Friday, October 22, 2010

Boulevard Imperial Stout, Smokestack Series

Nice presentation, numbered bottle. Cork took a wine opener to pop. Once it popped off the brew poured forth a solid black river. Deep black, even the edges didn't lighten up. Dense, tan head that foamed at a slow rate, it built up over 12 seconds after pour. 
Good coffee and toffee smell. Not overpowering, but constant and thorough. A hint of cocoa is present as it warms. I can smell the dryness.

Taste seems to come out big, but settle down to a nice balance of coffee, cocoa, and molasses. A sharp bite grips the middle of the tongue, yet finishes smooth. Flavor tends to start to sour towards the end, but then calm down with subtle complexity.

Overall, this beer is very nice. Rivals the Abyss, and like the Abyss a big bottle is too much for one person. Not a bad thing, but just know this ahead of time.

Beer and Food pairing online aid

A nice website from GreatBrewers. Select the main ingredient, then the dish, and Poof! the suggested beer pairings are listed.

Port Brewing/Pizza Port, Hot Rocks lager

This one borders on being a schwarzbier in my mind, but it's not quite as dark and the hop tones just aren't there. The way it's brewed is interesting; dropping hot rocks into the wort to produce a boil. The old method....

Pours a dark ruby/chestnut color with a small layer of off-white foamy head. A bit sticky in the lacing as it drank.

Aroma is sweet, a bit smoky, and anise-like. Caramel seems to provide a the backbone, slightly smoked. Anise and/or almond comes and goes.

Flavor isn't bad, just not very noticeable. I think if I had paired this with some Mexican dishes, slightly spiced, the flavor may have popped more. As it is, it's soft. Caramel, anise or root beer-like center...soft. Smoke comes in a bit and the caramel finishes it off. Slight earthy spice.

Thin mouthfeel. Or perhaps it's just so smooth. Again, should have paired it. Makes it quite drinkable. Nothing bad here.