Monday - Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout, on tap at Alewife, LIC, Queens.
This was my first time having this well regarded Japanese stout, so I was excited to see it on the draft list at my neighborhood craft beer spot. Strong notes of coffee, on both the nose and tongue, as anticipated. Unanticipated was a fruity, sour-ish finish. I'm not sure if this was how the beer was meant to taste or a product of some other bar-induced circumstances. In either case, it left an unfavorable taste in my mouth. Not sure I'll give it another shot right away.
Tuesday - Peekskill Simple Sour, on tap at Valhalla, New York, NY.
It was a hot day in the city and after the beer I originally intended to have based on their beermenus.com list upated the day before, SixPoint's 3Beans coffee porter, was already 86'ed, I decided to opt for something refreshing, making for a great opportunity to build on my newfound appreciation of sour beers. Simple Sour is one of the more popular sours and with good reason. The beer is exactly what it says it is, a simple sour. Refreshing, tart, tangy and very drinkable. I'll definitely have more of this one throughout the summer.
Wednesday - Founders KBS, Founders Devil Dancer, Allagash Curieux, on tap at District Tap House, New York, NY.
I got an email Wednesday afternoon from beermenus.com letting me know there was KBS on tap at a bar nearby bar. A KBS tapping is a special event and I wasn't passing it up because there's no telling the next time it will turn up. Turn out it was the tail end of a Founders tap take over from the previous night. KBS is one of my favorite beers, an amazingly well balanced coffee stout aged in bourbon barrels. It was served in a wine glass at $12 for a 10 oz pour. Well worth it and I was disappointed the keg was kicked shortly after I ordered mine. It did give me the chance to try some other beers. Devil Dancer, founders new triple IPA, is very hoppy, very floral on the nose. A solid example of what a good, strong IPA should be. The Allagash curieux is a Belgian tripel aged in Jim Beam bourbon barrels. The barrel aging was much more subtle here compared to the various other barrel aged beers I've had. This is likely due to Allagash blending the aged tripel with some fresh tripel before bottling. It was strong, yeasty, and flavorful. Not something I'd have often but something I'd have again. I'd be interested to try it without the fresh tripel added back in the mix. Note, I only had a sample of the Devil Dancer. These three beers are all heavy hitters in the alcohol content, with the KBS coming in at 11.2 abv, Devil Dancer at a whopping 12.0 and the Curieux at 11.2. Once the KBS ran out I wanted to try the other two and made the call to go with the sample of the DD because I feel it will be easier to find than the Curieux.
Thursday - Sunday - New Belgium Fat Tire, 6 pack of bottles, Boca Raton, FL.
I was away for the weekend, visiting family in south Florida. New Belgium is a great brewery out of Ft.Collins, Colorado. It's very well known throughout the country but they don't have distribution in New York City yet as far as I know. I pick up a sixer every time I'm in Florida to enjoy while I'm out in the sun. Fat Tire, their signature brew, is an amber ale with great malty flavor. I could drink this beer every day. Crisp and refreshing, with a 5.2 abv, it's
extremely drinkable. It will be a staple in my fridge as soon as it's available in NY!
Overall a very solid beer week. An unexpected midweek KBS find is always a big win.
Craft beer lessons from the week: beermenus.com is your friend. This goes for both the craft beer fan and craft beer bar. Update your favorite beers so you get notified when they're available in your area. And bars, us craft beer fans really do go to places based on what's on your list. So keep them updated regularly!