Sunday, September 14, 2014

Beer Review: Sierra Nevada Tumbler

Not billed as an Oktoberfest, but appropriate to the season for sure, Sierra Nevada Tumbler is described an an Autumn Brown Ale. It poured with a thick, three-fingered head, deep brown with reddish highlights in hue. Deep, rich taste, with chocolate and coffee high in the mix. Some sweetness, and a hop presence, but not terribly overwhelming. Hmmm...even some almonds in the taste palate!

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale

I was thinking the other day, after picking up the Sierra Nevada Autumn variety pack, that I often focus on the seasonal and specialty beers and rarely review a brewery's "flagship" offerings. That was precisely the case with Sierra Nevada's Pale Ale. I have had this pale ale on numerous occasions,  but, perhaps due to it's ubiquity, I never saw the need to feature it in Ill-Gotten Booty Beer Reviews. This classic ale pours a deep amber with a fluffy white head. Lightly carbonated, with just the right amount of hops. Both grapefruit and pine notes compete and there are some floral and citrus aromas floating just within reach of the olfactory nerves. This is indeed a classic, and a beer where you truly can't go wrong, as much a cliche that that is. So many beers these days are piling on the hops and flying right past the pale ale right into IPA's, or calling what should be a pale ale an IPA, it's refreshing  to see a good ol' pale ale still as popular as it is...and so delicious!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest

Pours a deep copper color with a thick two-finger head. Aroma of caramel and toffee as the beer is poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass. Bready flavor, mixed with faint roasted chestnut. Not as sweet as a lot of Märzens out there. Like most good Oktoberfests, a great beer to enjoy on a cool Autumn evening.

Leinenkugel's Old fashioned Shandy

Not impressed. That is all

Friday, September 12, 2014

Leinenkugel's Harvest Patch Shandy

Poured dark orange hue with not much of a head, just like the Cranberry Ginger Shandy, but this one has much, much more flavor. It's not a pumpkin ale - at least I haven't seen any mention of pumpkin on their website or in any press releases - but with the cloves, nutmeg and allspice, it tastes like pumpkin pie! Go figure. Highly carbonated, which helps give it a refreshing kick. The spices scream "Autumn!" with every sip.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Sierra Nevada Vienna Lager

Sierra of those breweries with which you can't go wrong. I spotted their Vienna Style Lager in the Fall variety pack. Since I had never heard of the style before, I was curious. According to my research, I found that despite the style is uncommon in Europe these days, but is popular in North America, where it is sometimes referred to as "Pre-Prohibition Style Lager". Sam Adams Boston Lager and Yuengling are all well-known examples of the style. Dos Equis and Negra Modelo are Mexican beers in this style and can trace their origins to Austrian immigrant brewers in the 1800's. Sierra Nevada's version of the style pours a coppery amber, with an off-white head that doesn't get above a finger and a half. It's heavily carbonated, with a sweet, caramel tinged quality. I detect some fresh-baked bread, a little toffee and some unidentified spices. At 5.3% ABV it would be easy to have more than one. Highly recommended from IGB Central.

Leinenkugel's Cranberry Ginger Shandy

Poured a dark orange hue with a four-finger head that faded fairly quickly. The cranberries are there, but not overwhelming, and the ginger has a bite, but not obvious. More of a novelty and part of a strategy to hold onto or grab some extra market share than a go-to beer. Should appeal to the shandy aficionados out there, but not really enough cranberry to supplant Lindeman's Cassis Lambic  on my Thanksgiving dinner table.