Tuesday night I had a Summit Horizon Red after work since they went down so well last weekend. Hanging the new TV in the bar was the project of the night and since it seemed like a special occasion so I figured a new beer was in order.
Stone Smoked Porter intimidated me a bit since the Smoke Ale I had from Rogue was different and definitely situational and with Stone's reputation for big taste I was hoping I'd like this. I was shocked at how easy this went down. The smoke element of this beer was very understated and well placed. It was just put there to compliment the rest of the flavors. I rated it a 3.9 on Rate Beer and that number could climb in the future. Here are my thoughts:
22 oz bomber from Casanova. Medium thick pour, black in color. Smokey chocolate aroma. Thick mouthfeel, hints of chocolate with a smokey coffee flavor and a smooth finish. Very flavorful but surprisingly smooth.
The Stone website sums it up perfectly - Smooth, with chocolate and coffee-like flavors balanced by the subtle "smoky" character of just the right amount of peat-smoked specialty malt.
I was pleased with myself for describing this beer in almost the exact same way before I went to Stone's Website. I finished off the night with an Old Rasputin because I was in the mood for a something dark thick and flavorful after that Stone went down too quickly.
Wednesday I had a Premium at my fantasy football meeting and a Stone Ruination (which I still have yet to officially rate).
Last night we went to Granite City and I was looking forward to rating a beer or two from them since I've really enjoyed them over the years. I normally like their IPA but when I found out that they still had their Wag’s American Wheat and figured I should try it while they still had it on tap since it's their seasonal for the summer.
Broad Axe Stout because I figured it would go well with the meatloaf that I ordered. I can sum up both of these beers with one description - they're both partial versions of what I've been drinking as of late.
I'm doing my best to not become one of the hated "beer snobs" that the lovers of fizzy yellow beer like to call people like us and in doing so, I do two things. I realize that beers like Bud Select have their place and are very drinkable on many occasions. I also realize that beers like Killian's Red, Amber Bock and apparently these two beers from Granite City are excellent gateway beers that can lead you to exploring beers outside the Miller Lite/Coors Light range.
I won't bother with detailed descriptions on either of these because looking back on the notes I took at Granite City, they were filled with words like faint and slight. These are both great beers in their proper place which can be anywhere from a stepping stone on your way to some of the big beers out there to something for someone like me who can enjoy beers all the way up and down the spectrum.
I also asked for a sample of their Blueberry Ale since it was still on tap. I had it before but wanted a review of it. It's not on Rate Beer and that doesn't surprise me but surprisingly it was very drinkable. When I had it at the tapping party, it was a bit too sweet for me and I'm not sure if they tweaked the formula or if it's just because it's a different batch but it actually wasn't bad.
Looking forward to their Oktoberfest tapping party soon. I'm also glad the weekend is here so I can just kick back and relax and drink a whole lotta beer.