I forgot that I had the Double Dry-Hopped All Citra Everything once before but I’ll admit this was better than I remember. Frankly, this eclipses the 3rd Other Half anniversary offering. I’d peg beer # 1,127 at 90 points. Super tropical, syrupy and boozy astringency.
Hill Farmstead has two main themes for their beer. Their “Ancestral” line is a foundational series of standard offerings that follow a loose rotation of release. Each name comes from Shaun Hill’s family tree. There is the familiar Edward, named for Hill’s grandfather who lived in the house that still stands on the brewery property. All told Edward had 13 siblings and you’ll recognize them through Hill’s series of tribute.
The other series of beer is known as the “Philosophical” line. Not surprising as Hill was a philosophy major in college. Where else would Friedrich Nietzche’s birthday (October 15th) be celebrated with cellared rarities like Beyond Good and Evil (named for a book by Nietzche)? More on that stout later.
I’m not one for really deep philosophical thought. In my mind, it always leads back to depressing thoughts of our own insignificance. However, I was taken by the name of this beer and its connection to Henry David Thoreau. Thoreau once said that he had three chairs in his house, one for solitude, two for friendship and three for society. Is it that Society & Solitude leaves out friendship or that friendship is found between Society & Solitude? Hmmm.
Society & Solitude #4
Tasting: October 11, 2017 Style: American Imperial IPA ABV: 8.0% Beer #: 1,109
I read a description of Society & Solitude #4 and it said to think Double Citra and Double Galaxy 97 points Uh, yes please!
Can I just say wow? Amazingly complex with guava, pineapple, orange flesh and some robust citrus rind. A bit more assertive than I was expecting and that’s just fine by me. 97 points.
Beyond Good and Evil (Maple Bourbon-Barrel Aged)
Tasting: October 11, 2017 Style: Stout with Maple Syrup aged in used bourbon-barrels used to age maple syrup ABV: Unknown Beer #: 1,110
Beyond Good and Evil deserves more than just a mention at the end of another beer’s entry but I didn’t get any photos. While having lunch at the brewery, my friend was sipping on a stout. He said that it could be the best stout he’s ever had in his life. I respect his opinion and dashed off for my own pour before we hit the road for home. The tap room line was about 15 people deep. I couldn’t stand the wait.
Incredible balance, cherries, mellow chocolate, earthy moss, syrup influence is entirely complimentary as is the polished roasted bitterness. Beyond Good and Evil has muscled its way into the upper end of my list, solid 98 points. I think my friend was right on the mark. This could be the best stout I’ve ever had.
My 15-year-old beer fridge went kaput the other day. I bought it for $199 so, I’ll consider it an honorable discharge. However, it leaves me in a quandry and I was forced to do an emergency evacuation of my craft beer to a couple coolers. I’ve had a few friends volunteer some fridge space but none made any promises of returning my full inventory. While I try and find a new fridge, I’ll do my part in trying to purge some beer that’s been building in my inventory. I’ll give some rapid fire thoughts on each…
A Beer Has No Name by Liquid Riot Bottling Company
Tasting: September 1, 2017 Style: American Double / Imperial IPA Beer #: 1,103 ABV: 8.2%
(C) 2017 popsonhops
Thanks to my friend, Mark for the goodies from Maine. I’m sorry to hear that his vacation was cut short. Dank hoppy and smokey underneath some bright pineapple sweetness. Hops include: Idaho 7, Mosaic, Citra, and Chinook Hops
Tasting: October 19, 2017 Style: American Double / Imperial IPA Beer #: 1,104 ABV: 8.0%
Another goody from my friend Mark. Lots going on with this beer. Herbal like black tea and lemongrass. Some underlying sweetness of honey and caramel. Bitterness is a little over the top but all in all enjoyable. 91 points.
Devastation by Brewery Vivant
Tasting: October 19, 2017 Style: American Double / Imperial IPA Beer #: 1,105 ABV: 11.6%
(C) 2017 popsonhops
Admittedly, this has been in the back of my fridge for a month. What’s left is yeasty, odd-flavored, sweet with some oak, vanilla and moss barrel influence. Really an odd beer. 75 points.
Big Timber IPA by Big Timber Brewing
Tasting: October 18, 2017 Style: American IPA Beer #: 1,106 ABV: 6.5%
(C) 2017 popsonhops
My first craft beer brewed in West Virginia crosses off state number 37 in my casual pursuit of beer from all 50. A gift from a friend that went to West Virginia. Maybe the first person I’ve known that has been to West Virginia. Very traditional IPA, lots of earthy pine and overpowering grapefruit and lime bittnerness. Has some balance as well with some distinct cracker-like malt. Surprisingly good. Big Timber IPA gets a respectable 87 points from me.
(C) 2017 popsonhops
Chasing Rabbits by Burlington Beer Company
Tasting: October 25, 2017 Style: American Pale Wheat Ale Beer #: 1,107 ABV: 5.8%
Delivers black tea, herbal, and some white wine grapes. Mouthfeel is nice. Like it quite a bit, 91 points.
Orbital Elevator by Burlington Beer Company
Tasting: October 25, 2017 Style: American Imperial IPA Beer #: 1,108 ABV: 8.3%
Brewed with Oat Malt and Flaked Oats and it does deliver a nice mouthfeel. Dank undertone, bold citrus. Froot loops quality flavor. I liked Chasing Rabbits more but another nice beer, 90 points.
Head High Tasting: September 1, 2017 Style: American-style IPA Beer #: 1,102 ABV: 6.6%
I have foodie friends and when they gush on about certain dishes, they often describe the fresh flavor. I think everyone gets that sentiment, and it’s easy to distinguish the differences between freshly picked tomatoes from your garden and the flavorless red things sold at the supermarket. I think the same can be said for hop-based beer. A positive experience can be described as a beer that has a fresh hop flavor. That is a bit deceiving as many hops used are dried and pelletized and really aren’t fresh off the vine. I think the interpretation is that you can taste the true characteristics of the hop and the latest evolution of craft beer has brewers working to spotlight a fresh flavor.
For many years, hops were added primarily in mid-boil and late boil. The mid-boil hop addition converts the alpha acids found in hops to bitterness compounds. The late hop addition released enough hop oils to contribute to a beer’s aroma. The boiling of hops doesn’t do much for imparting that fresh hop flavor. Today, brewers are shifting away from the bitterness addition and concentrating on the late or post cooling by using hopbacks, whirlpools and dry/wet hopping. So, when someone say that a beer has a fresh hop flavor, a lot of creativity went into the finished product.
A friend stopped by Kane during a recent beach trip and picked me up a few four-packs of Head High and Overhead – 93 points. Purely a guess, but I think Head High and Overhead might describe wave heights as overhead represents an imperial IPA as compared to the base IPA.
I’ve had this beer many times and I’m surprised that it hasn’t appeared in my blog. Fresh hops abound here and Head High is a solid go to beer, 91 points.
If you want release information, Kane tends to make announcements via their Instagram Page