12 Beers of Christmas, Day 2: Ithaca Embrr

Day #2 brings another beer that is new to my taste buds. It’s a rye porter from Ithaca called Embrr. Day #2 brings another beer that is new to my taste buds. It's a rye porter from Ithaca called Embrr. 12 Beers of Christmas, Day 2: Ithaca Embrr 12 Beers of Christmas, Day 2: Ithaca Embrr 2015-12-10 Eric Schiavo Virginia Pour House Review Ithaca Embrr - 86 86 86 Points A solid robust porter from Ithaca that delivers a solid punch of roasted malts and rye spice. User Rating: Be the first one !

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Happy New Year from Asheville, NC!

New Year’s Eve. It is a holiday that I normally spend going out with a bunch of friends to a fancy, semi-formal event. This year, though, I am spending the holiday at the cabin in the mountains outside Asheville, NC that my in-laws recently purchased. After an 8-hour road trip and a slightly scary trek 4,000 feet up the mountain, we arrived. And we caught the last minute or so of sunset. Of course, since it was a special occasion, I enjoyed New Year’s with a few rare and vintage beers with the family. We started on Tuesday night, when my sister-in-law and her husband (who just so happens to be a close friend) stopped in on the way down to NC. The first beer we cracked was a local one from Hardywood, and a variant of one I have already had this winter season. Hardywood Bourbon Barrel Gingerbread Stout …

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Quest for the Perfect Pumpkin Beer: #17 & #16

The Quest for the Perfect Pumpkin Beer continues with #17 and #16 in the countdown! #17: Troeg’s Master of Pumpkins Producer: Troeg’s Brewing Company; Hershey, PA Beer Name: Master of Pumpkins Price Range: $7.00/draught (10 oz) ABV: 7.4% Appearance: Copper-colored and clear Aroma: Faint pumpkin and spice Virginia Pour House Review: I got to taste this beer at one of my favorite beer joints at Penn State, The Deli. This is one that I had been trying to track down for a little while. It was brewed with local Pennsylvania gourd pumpkins harvested this year. The beer pours a clear copper color with a small white foamy head. There is a very faint aroma of pumpkin and spice, with no specific spices standing out. The taste is strong with pumpkin fruit with notes of cinnamon and nutmeg in the middle. The middle is reminiscent of pumpkin pie and the beer finishes dry. I …

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Quest for the Perfect Pumpkin Beer: #27 & #26

It’s Fall and you know what that means: it’s the invasion of the pumpkin! I know that pumpkin-flavoring things have been overplayed in recent years but I have to admit that I still love pumpkin beers. Now that pumpkin beers pretty much come out at any time of year, I decided to sample a bunch of this year’s offerings to try to find the perfect pumpkin beer. I tasted 27 different pumpkin beers and rated each to determine an overall winner. We’ll do this countdown-style. Here we go with #27 and 26 (apologies for no glass shots): #27: Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale Producer: Smuttynose Brewing Company; Hampton, NH Beer Name: Pumpkin Ale Price Range: $1.99/bottle (12 oz.) ABV: 6.3% Appearance: Pale, hazy orange Aroma: Cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin Virginia Pour House Review: The beer pours a pale, hazy orange with a foamy head that goes down but lingers near the top of the glass. The …

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Beer Review: Stone Brewery Smoked Porter with Chipotle Peppers

Producer: Stone Brewing Company; Escondido, California, United States Beer Name: Smoked Porter with Chipotle Peppers Price Range: $8.99 Style: Porter ABV: 5.9% Appearance: Black, mostly opaque, slight effervescence, small head of foam Aroma: Very faint smoky scent mixed with very faint spiciness but almost no aroma at all Mouthfeel: Effervescent and dry Taste: Smoky upfront with subtle, pleasant spiciness from chipotle; finishes very dry but spice remains    To be clear, I’m not a huge fan of Stone Smoker Porter. However, they have done some interesting things with the beer. I think of porters as being generally very malleable. They are easy to bend in different ways with the addition of one or two ingredients because they are generally fairly plain. Stone Smoked Porter isn’t an interesting beer. But when paired with vanilla bean, or in this case chipotle peppers, it becomes something else entirely. Despite the fact that this …

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