First off, Happy Mother’s day to all the moms out there who enjoy this blog, especially my own! Here is a photo of her and Riggo enjoying some time on the couch. I have no idea what kind of person I would be had I not been raised by such an awesome mother!
I also want to wish a very Happy Birthday to Paul Harrill. I have no idea how old he turned today, but he and I have coached basketball together for the last few years. He’s a good coach and a good friend.
As I just finished watching the Yardcocks blow the series against UK I had to make a move away from beer over to my old friend Jack Daniels. Fortunately though, we finished up our latest mix pack and have an initial blog post for you today! The last mix pack reviews had some solid brews in it, including the new Pick Six beer champion Fatty’s First Shot IPA. This mix pack I think is, at this point, close to the best overall selection we have made (thanks Doug for helping), but do any of the beers knock the champ off after a week?
First up, we have Highland Brewing Early’s Hoppy Wheat Ale. Now, this is the second time we have reviewed Highland as the Saw-Whet Saison can be found here. This beer comes in at a solid 5% ABV and markets itself as a beer one that people who enjoy the hoppy stuff and people who like the lighter stuff can both enjoy. You can see in the picture the nice lacing it leaves, but the head disappeared pretty quickly. It has a citrusy smell and you can taste the hops. It’s a little too acidic which brings the flavor down. Overall, it’s a pretty decent beer and I like what they were trying to do.
Up next is Harpoon’s Camp Wannamango. As a kid, I loved the show Salute your Shorts so I certainly appreciate the nod to Camp Anawanna. As an adult, I love mango. I love it off a plate and I love it in a smoothie. The question is would I love it in a beer? The answer is YES. This is a fun, tasty summer beer. Kendall and I worked in the yard yesterday and I found myself wishing I had saved it so I could drink it when we finished. The head disappears quickly, but you can smell the mango in it and that prepares your taste buds for a pop. It’s a little bitter at first but it fades away into a tropical sweetness that was very enjoyable. There was something about it that left a little to be desired, but I can’t quite put my finger on what that was. Recommendation: put it in the cooler as it’s going to be a hot summer.
Southbound Brewing Scattered Sun came out of the mix pack next. This is a Belgian Wit and a refreshing one at that. At this point during the day yesterday, Kendall was doing her best Spider-Man climbing trees to kill a weed that came into our backyard from behind our house. I drank it from the can so I can’t speak to appearance, but it has a lemon flavor that you can immediately detect. Tart is probably the best word I have to describe this one. It finishes a little too acidic but overall this is a good beer.
To finish off today’s post we have the beer that made me both nervous and excited to try. My first foray into the dark side, Founder’s Porter. I want to go ahead and put it out there that I am going to rate this again as the weather gets colder. I’m very temperature oriented with everything….right now my coffee is iced and I like my beer cold. All that being said, this, as Doug told me at Vino Garage, is the place to start when getting into dark beer. Chocolate and coffee are the two things I smelled. It’s very smooth and is not carbonated. The solid black color had me a little intimidated after I first poured it, but it finishes silky. As my buddy Stuart alluded to on Untappd, porters and stouts can be tough to drink when it’s hot. It’s hot, but this one was still pretty easy to drink. I am going to like this more in November and December than I did today and look forward to revisiting it then, but as far as it goes right now, I think mother nature is costing it part of a star.
—Editor’s note: the more I think about this, the more I think this beer is worthy of that fourth star.
That’s it for today. Kendall will be back tomorrow to rate the Two Hearted Ale and the One Claw. I’ll also be stopping by the Vino Garage to pick up a new mix pack and we’ll tell you what’s in it then. This week’s song of the week is Burning Love by Elvis for the very simple reason of its awesomeness. There is a version of this song with the Royal Philharmonic that is simply majestic.