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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Four + Brewing Company Punk'n Harvest Pumpkin Ale

Four Plus Punkn Harvest Pumpkin Ale
Four + Brewing Company Punk'n Harvest Pumpkin Ale:

Okay, so... not my favorite. Perhaps this particular six-pack is simply too old to be enjoyed properly (My sample was bottled on 8/15/2008) and maybe a really fresh draft from the brewery in Salt Lake City... Alright, I'm done apologizing. This beer isn't very good.

The light-medium body is the biggest positive, but the flavor is a bit funky and metallic and the pumpkin aroma isn't very exciting. The finish of this beer is akin to that of a pale ale, so I'm not giving up on Four + Brewing just yet. Maybe their more standard beer offerings are more palatable. Then again, typically an awesome brewery does an awesome job with pumpkin beers (just refer to last year's Ultimate Pumpkin Showdown) so I don't know what to think.

Punk'n is fairly thin for an Ale and doesn't represent the Pumpkin genre very well. Stylistically, Punk'n doesn't bring much to the table. Accessibility is unfortunately lacking because of the weird presentation of the pumpkin essence. Don't expect good scores from this one. And if you're shopping for pumpkin brews to bring to a Halloween party or to Thanksgiving Dinner, choose something else.

Four + Brewing Company Punk'n Harvest Pumpkin Ale:

Representation: .50
Accessibility: .60
Style: .60
Personal Preference: .30

Total Score: 2.0 Flags

Check out ALL of our Pumpkin Reviews

Monday, September 28, 2009

Making Friends with The Brew Club

From the Office of the Vice President:
It's always nice to make a new friend! Check out The Brew Club @ http://thebrewclub.com to read beer reviews and maybe get your hands on some home brew equipment or some microbrew Beer-of-the-Month selections, AND The Ferment Nation and South Jersey Beer News will be featured in an upcoming post! We'll keep you informed and updated.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Saint Somewhere Lectio Divina (Presidential Brief)

What: Saint Somewhere Lectio Divina
Where: PJ's Pour House (Westmont, NJ)
When: September 23, 2009, 11:46PM
What-have-you: Tastes like pluots. Mighty. Delicious.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Green Flash West Coast IPA

Green Flash West Coast IPA (draft):

Superior IPA. Chilled-out enough to recommend to any lover of good beers but bold enough to stash away for the occasional hop-fits that plague the hop-head from time to time. Stable malty skeleton with citrusy hops fleshed out on top. Grapefruity yet not overpowering. Light to medium in body with a bitterness up front. The bitterness disappears for the swallow and then magically reappears at the finish. Mystically good.

IPA lovers, drop what you're doing and grab one of these. Sometimes you need a pale; sometimes you need a double or an imperial; sometimes you need something just right. I'd put this in the "go-to" category right along with Victory Hop Devil or Dogfish Head 90 Minute. Also be sure to check out Green Flash Hop Head Red and Le Freak for daring drinkability.

Green Flash West Coast IPA is also one of a rare breed of brews that has a three-pronged attack: bottle, glass, or draft. This is a premier IPA, boasting 95 IBUs and cruising in at 7.3% abv.

As we enter Football Season, here's some Presidential advice: Definitely bring this one with you to a tailgater but guard it closely. You can protect it by saying, "You wouldn't like that... it's too bitter" (and you would be telling the God's honest truth), or you can be a hero to that random hop-head who eyes your brew knowingly. Use a West Coast IPA to barter for an awesome bratwurst sandwich or something but stand your ground on the value of this brew. Rare exception: that guy who has nothing to offer but stands in awe of your superior beer selection. You may bestow a Green Flash West Coast IPA upon this fellow traveler if you see in his eyes the determination to outdo you next time you meet. A truly grateful citizen of the FermentNation will take on this quest and deliver the goods.

Why not let the Brewmaster say it for himself: "A menagerie of hops are layered throughout the brewing process. Simcoe for unique fruitiness and grapefruit zest, Columbus for strong hop pungency, Centennial for pine and citrus notes, Cascade for floral aroma. A multi-dimensional hop experience." --Chuck Silva, Brewmaster.

Green Flash West Coast IPA:

Representation: 1.0
Accessibility: 1.0
Style: 1.0
Personal Preference: 1.0

Total Score: 4.0 Flags

Monday, September 21, 2009

Boulder Flashback (Citizen Review)

Boulder Flashback:

"Very hoppy only for those

who love hops. Also not

much body or overall


Representation: 1.0
Accessibility: .25
Style Points: .50
Personal Preference: 0

Total Score: 1.75 Flags

--Reviewed by Citizen Cheryl Selah

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Long Trail Coffee Stout

Long Trail Coffee Stout

When you pour this beer slowly as recommended "for the best experience," you get no bubbles, no head, no effervescence at all. First sip: coffee yes, stout yes. Seems pretty good. Certainly not a disaster. Sips 2-5: good, but here's the problem: this beer is neither very coffee-esque nor very stoutish either. Long Trail has done a good job brewing this, because I don't really taste the 8.0%abv, but to be honest, this is underwhelming.

No offense meant to Long Trail, but this seems like a "beer of convenience." Long Trail is in Vermont, the Vermont Coffee Company is in Vermont. If I were feeling snarky, I would say this beer is as average as Vermont itself. I mean Massachusetts has Bean Town, and Harvard and the Kennedys. Maine has rugged sea coasts and lobsters, and Vermont has...well. But I'm not in a snarky mood, so I will say this is a solid beer, but I would rather have a superior stout like Guinnness or Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout or a kick-ass coffee like Southern Tier's Jah-Va Imperial Stout or even pour some Kahlua in my coffee. I appreciated Long Trail's understated berry taste in their Black Beary Wheat, but I don't usually enjoy berry bears. But I love coffee, and this just didn't get me revved up or excited. Good but not great.

Long Trail Coffee Stout

Representation: .60
Accessibility: .90
Style: .60
Personal Preference: .60

Total: 2.7 Flags

Read our other Coffee Reviews
Read our other Stout Reviews

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Left Hand 400 Lb. Monkey (Citizen Review)

Ferment Nation Citizen ReviewLeft Hand 400 Lb. Monkey:

"A well-balanced beer; hoppy, but with sweet counterpoints, decent, but I'm not rushing out to get it."

Representation: .5
Accessibility: .5
Style Points: .75
Personal Preference: .5

Total: 2.25 Flags

--Review by Citizen Jack Witzig

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

De Dolle Special Extra Export Stout

De Dolle Special Extra Export StoutDe Dolle's Special Extra Export Stout

Sticking my nose to the bottle, I could smell the initial toasty nature of this stout. While looking for a suitable glass I found the beer gushing out the top like a school project volcano. So in it went into a pilsner glass (my apologies to El Presidente!), but it gave me a chance to really (and I mean literally) stick my nose into the foamy head. Wow! Bitter. And now that I think of it, I've often had overflow issues with Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout and their Taddy Porter (two favorites). The head is palpable. You could probably make a sculpture from it. It has "stiff peaks" like you would get in homemade whipped cream.

Navigating past the suds, the taste is definitely bitter but very clean and tasty. It really hits you in the lower read of the tongue, almost getting underneath. There's more of an aftertaste than I normally want, but it is not an alcoholic aftertaste despite its 9%abv. It's a clear, clean, toasty taste that lingers on the palate. If this is the "export" stout, then buy me a ticket for an aeroplane and fly me to Belgium. I wants me the domestic recipe. The fact that I immediately compare it to Samuel Smith is a major plus in my book, and makes it a great beer for any fan of stouts and porters who want to kick it up a notch.

De Dolle Special Extra Export Stout

Representation: .9
Accessibility: .85
Style: .70
Personal Preference: 1.0

Total: 3.45 Flags

De Dolle Special Extra Export Stout

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Kickin' Chickins

Hello Citizens,

Just letting you know that some personal friends of the FermentNation are playing at the Trocadero tonight in Philadelphia. Come see KICKIN' CHICKINS with El Presidente tonight. Doors open at 7:00 and the Poultry goes on around 9:00. See you there!