************** Warning!! Don't Drink Nickel Brook Gluten Free Ale **************
The above message may be a little extreme, but I believe it needs to be put on every can of this beer. That's how much I didn't like this beer. It's just terrible.
I should have realized what I was getting myself into when I poured this pathetic excuse of a beer. It was the colour of piss, and its head resembled the foam that forms in the toilet during my morning leak. I guess I shouldn't have been surprised that it tasted like piss too.
I only drank this beer because a close friend of mine had recently gone gluten free and he wanted me to try this "great gluten free beer" he recently discovered. All I've got to say is that if this is a good gluten free beer, my friend needs to get back on the gluten!
To be fair to Nickel Brook's Gluten Free ale, I did have one positive experience. Up to this point, I had not given any beer my lowest burp rating (one burp). I was starting to think I was like Homer Simpson doing restaurant reviews. I like everything and I hate nothing. Thanks to this beer I know that's not true.
I really hated this beer. I actually poured it into the bushes instead of finishing it. Now I know what a one burp beer tastes like and this is it.
I recently returned to the old country to visit my closest and dearest friends. While there, I entered the role of plaything with my friends' various children. For days, their daughter wanted to teach me cartwheels. Finally, I relented but only on the condition that she be my "beer girl" during the family BBQ that night. She readily agreed to fetch me beers and dispose of my empties for my participation in cartwheels.
The first beer my five year old server brought me was Creemore Springs Brewery's Hops and Bolts IPL (India pale lager). When I asked her why she selected this one, her response was all little girl "because the can is pretty". Well, I'm glad she selected it because I really enjoyed this India pale ale.
I knew it was going to be good as soon as I poured it. It had a great head which I always like, and it had a very unique color. The color was so unique, I had trouble describing it. Eventually, I asked Violet, my beer girl and she said it was "brorange" which is brownie-orange. You know what? She was bang on with her description.
This beer was really easy to drink. I thought something with such a hoppy flavour and finish would take a while to plow through, but it didn't. I quite enjoyed Hops and Bolts as did my beer girl. When I asked her what she thought of it, she wiped the foam mustache from the top of her lip and gave me a thumbs up. I gave it 4 burps, and I recommend it to anyone who likes a hoppy lager.
Generally speaking, I'm not much of a fan of strong beers. Usually, I find strong beer to be kind of sweet tasting, and once they get a little warm, they become terrible. That's why I was surprised to learn that Muskoka Brewery's Mad Tom IPA was a strong beer. It's pretty decent.
Mad Tom is an unfiltered India pale ale. This means that it's a little cloudy when it hits the glass. With the color of a light orangy brown, it tasted as good as it looked. Mad Tom had a decent hoppy taste that wasn't overpowering.
My guest drinker Violet gave this Canadian IPA five burps. Personally, I think she rated it to high. I thought it was only worth 3 burps. It was a good beer, but it wasn't a damn good beer. Having said that, if you want a strong beer that will hit you before you go to the bar. Give it a try. You'll be able to drink more than one.
Ontario Canada's Muskoka region is a special place. Littered with small lakes, the region is the premier cottage area for the rich and famous from Toronto. I would have thought that a craft brewer with clientele as demanding as rich Torontonians, would have brewed a better product.
I tried Muskoka Brewery's Detour IPA after reading about it online. The brewer describes it as taking a left turn from other IPA's by dry hopping as part of the method. I have no clue what this means. All I know was that I was expecting something different.
Maybe I did get something different, but I didn't think I got anything special. There was no head when poured (boo), and it had a slightly hoppy medium bodied flavour. I enjoyed the beer, but it certainly doesn't stand out. There are plenty of other IPA's I would select over this one.
I expected more from a brewer that has been making beer since 1996. Maybe it's just me, and I kept going straight instead of taking the detour. As a result, Detour IPA only gets three burps.
If you disagree let me know.
With the current craze in craft beers, it looks like anyone and everyone is getting into the craze. To prove my point, Riptide Rye Pale Ale is brewed by two scientists and an engineer from London, Ontario's Forked River Brewery.
What would three nerds know about brewing beer? Apparently, a little something. I was pleasantly surprised by the fellas from Forked River. Their Riptide Ale tasted deliciously like rye which was a nice change from the other pale ales I had been drinking recently. It also had a nice malty flavour in the finish.
When pouring the beer, I noticed that it was slightly cloudy. I figured it was unfiltered but I was surprised to learn that it's not pasteurized too. This was truely a fresh beer! I was disappointed with the lack of head. There just wasn't much to it. I think maybe that's why I didn't rate it higher.
I give this pale ale three burps. I just wished I could have given it more, but the head let me down.
Recently, I was in Ontario, Canada and I wanted to to try as many local beers as I could while I was in this central Canadian province. One of the beers I selected was Collingwood, Ontario's Downhill Pale Ale.
The beer's logo has pine trees beneath a mountain ski slope. It looked very Canadian to me, so I thought, what the hell, let's give this one a taste. You know what? I'm glad I did. Downhill Pale Ale had a great full flavour of malt that leaves a pleasant but bitter aftertaste. It was a cloudy amber brown colour that formed a nice head when poured. The head eventually reduced to a consistent 1/4" thick medium bubbled layer while I consumed the glass.
The Collingwood Brewery which makes this beer is a true craft brewer. They built this small local brewery from the ground up and they are spreading throughout Ontario.
I'm not sure if you can get his beer outside of Ontario, Canada but if you are ever in the province, you have to try this Canadian pale ale. It's pretty damn good, and I give it four burps.
Black Sheep Ale from North Yorkshire, England looked promising from the bottle. Five generations of brewers, Northern English ale, and a kick ass name to boot.
I was looking forward to trying the Black Sheep. I love English beer and their ales in particular. That's why, I left this one in the back of my fridge until it was the last beer. I wanted to build up the anticipation of what a great drinking experience it will be.
Black Sheep Ale certainly met my expectations. It had the distinctive color of many English ales that I love, browny-orange that was slightly cloudy. A nice frothy head formed when I poured it, and the residual head stayed for the length of the glass, leaving a nice film along the glass's inner surface.
It has a nice crisp, fresh taste that leaves a hoppy bitterness which lingers in the back of the mouth as you work through the glass.
If you have the opportunity, I strongly encourage you to try this ale! It's a deliciously classic English ale that makes you think you're in the pub even when your sitting in front of the TV at home. I give this 4 big burps!!
The first time I got drunk was with Labatt Blue. I skipped school and watched the Sylvester Stallone classic Nighthawks while splitting a six pack of this classic Canadian beer with my grade nine classmate. Ever since that day, Blue has held a special place in my heart.
I don't normally order a Blue when out at the pub, but if I'm offered one, I'll always accept. To me, Blue is a default beer. I'll drink it at a wedding if I have to choose between that, Coors Light and Budweiser. You get the idea.
Recently, I was visiting an old friend and he offered me a Blue as soon as I arrived. Naturally I accepted. I haven't had one for a long time, so this was a good opportunity to review it.
When I poured the beer, I noticed that it had mild carbonation that left little residual head. It had a pale gold colour and a slightly bitter taste with little finish. I used to find Blue to be a strong flavoured beer, but not anymore. Now, it's a little boring.
Brewed since 1847, Labatt Blue is one of the strongest beer brands in Canada. It is marketed internationally simply as Labatt. The beer started out as Labatt Pilsner, but switched it's name to Blue in the 1950's because of it's blue labelled nickname.
Labatt Blue is just OK. I really don't know why it's so popular. Marketing hype perhaps. I give it 3 burps. I don't dislike it, and I don't love it. It's just there. Like it always has been, I guess.
I tried Neustadt Springs Brewery's 10W30 for one reason; the name. When I saw this in the liquor store, it just jumped out at me. I figured with a name like that, this had to be one dark beer that would slide down easily. For the most part, it did.
When I poured this premium dark ale, I immediately noticed why it's called 10W30. It had the colour of used motor oil. A nice foamy head formed when I poured it. Unfortunately, it disippated quickly.
Despite it's black intimidating color, 10W30 had a mild malty flavour with hints of caramel. It wasn't nearly as strong tasting as I anticipated it would be.
Brewed by a small family owned Canadian craft brewer, Neustadt 10w30 won the Silver Medal at US Open of Beer in Atlanta, Georgia in 2011.
I definitely enjoyed this beer, however, when I reviewed my notes that it was good but not outstanding. That's why, I give it 3 burps and no more.
One of the best aspects of a good stout is the thick creamy head it gets when poured from the tap, and the recent glass of Murphy's Irish Stout I enjoyed did not disappoint.
When it arrived at my table, the glass had an inch thick light brown creamy head. I couldn't wait to take my first swallow and get a stout moustache. After I got through the tasty head, I could taste its classic stout flavour with hints of caramel and a coffee finish.
After wiping my moustache with a napkin, I looked at this Irish stout's intense color. Initially it looked black, but when held it up to the light, it was more dark brown with reddish overtones.
The creamy head certainly met my expectations. After every swallow along the top half of the glass, I had to wipe my mouth. Even at the halfway point, there was still 1/4" thick head.
Brewed in Cork England by Murphy Brewers, the beer comes with a nitrogen widget in the can to provide a good quality head if you can't get it on tap. Locals consider Murphy's to be craft beer compared to it's national competitor Guinness.
I give this bad boy 4 big burps. I'm not much of a stout man, but when I'm in the mood for one, I'll gladly drink a Murphy's!
Drinking the world.
One beer at a time.