Tag Archives: Easton PA

Brew Review: Old Heathen

24 Oct

Brew: Old Heathen

Brewed by: Weyerbacher Brewing Co. (Easton, PA)

Style: Imperial Stout (8.0% ABV)

 

Weyerbacher has two similar imperial stouts that are pretty much available whenever you want them in the Twin Cities.  Both the Old Heathen and Heresy are imperial stouts with the only difference that I can tell is that the Heresy is aged in oak barrels.  So I picked up both recently and the old Heathen is the one I popped open first.  Still haven’t gotten to the Heresy but that will be coming up soon I think.  Weyerbacher, out of Pennsylvania, has impressed me with what I have experienced from them so far.  Their Blasphemy and Tiny are both really good brews and I was excited to try one of their more regular offerings in the Old Heathen.

The Heathen poured out a solid black.  No light escapes and looks like most other imperial stouts.  A tight head with small compact bubbles rose up from the beer, it was the color of a mocha or dark khaki.  It rose up about a half inch, a bit smaller than I would ideally want but still a really good looking imperial stout.

The aroma of this brew was excellent.  I picked up toffee, vanilla and roasted grains right away.  I could smell this beast from far away, I didn’t even have to get close to it to really smell the goodness.  The right amount of sweet balanced with the char and bitterness of roast of the grains.  There is a faint detection of dark fruits and a hint of hop presence but those are minor players at this point.

The first sip is great.  This imperial stout is thick and chewy.  You can tell there are pounds and pounds of ingredients in this recipe.  Nothing light drinking about it at all.  Just what I wanted.  There is a ton of dark chocolate on the first sip. The chocolate lends in bitterness to the sip and combined with the roasted aspects of the grains that bitterness shines through as well.  Not a ‘bitter’ beer as you might think but there is that presence with every sip that there is a sharper tang hiding in the background waiting for you.  There are also flavors of coffee that come through as well.  Those fruity aromas that I picked up earlier didn’t really go anywhere.  This beer was mainly roast and chocolate bitterness.

The amount of chocolate in the taste was awesome and really took me by surprise and I didn’t expect that at any point until it hit me in the face.  The sweetness of the massive amount of malts was definitely balanced by the bitterness from the chocolate, coffee and roasted grains.  I didn’t pick up much by way of hops.  I don’t know the bottling date or anything about this brew so I couldn’t tell you anything about how old it was in that regard but I would wager it had maybe 3-6 months on it at this point.  Not a ton but enough for the hops to start their decline in power in the beer if there were many to begin with.  Since this is widely available, I can easily see this becoming a beer I always have in my fridge.  If you haven’t had it and not that its getting colder I would try to snag some next time your off to the store.

 

Final Grade: B+

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Brew Review: Tiny

9 Oct

Brew: Tiny

Brewed by: Weyerbacher Brewing Co. (Easton, PA)

 Style: Belgian Style Imperial Stout (11.8% ABV)

A Belgian style imperial stout.  That’s a lot right there in the name.  What can you take out of that?  This is going to be a big boozy stout, hence the imperialism.  However with a Belgian style ale mixed with a stout what are we expecting here?  Russian stouts are big and roasty.  Belgian beers could be grouped into a ‘fruity’ family with their lambics and wide variety of tastes that come out of the “Disneyland of Beer.”   So is this going to be a boozy, fruity laden syrup with burnt roast jumping out of the woodwork?  I really have no idea, it seems to be a daunting beer to brew, one that will probably not conform to any style when it’s all said and done.

Tiny pours out pitch black into my glass.  Pretty much all dark, no light coming in through the sides or anything.   There is a small dark tan head that rises up but doesn’t last long, like a poorly planned rebellion or mutiny. 

The brews aroma is a task.  There is a lot going on here.  Immediately I can sense a ton of big heavy malts.  There is also a lot of dark fruit in the nose.  Plumbs, raisins, apples, mixed in with some toffee and a faint coffee and chocolate bit deep down.  Almost too much going on to pick out certain things.  Deep fruits amongst some more traditional stout aromas are the main things.  I think the Belgian yeast provided some of the lighter fruit aspects while the stout quality added its roast and darker themes.

The name Tiny for this brew is ironic.  The taste that rushes at you the second you tip this glass forward is huge.  Not small or tiny by any means.  The brew is thick and rich like a solid stout should be.  The fruity, toffee and big malt flavors all show up again from the aroma.  There is more of a pronounced note of chocolate than before and the roast has faded into the background.  This is super smooth.  Thick and chewy with a hint of hot booze on the end.  After all its hard to cover up all almost 12%.

Weyerbacher definitely did well with this task of a Belgian style Imperial Stout.  They hit some roast, chocolate and toffee but also added fruits from plumbs and raisins to apples.  The Belgian yeast added a layer of complexity to an already thick and chewy imperial stout that really set the brew off.  The added bonus to this brew is that it is brewed year round and has a price tag of about 7-8 bucks for a 750mL bottle.  Which, means you can enjoy this all the time and the price tag isn’t something that will give you cause to pause when you look at it.  Think of it as a really good bottle of wine for 8 bucks and you’ve already saved yourself like 15 bucks.  On top of that its beer = win/win.

Final grade: A

Brew Review: Blasphemy

27 Sep

Brew: Blasphemy

Brewed by: Weyerbacher Brewing Co. (Easton, PA)

Style: Quadruple (11.8% ABV)  

 

Weyerbacher out of PA distributes to MN which is great although I for some reason haven’t really jumped on any of their releases.  I have tried one or two here and there like the Double Simcoe IPA but nothing else has really stood out to me.  I am hoping that this 750 mL along with another one I picked up will bring me on the bandwagon of trying some more of Weyerbachers brews.   Quads are usually a style that, while not impossible, a little harder to approach than other since they are so rich and complex, but here goes.

Blasphemy poured out a dark copper color.  Burnt orange, red and brown all thrown together, looks like a brooding storm of flavor.  There is a lot of visible carbonation that rises to the top and forms a nice half inch head of off-white or very light tan head with some flecks of sediment in it. like a faintly speckled egg.

The aroma is big and bold.  Tons of fruits like apples and pears and some raisins and other darker varieties.  The malts show up as well showcasing some caramel and a very small note of chocolate.  The Belgian-style yeast strain they used produced some very nice aromas with plenty of depth.

The taste was big right off the bat.  Plenty of the flavors you would expect from a big quad.  Starting with booze, a mild warming effect in my mouth and down into the gut.  Along with booze was more caramel, dark fruit and some earthy hop taste as well.  The booze was present more than anything but it wasn’t off-putting by any means, like I mentioned it was more of a warming effect but it was still present, possibly shutting out other flavors trying to get through in this beer.  It was not as thick or heavy drinking as I would have thought by looking at it.  It was more of a medium body which was a nice change that allowed me to drink more of the 750 than I was expecting (although I was sharing it with a couple friends). 

Overall, a very smooth and enjoyable beer.  The booze was present and could have been less so but it wasn’t negative to the brew all together.  The body of the brew was also a plus, not heavy and lighter than expected.  I could have used more of a roasted taste in the brew along with some more bitterness either from hops or more of a chocolate bitterness.  Not a ton but just enough to cut through some of the sweetness that this beer showcased.

 

Final Grade: B+