Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Weyerbacher 21st Anniversary


3.4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20ChadPolenz (1678) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 30, 2016


2015 BJCP Category: 33B Specialty Wood-Aged Beer (base style: 20C Imperial Stout)

AROMA: Prominent bourbon spirit and barrel aroma. Light chocolate/vanilla. Sour grape. 10/12

APPEARANCE: Cola-like opaque dark brown. Dark tan foam quickly evaporates. Fine carbonation visible. 1/3

FLAVOR: Sweet bourbon flavor throughout. Vanilla and cocoa emerge at the apex but are background notes. Fairly strong palette of dark fruit with slight cherry cola flavor. Not much roasted malt or hops. Treacle or toffee sensation on the finish. Alcohol is strong, but not overpowering. Sweet, but not cloying. 15/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-full bodied. Mouthfeel seems a bit thin and too highly carbonated. Alcohol is warm, but not phenolic or burning. Aftertaste is quite clean. 3/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: A beer of this size and stature should be amazing, but this is merely good. 7/10

TOTAL SCORE: 34/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Brewpub review: Ten10 Brewing (Orlando, FL)

Where I live is a bit of wasteland when it comes to culinary culture, so it’s nice to journey up to Orlando once in a while and check out the best beer and food locations. Ten 10 Brewing in the Mills 50 area of had been on my list of “Must-Try” breweries for quite a while. I’ve heard nothing but good things, so I finally got to stop by on Sunday and check it out. While it wasn’t mind-blowingly amazing, it was definitely one of the better craft beer destinations I’ve been to in Central Florida thus far.

Ten10 Brewing 001

The atmosphere is very modern. Everything looks brand spankin’ new, which is nice because it has a clean, sleek look. There’s an L-shaped bar (~18 seats) in the center of the facility with the brewhouse to the right and a dining room (~25-30 seats) to the left. There are only a couple of TVs on one end of the bar, but no pool tables or darts or other typical bar games probably due to the lack of space. That’s fine though, because while the taproom may be small, it never feels cramped.
Ten10 Brewing 004
Ten10 Brewing 003
As for the beer, the menu is rather extensive – about 15 brews on tap with one guest tap. Pints are $6, half pints are $3, or you can get a flight of four 5oz pours for $8. The prices for full and half pours are quite reasonable, as some brewery taprooms charge upwards of $10 for a full pour of their heaviest beer. That flight price is a bit steep, though. If you wanted to sample the entire menu you’d have to spend $32! I like taprooms that will give you more samples in smaller sizes (i.e. six 3oz pours or five 4oz pours). My friend Maggie and I decided to sample half the menu, so we ordered a flight of four before we ate and then ordered another flight when we were done. I have to say I was quite satisfied with the quality across the board. Some brews were totally to-spec for their styles, while others were somewhat experimental but didn’t go overboard. Here’s the rundown:

Ten10 Brewing 015Havakow (5.5% ABV, 15 IBUs): A classic, by-the-book milk stout. Sweet with a lovely chocolate finish but not cloying at all. Great dessert brew. RATING: 4.25/5.

Ivanhoe’s Mango IPA (7% ABV, 60 IBUs): I’m really over the whole fruit-infused IPA trend, but this one was actually pretty good. The mango seemed totally authentic in both the aroma and flavor; there was a juicy quality to the brew, though it was still plenty hoppy. I love it when microbreweries pull off a recipe like this. RATING: 4/5.

Ten10 Brewing 014Black Bombers In the Night (5% ABV, 15 IBUs): You don’t see too many small breweries making black lagers (a.k.a. Schwarzbier). This one was pretty good; mild on the first half but finished with a nice roasted malt flavor. RATING: 3.5/5.

White Ryno (5.5% ABV, 15 IBUs): A Belgian witbier with coriander and citrus flavors. It didn’t say on the menu, but it seemed to have lemon, lime and orange peels. Body was rather thin considering the ABV. Not bad, but could’ve been better. RATING: 3.5/5.

Ten10 Brewing 013Chronically Mismanaged (6% ABV, 40 IBUs): My favorite beer of the flight. A hoppy red ale made with espresso. The dank resiny hops matched with the bitterness and coffee flavor perfectly. This is a versatile brew: a pint would pair great with savory food or with dessert. RATING: 4.25/5.

East West IPA (7% ABV, 60 IBUs): A classic East Coast-style IPA (which seem to be a rarity these days). Huge pine and resin notes, a little green tea from the Centennial hops and a sweet caramel finish. RATING: 4/5.

Ten10 Brewing 012Cosmic Corsair (6.6% ABV, 60 IBUs): Described as a Belgian pale ale dry hopped with Galaxy and Cascade hops. I could smell and taste the Belgian esters which were nice, but I thought the use of American hops actually clashed with the base brew. Not that it was bad, and I definitely appreciate the originality. RATING: 3.25/5.

Dinky Line Project (4.5% ABV, 13 IBUs): A great sessionable saison. Plenty of banana aroma and flavor along with a honey or mead-like taste on the finish. I’d recommend getting a growler of this for summertime refreshment at home. RATING: 4/5.

The food menu is a bit on the simple side: sandwiches, personal pizzas, and a few starters. There’s nothing in the way of gourmet entrees, burgers, salads, or desserts. That’s okay, because everything is moderately-priced; pretty much everything on the menu is $8 and the most expensive item is only $9! My friend Maggie and I headed here for dinner, so we got a soft pretzel ($4) with beer cheese ($2) to start. The pretzel is made with beer grain and it definitely has a genuine bready flavor. The beer cheese was nice; mild but very creamy. I ordered the Cheezy Buffalo Chicken Melt ($8) which is essentially pulled chicken with buffalo sauce. It wasn’t quite as spicy as I was hoping. I will say it was plenty flavorful and enjoyable, though. I liked the roll, too. Maggie opted for the “D.H.W.V” (don’t ask me what that stands for). It was kind of like a Cuban, but with roast beef and chicken. She liked it. Both of our sandwiches came with tortilla chips and salsa. The chips were good, but we dipped them in the leftover beer cheese since the salsa seemed like a very mild supermarket brand.
All in all I would have to say Ten 10 Brewing was a satisfying experience, and I can see why it gets the good reviews that it does. I would definitely like to come back and try the rest of the beer menu since what I had was so good I’d like to see what their other styles are like. I also liked that it was so economical – dinner for two was only $38. The same experience at other places tends to be closer to $50.

Ten10 Brewing 008

One piece of advice if you go to Ten 10: bring a sweatshirt or a jacket – the air conditioning blows very hard and it’s very cold. It’s like a server room in here!

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Stone 20th Anniversary Citracado IPA


4.4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20ChadPolenz (1677) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 27, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 22A Double IPA

AROMA: Strong citrus/tropical fruit juice nose. Slightly grassy. Some clean malty sweetness may be found in the background. 10/12

APPEARANCE: Dark copper/orange hue. Mostly clear with CO2 bubbles constantly visible. Moderate amount of off-white foam laces well. 2/3

FLAVOR: Strong hop presence from beginning to end. Flavor is akin to tropical fruit juice rather than citrus pith. Some grassy/resiny flavors emerge on the finish. Hefty malt base imparts honey/amber malt sweetness and matches the intense dank bitterness. Alcohol is present, but not distracting. 18/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-full bodied. Well carbonated but not crisp; no syrupy texture,either. Hops linger but are not astringent. Alcohol warmth is gentle. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: A DIPA from Stone that’s exactly to spec and tastes and drinks great? Gee, what a shocker ;) 9/10

TOTAL SCORE: 44/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Innis & Gunn Original (2016 re-review)


3.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20ChadPolenz (1676) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 25, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 33A Wood-Aged Beer (base style: 14C Scottish Export)

AROMA: Sweet butterscotch candy; some light apple character. Wood is faint. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Rusty brownish/orange; mostly clear. Small, tan foam mostly dissipates. 1/3

FLAVOR: Red apple flavor, but not cider-tasting per se. Mild toffee and butterscotch notes, with a strong sensation at the finish. Wood character is faint and imparts minor earthy flavor. Some butter in the aftertaste. Almost not hop presence. Not bad, but not much of a palette to latch onto. 12/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-low body and CO2. Feels flat and a little slick. No alcohol presence. 3/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Has the basic elements of the style, but is in no way superior because it’s oak aged. 6/10

TOTAL SCORE: 31/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Saltwater Screamin' Reels IPA


4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20ChadPolenz (1676) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 24, 2016

2015 BJCP Category: 21A American IPA
AROMA: Tropical/citrus fruit plus strong grass or spice rack notes. 10/12

APPEARANCE: Hazy shade of tarnished amber. Large white froth retains and laces well. 3/3

FLAVOR: Strong hop flavor throughout. Tropical fruits at first with a spicy/grassy/zesty sensation as it finishes. Slight onion or garlic in the aftertaste. Malt backbone is pale/amber flavor and a touch of biscuit. Slight vanilla flavor lurks in the background, though the beer is not sweet per se. 17/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium+ body and matching CO2 level. Smooth and soft, yet crisp. Alcohol is subtle. Slightly grassy/starchy in the aftertaste. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Reminiscent of a NEIPA with tropical fruits and herbal/grassy flavors. Hits all the right marks for the style. 9/10

TOTAL SCORE: 43/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Petrus Oud Bruin


3.6
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20ChadPolenz (1675) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 23, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 23C Oud Bruin

AROMA: Moderate sourness in nose with nature cherry-like scent. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Beautiful mahogany hue; mostly clear. Fairly large, light tan foam laces well. 3/3

FLAVOR: Malt-centric palette though sourness is a major flavor component. General amber/dark malt taste, though none stand out individually. Slight cherry note as it finishes. Faint peppery hop character, otherwise mild. 13/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-light body; low CO2. Slightly flat sensation though very smooth. Tart finish is pleasant, but it fades away quickly and cleanly. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: A well-made brew albeit a bit boring. 7/10

TOTAL SCORE: 36/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Terrapin All American Oat Pale Ale


4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20ChadPolenz (1674) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 22, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 18B American Pale Ale

AROMA: Hop forward nose of tropical and citrus fruits plus slight grassy notes. Low pale/amber malt presence. 10/12

APPEARANCE: Clear shade of amber/pale orange. CO2 streams steadily. Average white foam with good lacing. 3/3

FLAVOR: Hop-forward in terms of flavor rather than bitterness. Tropical and citrus fruits up front followed by herbal/grassy taste on the back end. Oats may impart slight sweetness; otherwise malt backbone is firm and unobtrusive. 17/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-light body; quite crisp. Smooth and quaffable. Minor lingering grassy hop sensation is easily tolerable. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: One of the few APAs that really stands out as such. Well-balanced, highly drinkable, and quite tasty overall. 9/10

TOTAL SCORE: 43/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Innis & Gunn Toasted Oak IPA


3.1
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20ChadPolenz (1673) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 21, 2016


2015 BJCP Category: 33A Wood-Aged Beer (base style: 12C English IPA)

AROMA: Light citrus orange scent. Some vanilla/wood character. 7/12

APPEARANCE: Hazy shade of orange. Small white foam mostly dissipates. 1/3

FLAVOR: Orangepeel is the predominant flavor, though actual bitterness is low. Lightly sweet amber malt base is present throughout. Fairly assertive toffee flavor right as it finishes imparts a nice sweetness. Oak character is mild. 13/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-light body; consistently crisp. Finishes dry with a little astringency. Otherwise smooth and quaffable. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: This is more of an amber or pale ale than an EIPA. Not much wood character, either. Still, it’s enjoyable for it is. 6/10

TOTAL SCORE: 31/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Petrus 50/50


3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20ChadPolenz (1672) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 20, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 28C Wild Specialty Beer (base styles: 25A & 23C)

AROMA: Prominent sour nose; though not acrid. Cherry seltzer-like scent. Slight resemblance of red wine. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Mostly clear blush/magenta hue. CO2 visible. Small off-white foam mostly fizzles away. 2/3

FLAVOR: Strong sourness immediately. Tart and dry throughout the first half. Cherry flavor doesn’t emerge until the finish and has a sweet, authentic taste akin to maraschino cherry. Leaves a clean, dry aftertaste. Overall palette is enjoyable, but there’s no discernible wood character nor hops nor malts. 15/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-light body; moderate carbonation but always crisp. Alcohol is virtually non-existent. Difficult to take more than a sip at a time, though. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Not quite as good as either of the brews used in the blend, but a fun and enjoyable beer nevertheless. 8/10

TOTAL SCORE: 38/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Friday, August 19, 2016

PBR Pabst Blue Ribbon (2016 re-re-review)


3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20ChadPolenz (1671) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 19, 2016


2015 BJCP Category: 1B American Lager

AROMA: Sweet flaked maize and blonde grain. Light DMS. Generic macro lager scent is tolerable. 8/12

APPEARANCE: Clear golden color; effervescent. Large white foam mostly dissipates. 2/3

FLAVOR: Slightly sweet corn-forward palette akin to Corn Flakes or similar cereal. Light pale malt presence. No discernible hops. Slight metallic flavor at the finish; otherwise dry with a clean fermentation. No acetaldehyde. 15/20

MOUTHFEEL: Light+ body; consistently crisp. Refreshing and quaffable. Almost no aftertaste. 5/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: It’s on point for the style. Though not an amazing beer, it’s surprisingly not bad for an adjunct macro lager. 8/10

TOTAL SCORE: 37/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Carton Epitome


3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20ChadPolenz (1671) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 18, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 21B Specialty IPA - Black IPA

AROMA: Huge grapefruit hop aroma. Almost a sweet, bubblegum or juicy aroma as well. Unfortunately, no malt, roast, or chocolate notes. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Opaque dark brown/black. Moderate tan foam retains and laces fairly well. 2/3

FLAVOR: Grapefruit and citrus flavors throughout. Some dank resiny notes at the apex. Hop-forward for sure, but bitterness seems lower than 100 IBUs. Malty presence, but no chocolate/coffee/roasty notes. 15/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium+ body; relatively low CO2 with a creamy texture. Alcohol is well masked and imparts only minimal flavor and warmth. Lingering resiny aftertaste. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: I enjoy the taste a lot but wish there was more black in this Black IPA. Drinkability is impressive. 8/10

TOTAL SCORE: 38/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Devils Backbone Schwartz Bier


2.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20ChadPolenz (1670) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 17, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 8B Schwarzbier

AROMA: Dark roasty malt; slight coffee notes. Clean yeast character. 10/12

APPEARANCE: Dark brown with ruby highlights. Mostly clear, visible steady CO2. Average tan foam. 2/3

FLAVOR: Moderate dark malt flavor, though not especially sweet. Dry bitterness throughout; slight burnt toast flavor. A bit of a musty background note. Husky grain flavor with astringent aftertaste. 11/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium light body; moderate to low CO2. Smooth, but not refreshing. 3/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Unimpressive, below average black lager. Probably an old bottle. 4/10

TOTAL SCORE: 28/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Grayton Redneck Rye-Viera (2014 vintage)

3.6
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
ChadPolenz (1669) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 16, 2016
2015 BJCP Category: 21B Specialty IPA - Rye IPA

AROMA: Sweet butterscotch (oxidation) and piney/resiny hops. Plenty of malty presence as well. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Murky rusty orange/brown; some sediment and CO2 visible. Small, tan froth but nice lacing. 1/3

FLAVOR: Sweet butterscotch and toffee confectionery notes with minor sherry background note (oxidized). Strong amber malt presence with a vanilla finish. Rye imparts a bready sensation; not much actual spice (just a minor bite on the finish). Hop bitterness and flavor is low. 15/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium/full body; low carbonation. Thick, soft, smooth mouthfeel - yet finishes clean so as to not seem sticky or syrupy. Alcohol presence is gentle and supportive. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Age of bottle has effectively turned it into a barleywine, but it works as such. I’m sure a fresh bottle would work well as an IPA, though. 7/10

TOTAL SCORE: 36/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Innis & Gunn Irish Whiskey Aged


3.6
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20ChadPolenz (1668) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 15, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 33A Wood-Aged Beer (base style: 16C Tropical Stout)

AROMA: Sweet dark malt and fruits; whiskey note in the background. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Dark brown to black; fairly clear with no highlights. Small, tan, soapy head mostly evaporates. 1/3

FLAVOR: Quite sweet with smooth dark grain flavors and restrained bitterness. Some cola-like taste and sweetness. Slightly chocolaty. Whiskey-soaked oak chips impart only faint flavor and mostly on the end. Some toffee notes as well. No hop presence. 16/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium bodied with low carbonation and watery texture. Very smooth with clean aftertaste; no alcohol presence. 3/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: As a stout it’s pretty good, but the wood aging doesn’t do much for it. Sweet for a stout (but not cloying). 7/10

TOTAL SCORE: 36/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Milwaukee Brewing O-Gii Imperial Wit


3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20ChadPolenz (1667) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 14, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 30A Spice/Herb/Vegetable (base style: 24A Witbier)

AROMA: Light chamomile tea notes; slight orange juice. Floral scent. Nose is mild. 8/12

APPEARANCE: Apricot pale orange/amber hue. Very cloudy body though no visible sediment. Small, white foam. 2/3

FLAVOR: Strong honey flavor throughout which is boosted by alcoholic presence. General orange/coriander/tea flavor combination. Some vanilla essence at the end. Has a flavor of cinnamon-dusted cookies, too. Sweet but not cloying. Spice could use a boost. 17/20

MOUTHFEEL: Thick, full-bodied mouthfeel. Not syrupy as it finishes surprisingly clean. Alcohol does play a major role in the palette and body; warm throughout but tolerable. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Very interesting and delectable palette. A bit boozy, but quite drinkable. Not very reminiscent of a witbier, though. 8/10

TOTAL SCORE: 39/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Carton/Green Flash/Alpine Ron's Steam Bock Haircut


3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20ChadPolenz (1666) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 13, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 34C Experimental Beer (base style: 4C Helles Bock)

AROMA: Amber malt sweetness; fairly prominent New World hop aroma (citrus, pine). Clean fermentation profile. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Burnt umber hue; slightly hazy; no visible CO2. Large tan foam, decent lacing. 2/3

FLAVOR: Pretty strong malty sweetness throughout. Confectionery notes of caramel and toffee are moderately strong. Hops are low with minor piney/earthy notes. Tasty and well balanced. (NOTE: BJCP doesn’t recognize Maibock as its own style and lumps it in with Helles Bock. This is an Americanized Maibock due it being brewed with American hops and yeast and is best judged as an experimental brew.) 15/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium body and CO2. Neither crisp nor chewy. Smooth and soft texture and mostly clean finish. Little alcohol presence. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: An interesting take on the Maibock style. Sweet, but not too sweet. Hoppy but not too hoppy. Nice all around. 8/10

TOTAL SCORE: 38/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Forbes uses TWO of my beer photos without my permission (updated)

Gonna cut right to the chase here, folks. Forbes, the financial magazines and website, used two photographs of mine in this ridiculous listicle "The 13 Best Craft Beers in America" by Karla Alindahao.

Screen capture of their website:

forbes
And here's the same photograph that's been sitting on my website for just about three years now. Notice any similarities?

mine
And here's another:

forbes2
And my original:

mine2

I thought my photos on their site might've just been embedded from my site, but if you right-click on either of them you'll see that the photos have been uploaded to Forbes.com:
http://www3.forbes.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/3-Mastermind-Fiddlehead.jpg
http://www3.forbes.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/9-Lunch-Maine-Beer-Company.jpg.

I'm flattered that a company like Forbes would consider my photos good enough to use among their content. I'm not a professional shutterbug, so it's odd they'd use amateur material like mine. In fact, if you do a Google image search for Maine Beer Lunch you'll see some pictures that look way more professional than mine. Though looking through the listicle, the photos range in quality from very obviously professional to some-schmuck-with-a-smartphone.

I know Forbes uses the photos and graphics they do to make their content more appealing and nice to look at. Good content = more traffic = more ad revenue. They're an online magazine, so they make money off clicks (I do too, but it's mostly a pittance). So if my photos are helping them to generate revenue, aren't I entitled to a cut of that?

The irony is, if Forbes had just asked if they could use my photos I probably would've said yes (on the condition they credit me, of course). And I'm not accusing them of theft since they don't seem to be outright claiming these photos are their original content, and also because it's impossible to steal intellectual property, anyway. They just used it inappropriately.

Looking over this listicle, it appears they didn't credit any of the photographs. That's just unprofessional editorial direction. I don't entirely blame the writer Kayla Alindahao, either. I messaged her on Twitter and she seem shocked to find out that this had happened. She is bringing this to the attention of her editors, so hopefully they'll contact me soon. In the meantime, I can't help but wonder if how many of the other photos in this listicle were pilfered without permission and if their creators are looking for credit.

And to those of you who actually read this listicle - I agree, it is an absurd list since the majority of the entries are from Vermont and the New England states. Lost Nation Gose #1?!  You gotta be kidding me.

UPDATE 8/19/2016
Forbes has responded:
We have looked into the situation and it appears that the photos in question were used in Karla Alindahao's craft beer story by mistake. (She was not responsible for their use.) As soon as you made us aware of the error, the photos were removed.

I am very sorry for the error and appreciate that you brought it to our attention.

If you have any more questions or concerns about this please feel free to contact me. I will be back in the office next week.

Sincerely,

Michael Solomon
Editor
ForbesLife
 
Uh huh. "By mistake," right.
How do pictures just get magically uploaded to a website without any editorial oversight whatsoever? I guess Harry, Ron and Hermione are of drinking age now and this was their idea of a prank.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Sun King Osiris Pale Ale


3.1
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20ChadPolenz (1665) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 10, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 18B American Pale Ale

AROMA: Light piney hops; some amber malt notes but no specific character. 7/12

APPEARANCE: Dark amber/orange proper. Fairly hazy but plenty of CO2 visible. Moderate white foam mostly dissipates. 2/3

FLAVOR: Piney hops throughout, but low on the bitterness. Low to moderate clean grainy-malt character provides balance but is not especially sweet. No off flavors, but palette is a little boring as it’s rather mild. 12/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-light body with medium-high carbonation. Crisp, but not refreshing per se. Slightly dry aftertaste. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Nothing wrong with this beer other than being mild and kind of boring. Drinkability is nice at least. 6/10

TOTAL SCORE: 31/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

AleWerks Bitter Valentine Double IPA


4.6
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20ChadPolenz (1664) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 9, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 22A Double IPA

AROMA: Strong orange aroma, some alcohol. Some clean malty sweetness in the background. 10/12

APPEARANCE: Flame orange hue, hazy body, visible sediment and CO2. Moderate off white froth leaves great lacing. 3/3

FLAVOR: Orange flavor akin to sweet peel rather than bitter peel. Some sherbet or candy-like flavors. Bitterness is strong and dank, but not syrupy or resiny. There is a firm malty backbone, but it is not especially sweet. Alcohol is subtle. Well balanced. 17/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-full body. Too thick to be crisp, but too carbonated to be syrupy. Alcohol warmth is minor and complements the palette. Very smooth and surprisingly quaffable (not a sipper). 5/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: An excellent overlooked DIPA. Kind of an orange bomb, but tasty, well balanced, and highly drinkable nevertheless. 9/10

TOTAL SCORE: 45/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.

Monday, August 8, 2016

Green Flash Sea to Sea Lager


3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20ChadPolenz (1663) - Lakeland, Florida, USA - AUG 8, 2016

 
2015 BJCP Category: 7C Pale Kellerbier

AROMA: Clean malty scent; some lemon zest. Mild, but nice. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Mostly clear shade of white gold. Highly carbonated. White foamy head mostly dissipates. 2/3

FLAVOR: Grainy sweet malt up front; nice spicy bite at the apex. Finishes with more malt. Slight starchy background note. Some DMS imparts a corny flavor (not a flaw - part of the palette). No obvious diacetyl. 15/20

MOUTHFEEL: Only 4% but body is closer to medium than light. Consistently crisp and smooth. Refreshing, but slightly dry aftertaste. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: Impressive that an American brewery can make a niche Euro lager style to spec and on such a large scale. 8/10

TOTAL SCORE: 38/50

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a certified BJCP judge; therefore, this score sheet is not necessarily indicative of proper BJCP judging techniques and protocol. The author is grading to 2015 BJCP Guidelines in order to prepare for examination.