THE BREWSKI REPORT Tommy Brewski: My Beer. My Life.

August 26, 2012

Sea Dog’s Raspberry Wheat Ale Review 8.26.12

Full on raspberry flavor with this beverage.

Full on raspberry flavor with this beverage.

TBR Reports On Sea Dog Raspberry
File Date: 8.26.2012

File Name: A Delicious Brew to Welcome Me Back Home
The Beer: Sea Dog Raspberry Wheat Ale
Type: Fruit/Vegetable
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 4.5% ABV
Brewer: Pugsley Brewing LLC/Sea Dog Brewing Co.
Web Site: http://seadogbrewing.com/
State/Country of Origin: Maine, USA
Brewer Info: Being authentic is important to us. Our beers are brewed in a traditional English style using only the highest quality ingredients like English two-row malted barley and British top-fermenting Ringwood yeast. Our English brewing style results in brews with a distinctive, refreshing taste and crisp finish. Founded in 1993, Sea Dog is Maine owned and Maine brewed. Our crew brews a full line of award-winning handcrafted ales that capture the spirit of Maine’s sea-faring history.

tbr-sd-rspbry-insertBrewer Brand Hype: Sea Dog Raspberry Wheat Ale is a dry, crisp refreshing ale with the added essence of raspberries.
Label: Beer with natural flavor added.

The Brewski Review: Oh yea! This is it. Real raspberry flavor. As I said before, If your going to advertise Raspberry as an ingredient in your brew, it darn sure better taste like raspberry is in there. This ale does not disappoint. It poured with a minimal head but you could smell the raspberry aroma as it was poured. The first sip was oh good. I was hoping to have a beer earlier in the day but I started to polyurethane some trim boards for my garage and I didn’t want to put the brush and roller down (My professional painter 2 cents worth…roll the coating on first. Then brush it out with the grain. It looks better. Trim and doors look terrible with a roller finish.) I decided to go with a natural pine wood finish to enhance the ‘barn’ style appearance of my garage. I’m excited about getting a start on my home projects. One of two of my readers have probably wondered where I’ve been the past year and a half. Well, I’ve spend every weekend and some weekdays doing a rehab on my duplex. I’ve been unable to sell it the past 2 years I figured I’d bite the bullet and remodel the entire upper unit. New flooring throughout, new kitchen and new bathroom. Cleaned and painted the basement walls and did a whole bunch of curb appeal projects. Apparently it worked. I lost a bunch of money but I take consolation knowing I’m probably not the only one in this market. I’m just happy to be done with it. Now, it’s 100% home project time…starting with the garage completion. Everything dominoes….Garage needs done so I can empty the basement. Basement needs emptied so I can complete rewiring the electrical in the house. And so on. There are other things on the horizon I’ll share with you later.  But for now, enjoy a summer beer with Sea Dog Raspberry.

Drinkability: Yes. One of my top fruit beers to date.
Appearance: Deep golden color.
The Buds: Crisp, cold and plenty ‘o fruit flavor
TBR Cap Rating: 4.75 out of 5 caps.

January 16, 2011

Pualaner’s Salvator Double Bock Beer Review 1.16.11

Paulaner's Salvator Double Bock (or, Dopplebock for all the beer snobs who probably wouldn't be reading this blog.)

Paulaner's Salvator Double Bock (or, Dopplebock for all the beer snobs who probably wouldn't be reading this blog.)

The Brewski Report Reviews Paulaner’s Salvator Double Bock
File Date: 1.16.2011

File Name: Sometimes The Best Action Is No Action
The Beer: Salvator Double Bock
Type: Dopplebock
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 7.9% ABV
Brewer: Paulaner Brauerei GmbH & Co. KG
Web Site: www.paulaner.com
State/Country of Origin: Germany
Brewer Info: The oldest document of the Paulaner Brewery Munich dates back to 1634. Life is hard for our monks in the Munich monestary Neudeck ob der Au; they are extremely poor and have to work very hard. To help them cope they began to brew Salvator. Since 1780 the Paulaner monks have been officially allowed to serve beer without restrictions. The Neudeck ob der Au is dissolved in 1799. In 1815 the first beer huts on the Wies’n appear. Five years earlier a major horse racing event was held here. This was the birth of the world’s biggest fair. in 1837 Bavaria’s King Ludwig I declares Paulaner a luxury article. The name Salvator is protected by the imperial patent office in Berlin in 1896. Through the 1920’s Paulaner expands by acquiring other breweries. In 1986 Paulaner brews the worlds first non-alcoholic wheat beer which is now called Hefe-Weitbier Alkoholfrei. The worlds deepest underground cellar is built by Paulaner in 1989. In 2001 a joint venture with Dutch brewers Heineken N.V. is established.

tbr-paulaner-logoBrewer Brand Hype: Paulaner Salvator is the founding father of all Bavarian stouts, and the orinator of all “-ator” beers. With an alcohol content of 7.9%, it is not only the strongest beer brewed by the Paulaner Brewery, but also has the most tradition: Paulaner Salvator has been brewed from 100% Munich malt to a handed-down recipe for 375 years. Today, it is the highest-selling “double bock” beer in Germany. Paulaner Salvator is dark, full-bodied and strong, and wonderfully malty in flavour and aroma – a perfectly balanced, round, quaffable stout specialty. Paulaner Salvator is freshly brewed every year for the stout season and is only available between December and April (as a general rule). Based on the principle of, “Liquids don’t break a fast”, this double bock beer remains the traditional drink for Lent to this day.
Label: Each one of my Paulaner biers is brewed slowly, all-naturally, as they have been for over 360 years. Brewed and bottled by Paulaner, Munich, Germany.

The Brewski Review: My project list hasn’t seen the light of day recently. I don’t mind but it does eat at me. Winter seems to slow me down with all the cold temps and show shoveling chores. I had a tenant move out of my duplex this past December leaving me a unit in desperate need of some serious TLC. But, I figure it was easier for me to shut off the heat, drain the water lines and pour antifreeze down the j-traps than to go over there and work. (And, spend money to keep the place somewhat heated.) This strategy will push back all my house projects but I’ll live with that decision. In the Spring I’ll re-list the property in the hopes of shedding myself of the re-mod responsibility before it becomes a dire necessity. I need to re-focus efforts on my house. The duplex has been an unwanted distraction of late. So I’ll take it easy for a couple of months. Maybe drink some beer. This Paulaner beverage turned out to be somewhat good. Very tasty beverage. Creamy with a rich malt flavor. Minimal bitterness. Excellent choice for the cool days of winter. Curl up by the fire and crack one open.

Drinkability: Definitely. 
Appearance: Carmel color, minimal head.
The Buds: Very smooth and malty.
TBR Cap Rating: 4.25 Rating out of 5.

It's hard to be around 360 years and not know how to throw a party. Kickin' it German style.

It's hard to be around 360 years and not know how to throw a party. Kickin' it German style.

September 22, 2010

Sam Adams’ Octoberfest Beer Review 9.22.10

For display purposes only. Mine was a draft.

For display purposes only. Mine was a draft.

The Brewski Report Reviews Samual Adams’ Octoberfest
File Date: 9.22.2010

File Name: My Lost Vacation
The Beer: Sam Adams Octoberfest
Type: Marzen/Oktoberfest
Serving: Draft
Stats: 5.3% ABV
Brewer: Boston Beer Co. (Samuel Adams)
Web Site: www.samueladams.com
State/Country of Origin: MA, USA
Brewer Info: Jim Koch founded The Boston Beer Company in 1984 because he believed that Americans deserved better beer. Today, we’re a team of about 350 people, and we all share a common passion for bringing great Samuel Adams® beers to beer lovers everywhere. We’ve worked hard for the many successes we’ve enjoyed over the years. The Boston Beer Company has been cited as one of the best companies to work for by Boston Magazine, one of the Best Entry-Level Jobs by The Princeton Review, and our beers have won more awards than any beer in history.

tbr-sa-oct-logoBrewer Brand Hype: Brewed with five varieties of malted barley for a big, rich flavor. The first thing you notice when pouring a glass of this seasonal beer is the color. Samuel Adams® Octoberfest has a rich, deep reddish amber hue which itself is reflective of the season. Samuel Adams Octoberfest masterfully blends together five roasts of malt to create a delicious harmony of sweet flavors including caramel and toffee. The malt is complimented by the elegant bitterness imparted by the Bavarian Noble hops. Samuel Adams Octoberfest provides a wonderful transition from the lighter beers of summer to the heartier brews of winter.
Label: Draft beer served at the bar.

The Brewski Review: I took a week off for vacation tin the hopes of getting a good start on remodeling two more rooms in my house.  As I noted in an earlier e-mail, I’ve been cleaning out our ‘office’ for a while and I was dissapointed that it wasn’t completed BEFORE my vacation started. The last thing I wanted to do was waste time moving stuff on my vacation (which, by the way, is rare for me to take a whole week’s vacation.) So, it took two days to finish moving material out of the office and get the room sealed up – rosin paper on the floor and plastic over the doorways (sans the doors which were removed to strip the paint). And then, I tried to plug my wireless router back in and reconnect our computers. That’s were I lost two more days. So, four of my 9 total days were spent cleaning and trying to figure out how to set up the computer. Then, I purchased a few trees I needed to get into the ground before winter so I set about doing that. This took two days. So, my plans to work on my house and repair my SUV (the front sway bar links broke and the sway bar shifted over and tore a hole in my front passenger side CV Boot). I just pushed my timeline out until spring on both. I figure if my front axle locks up on me….oh well. And, it’s too late into the season to start tearing plaster off my walls. I won’t be able to run the wiring and insulate before it freezes so I better wait. The good news? I’ve got all winter to work on other stuff. Oh yeah, the beer. It was a decent octoberfest beer. Holding out for something better.  Would drink it again though.

Drinkability: Probably.
Appearance: Medium to dark brown. Minimal head (dirty glass?)
The Buds: Malty with a bitter finish.
TBR Cap Rating: 3.75 out of 5

August 25, 2010

Birra Moretti Premium Lager Review 8.25.10

The Morettie Man - Sounds like a sinister hit man movie title.

The Morettie Man - Sounds like a sinister hit man movie title.

The Brewski Report Reviews Italy’s Birra Moretti Premium Lager
File Date: 8.25.10

File Name: 5S Methodology Around The House
The Beer: Birra Moretti
Type: Euro Pale Lager
Serving: Bottle
Stats: 4.6% ABV
Brewer: Birra Moretti / Heineken
Web Site: www.birramoretti.com
Country of Origin: Italy
Brewer Info: Luigi Moretti’s “Beer and ice factory” was founded more than a century ago in Udine, in the Friuli region. At that time, Udine was a sleepy little town, surrounded by stone walls that had been built by the local community as far back as 1350. It was at an important time during the unification of Italy. At that time, the whole of the Friuli region was still annexed to the Austro-Hungarian Empire and patriotic uprisings in the city were frequent. It is no coincidence that an Austrian garrison was stationed in the castle that dominates Udine, and that cannons were placed in the main square. It was during this very climate of unrest that the then 37-year-old Luigi Moretti – in the same year as the famous battles of San Martino and Solferino – looking to the future with conviction and confidence, decided to build his brewery. Born into a family of wealthy merchants, Luigi Moretti was at that time already familiar with wholesale trading in cereals, wine, spirits, foodstuffs and – naturally – even beer, which his family purchased from nearby Austria. At the time his small factory was inaugurated, its founder certainly could not have imagined how it would grow in the future. The first bottle of Birra Moretti was sold in the summer of 1860. The machinery used then was extremely advanced for its time, just as that used today is also at the cutting edge. From the 1990s on, Birra Moretti went from being a Friuli-based beer to a nationally-distributed beer, constantly growing and conquering new fans and admirers.

The Birthplace of Birra Moretti

The Birthplace of Birra Moretti

tbr-bierra-moretti-glassBrewer Brand Hype: Birra Moretti is a quality beer made in the traditional way. It is the result of a production process that has remained almost unchanged since 1859. The best raw materials are used to make Birra Moretti, as well as a special blend of high quality hops that gives it a unique taste and fragrance, enhancing its perfectly balanced bitter taste. It is a bottom fermented beer with a golden colour. This colouring is a result of the type of malt used in brewing. Its alcohol content is 4.6% alcohol by volume, a percentage that makes it ideal for any time of day. In fact, it is not a strong beer and is therefore perfect for drinking at lunch, at dinner or for evenings out with friends.
Label: Qualita E Tradizione. The Beer In Italy. Dal 1859. Premium Lager.

The Brewski Review: I’ve been a little behind on my reviews. I actually back date them so that the posting date is the date that I reviewed the beer. If I actually had the time to write a review the day I drank a beer, It would be an amazing feat. My guess is that my wife and kids would be out of the house all day which is a stretch. But, even more remarkable is that I wouldn’t have any projects around the house to complete. I’ve noted that my den is finished and I’m moving on to two more rooms to remodel. But, to do this, I need to clean them out. I actually spend a full 12 hour day packing up my wife’s scrap booking material. A WHOLE day!  Now you can understand why I don’t get much done. I’ve got 6 solid days into cleaning out these rooms and I’m still not done (Contrary to what you may be thinking, we are not ‘Hoarders: Buried Alive’ as you might see on TLC). Of course, I’ve been doing some 5S work in the process (Japanese version: seiri, seiton, seiso, seiketsu and shitsuke; Translated to English: sorting, straightening, sweeping, standardizing and sustaining.) My version of sorting – two piles: one pile for keeping and one pile for some future pending garage sale. My assesment of this whole timeline would be dramatically reduced if I just started dumping things into boxes. But why box it up, store it and unpack it later? And, my wife needs to be present for some of this sorting: all she needs to do is stand there and answer my very basic question: Do you want it or not. Of course, it’s never as simple to her as it seems like it should be. But I’m just as guilty. I opened a four tubes of old posters I’ve kept for some time. Many of them were beer posters (collected before I was of legal drinking age) and the usual kid stuff: dirtbikes, cars, etc. Did I toss any of these out?  No.tbr-dirtbike-air3

Drinkability: Nah. I’d try something else first.
Appearance: Medium golden color. Not much head.
The Buds: Good but a little bitter on the backside.
TBR Cap Rating: 3.75 out of 5 caps or ‘crowns’.

June 11, 2009

Carib Lager Beer Review 6.11.09

TBR takes on the Modern and Fashionable Carib Lager

TBR takes on the Modern and Fashionable Carib Lager

The Brewski Report’s Review on Trinidad and Tobago’s Modern and Fashionable Carib Lager.
File Date: 6.11.09

File Name:  It’s All In The Punch List
The Beer:  Carib
Type:  Lager (American Adjunct Lager)
Serving: Long Neck Clear Bottle
Stats:  5.20% ABV
Brewer:  Carib Brewery Limited
Brewer Info:  Carib Lager is the authentic, original, unique and defining icon of being young, modern and fashionable in Trinidad and Tobago. Launched on May 16th , 1950, this full bodied, clear and refreshing lager with 5.2% ABV is the flagship brand of Carib Brewery and the preferred brew of Trinidad and Tobago. Carib Lager is deeply rooted in the way of life of the Caribbean people, the environment, and the distinctive and refreshing culture associated with the region – its Carnivals, music and sporting events.  The brand is fashionable and youthful and very today, just like the people it represents, a people with vision for and of the future.  Carib’s vision is to become the most sought after Caribbean beer in the international market place.

Carib Lager Beer Logo

Carib Lager Caribbean Beer Logo

Brewer Brand Hype: Carib is a lager of European origin. It is a pale golden straw colour with a rich head formation. It is slightly aromatic, with a neutral balance between malt and hops, sweet and bitter. Medium-bodied mouth-feel leads directly to a semi-dry finish with only a hint of bitterness. No accented hop or malt character. Refreshing drinkability for a parched and thirsty palate. Diacetyl should not be perceived. Carib is brewed using sugar as an adjunct. The “clean label” policy applies i.e., no additives that have to be declared. (For all the beer geeks: Original Gravity 11.6 – 11.9°P; Alcohol by Volume: 5.1-5.4%;  Bitterness (BU) 14-16; Colour 5.5 – 7.5 EBC; Calorific value 120kcal/275ml.)

The Brewski Review:  I pulled out a Carib the other day thinking it would take me far away from my home horror to some breezy tropical location.  Kind of like the old Calgon commercials: ‘Calgon, take me away.’  Well, Carib didn’t take me anywhere other than where I was, standing outside my house, staring at my financial waterloo.  The previous owner didn’t do my any fiscal favors, that’s for sure.  He actually created more work while trying to remodel the house than all the damage the FBI, DEA Local and State police did when they raided the place to confiscate all his pot plants.  His previous attempts at remodeling were unusual.  See the kitchenbathroom and dining room ceiling.   Perhaps, had he not been so abrubtly sent to ‘The Big House’ he may have had the chance to complete a project.  Any project.  But, then again, maybe not.  It appears he loved remodeling but considered the punch list detail too much of a hassle to bother.  I’m not wired that way.  And, I am by no means passing judgement on skill, taste or dedication (or, at least, not in this post).  Part of the issue lies within the guy standing here drinking this uneventful beer.  I have high standards.  As Adrian Monk would say: ‘It’s a gift…. and a curse.’ 

It's a gift...and a curse.

Could this man be as obsessed as I am?

I lament over rather unnoticeable issues such as dried horizontal brush strokes on a rail that crosses the stile strokes perpendicular.  Others wouldn’t notice it, but I do.  On the other hand, when I do complete a project, like enlarging the closet opening and installing French Doors, I feel pretty great.  I’m a list person so crossing off my task list is a big deal.  And, I don’t cheat.  It’s not crossed off until every little facet of the project is complete.  Like this beer for example.  I can cross it off my list of ‘beers I’d drink again’ quite handily.  It looks good an pours with a nice head but it just didn’t do anything for me.  I think a Bud or Miller Lite will fare better in my overall taste review than this brew.

Drinkability:  ‘Refreshing drinkability for a parched and thirsty palate.’?  Given the option I’d drink ice water.
Appearance:  Brewer Hype on color and head formation is on spot.
The Buds:  Uneventful. 
TBR Cap Rating: 2.75 out of 5.

May 10, 2009

Red Stripe Beer Review 5.10.09

The Brewski Bottom Line: 4 out of 5 caps

TBR Cap Rating: 4.0 out of 5

The Brewski Report’s Review on the Desnoes & Geddes Flagship Brand Red Stripe Beer.
File Date:  May 10, 2009

File Name:   ‘A Mother’s Day Feast’
The Beer:  Red Stripe
Type:  Lager (American Adjunct Lager)
Serving: Short, stubby brown bottle
Stats:  4.70% ABV
Brewer: Desnoes & Geddes Limited
Web Site: www.redstripebeer.com
Brewer Info:  The first Red Stripe was brewed in the Surrey Brewery in 1928 as an ale style beer that was too heavy to suit local preferences. The current lager formulation was first produced in 1938 from a recipe developed by Paul H. Cotter (the son of founder E. P. Cotter) and Bill Martindale. The modern brewery was opened at Hunt’s Bay in 1958.

Brewer Brand Hype:  Red Stripe’s superior taste is created with the finest quality Hops from the Yakima Valley in the USA, choice European Malt, water from the Liguanea alluvium aquifer, superbly brewed with care.  It’s moderate in body, bitterness, hop aroma and flavor, has a low butterscotch flavor, full bodied and has a smooth post palate sensation.

The Brewski Review:  Being that it was Mother’s Day, I thought it would be nice to cook dinner.  The notion that my wife actually asked me before this thought entered my mind probably had some minor bearing on the final outcome.  But, nonetheless, I took on the project.  First things first, so off to the store we go: filet mignon, mustard based potato salad, asparagus, mushrooms, onion and mozzarella ball and tomato salad.  To me, this is a guy can-do dinner because the only stovetop cooking was to sauté the mushrooms and onions. Cut ‘em up and toss ‘em in butter.  Move ‘em around every now and then and pretty soon their done.  Walla!  I was originally going to grill them but my wife wanted them caramelized, not burnt.  So I acquiesced.  The filets and asparagus go on the man-grill.  I also considered corn on the cob but it was a little early in the season for sweet corn in our neck of the woods.  I also decided to invite my parents.  Its rate that we invite my parents over (although, it even rarer that I cook).  It’s not that they live too far away.  Heck, they just live maybe ¾ mile down the road.  Maybe it’s our frantic kid schedule that drives our dinner routine.  Or, maybe it’s because the house is in a perpetual state of ‘remodel’ – clutter stacked up everywhere.  I know it shouldn’t matter but I take pride in keeping a neat and organized mess.  Perhaps the winds of change are upon us: I purchased a large salmon filet not too long ago and that may just be the reason to get them back over for another meal.  I’ll try grilling that as well.  A little butter for flavor (I’m on a low salt diet) and, of course, a beer by my side while I try to figure out if the fish is cooked on the inside.  As today, I think that time would be worthy of a Red Stripe as well.

Drinkability:  Ya mon.  I be drinking this beer again.
Appearance:  Golden color.  Pours with a nice head.
The Buds:  Sweet tasting mild beer.  
TBR Cap Rating: 4.0 out of 5.
If I ever find myself in Jamaica, I’ll try a bottle on the beach.

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