Posts tagged ‘dark’

Laughing Dog Brewery: The Dogfather

Here’s another beer I purchased (well, okay, the boyfriend bought this one) just because of the name–but it turned out to be quite the beer!

Laughing Dog is a microbrewery based in Idaho. It’s a new state for this blog! I must say I’m impressed. I’ll have to try to find some more beers from this brewery.

Yes that IS in a plastic cup. I was in a hotel and four of us were sharing, what do you want? Anyway, The Dogfather is a lovely Imperial Stout, and it was quite good. It has a smokey, chocolatey aroma, and is thick and creamy. It has a smokey/chocolatey taste with a hint of bitterness.

While this isn’t the best beer for the gorgeous May weather we were having, it’s still an excellent choice.

Try this if you like: Leinenkugel’s Big Eddy Imperial Stout

4 stars


Dark Horse Brewery: Scotty Karate

Yes, we’ve turned away from New York beers and on to Michigan beers. Today’s selection is from the Dark Horse Brewery in Marshall, MI: Scotty Karate, an excellent Scotch ale.

This beer was so good I almost forgot to take a picture until it was nearly gone. My friend Paul claimed this to be the second-best Scotch ale he’s ever had. I don’t remember what he said was the first. But anyway…Scotty Karate is a traditional Scottish ale. It’s got a caramel aroma and a caramel/smoky/malty taste. It has a mildly rich mouthfeel. The taste will linger on your tongue. Scotty Karate was also mildly effervescent–a nice counter to the richness of the beer.

Try this if you like: Bell’s Christmas Ale, Duke of Winship, Twisted Kilt Scottish ale

5 Stars

Bell’s Brewery: Batch 9000

The best part about being a beer snob is when you have friends who are too.¬† Thanks to Jenn and Paul, I got to try two excellent selections. The first is from Bell’s Brewery: an American strong ale called Batch 9000.

That lovely dark color and good head is just the first indication that this is going to be a good beer. Served in a goblet, the aroma of molasses nicely sits just above the head in the glass. On first taste, you’ll be surprised that it doesn’t taste as heavy as it looks. It’s not a beer you’d want to have four of in a row, but a bottle won’t make you feel tired. The flavor is molasses and a hint of chocolate, with a fruitier sweetness, probably from the raisins and plums used in the brewing. The bottle also claims that there is licorice flavor, but I didn’t taste any. (Which was fine. I hate licorice.)

All in all, this was an excellent beer. Unfortunately it’s limited release and not available anymore…but maybe you can find a friend who’s got some they are willing to share.

Try this if you like: Bell’s 25th Anniversary Beer, Sam Adam’s Utopias, Great Lakes Nosferatu.

5 Stars

Heartland Brewery Part 4

The last post in the Heartland Brewery series will be about one of their seasonal brews: Not Tonight Honey Porter. Apologies for the picture quality–I lost my original picture.

Admittedly I ordered this beer for the name, but that hasn’t led me astray before, and it didn’t this time either. This was a rich, smooth, malty beer with a light honey/chocolate aroma. It was dark ebony, but don’t let that fool you: this is a porter, so it is quite a bit lighter than a stout of the same flavor profile. When tasting it I got hints of molasses, honey, and chocolate. This beer is a seasonal, so it’s only available January-April.

Try this if you like: Sierra Nevada Porter, Boulder Old Chicago Black Diamond Chocolate Porter

4 stars

Heartland Brewery Part 3

Today’s selections from the Heartland Brewery are their Indiana Pale Ale and Farmer Jon’s Oatmeal Stout. This will be the second-to-last post in the Heartland Brewery series.

The Indiana Pale Ale was a very typical IPA. It was clear, crisp, dry, and hoppy. It’s everything you would want from an IPA. That said, it doesn’t have any “extras” to it that would make it more than just an IPA. You can get the same taste from just about any brewery that makes good IPAs. Goose Island’s and Sierra Nevada’s come to mind.

Try this if you like: IPAs in general

Next up is the Farmer Jon’s Oatmeal Stout. Sadly, the Heartland Brewery claims that it is similar to Guinness. Now, there’s nothing wrong with American Guinness but there are MANY better oatmeal stouts out there. New Glarus makes an excellent one. This beer was far too flavorful for it to be like American Guinness. (Why do I keep saying “American?” Because Guinness is MUCH better in Ireland.)

This was a dark, almost black, opaque stout. It had an oatmeal/malty aroma, and a smooth, malty taste with hints of espresso. If you like coffee stouts but find them a bit too strong for you, this is the beer for you. The espresso was just enough to balance out the oatmeal. No one flavor was overpowering.

Try this if you like: New Glarus Road Slush, New Glarus Coffee Stout, or other oatmeal/coffee stouts.

4 stars

Boulder Beer Company: Old Chicago Black Diamond Chocolate Porter

Whew—that’s a mouthful! The Boulder Beer Company in Colorado makes this lovely chocolate porter. I believe this was made specifically for Old Chicago, because I can’t find it on their website. Oh well.

Chocolate Porter

It pours beautifully with this dark ruby color, and there’s chocolate all around; from the first scent to the aftertaste. Don’t let the darkness fool you–it’s light, as one might expect from a porter. The initial taste of chocolate then gives way to malt and then hops.

OCBDCP was a pretty decent chocolate porter, but as far as chocolate beers go, there are far better ones.

I’d recommend another chocolate porter to try, but I haven’t personally had any that I can remember clearly, so I’ll leave you to google Chocolate Porters and find one in your area. For those of us in New York, Horsehead Brewery does make one.

Heavy Seas: Siren Noire


Imagine the thickest, creamiest, most chocolatey hot chocolate you can. Now imagine it cold, and add hops and alcohol. If that sounds great, then you will love today’s review.

Siren Noire is an Imperial Chocolate Stout by the Heavy Seas Brewery in Baltimore, MD. I like pirates and (as you saw with the Hobgoblin review) fantasy creatures, so this beer is a definite win.

Siren NoireJust look at the gorgeous head and beautiful color on that! The first thing you notice is the aroma of the beer: pure, dark, chocolate. Once you taste it, then the chocolate hits you even more, and there’s a little hint of coffee as well. The after taste is reminiscent of root beer, which even with all the chocolate isn’t as weird as it might sound. It’s actually quite good.

Though this is an Imperial stout, it’s not as heavy as the typical beer in this category, which could be good or bad. Personally, I liked it even in spite of that.

Good luck finding this great beer though–it’s part of the Mutiny Fleet which had an extremely limited release. If you see it at your local bar, though, definitely give it a try!

Try this if you like: Young’s Double Chocolate Stout

5 Stars