I think this is the 6th? Anyway, the baron is still winless, although the good news this year is that IPAs have finally won the gold medal. In previous years, the ladies of the beerbaron family have made it very trying to win when bringing an IPA, they just aren’t into the intense hop presence, but this year we have broken new ground and hopefully will continue to do so. Another fun night at the parents’ house, more exciting beers to try and already looking into what to bring to next years competition.
Judging is based on 4 categories: appearance, aroma, taste, and drinkability.
I did bring an IPA, Schlafly’s Tasmanian IPA to be exact, and although I felt I had the best beer of the bunch, majority rules; here are the results.
1. Mission Street IPA – 6.1% ABV – India Pale Ale – I believe this beer is available at Trader Joe’s around the country. This is a very drinkable beer, the malt presence is the initial taste followed with the pine and resin from the hops to round it out. The winner is the same guy whose beer almost made me wretch a couple of years ago. A great worst to first story. Congrats to brother-in-law Tees Dees on the victory, but now he is a marked man.
2. Samuel Adams Winter Lager – 5.6% ABV – Spice/Herb/Vegetable – the 2nd time that is has been brought to the big show and this time scored much better than the last, I believe. I think this struck a chord with the females in the family but a few of the guys thought it was lacking in the flavor department. Sam Adams usually makes a showing, but has yet to take home gold. I wonder if my brother will bring it again, or if he thinks this was its best run?
3. Schlafly Tasmanian IPA – 7.2% – India Pale Ale – Of course I thought this was the best beer of the bunch! It’s a fantastic IPA! I wish Schlafly could brew this year-round, but of course it just came up short, (actually tied for 3rd but I’m going to go ahead and put myself in the #3 spot). Two IPAs in the top 3, the tides are turning a bit and taste buds are hopefully changing for the group. Seriously though, this beer is excellent. Buy some, buy some now.
4. Well’s Banana Bread Beer – 5.2% – English Strong Ale/Fruit Beer – Brought by my sister-in-law. This is one of those beers that gets hurt in the drinkability category. You are definitely tasting banana bread and the first few sips are really good, but after it sits a bit, it almost becomes undrinkable. Drink it fast and it is a pretty refreshing fruit beer.
5. Bell’s Java Stout – 7.5% – Stout – brought by my youngest brothers’ love interest. This is an intense coffee stout, one that would really wake you up in the morning if you are a morning beer person. I really enjoy this beer, at the right time.
6. Lagunitas IPA – 6.2% – India Pale Ale – brought by Meat. Definitely thought that this beer should have placed higher. An excellent west coast ipa with hop bitterness in your face rounded out by the sweet malts. I enjoyed a few of these after the beerfest was over.
7. Big Sky Moose Drool Brown Ale – 5.1% – brown ale – brought by the 3 time defending champ, the Beer Baroness. I thought this would place higher, and am thinking this was an old six pack. It seemed really think and lacking flavor, or it could be where and when we tasted it. Nevertheless, the Baroness has been knocked off her throne and Tees Dees takes the crown.
8. Breckenridge Oatmeal Stout – 4.95% – Stout – brought by Stab, the King of the castle. Am I missing something when it comes to Breckenridge brews? Nothing they have done impresses me at all and with an oatmeal stout you would think that it would be a very drinkable, possible top 3 placing. No go here, thin, watery, lacking many qualities of what a good stout has, finishes in the bottom 2.
9. Chick Beer – 4.2% – Pale Lager – Well shit, I’m not even sure what to say about this beer. If you go to http://www.ratebeer.com and look at the scoring it got a 3 out of 100. A three! I love my mom dearly, and believe she picked it because the packaging was cool, but as the old saying goes, never judge a beer by its packaging. One of the worst damn things I’ve ever tasted and I hope it goes away forever.
What should I bring next year? Help me out.