Friday, December 17, 2010
Top 10 Beers of 2010
Just like last year, I wanted to put together a list of my favorite beers from this past year. These are not in any particular order. They are just my favorite ten beers from the year 2010.
The Bruery Hottenroth - I had enjoyed a Berliner Weissbier style before with the Fritz Briem 1809. But, the Hottenroth just blew me away. It was an amazing beer that I first had on a warm April Saturday. The tart lemony flavor make this one of the most thirst quenching beers I have ever had. This beer was made for the summer. Low in abv (3%) but so much flavor. Just an incredible beer for sure.
Sierra Nevada Tumbler - This is probably the most welcomed beer to my taste this year. As a fall seasonal, I had been unenthused by most Octoberfest beers. Thankfully, Sierra Nevada, in deciding to brew a fall seasonal a bit different from these normal fest beers, did a great job with a relatively simple, excellent drinking beer. Lots of good roasted flavor here with a nice bit of hops, this beer was exactly what I was looking for. Thank you SN for brewing this beauty. I look forward to more of it next year.
Wachussett/Public House Larry DIPA - Normally I am not a fan of American style IPA's. I tend to enjoy DIPA's a bit more however as I feel they create a much better balance than the normal AIPA's. I am generally not a hop head and I don't care for piney flavor in my hops. This had very little pine in the flavor and just a great overall balance. Just a really nice DIPA. Nice and inexpensive too make this a good beer for me.
Berkshire Brewing Lost Sailor IPA (on Nitro!) - Have you ever had an IPA on nitro draught? I had not and this was one heck of an experience. I enjoy the regular Lost Sailor (an English style IPA, good malt, decent hops, great balance), but putting it on nitro just added an incredible creamy feel to the beer that just made it absolutely incredible. BBC does a number of beers for nitro tap and this is one that I see pretty often now here in New England. That is an excellent thing in my opinion and I look forward to having this as a go to beer for many years to come.
Berkshire Brewing Lost Sailor Aged in Cabernet Barrels - Now I know you may think that me putting the same beer on here is sort of silly. Fear not, brothers (and sisters), for this beer is NOTHING like the regular Lost Sailor. It is an IPA in name only. The aging in the cab barrels soured this very nicely and made just an amazing beer. It wasn't seen often (I had mine at Armsby Abbey in Worcester) but it was such a memorable beer for me. And because my wife was there, I had to fight to just get a sip of this beer. BBC should definitely do more beers like this and maybe even bottle a few of them.
Lost Abbey Duck Duck Gooze - I still can't believe I bought this bottle (let alone find it). Again, this happened at a night at Armsby Abbey. This was the last bottle they had and they charged a ransom for it. My wife needled me enough to get it however. She still owes me to tell you the truth. But, what a beer it was. A great sour beer with amazing flavor. We were with a number of friends and we all tried it. I think it was a big hit, even with them never having really tried sours before. Luckily we ganked the bottle and it sits on our bookshelf proudly. Most expensive bottle of beer I have ever bought (and hopefully stays that way for a long time to come).
Duchesse de Bourgogne - Ah the good Duchesse will now make her appearance. I love a good Flanders style red and this is one of the best of that style. A bit of a vinegary smell comes off of this beer, but the flavor is sweet with bits of sourness. Fruit flavor is front and center on this beer. Cherries mostly with some strawberry and raspberry as well. Just a great beer to have at any time.
Ithaca White Gold - Aside from the gusher that I had at Thanksgiving, this beer was amazing. I had it first time on tap at Track 84 during Providence Craft Beer Week in October. I was floored. I had never had an American Pale Wheat Ale before this. But, what a beer this was. There is just a slight tartness to the beer which goes nicely with the full carbonation (or sometimes TOO much carbonation, grumble grumble grumble). Ithaca does some good worth with their Excelsior series, and this was no exception.
Three Floyds Blackheart IPA - Another English style IPA that I found at Pizzeria Paradiso in Georgetown in DC when I was back home to see the family for Thanksgiving. Somehow, they get Three Floyds there. I don't care how, but they do. And this beer shows me why I want to see 3F distribute more than they do. They are an outstanding brewery from the little I have had of theirs. I want more! This beer is just a super drinkable, nicely hopped, beautifully full flavored IPA that I could sit down to drink with almost any type of meal imaginable.
Founders Imperial Stout (2009 vintage) - This was the beer that I came away from the Open It! weekend with a new respect for. I have gotten to the point where I don't care for stouts too much. This beer though made me think I may just need to find the RIGHT stouts. What a beer. Lots of chocolate and coffee flavors as well as the normal roasted stout flavor. But, add in hints of dark fruit and a smoothness (from only a year of aging!) and this beer is maybe my favorite stout of all time. It is even the type that could be vying for the top spot on my all time beer list. It was that good.
So, there is my list. I would love to hear from others on beers that they just loved this past year. Is there something I need to try? Tell me about it please.