1. Great Lakes Elliot Ness - Cleveland, OH
Great malt. Notes of Lake Erie sludge...not really. Very solid.
2. Belfast Bay McGovern's Oatmeal Stout - Belfast Bay, MA
Adequate. Not big enough. Reasonable taste but not as powerful and full as an oatmeal stout should be.
3. Southern Tier Unearthly IPA - Lakewood, NY
Weak IPA. Not nearly enough hop, way too much fruit. Unbalanced.
4. Pyramid Apricot Weizen - Seattle, WA
Surprisingly good (compared to my expectation, which involved vomitting). Would be decent in summer. Definitely lots of apricot but apricot is a subtle enough fruit for it to be worth drinking one (but not more).
5. Flying Dog Tire Bite Golden Ale - Aspen, CO
Okay for a standard golden ale but a little heavy for this type. Balance is off though. Should be smoother if calling it golden ale.
6. Alhambra Negra Ale - Granada, Spain
Boring, surprisingly dull flavor given the dark color. My palette is also dying a slow painful death. (this was the second to last beer we tried)
7. Two Brothers Ebel's Weiss - Warrenville, IL
Like the Sophie (see below) slightly better. Vanilla + banana flavors. I am now certain I don't like "Weiss's."
8. Two Brothers Domaine Dupage French Country Ale
Good earthy flavor. Well rounded. Homey feeling. Tastes like toast (I nailed that one!).
9. Two Brothers Cane and Ebel Red Rye Ale
Scent of oak from the beginning. Fruity (mango according to Seth, I agreed) but lots of hops balance it out wonderfully.
10. Saison Dupont Farmhouse Ale - Citrus flavor with nuttiness. One of the best Belgians of the night.
11-12. N/A. You suck Windy City Distributors. The event was reservations only. Plan better so you don't run out with an hour remaining in the tasting.
13. Goose Island Matilda - Chicago, IL
Abbey Ale, banana flavor/aroma, very traditional for the style. Not my fav though.
14. Goose Island Pere Jacques
Excellent! Distinct roasted malt, chocolatey and a little rich but not too heavy -> Surprising given that color isn't dark.
15. Goose Island Sophie
Belgian again, citrusy in a bad way, somewhat off-putting.
16. Goose Island Juliet
Very fruity, sour. Gross. Gag.
17. Half Acre Lager
18. Half Acre Over Ale
Floral, spring taste. Good hops but not too much. Well-balanced.
Exchanges of the night:
Me: It's kind of floral.
Seth: Floral? Are you kidding me?
Seth: It's like a beer smoothie!
Me: I'll be sure to write 'better than it sounds' after that in the tasting notes.
Seth: Definitely citrusy.
Me: I'm getting a lot of nuttiness too.
Seth: Yeah, slight nut.