Tag Archives: Michigan

593. Kuhnhenn Forbidden IPA

Kuhnhenn ForbiddenKuhnhenn is a new brewery for me as I had not even heard of them before receiving this beer in my box from Virginia. After trying this beer I am certainly going to look for more beer from them in future trades. I like the simple label on this 12 ounce bottle. Forbidden IPA gets its name from the use of black rice (which is also known as Forbidden rice) in the beer.

The first thing that I noticed was the odd color of the beer. Hard to see in the photo but it had an almost purple hue to it which I don’t think I have ever seen in a beer (other than the terrible blueberry from AB InBev which I am sure was artificial). The color was certainly not a bad thing just something that made this beer unique. The aroma was mostly tropical hops but there was some sweet malt in there too. Taste had those same tropical hops but also added some pine and floral hops. This beer is big on hops but still quite balanced.

Alcohol is very well hidden considering it is almost 10% ABV. Another very well done DIPA and I look forward to my other bottle from Kuhnhenn.
Pros:
Hoppy
Cons:
Alcohol Content: 9.75% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Kuhnhenn Brewing
Brewers Description:

563. Founders Dirty Bastard

Founders Dirty BastardI had this beer after drinking the Backwoods Bastard and should have done them in the opposite order as Backwoods is the barrel aged version of Dirty Bastard. Because this one doesn’t have the bourbon character from the barrel I actually enjoyed it more than Backwoods.

Appearance is very similar, dark brown with a thin tan head that disappeared soon after it was poured. The aroma had a nice combination of sweet caramel and dark fruit. Tastes is similar but also has a nice hop finish which surprised me from a Scotch Ale. The 8.5% alcohol was well hidden.

Overall a tasty beer for a style that I do not drink often. 
Pros: 

Cons: 
Alcohol Content: 8.5% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): 50
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Founders Brewing
Brewers Description: So good it’s almost wrong. Dark ruby in color and brewed with seven varieties of imported malts. Complex in finish, with hints of smoke and peat, paired with a malty richness and a right hook of hop power to give it the bad attitude that a beer named Dirty Bastard has to live up to. Ain’t for the wee lads.

562. Founders Brewing Backwoods Bastard

Founders Backwoods BastardI know there are plenty of people out there that will disagree with me on this review and they have every right to. I review beer by my personal preference and I generally do not like big bourbon tasting beers. Beer should taste like beer not bourbon so when I come across a boozy beer like this I sip it and try to enjoy the complex flavors but the booze is hard to ignore. The same goes for coffee flavored beer, I don’t like coffee so a beer that has big coffee notes is not going to do well by me.

This beer has a great dark color and a nice tan head that dissipates quickly. Aroma has plenty of bourbon and alcohol. The taste is complex with some dark fruits, vanilla and the bourbon finish that just overpowers everything else. This is a good example of a barrel aged beer but not something that I enjoyed or would buy again. Giving it 3 stars as it is a complex well made beer just not my style. 
Pros:
Complex
Cons: Bourbon overload
Alcohol Content: 10.2% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): 50
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Founders Brewing
Brewers Description: Expect lovely, warm smells of single malt scotch, oaky bourbon barrels, smoke, sweet caramel and roasted malts, a bit of earthy spice, and a scintilla of dark fruit. It’s a kick-back sipper made to excite the palate.

561. Founders Brewing Cerise

Founders CeriseThis bottle is actually from 2012 and I almost forgot I had it. Founders replaced Cerise (a cherry beer) with Rubaeus (a raspberry beer) in 2013 due to a shortage of cherries in Michigan. After having both beers I have to say I enjoyed Rubaeus more than Cerise so hoping they continue with Rubaeus in 2014 even if the cherry crop is better.

Cerise pours a nice deep red, not like a red ale but more like cranberry juice. The head was gone in a couple of minutes and no lacing on the glass. There was also a fair amount of sediment in the bottom of the glass – not sure if this was due to the year plus in my basement or if it was intended. Aroma was all cherry.

Taste again was dominated by cherry but it was not a kool aid type cherry taste and you can definitely tell you are drinking a beer as there was a nice malt sweetness to offset the tart cherries. This was a very nice beer and easy to drink but not sure I would want more than one in any sitting. 
Pros: 

Cons: 
Alcohol Content: 6.5% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness):
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Founders Brewing
Brewers Description: 

560. Founders Brewing Porter

Founders PorterDecided to open a few bottles of Founders last weekend. Since they are 12 ounce bottles it was easy to get through a couple each day and get reviews done. Started on the low end of the ABV spectrum with their Porter which checks in at 6.5% ABV.

I generally enjoy porters so was looking forward to this one. Not surprisingly this beer was very dark with a thin tan head. Lots of chocolate and other roasted malts in the nose but very little coffee which is a plus for me. The beer is very lightly carbonated but still has a bold rich taste with those same cocoa and roasted malts in the aroma but also a nice hop bite. I drank this beer after only an hour in the fridge so it was chilled but certainly not cold. Seems like this was a good temp for the beer as the flavors really came through.

Overall this was a very enjoyable beer and something I prefer to the huge barrel aged imperial stouts. 
Pros:
Quite tasty and drinkable
Cons: 
Alcohol Content: 6.5% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): 45
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Founders Brewing
Brewers Description: Pours silky black with a creamy tan head. The nose is sweet with strong chocolate and caramel malt presence. No absence of hops gives Founders’ robust porter the full flavor you deserve and expect. Cozy like velvet. It’s a lover, not a fighter.

494. Founders Brewing Rubaeus

Founders RubaeusI’m a bit late getting this review up but if you look hard you might be able to find some of this seasonal beer still on the shelves. Rübæus is a raspberry beer and I am typically not a fan of fruit beers but Founders did a nice job with this one.

The color is amazing and the picture captures it quite well – a bright red with minimal head. Smell has tons of raspberry and is very sweet. Fortunately the taste keeps the raspberry but loses most of the sweetness. No doubt this beer is sweeter than your average beer but it is not the syrupy sweet you often get with fruit beer.

Overall I really enjoyed this beer but I am not sure I could drink more than one on any given evening. Something to try but certainly not going to be an everyday beer. 
Pros:
Fruit flavored without the syrup sweetness
Cons: 
Alcohol Content: 5.7% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): 15
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Founders Brewing
Brewers Description: Not another boring summer wheat beer or lemonade shandy—Rübæus is Founders’ way to celebrate the season’s warmest months. Optimizing the flavor of fresh raspberries added at multiple stages during fermentation, this stunning berry red masterpiece is the perfect balance of sweet and tart. No question about it, with a hefty malt bill and 5.7% ABV, this beer is 100% Founders.

462. Brewery Vivant Escoffier Bretta Ale

Vivant EscoffierI had high hopes for this beer being a collaboration with New Belgium Brewing and being a brett beer in a can. Overall I was happy with the beer but I think I am spoiled by the great funky beer coming out of Allagash and Oxbow.

Appearance may be the best part of this beer with a nice orange color and thick off white head. Aroma is a bit odd with some apple tart and a bit of funk but not overly pleasant. Taste was disappointing with a little brett and some light fruit but also some flavors that just seemed off, not even sure what they were. Alcohol was well hidden but overall this is not a beer that I would seek out again. 
Pros:
Appearance
Cons: Odd flavor 
Alcohol Content: 9.25% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Brewery Vivant
Brewers Description: Escoffier is our much heralded collaboration with New Belgium Brewing in Ft. Collins, CO. Coinciding with their entry into Michigan, this project began with a friendly meeting at our pub. After a few beers and some food, the idea to brew a beer together started to take shape.

Auguste Escoffier is considered the master chef of the 20th century. His ideas and methods left an indellible imprint on the culinary world, and are still in use to this very day. We named our beer ‘Escoffier’ to celebrate the relationship between great food and excellent beer, and how they elevate each other when enjoyed together. If you’ve ever visited our pub, this is the cornerstone of what we try to accomplish.

Characteristics: This beer displays our Farmhand yeast and a wild yeast from New Belgium’s brewery called Brettanomyces. Expect a brew that is somewhat dry and malt forward with the “horse blanket” funkiness synonymous with brett. This beer will only get better with time, and cellar well for years to come.

457. Bell’s Brewery Third Coast Beer

Bells Third CoastI acquired this one a trade, honestly not sure where but I had high expectations after drinking Hopslam and Two Hearted. This one is a blonde ale so I guess I should not have expected much.

Appearance is probably the best part of this beer with a nice light orange color and bright white head. Smell is slightly sweet but not very pleasant. Taste is simple with only a bit of earthy grass and bread. Not a lot happening with this one and not something I would seek out.

No question Bell’s is a quality brewery but this is a style that does not lend itself to big aroma or taste. Completely average blonde ale that looks much better than it actually was. 
Pros:
Appearance
Cons: Bland
Alcohol Content: 4.8% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Bell’s Brewery
Brewers Description: Assertively hopped, Third Coast Beer offers a crisp, dry bitterness with a mixture of floral & herbal aromas.

440. Short’s Brewing Rye Not

Short's Brewing Rye NotThis one came from a trade and was from a brewery I had not tried before. Short’s is a brewpub in Northwest Lower Michigan and it looks like the only distribute in Michigan.

The Rye Not? is a rye IPA and part of their specialty bottle release program. Appearance is a nice unfiltered orange with a thin white head. The rye dominates the aroma with some citrus and floral hops coming through. Lots of rye spiciness in the flavor with a fair amount of bitterness. Overall this was an enjoyable rye beer but nothing too exciting.
Pros:
Very drinkable and good rye character
Cons: 
Alcohol Content: 6.5% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): 84
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Short’s Brewing
Brewers Description: Rye Not? has massive floral hop qualities, amplified by notable rye characteristics that blend together perfectly and offer ample citrus and subtle pine fragrances, creating a truly memorable nose. The rye-based theme continues as the distinctive flavors of this grain stand out as the distinguishable malt characteristics. The focus from rye to an intense bitterness shifts quickly and lingers well into the finish, transitioning into a heavy dryness during prolonged tastes.

435. Bell’s Brewery Two Hearted Ale

Bell's Two Hearted AleI ended up with two bottles of this beer through trades and I am glad I got them both. I enjoyed one a couple of weeks ago and I had this one yesterday. Nice looking beer with a bright yellow and thin white head. The head disappears quickly leaving only a little lacing on the glass.

Aroma has lots of floral and citrus hops and the taste follows but with a very nice balance. Two Hearted is refreshing and very easy to drink. Having a six pack of this in the fridge could be dangerous.

This is only my second beer from Bell’s, the first being Hopslam, and so far I am impressed. Hoping to get my hands on more from Bell’s for future reviews. 
Pros:
Very well balanced
Cons: 
Alcohol Content: 7.0% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Bell’s Brewery
Brewers Description: Bell’s Two Hearted Ale is defined by its intense hop aroma and malt balance. Hopped exclusively with the Centennial hop varietal from the Pacific Northwest, massive additions in the kettle and again in the fermenter lend their characteristic grapefruit and pine resin aromas. A significant malt body balances this hop presence; together with the signature fruity aromas of Bell’s house yeast, this leads to a remarkably drinkable American-style India Pale