Here we have our first four contestants. The solid yellow was a six-pack of Mad Anthony's Gabby Blonde Lager, of which we had a six-pack in case my other choices were stinkers. This is made right here in Fort Wayne and was a nice, refreshing, light lager with yeast particles enough that you had a nice cloudy beer if you poured the whole thing in a glass. And it was better cloudy. Definitely was the winner of our lot. Not surprising, because unlike "beer connoisseurs" , we don't prefer beers that taste like Barney Miller's coffee with a shot of bourbon and a pinch of allspice thrown in.
The Tyranea was more to that end of the scale. It was a brew called Rocky's Revenge, a brown ale aged in oaken bourbon barrels. Immediately KC was turned off, mainly by an aftertaste that was reminiscent of unsweetened toffee and vanilla- which I didn't think was too bad. KC thought it tasted like straight coffee, to which I replied, "I might not drink coffee, but if I did, I'd want it to taste like this." To which he replied, "True that." As darker beers go, it was pretty good and at 6% alcohol, quite fun as well. But that aftertaste was still faintly in my mouth even the next morning. KC grabbed another Mad Anthony's and promptly dropped it on the floor, giving Scrappy his chance to sample.
The blue Kona cap belonged to their Big Wave Golden Ale. Before I review, let me say something nice about Kona. They are based in Hawaii on the Big Island, but much of their mainland stuff is brewed at the facilities of their partners in the Craft Brewers Alliance, Widmer Brothers and Red Hook.
The review? Should have named it "Big Weed". Tasted like you went out to your garden or flowerbed, found the biggest weed in the plot, and pulled it out with your teeth. The garbage disposal got to enjoy it.
The last one on Saturday's adventure was the HopCity Barking Squirrel, made by a spin-off of Moosehead. This is a 5% amber lager, and once again KC sipped and rejected, turning to the Coors Light he brought. It was a lot like the Rocky's Revenge, but lighter and without the aftertaste. Not repugnant as brown beers go, but I cant imagine it has enough oomph for regular dark beer fans.
And Sunday came round two...
These were all lagers/pilseners, and Scrappy was actually begging for a taste... what a lush!
By the end of things, I thought this was a good idea for the cap picture. Maybe not, upon reflection...
The second Kona was their Longboard lager, which was definitely the pinnacle of day 2. A light, refreshing, drink-all-you-want lager. On the other end, you see one of 2 from Upland brewing of Terre Haute, Indiana. This is actually from a Champagne Velvet, "the million dollar beer" which sold nationally from the early 1900's into the 1950's when it ceased production. Craft brewer Upland acquired the original recipe and began reproducing it in the early 2000's. KC thought it reminiscent of Miller Lite. The final contestant was an oddity called Upland Wheat Ale. A witbier-style pilsener, it has coriander, chamomile, and orange peel, which you don't taste until you swallow, and then it tastes like you had a spice stick in the back of your mouth. I would think this better as a Christmas-season beer. Unusual, but not bad.
After the tasting we adjourned to the Corner Pocket pub, where the night ended with PBR and a shot of duck fart. Scrappy, much to his chagrin, was NOT invited.
(PS: Scrappy got nothing more than scattered sips. If he'd had his way, he'd have gotten a bowlful, but that did not happen.)