Coming in at just under 20% abv, Black Tuesday could really make for a Blacked Out Tuesday. This Barrel Aged Imperial Stout packs a heckuva malt punch, tasting much of raisins and dried fruits. The bourbon barrel character shines through in some caramels and a slight oakiness, as well as the slight alcohol bite. This beer makes for a wonderful shared pour among friends, but be careful when enjoying alone. It may leave you wondering where Tuesday’s gone.
Appearance. Black in color. Slight head, tan.
Aroma. Very malt forward. Some caramels along with dried fruits, raisins.
Taste. Very malt forward. Raisins. Whiskey characteristics (oaky and caramels).
Mouth feel. Medium heat (alcohol). Very warming. Some slickness. Beer was thick, but not as thick as one would think.
Happy National Beer Day!! That’s right, on this day in history, 1933 to be exact, the Cullen-Harrison Act (1)(2) went into effect. This allowed people to buy, sell and drink beer containing up to 3.2% alcohol by weight (or 4.05% by volume) in states that had enacted their own law allowing such sales. By December, prohibition was repealed. The brewing industry had sustained a major hit, and it wasn’t until the 70s and 80s that craft brewers and something other than light american lagers started to once again grace the U.S. with their presence. For the next few decades, the brewing industry saw growth across the country, with brewery after brewery popping up across the country as states became brewer friendly. Great Raft is one such brewery. I am very excited to be trying their 100% Brettanomyces fermented IPA.
Oceans Between Us is a very hop forward beer, which is to be expected with an IPA. It poured a golden straw color, with a white, fluffy head. Citrus and grass hit my nose. It is very prickly throughout, with higher carbonation. The beer is like biting into a grapefruit, but at 7% ABV (not Cullen-Harrison friendly), I would not recommend having it at breakfast…if you have a workday ahead. The beer even finishes like a grapefruit, and it finishes dry, leaving you thirsting for more. Upon reccomendation from the Nation’s, I plan to cellar a bottle (it was a conundrum with it being an IPA, but the Brett won out). I will be reporting back with how this beer changed in 6 months.
In the 1620, the Pilgrims crossed the Ocean, and landed on Plymouth Rock because the ship was running out of beer.(3) The beer tradition continued flourishing, except for those dark times in the early 1900s. Thanks to the Cullen-Harrison Act and the repeal of Prohibition, beer was able to be imbibed in public. By the late 20th century, beer began to expand past the American Light Lagers that dominated for the majority of the 1900s. Today, there is large variety of styles to enjoy, and more seem to pop up monthly, as homebrewers and commercial brewers alike continue to push the limits and experiment against the norm. Great Raft has done a wonderful job so far with their continued innovation and experimentation. I look forward to more from their Belgian series of beers, as well as their general selection. I am also glad there is only the Red River, and not an Ocean Between Us.
This is my first taste of what the brewery in Water Valley, Ms. has to offer. The name fits this Amber Ale. While the copperhead is one of the more common poisonous snakes in the region, the amber ale is a common style found in most breweries. Like the snake, which is known to be the most likely to bite, the amber is a beer that is easy to sneak up on you. It drinks similar to it’s blonde and pale cousins, and doesn’t pack the alcohol or hop punch that other styles do, much the same as the snake, which although is venomous, has a milder venom in comparison.
The Copperhead, we’re talking about the beer now y’all, has some wonderful ruby notes to the eye. This is a malt forward beer, which is to be expected with an amber. A certain roastiness hits the nose, and the beer starts crisp on the tongue. Toast continues, along with caramel and nutty notes towards the middle of the palate. The beer finishes with an earthy, almost spicy backend. Overall all impression is a wonderful beer to have at a cookout in the fall, heck even winter down here. This brew would pair wonderfully with any red meat dish.
I remember as a kid going to play by the creek, always watching out for cotton mouths (water moccasins). We’d always repeat back the common rhyme to not confuse corals and kings, “Red on Black, friendly jack. Red on yella, kill a fella.” We’d even have to watch out for rattlers around here, and listen for ’em too. I do remember being on the lookout for copperheads, but they always seemed to play 2nd or 3rd fiddle to the other snakes common in Louisiana. Much the same does the amber ale seem to take a back seat to the more popular and bigger beer styles, such as the IPA, the Barleywine, the Imperial Stout, and any other style one can think of in this, more alcohol, more hop world that craft beer is in sometimes. I always have to step back and remember that even though it may not have as catchy a name, have some wonderful rhyme, or make sounds that sends shivers, the amber ale can still pack a heck of a punch if you are not prepared. Similarly can the copperhead strike without warning if you are not vigilant.
I remember being a child and seeing pictures of a Rougarou. It haunted my childhood dreams. When I would be leaving a deer stand at night and see eyes, it was a Rougarou. I was terrified of being in the woods at night. Now that I have grown up I know that this hellish beast was something a taxidermist fashioned out of deer, coyote, and bobcat parts. Tin Roof has recreated this Rougarou nightmare with a beast that is 9.7% ABV and 108 ibus. I don’t fear this Rougarou. I respect it’s power. The only thing that scares me now is the car ride home…thankfully Uber has that covered.
The aroma is a mix of dark roasted malts, chocolate and coffee with some citrus. The hops are pretty powerful at the front end but quickly faded to a dry, stout like finish. I will definitely be grabbing another bottle of this.
‘Tin Roof Brewing Co. Tap room’
Cypress Suds on Facebook
Cypress Suds on Twitter
When first starting this blog, I figured it would be a cakewalk. As it turns out, I greatly underestimated the difficulty that I would have in writing. I am a creature of habit. As we all do from time to time, I settle into my ways, especially in the evening time. I am now challenging myself to review a beer a week. I hope to stick to majority Louisiana beers to start, but will definitely expand out.
To break my habit and start to writing, there was no better choice for me than Creature of Habit by Great Raft Brewing in Shreveport. First let me say that I love what these guys are doing. I have yet to be disappointed by one of their brews, but enough about the brewery, let’s get to the beer!
Creature of Habit is their seasonal brown ale. It’s a coffee aged ale. Coffee is the definitive characteristic, complimented by some nutty and biscuity malt qualities. I am not one for cold brewed coffee, but a cold brew combined with coffee, that is another story. Sipping on this beer takes me so many different places. With one sip I am with my buddies after a morning hunt, eating a hearty breakfast at a local diner, sipping on a piping hot mug of drip coffee. The next drink comes and I am sipping espresso whilst visiting with friends. Coffee aroma and flavors abound with this brew bringing together blue-collar and the upper-echelon alike.
That is what I love about beer as a whole, there’s a style for everybody out there. Everyone has different tastes, sometimes we have to break out of our comfort zones of taste, and sometimes it’s fine to fall back and be a creature of habit.
Cypress Suds on Facebook
Cypress Suds on Twitter
*Thanks for reading, all comments and critiques are much appreciated. I look forward to sharing the world of beer*