As of today New Belgium is officially available throughout the state of Ohio!! Though a few distributors let slide last week you can get it everywhere now, better yet Ranger, Fat Tire, and Triple are all $2.99 a bomber! Yes… two dollars and 99 cents, 299 pennies, 1 cent less than $3 also translated to the fucking cheapest I’ve ever seen a god damned bomber of good beer in my entire life. If you feel like getting out and hitting up an event then read the massive list after the jump
In the continuing run up to New Belgium’s appearance in Ohio I’m doing a review of their flagship beer, Fat Tire. Like Accumulation and Ranger New Belgium sent this to me to review and help introduce our readers to their beers. Also like Ranger I previously reviewed this beer while on vacation in North Carolina, where New Belgium will soon be opening a new, second, brewery to compliment their original location in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Named in honor of our co-founder’s bike trip through Europe, Fat Tire Amber Ale marks a turning point in the young electrical engineer’s home brewing. Belgian beers use a far broader palette of ingredients (fruits, spices, esoteric yeast strains) than German or English styles. Together with co-founder Kim Jordan, they traveled around sampling their homebrews to the public. Fat Tire won fans with its sense of balance: toasty, biscuit-like malt flavors coasting in equilibrium with hoppy freshness. Fat Tire: Pairs well with people.
If you haven’t heard then I’m happy to tell you that New Belgium Brewing Company will be coming to Ohio on December 16th, just over a month away. In perpetration for there roll out they kindly hooked me up with some samples. We took a taste of Accumulation last week when the first snows fell and today I’m trying their Ranger IPA. I first reviewed New Belgium’s Ranger IPA last year after bringing a bottle back from North Carolina.
Bring out the hops! This clear amber beauty bursts at the starting gate with an abundance of hops: Cascade (citrus), Chinook (floral/citrus), and Simcoe (fruity) lead off the beer, with Cascade added again for an intense dry hop flavor. Brewed with pale and dark caramel malts that harmonize the hop flavor from start to finish, Ranger is a sessionable splendor for all you hopinistas. Thank your Beer Ranger!
In honor of the first significant snow fall in Cincinnati today I decided it was time to get around to trying the sample of Accumulation that New Belgium kindly provided me in advance of their statewide roll out next month (December 16th). Recent brewing history has had winter seasonal beers focus on the “winter warmer” variety of a dark, roasty, spice laden brew packing a highish abv. This year both Dogfish Head and New Belgium are throwing a curve in that tradition. Dogfish Head is bringing out a cider/beer hybrid featuring pear in a pilsner. I’ll let New Belgium explain their new brew below:
Accumulation White IPA was inspired by the white beauty that falls each winter from our Colorado sky. Flurries of Mosaic and Amarillo hops bring soft fruit and citrus flavor, followed by a layer of bitter. Piled high in IBUs, Accumulation will make your winter brighter.
Ohio is receiving lots of distribution from new (to us) breweries at the end of 2013. New Belgium, Deschutes, and others will be here before the end of the year but it’s getting kicked off with Clown Shoes. Clown Shoes is a contract brewing operation out of Massachusetts that’s known for somewhat insensitive beer names like Tramp Stamp, Lubrication, and Brown Angel. Controversial names haven’t stopped them from making big and interesting beers for a few years distributing them to a variety of states before finally coming here.
Clown Shoes is initially gracing Ohio with 6 different brews: Galactica and Hoppy Feet are here in 4-packs of 12 oz bottles, Chocolate Sombrero, Genghis Pecan, and Muffin Top are all in 22 oz bombers, finally Tramp Stamp is draft only, at least for now. I did a review of a bottle of Tramp Stamp that I brought back from Georgia last year, you can read that here. I also had a bottle of their Chocolate Sombrero which, in short, is a spicy chocolate imperial stout starting out with some heat that slowly builds and adds in rich chocolate as the glass warms. I have yet to have Genghis Pecan or Muffin Top and my thoughts on Galactica and Hoppy Feet are just below!
Over the past couple weeks, I’ve been going through my Untappd profile, rounding up my most memorable beer than I was lucky enough to try in 2012. I ended up with a total of fifteen beers, consisting of a top ten and five honorable mentions which were just short of the cut. It’s not quite the end of 2012 yet, so I suppose it’s possible that late additions bump some of these out, but it’s a risk I’m going to make.
- I definitely like barrel-aged beers.
- Cincinnati-area beers performed well, taking 4 of the 15 spots.
- This list was really, really hard to cull down. There is so much great beer out there and I’ve been able to try so much of it. I love the choice that better beer drinkers have now.
Now, for the list. There are more details for each beer in the captions of the slideshow below, but this here’s the summary. By the way, the top ten are in no particular order.
- Rivertown Lambic (2010)
- Founders Looking Glass
- Sierra Nevada barrel-aged draft only beers
- Quaff Bros. Joseph
- The Bruery Black Tuesday (2009, 2011) & Chocolate Rain
- Goose Island Juliet
- Dark Horse Bourbon Barrel Plead the Fifth (2011, 2012)
- Goose Island Bourbon County Stout (2012)
- Westvleteren XII
- Listermann Cincinnatus
- Rivertown Sour Cherry Porter
- Stone Enjoy By 11.09.12
- Quaff Bros Sour Grapes
- New Belgium La Folie
- Founders Better Half
The format is a little awkward below with the captions, so if you’d like a better view of them, you can do so here.
Whenever I find myself in Indiana I always see what New Belgium beers are available, luckily I again found myself in this situation over the weekend. I had heard about the Super IPA being released but little more than that. When I got to Crown Liquor in downtown Indy I started asking what was new and they busted open a box of this for me. Sadly though if you want this you gotta head across the state line to Indiana, I encourage you all to go do that now!
If you recall from my New Belgium review roundup I failed to write, or more likely failed to save, my notes regarding my tasting of their Ranger IPA. You may also recall that I freaking loved their beers. So when I made a pit stop in Nashville last week I was sure to pick up some more Ranger. You can get New Belgium in Indiana as well, but still no distribution in Ohio or KY.
Here’s the notes from the first day of Beer Bloggers Conference 2012 in Indy. Not sure if I’ll stick to this format for the next 2 days but time will tell. So far there has been lots of interesting stuff to share that I hope everyone enjoys reading!
Any dedicated readers know I’m a crazy Belgian fanatic, as such I’ve always been enticed by this Colorado brewery I’d heard rumors of known as New Belgium Brewing. Sadly though, they don’t distribute to Ohio or Kentucky, though I just discovered they do have limited distribution to Indiana. Over Memorial Day weekend I went up to Chicago to spend the holiday with my sister’s family. To my overwhelming delight I discovered that New Belgium had significant distribution to the Chicago Area. Needless to say I picked up one or two of every New Belgium style they had. Later in June we went to North Carolina for the beach where I again found excellent New Belgium coverage resulting in a few more styles for me to try. Now, I present the results of all the New Belgium beers I could buy.
I hope this review will inspire our readers to try New Belgium beers when they get a chance, and hopefully New Belgium will see this demand and add Ohio to their list of over 25 states.