Imperial IPA

Spring Break: Portland, Day 3

Our third day in Portland featured lots of walking, but the thing with Portland is that everything is really walkable. We walked from our hotel in downtown pioneer district all the way to Mississippi district and we still only walked about 3 miles, never in dangerous areas. So we learned that you can walk from downtown to Mississippi district, but you will be walking for a long time if you do. We eventually made it to what turned out to be one of my favorite places in Portland, Ecliptic Brewing. Ecliptic Brewing Company 825 N Cook St, Portland, OR 97227 Well, it’s certainly out there but I suspect that is how they like it. Ecliptic featured some of the best beer I had in Portland, including their Hypernova triple IPA and their Orbiter IPA. Their Orange Giant barleywine and Oort Imperial Stout also hit the spot, as well as a massive 1/2-pound …

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Spring Break: Portland, Day 2

Day 2 of my Portland trip featured more of the same from day #1… great food and great beer. After an amazing breakfast featuring a chorizo burrito and French toast with huckleberry jam at Tasty n Alder, and great coffee at Barista, we headed over the bridge into East Portland to see what this area had to offer. The first place we hit was Burnside Brewery. Burnside Brewery 701 E Burnside St, Portland, OR 97214 So we started off the day here and I thought it would be a great idea to get a taster tray of all their beer. Turns out, that might not have been the best idea. Their taster tray consisted of 18-4 oz taster (in case you’re keeping track at home, that’s 4.5-12 oz beers). Here’s what that looked like: Right. I had some work to do. I sipped each of these very slowly, but some …

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Spring Break: Portland, Day 1

I know it’s been a while since I wrote anything, and there’s a ton to tell about Virginia craft beer. But for now, I’m in Portland with the wife for spring break so I only thought it appropriate to write about my experiences at the many, many amazing breweries out in the Pacific Northwest. My first day featured visits to Voodoo Doughnut, Deschutes, Fat Head’s, 10 Barrel, and Rogue Public House. Voodoo Doughnut 22 SW 3rd Ave, Portland, OR 97204 OK, so this place is probably touristy as hell, but it was amazing. It’s a tiny little doughnut shop that accepts cash only but the doughnuts are incredible. I got the pot hole, which was a bar doughnut with chocolate icing topped with Oreo crumbles and stuffed with cream. It was delicious and I could barely finish the whole thing by myself. I paired it with a nice Stumptown coffee …

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Quick Pour: Mikkeller Crooked Moon dIPA

Quick Pour: Mikkeller Crooked Moon dIPA Quick Pour: Mikkeller Crooked Moon dIPA 2015-10-02 Eric Schiavo Virginia Pour House Review Mikkeller Crooked Moon dIPA - 93 93 93 Points This big, citrusy hop bomb from Mikkeller is surprisingly drinkable and surprisingly American for a foreign IPA. User Rating: Be the first one !

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Quick Pour: Lickinghole Creek Nuclear Nugget

Producer: Lickinghole Creek Brewery; Goochland, VA Style: Imperial IPA Price Range: $15 / bottle (25.4 oz) ABV: 10.5% Appearance: Deep golden, foamy white head Aroma: Pine, earthy, honey, citrus Virginia Pour House Review: Lickinghole Creek Brewery in southern Virginia releases a hop bomb every summer called Nuclear Nugget. I picked up a bottle at my local beer shop a couple weeks back and thought it would be perfect to drink this beast on National IPA Day. This thing checks in at a hefty 10.5% and 105 IBU, and is brewed with tons of Centennial and Nugget hops, along with local clover honey to attempt to take the bite off the hops a bit. The beer pours a deep golden color with a healthy, foamy, white head. The aroma is earthy and piney, with a hint of sweetness from the honey. The big earthy notes of the Nugget hops burst forth immediately upon …

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Sierra Nevada: An East Coast Compound with a NorCal Feel

Sierra Nevada officially opened the doors to its North Carolina brewery/restaurant/bar in March of 2015 after a phased approach starting last summer. While I’m not the biggest fan of their beers overall, I still thought I had to visit while I was in the Asheville area. I made the long trek from the cabin outside of Canton through Asheville to Fletcher, about an hour drive. I have to admit that I was under the impression that the brewery was closer to Asheville proper, but it actually lies about 17 miles south of the city, which is about a half hour drive. As we pulled through the gate, I quickly realized why it was located so far from the city. It seems to be by design. After winding through a half mile of forest and over a small stone bridge, we pulled up to the parking lot, which was appointed with …

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Ocelot Brewing: A New Go-To in Loudoun County

Note: This post was written on Memorial Day. Since my first visit, I have visited Ocelot almost every weekend. Loudoun County boasts some pretty serious craft breweries, as evidenced by my last post. While that only begins to scratch the surface of what the county has to offer, it’s a good starting point for getting into the local craft beer scene in northern Virginia. After visiting a new brewery in Sterling this weekend, it is safe to say that there is some serious competition for all other Loudoun County breweries. Ocelot Brewing opened its doors for a soft open in April but they had their grand opening this weekend. It is located in a no-frills industrial park off of Old Ox Road/Rt 606 in Sterling, but don’t let the exterior fool you. The interior is inviting with what looks like a bar and tables made from repurposed wood and a southern …

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Quick Pours: A Trio of Local IPA’s

GRAFFITI HOUSE  Producer: Old Bust Head; Vint Hill, VA  Style: IPA  Price Range: $2 / bottle (12 oz)  ABV: 7.5%  Appearance: Deep amber, clear, with small white head  Aroma: Malty, faint earthy notes  Virginia Pour House Review: The first IPA is from a small brewery near Gainesville  called Old Bust Head. This is brewed in a West Coast IPA style so it promises to be very  hoppy with citrus and pine notes. The beer pours a deep, clear amber with a small white  head. The aroma is faint, but there is some malt and earthy notes. The first sip is big and  bright, with a nice citrus up front and earthy tones the middle. The beer finishes super bitter  with a lingering pine bitterness. For a base IPA, this beer has a lot of flavor and really good  bitterness. It is reminiscent of a West Coast IPA with subtle citrus and big …

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12 Beers of Christmas: BrewDog Hardcore IPA (Day 4)

The 4th day of Beermas features a beer from the Brew Dogs in Scotland! BrewDog Hardcore IPA Producer: BrewDog Brewery; Ellon, Aberdeenshire, Scotland Beer Name: Hardcore IPA Style: English IPA Price Range: $3-4 / bottle (12 oz) ABV: 9.2% Appearance: Mostly clear amber, fizzy off-white head Aroma: Slight booziness, almost metallic, but hoppy Virginia Pour House Review: The beer pours a mostly clear, brilliant amber that reflects nicely in the light, with a small off-white head. The aroma is typical of English IPAs, hoppy but with a boozy, almost metallic aroma. It is not indicative of a typical West Coast-style American IPA but more similar to an East Coast one. The beer is surprisingly light-bodied despite the 9.2% ABV, but packs a lot of nice hop bitterness. The hops in this one are earthy and combine nicely with the light Maris Otter malts. Despite the hop punch and relatively light body, the malts shine through, …

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Beer Review: Evil Twin Brewing Company Yin & Yang

When I see beers from Evil Twin Brewing Company in the store, I usually walk past them. I have sampled a couple and liked what I tasted, but they are generally too pricey for my taste. Of course, to every rule there is an exception. In this case, it is Evil Twin’s companion beers, Yin and Yang. It’s rare to find these beers together at the same time, so when my local beer store (thanks Wine Cabinet!) hosted a tasting, I had to go try them. I liked them enough to buy a four-pack of both and do a writeup… Beer Review: Evil Twin Brewing Company Yin & Yang Beer Review: Evil Twin Brewing Company Yin & Yang 2014-09-08 Virginia Pour House Review Overview Evil Twin Yin - 95 Evil Twin Yang - 80 Evil Twin Yin & Yang Blend - 100 92 91.7 Virginia Pour House Rating User Rating: …

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