It seems rather fitting that I am posting my March Craft Beer Review on St. Patrick’s Day, even though none of these beers are Irish! Guinness is a really great Irish beer and has a long history dating back to 1770. It may be one of the most famous beer brands in the world. You can pretty much guarantee you will find it on tap, or in a can, at almost any pub. It’s a reliable, comforting, rich, creamy stout that is probably the stout that all other stouts are measured against. But I am not going to write about Guinness or any other Irish beverage, for that matter in this March Craft Beer Review. I like to review new (to me) craft beers on Chews and Brews and so here is my St. Patrick’s Day, non-Irish beer, March Craft Beer Review.
March Craft Beer Review
St. Patrick’s Day is often celebrated by drinking beer, but you don’t have to drink the Irish kind to still take part in the festivities. Here are some great alternatives that you can enjoy (some are still on the stout side) to celebrate the death of Ireland’s patron saint.
Old Man Winter Porter, by Ribstone Creek Brewery in Edgerton, Alberta
A – pours a clear, dark amber, almost black with a thick and foamy beige head
S – definite coffee aroma with some sweet caramel malts and light fruity spice notes
T – I fully expected this to taste like coffee based on the smell, and it does, but it also has some awesome toasted caramel malts and bittersweet chocolate, all balancing together
M – a bitterness with a caramel sweet finishing. Low carbonation making this a milky, creamy and smooth beer.
O – overall this porter was more than a cup of coffee. It had great sweet and bitter balance and at 6.6% alc./vol. the alcohol taste was almost unnoticeable. Great porter!
Monk Chai Winter Porter, by Village Brewery, in Calgary, Alberta
A – Another clear, dark brown, almost black pour. The head is bubbly and off-white and lingers along the side of the glass in lace form.
S – woah! Big spice aromas of cardamom, cloves, ginger and some sweetness
T – aroma follows to the taste with lots of spice – cardamom, cloves, ginger, and the sweetness of chocolate and malts
M – a smooth, low carbonation beer that is quite balanced with sweetness and spice
O – a great execution of a winter spice beer with a lot of flavour going on. I couldn’t drink a lot of this beer – one is enough with everything going on in this chai porter. The bottle design is super cool as well, which is what actually made me buy it in the first place!
Wells Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale, by Charles Wells Brewing in Bedford, United Kingdom
A – clear pour of a caramel brown colour with a light beige head that doesn’t stick to the glass
S – smell of sweet caramel, brown sugar and toasted nuts
T – sweet caramel, a very light hoppy bitterness, toasted nuts and vanilla flavours
M – a dessert beer for sure, with a lot of sweetness. A sticky mouthfeel, medium carbonation, medium bodied.
O – overall if you are a sweet tooth, you will love the sweetness of this beer.
Citradelic IPA by Big Rock Brewery in Calgary, Alberta
A – a slightly hazy, copper, orange coloured pour, with a thin line of lacey, ivory head
S – citrus! Lots and lots of citrus aromas here, from oranges, lemons and grapefruit peels.
T – more citrus! Tastes of oranges, with more citrus notes of lemons, limes and grapefruit peels. A subtle earthy, weedy, grassy, herbal hops and some sweetness from caramel malts and tropical fruit.
M – medium carbonation, medium bodied with a bit of a dry finishing
O – overall I have now found my most favourite IPA ever! I love the amount of citrus in this IPA with a balanced sweetness from malts, and the tropical and citrus fruits. If you have read my blog for a while now, you probably know I am a little bit of a Big Rock Brewery lover – and this brew can be added to my list of reasons why I love what comes out of that brewery so much!
Luck of the Irish Red Ale, by Russell Brewing Company in Surrey, British Columbia
Here is my one “Irish” craft beer review – a beer not even from Ireland, but a beer released with St. Patrick’s Day in mind.
A – a dark amber pour with a very light, thin line of beige head
S – earthy hops on the nose with some light notes of cocoa sweetness
T – a bready, malty, toffee sweetness rounded out by earthy, weedy, grassy hops
M – a low carbonation, medium bodied red ale; the sweet malts steal the show from the bitter hops here, making this easy to drink from the lingering sweetness
O – overall a great beer for your Irish celebrations today if you want to stay away from the heavy Guinness.
Here are some other beer reviews by Chews and Brews!
I hope you enjoyed my March Craft Beer Review! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
How are you celebrating St. Patrick’s Day?