So, my whole strategy to come in Friday and test out the five beers I hadn’t tried yet fell through, but I figured it was no big deal; I’d just postpone until Monday and deal with those pesky newcomers then. But what did I discover at work on Saturday? Five additional new beers!
Of course, this all means that I’m due for a showdown of epic proportions tonight. Overmatched though I may be, at least I’ll be armed with a little knowledge of what I’m getting myself into. Based on some pure speculation and a few educated guesses, here’s how I’ve sized up tonight’s enemies:
- Beer Valley Leafer Madness Imperial IPA—From what I’ve seen, folks are digging this one just as much or more than the beer it replaced, the legendary Double Mountain Molten Lava Imp IPA. I’m betting: sweeter than the Molten Lava with the emphasis just a little more on the malts than the hops. I’ve no doubt that this is an aggressively hopped beer, but I’ve got a feeling it’s just a little smoother and sweeter than its predecessor.
- Cascade Cuvee de Jongleur—A Belgian sour beer? Crazy! Never had a Flanders before—on tap or otherwise—but from what I hear, these beers are traditionally allowed to ferment naturally instead of pitching a specific yeast. I seriously doubt Cascade took that course of action, but who knows. Hearing that this beer is T-A-R-T. Big time. Don’t usually look for sour in my beers, so I’m predicting this one won’t be for me, but for rare Belgian style enthusiasts, this could be a home run. I’ve heard a number of good things about Cascade/Raccoon Lodge’s Belgian experiments.
- Sierra Nevada Summerfest—I believe this is a different beer from the Sierra Nevada Summer Ale. The Summerfest is listed as a Pilsner on our beer menu and certainly pours paler than the Ale. Anyway, I’m predicting this is a more aggressively hopped Pilsner than most traditional styles with those trademark Sierra Nevada piny hops shining through. Probably also light in the malt department, dry, and with a fairly subtle—but present—aftertaste.
- Walking Man Sasquatch Legacy—What the hell is an Imperial Vienna? I have absolutely no idea what this beer is about. But if it’s Walking Man, there’s about a 90% chance that I’ll love it.
- Baron Uber-Weisse—Alright, so I actually did have a little taste of this after hours on Saturday night. But I’m going to pretend that I didn’t so that I can have at least one accurate prediction: big roasted, slightly chocolaty notes smooth out and into a banana sweet and sourness with just a really tiny hop bite at the end. Delicious. It’s listed as a Weizen-bock, but it tastes more like a rocking Dunkelweizen to me. Er… I mean, I’m predicting that it tastes more like a Dunkelweizen…
Don’t know how reliable my taste buds are going to be after I get knee deep into new beer territory, but I’m aiming to tackle all ten of these monsters tonight and bring you the full blow-by-blow tomorrow. Wish me and my liver luck. Or even better, show up to cheer me on!