Sunday, February 05, 2012

Yeah, I'm ready for the Big Game

From left to right: Penn Dark Lager, Lagunitas IPA, Shipyard Blue Fin Stout, Left Hand Black Jack Porter. Reviews forthcoming - if my liver holds up.

Black Jack Porter - My bottle had a thin mouthfeel. The roasted notes don't last long after a sip, and it's less bitter and malty than I expected; sorta flavorless, to be honest. Alcohol content isn't overwhelming, so most people should be able to drink two or three bottles over a long dinner. I'd drink it again if it was on tap somewhere, but I wouldn't seek it out.

Lagunitas IPA - This beer has a good, straightforward hoppy taste. Not a lot of carbonation, pours out into a clean amber-gold. You feel the bitterness in the back of your throat. Would pair quite well with something nice and greasy, like a big hamburger.

Shipyard Blue Fin Stout - Very pronounced roasted coffee flavors, with chocolate undertones. There's a tinge of hops once the malt wears off, but it doesn't last long, and your mouth is bare again. Like most Irish stouts, there's actually not much alcohol here. It's sort of like a sharper, fancier Guinness, which is a good thing.

Penn Dark Lager - Marketed as a "dark lager." Penn Dark is probably the closest to a mainstream beer of the four bottles I tried. My Dad likened it to a darker, slightly maltier Sam Adams. It's quite mild and smooth to drink, with a bit of a watery finish. Balance of malt and hops is executed pretty well. Not something that'll knock your socks off, but a solid beer.

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