and sweet clementine notes. I really love the smell of this beer. Touches of caramel apple and oat flakes on the nose as well. First sip is grapefruit rind, spruce tips, and fresh cut grass with the slightest touch of peppery alcohol. I love the medium-to-full body mouthfeel on this one. Ridiculously drinkable and satisfying and the 8.2% abv in a 16oz can is downright dangerous in all the best ways. I have never tried Swish, but it blows my mind to think that it could be better than this beer. I am hoping that Bissell Bros. is still going strong when I retire to Maine in about 25 years!
Lawson’s Finest Liquids, Sip of Sunshine IPA, Warren, VT (brewed in Stratford, CT)
I have tried a lot of beers, this is number 2,336 in my beer database. The legend of Sip of Sunshine has been around for a while now, but for various reasons this beer has eluded me. I tend not to chase beer and I rarely stand in line for it (especially during winter at 5am), but I can respect those that do! I got lucky the other day when I opened Facebook and saw that Rapid Liquors in Stoneham had just received a shipment of this beer. I live about 2 miles away and within about an hour, there were only 3 four packs left when I got there. Here is my review:
Tallboy can dated 5/2/17 so this is about a week old. 8% abv. Pours dark gold with a decent white hop head. Great Belgian lace. Huge pineapple juice aroma with bursts of mango. The sweet smells jump out of the glass and assault the nose. Some dried apricot and papaya notes as well. Simply put, this beer smells amazing. First sip is tropical fruit salad with a touch of pine. It has a distinctive floral and herbal hop finish. It is kind of a perfect balance between an old school IPA and the new juicy east coast variety. Almost immediate slow warming in the belly after a few sips, yet it remains ridiculously smooth for the high abv. Some caramel malt balances it out, but it is really all tropical fruit deliciousness. Gets drier and slightly more dank as you move through it, but not in any kind of negative way. Great, great stuff.