#317 Rogue – XS Imperial Red Ale

Rogue XS Imperial Red Ale

Mini bottle. Not a giant head.

Name: Imperial Red Ale
Brewery: Rogue (Oregon, US)
Style: Imperial Amber Ale
ABV: 9%
Source:  Galbraith’s Alehouse

Micro-pigs. Mini hamburgers. Bonsais. Baby sneakers. Borrowers. Cocktail weenies.

Some things are meant to be small.

I don’t think that intro worked quite as well for me as it did in reverse for Epic, but you must agree that there’s something mystifyingly appealing about things that are 1/4 or so of their original size, no?

Or maybe it’s just me. Either way, I pretty much lost my shit squealing when I saw this 200 ml bottle of Rogue XS and (as you can maybe tell from the photo), would probably have loved it no matter what it tasted like.

But what a bonus! It was actually delicious as well, like they had crammed all the flavours of a full-sized beer into that tiny bottle, so that they would burst out, like a Jack in the Box, when I opened it.

The aroma was deep and rich, with notes of caramel, chocolate and  fruity hops. In the mouth it was malt-tastic without being overly sweet, with a little chocolatey roastiness and bitter hops cutting through the caramel. It was medium bodied and carbonated enough to not be sticky, so quite easy to drink despite the Imperial ABV.

At 9% it’s probably just as well there was only 200mls of it, but still it didn’t feel like quite enough. It was like when you think you’ve finished your coffee but there’s still one sip in the cup, and you can feel that something’s not quite right. I just wanted one more sip. Maybe two. Maybe 130 more mls. …

Published in: on July 8, 2012 at 3:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

#158 Rogue – Dead Guy Ale

Name: Dead Guy Ale
Brewery: Rogue (Newport, Oregon, USA)
Style: Heller Bock
ABV:  6.6%
Source: TART on Beverly Blvd, Hollywood

1) Craft Beer
2) Disneyland

That’s a list of all of the things that I like about Los Angeles. It’s not very long, but both of those things are so great that it’s worth visiting the city and traipsing the bleached white footpaths alone (only the homeless walk in LA) to reach them.

You don’t need to traipse far to find craft beer either. Even the gas stations in LA sell Sierra Nevada Pale Ale (now that’s convenience), and any decent restaurant will probably have a handful of local craft beers on tap too.

I had this Dead Guy Ale at an amazing little restaurant in Hollywood called TART where everything on the menu was $12.99. For that I got a plate heaving with delicious food, and for another 5 bucks or so I got this beer. I wish real life was like that!

It was pretty lively for a dead guy – with nutty caramelly malt balancing bitter citrussy hops.  It was  I had a bit of a ‘Halleluljah!’ moment as soon as I sipped it, which made me realise that while Mexico’s craft beer scene had been much more promising than I’d expected, I hadn’t had a really good beer in quite some time.

PS – As you can tell by the fact it’s in focus, that’s not my picture. I’m still iPhoneless!

Published in: on January 17, 2012 at 2:55 pm  Leave a Comment  

#19 Rogue Morimoto Soba Ale

Rogue Morimoto Soba Ale

The sun was just behind a cloud, honest.

Name: Morimoto Soba Ale
Brewery: Rogue (Newport, OR, U.S.A)
Style: Soba Ale
ABV: 4.8%
Source: The Beer Store

The sun is out in Auckland!

And as we all know, the first glimpses of summer (no matter how fleeting and misleading) call for beer to be drunk in the middle of the day. This is not something to be debated, it’s simply a ritual I learned at university and have honoured ever since.

Olivia came over for lunch and we split this Soba Ale. I’d had this at Hashigo Zake nearly 3 years ago and had always remembered it fondly for it’s uniqueness – presumably owing to the fact that it’s made using soba (also known as buckwheat). Fun fact: buckwheat is not a wheat, but a member of the rhubarb family. Fancy that!

As you can see it pours a rather lovely colour – golden and slightly hazy. I think the aroma is the best thing about this beer: it’s unusual and yet somehow really familiar… I smelled marmalade, appletiser, and grass (although the neighbour was mowing the lawn), and we both thought it reminded us of something from our childhood – a summer holiday maybe. As is often the way though, we drank it all before we nailed it on the head.

The taste is quite light, nutty, and not at all sweet, nor overly bitter. It has a light mouthfeel and quite a quick dry finish. It was really nice and refreshing, I think I wanted just a little bit more from it. I guess that might be a sign of a newbie craft beer taster, always wanting BIG flavours so that we can jump up and down and use exclamation marks when we write about them!

I’m nearly 3 weeks into this blog now, and it’s funny how the things I thought would be hard are easy and vice versa. For example: thinking of things to say about each beer = easy. Forcing myself to shut up = hard. Finding a different beer to drink each day = easy. Sticking to just one = very hard.

I was a bit greedy yesterday and drank four different beers. As well as the 8 Wired Big Smoke I had a Mac’s Sassy Red, a Moa Five Hop Winter Ale, and an Emerson’s Taiere George. They were all worth breaking the rules for!

Published in: on August 27, 2011 at 2:51 pm  Comments (1)