Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Stone Brewing Company Stochasticity Grapefruit Slam IPA

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Clearly, I'm still in search of a great grapefruit IPA. I'm under the delusion that a) I'll be able to taste the grapefruit and the beer in general, and b) the vitamin C in the citrus plus the alcohol will be able to kill this ickiness that has taken over my body for nearly two weeks. This one is brought to us from Stone, and seems to be the first in a series of brews from them. This is a double IPA brewed with grapefruit peel. I'm definitely intrigued.

Aside from the wonderful bottle, which evokes Cold War-era high technology, this pours a medium amber with a fluffy eggshell-colored head that doesn't stick around too long. The aroma on this is interesting. It's not overly strong, yet there's a faint tinge of noticeable grapefruit, along with some freshly mowed grass and hay. I am not noticing any malt presence in the aroma, other than it smells slightly sweet. Taking a sip, it starts out with caramel and brown sugar from the malts, which then quickly fades into the bitterness of grapefruit peels. The finish on this is a bitter, dry bite. I wish they had used more zest than pith, which is where I think the bitterness is coming from, but it's also nicely cutting through the glue that is my throat right now. It's not overly grapefruit, but the grapefruit is definitely noticed, especially toward the back side. I'm not sure if there are more subtle notes that I'm missing; I'll let Nathan fill in any blanks.

Candidly, I kind of want to use this in a Netti pot. This is a good example of a grapefruit IPA. Stone, as usual, has yet to disappoint.

4.3/5 caps -- only because I wish I could get a full feel for this.


After letting this warm up, while she-with-lady-parts took lead on this review, the color remains the same (as it should) and there is still a bit of eggshell head struggling to hold on for dear life.  The aroma at this point is earthy, piney and grapefruit, as I'd expect from Stone. The flavor is interesting. It's a long interesting journey from start to finish. Biscuit malt at first, leading almost instantly into a brown sugar flavor while the hop flavors start making their presence known. There is some piney that leads into some grapefruit almost instantaneously. The grapefruit builds and builds to a nice bitterness while the oils start overtaking and giving a pleasant puckering to the mouth. At times there are hints of floral notes that pop in, but don't stick around long. The finish on this is nice and dry with a strong bitter bite (like Jennie said). There's a nice puckering oily finish that washes over everything on the backend.

Not my favorite beer by Stone (read: Dayman or Enjoy By), but damn good. A bitch to spell, a pleasure to drink. When your pint glass is done, your mouth will feel like you just ate a grapefruit (or drank a pint of grapefruit juice). Fantastic for those who love grapefruit.

And for those who are wondering, Webster's dictionary defines Stochastic as:
:  random; specifically :  involving a random variable <a stochastic process>
:  involving chance or probability :  probabilistic <a stochastic model of radiation-induced mutation>
So, randomly, this beer works. Thanks again to our friends at Wine and Brew for carrying this and for being stellar people in general.
4.5/5 caps
Music Pairing: Bullets and Octane "Pirates"
Cheese Pairing: Kerry Gold Irish Cheddar
Food Pairing: Reuben Poutine (yeah, that happened)

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Abita Grapefruit Harvest IPA

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Firstly, we would like to apologize to our loyal fans that we've been inactive for a while. There's been some sort of sickness that we're just now getting over, killing our sinuses and taste buds for too damn long.

I've personally been longing to taste good beer again, not being able to taste made Two Brother's Outlaw IPA (upcoming review) taste like water, or even worse, Natty Light. Ick.  Regardless, my senses are back to almost full, so onto the review.

I've been intrigued by this since I first saw it in an email from Premium Beverage Supply (yes, I get email updates on upcoming releases of beer because I'm awesome like that). I love grapefruit, I love IPA, the combo has entered my mind many times when we've thought about that to homebrew.

This pours a nice golden color with decent carbonation and a white head that doesn't stick around very long. The aroma on this is a nice lighter crystal malt-like essence that is lending itself to the citrus/grapefruit that is prominent. I love this aroma. The flavor, however, falls short. This is not so much an IPA. There are some light earthy and piney tones up front that drop out of the flavor profile in about 2 seconds. After that, there is a watery blast that washes away the palate. The backend has a tinge of faint bitterness (that without hardcore analyzing, would be missed). This isn't bad, more like a lawnmower beer, but it's more like grapefruit flavored sparkling water. Definitely not an IPA. the 6% isn't noticed in this light-bodied brew. Smooth drinking with a light grapefruit juice finish sort of stickiness. Today's a good day to drink this (as it was 65 degrees in central Ohio, with a high of around 28 tomorrow), but would be better on a hot summer day.

3.0/5 caps- just due to such a light flavor


I'm still sick, but after nearly two weeks of dulled senses, I'm wanting to get some extra vitamin C in my system, hence the grapefruit beers. Besides, I miss drinking craft beer. Well, I suppose our go-to cheap beer (Burger) could be considered craft, as it's made in small-ish batches here in Ohio, but nevertheless, I want something with taste. Phlegm be damned, I'm drinking anyway, so if I miss some tasting notes in this, I apologize.

Nathan nailed the appearance. I don't pick up as much crystal malts as well as I pick up citrus and grapefruit with some light cracker-y notes from the malts in the nose. The aroma is lovely, quite lovely, even through the clogged-ness that is my nose tonight. As I take a sip, I'm sadly disappointed. I could hope it was my dulled senses, but after Nathan's review, I am thinking I'm not that far off. It's weird, but I feel the grapefruit more than I taste it, if that makes any sense at all. I get some cracker, an almost metallic note, the grapefruit feeling, and then a dry finish. It's rather sweet in the middle. On the deep back end of this (read: as I'm belching it back, one of my favorite parts of the tasting -- yes, I'm weird and uncouth like that), there is noticeable grapefruit, but it's almost like it's too little, too late.

I'm a little saddened. If you're going to go with an Abita beer, their Purple Haze is pretty fantastic.

3.4/5 caps


Cheese pairing: Colby-Jack
Food pairing: Key Lime cheesecake
Music pairing: Pharell, "Happy"