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Old 03-24-2007, 08:41 AM   #1
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Default Beerswap 2007 - the_bird's Beers

I didn't see a thread for the_bird, so I'm starting one.

Trying the Murder in the Red Barn IPA tonight.

Appearance: Decent pale tan head on a very dark amber, almost brown beer. Surprisingly dark for an IPA, the darkest I've seen.

Aroma: Straight hoppiness, doesn't seem either floral or citrusy to me, more of a slightly fruity, perhaps cherry aroma. It's very cold though, so that could be inhibiting the subtleties.

Taste: Yeah, I think I detect a bit of cherry right in front, but that is quickly washed away by a touch of hops, a fair amount of maltiness, and then back to a bitter hoppy finish which seems a bit delayed.

As this has warmed up, the hops have become much more pronounced, and last from start to finish. They seem relatively earthy to me.

Mouthfeel: Perfect carbonation, medium/light body, and a clean finish.

Overall: This tastes a bit different from most of the IPAs I've been drinking lately, with seemingly less citrus than I'm used to. A good IPA nonetheless, and quite drinkable. I'm glad I get another one later!

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Old 03-24-2007, 12:42 PM   #2
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Torchman,

when did you get your shipment? I haven't gotten mine, and I just wanted to make sure it didn't get "lost" (i.e. drank by UPS employees) in transit.

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Old 03-24-2007, 02:13 PM   #3
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I need to get a review down for this as well. I took some notes for it that night but they are on a sticky note next to my home computer.

I also tried the pale ale a few nights ago....will review that at the same time.

One note....I cannot wait for DOUBLE MURDER.

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Old 03-24-2007, 02:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan!
Torchman,

when did you get your shipment? I haven't gotten mine, and I just wanted to make sure it didn't get "lost" (i.e. drank by UPS employees) in transit.
They just showed up Friday afternoon. I was concerned my package had gone missing as well for awhile there.
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Old 03-24-2007, 04:53 PM   #5
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Well, I'm out of town at the moment...that'd be nice to get home tomorrow to some new brews!

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.primary | bright:
98: Moss Hollow Soured '09 72: Oude Kriek 99: B-Weisse 102: Brett'd BDSA 104: Feat of Strength Helles Bock 105: Merkin Brown
.on tap | kegged:
XX: Moss Hollow Springs Sparkling Water 95: Gott Mit Uns German Pils 91b: Brown Willie's Oaked Abbey Ale 103: Merkin Stout
98: Yorkshire Special 100: Maple Porter 89: Cidre Saison 101: Steffiweizen '09 (#3)
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Old 03-29-2007, 07:55 PM   #6
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Pale as a Bone APA

Appearance: A golden/light amber color, with a small film of head that dissipated to a ring quickly. A small bit of haziness, which I attribute to the fact that this is a relatively young beer, I believe.

Aroma: Mild floral hoppiness, some maltiness as well. Seems about right for a pale ale.

Taste: A very clean sweet front, caramel malt pops in for a moment, nice hoppy bitter finish, with a pleasant bready aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: I was warned the bottle might not be carbonated, but it seems just fine now. Medium body balanced by good carbonation.

Overall: A really nice, quaffable pale ale. I usually don't care for them all that much, but this is a great example of the style, and one I wouldn't mind drinking on a regular basis. Very drinkable, and it's going down quickly. Good job.

Thank you very much, bird, for sharing your beers!

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Old 03-29-2007, 10:21 PM   #7
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Thanks for the kind words, Torch!

The darkness of MITRB is intentional (hence the "red" in the name). Two ounces of de-bittered black malt. It came out a little bit darker than I wanted, so I'll probably drop that back to 1 ounce next time, but I want it to be a little different in color. Hell, I've toyed around with the idea of making "Creeping Death" - a black IPA - but I'm not sure what flavors I'll end up with from the de-bittered black malt at the levels I would need. In any case, I was just happy that there were not any roast notes, at least that I could detect.

The hops were Chinook (bittering), then Centennial, Cascade, and Amarillo for flavor and aroma. I'm surprised you perceived them as earthy instead of cirtrus; to me, at least when the beer was younger, it tastes like chewing on a grapefruit tree (so to speak). Glad you liked it, though.

Three pounds of Munich malt; next time, I may sub in some dark Munich or melanoidin malt (or are they the same thing?). This also contributes to the beer's darkness.

The Pale As Bone IPA, I think came out a bit too light bodied. It finished a lot lower than I am used to, at 1.008 (after starting at 1.062, IIRC). It tastes a little hollow to me. I'm thinking the haze was from the transport, as it's pretty clear here (it's one of the few times I'm remembered to toss the moss in the sauce). It also got a de-facto cold conditioning by virtue of the basement's temps. It is still somewhat young, but not THAT young; it's just taking its time to condition. It's got a couple pounds of Vienna malt, which I think comes through in the aroma (it was not dry-hopped).

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Old 03-30-2007, 12:57 PM   #8
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Default Pale As Bone APA

Pour: Light hiss at uncapping indicated a possible lack of adequate carbo, but the pour proved that untrue.

Visual: Obvious carbonation, but very little head and no retention. The color is a spectacular pale gold, which just looks refreshing. It's pretty cloudy, given its young age, and there are some floaties I see in the bottom of the glass when held up to the light.

Aroma: The nose is pretty sparse on this one. I get some subtle floral hops, but not too much else. Pretty clean and polished from what I can tell. Perhaps some dryhopping could have benefited this brew, to give some more character to the nose.

Palate: I don't get the "watered down" thing that The Bird claimed. It may have attenuated a bit too much, but it's not watered down. I've made watered-down brew before, and this is not it. I'd be a little more worried if the hops or alcohol were more evident, because then the low FG would surely seem out of balance. But as it stands, it's got great balance. The taste is somewhat true to the nose, but with a little more complexity. The clean hop bitterness and flavor is there, though I couldn't pick out any specific characteristics other than "floral". The best facet of the palate is the bready note that comes on mid-palate (and somewhat in the finish as well). It's not yeasty-bready, but fresh-baked-bready. Very nice; lends a professional air to it.

Proximity to Traditional Styles: The cloudiness, due to its youth, makes it look like a hefe. Otherwise, I'd have called this one a Golden Ale. It's not got enough hops to be a true pale ale, IMHO. If you'd just call it a Golden Ale, you'd be spot-on!

Overall: Great brew. I appreciate the restraint above all else. So often, homebrewers lean towards the extreme because they can. I am evidence of that. But this brew is restrained, chilled out, unpretentious, and uncomplicated. Above all else, the PaB is damned refreshing after a 12-hour workday, if I may say so myself. I could down a few of these, and feel completely quenched. My only complaint is that, given the name, "Pale APA", I expected a more pronounced hop character (not more bitterness, more flavor/aroma). Dude, just call it a Golden Ale... Judging by those standards, it's a flawless summer drink.

Thanks much, Bird.
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MOSS HOLLOW BREWING CO.
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.planned:
•Scottish 80/- •Sweet Stout •Roggenbier
.primary | bright:
98: Moss Hollow Soured '09 72: Oude Kriek 99: B-Weisse 102: Brett'd BDSA 104: Feat of Strength Helles Bock 105: Merkin Brown
.on tap | kegged:
XX: Moss Hollow Springs Sparkling Water 95: Gott Mit Uns German Pils 91b: Brown Willie's Oaked Abbey Ale 103: Merkin Stout
98: Yorkshire Special 100: Maple Porter 89: Cidre Saison 101: Steffiweizen '09 (#3)
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Old 03-30-2007, 01:18 PM   #9
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Default Dope Slap Brown

Hey, you know, this does feel like getting smacked in the head with a sack full of weed...

Pour: Good hiss, pretty pour, good carbo as far as I can see.

Visual: Nice head, but little retention. The bubbles seemed a bit too coarse to me---on a brew this dark, I like tight bubble matrices. I'm guessing this was primed with corn sugar and not DME. Personally, I think I'm switching back to DME on my bottles. I think the head turns out better. Anyway, the color is such a dark brown that this could easily be a light porter, judging by the looks. This is olde-style brown, like Old Richmond brewery does. A slight reddish tint at the edges of the glass, but otherwise, it's opaque.

Aroma: Awww, damn. See, this is why I'm aching to brew a brown. I love it! Sweet, sweet caramel, you mistress of the night! So tempting. There are many layers here. I get clean hops on top. Under that, there's a fruity licorice (not anise, more like black licorice candy) layer. Under that, a pronounced chocolate. And finally, a sweet caramel layer that has slightly burned undertones. Magnifico! I keep wondering if this is a brown or an entire butt. Little of both I suppose, though, it's not like the two styles are that different anyway.

Palate: Well, the coarse bubbles don't hurt it. I see coarse bubbles, I expect a harsher mouthfeel, but it was pretty smooth. All the layers on the nose come through on the tongue as well. Candy licorice, caramel, roasty chocolate. The hops are here, definitely. They add a little fruity note that hearkens back to Dogfish Head's India Brown. The weight is nice, not too heavy, but not watered down either. I had this while eating some bittersweet Ghirardelli, and the pairing was perfect.

Proximity to Traditional Styles: The looks say "olde-style brown", but the aroma and taste say "American Brown/Entire Butt".

Overall: Giggity-giggity-goo. I have no complaints, other than that my glass is empty. I'm going to try the next bottle up against Dogfish Head's version, because it really does remind me of it. The fruitiness along with the caramel and roasty notes...in my opinion, it's like a cross between an American Brown and an Entire Butt Porter. I want your recipe.

Thanks again, Bird. More reviews to follow...

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MOSS HOLLOW BREWING CO.
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.planned:
•Scottish 80/- •Sweet Stout •Roggenbier
.primary | bright:
98: Moss Hollow Soured '09 72: Oude Kriek 99: B-Weisse 102: Brett'd BDSA 104: Feat of Strength Helles Bock 105: Merkin Brown
.on tap | kegged:
XX: Moss Hollow Springs Sparkling Water 95: Gott Mit Uns German Pils 91b: Brown Willie's Oaked Abbey Ale 103: Merkin Stout
98: Yorkshire Special 100: Maple Porter 89: Cidre Saison 101: Steffiweizen '09 (#3)
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Old 03-30-2007, 01:20 PM   #10
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Regarding Pale as Bone, it is on the low end of bitterness for an APA, by design. I think it's around 30 - 35 IBUs. The OG came in a lot higher than I was expecting, so it's BU:GU ratio is a little low for the style. Hops are Northern Brewer and Cascade, 50/50 split, same as Walker's IPA (since that's such a damn good beer).

I can't remember if I used any wheat or not, but I'm disappointed in the head retention. If I did use any, it was only a half-pound; I might bump that up a little bit more next time.

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