Oh Christmas beer, oh Christmas beer, how lovely...

Nov 17, 2013

Another week and another fantastic adventure to Huron Market. 

Fresh off of his visit to the IX International Beer Festival in Cleveland, Huron Market beer guru Tim Board had some great choices for me to drink this week. 

Like the weather, my taste preferences have been up and down and all over the place.  Being that it has been mostly cold, I decided to have Tim recommend me some bigger, heavier brews. 

However, we can’t forget about a Christmas beer or two.

I wanted a Christmas beer, but I wanted something beyond the traditional honey and cinnamon blended brews that tend to dominate the Winter Warmer beer style.  Tim had the perfect recommendation:

Anderson Valley Brewing Company’s Winter Solstice 6.9% ABV
Pouring a dark copper with a thin and light head, Winter Solstice pleases the senses with very mild aromas of orange peel, allspice, a hint of black licorice and just a touch of cinnamon. 

No scent seemed to dominate over the other, and the aroma was very pleasing leading into the tastes.

Nice, smooth mellow flavors of caramel, orange peel, grapes and holiday spices filled the palate with a nice, creamy medium carbonated mouthfeel.  Winter Solstice has by far been the smoothest winter style beer I’ve had to date.  Very mild, very balanced and very refreshing!

Ok, so I had my Christmas fix for the week, even though it’s not even Thanksgiving yet!  Poor Thanksgiving, it’s become the middle child of the holiday season. 

Everybody loves to dress up and go to Halloween parties and what not, and then as soon as November hits it’s all Christmas all the time.  Thanksgiving has just gotten lost in the shuffle. 

It’s quite sad really. 

It’s probably my favorite holiday. 

Show up, eat, watch football and sleep. 

What more could you possibly ask for??!!

Anyways, enough on my sympathy for Thanksgiving.  I told Tim I also needed to get my weekly fix of a hop overdose.  He delivered with another truly uniquely brewed beers by the most off-centered brewery in the country:

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery’s American Beauty 9% ABV
This Imperial Pale Ale is a truly uniquely brewed beer.  Brewed with granola and a cornucopia of American hops, American Beauty packs a huge hop punch along with a truly unique body. 

Named after The Grateful Dead Album, American Beauty the beer is as delicious to the palate as American Beauty the album is pleasing to the ears.

Pouring a clear, pure copper in color, this imperial pale ale leaves a beautiful off-white head that leaves beautiful lacing on the glass throughout the drinking experience. 

Big bold tastes of grapefruit, pine, floral and citrus hops, a bit of sour grapes and a very bitter finish explode in your mouth to provide a wonderful drinking experience. You can really get a feel for the granola in this beer when it comes to the body and mouthfeel. 

This mouthfeel is very thick and full with a medium carbonation.  Definitely not a beer for the beginner, this brew is a long sipper that gets better after each sip. 

So far, Tim is 2 for 2 on picking out a great group of beers for me this week.  But who am I kidding?  He’ll go 3 for 3, simply because I love beer.  I love beer and I love getting beer at Huron Market!  Even better, I love getting a growler of draft beer to go from the growler station, especially on Tuesdaywhen all growlers are 10% off!

For a second there, the pressure was on for Tim to go 3 for 3, but I pretty much alleviated that pressure for, again, the simple fact that I love beer.  I love all different styles, and so far I’ve had two completely different styled beers, so let’s go for a third!

Epic Brewing Company’s Big Bad Baptist Imperial Stout 12% ABV
Just at the cutoff of the allotted alcohol content allowed for beer in the state of Ohio, Big Bad Baptist is by far the best brew I’ve had from the Salt Lake City, UT brewery. 

A Barrel Aged Imperial Stout that is as awesome as its name, Big Bad Baptist is a tremendously awesome brew that ranks up there with one of my all-time favorites.

Pouring a pitch black, this brew has nice, cocoa colored head that doesn’t hang around too much throughout the drinking experience. 

Strong aromas of coffee, chocolate, vanilla, oak and whiskey fill the nostrils and might make you a little weak in the knees. 

The tastes are very similar to the aromas, with a very strong, fresh brewed coffee taste up front, followed by smooth chocolate, then a slight oak smokiness and finished with a smooth rounded out hint of vanilla due to the barrel aging of the brew. 

A very heavy, full bodied, creamy and mildly carbonated ale, this brew will best be enjoyed when shared with family and friends after Thanksgiving dinner.  Get it while you can, because once they’re out of stock at Huron Market, it’ll be hard to get back in.  This brew was only brewed in small batches and has a limited release. 

So get it while you can!

Another week and another three delicious beers.  Huron Market never disappoints.  They always have new beers in stock and they always have something that is sure to please even the most picky of palates.  And if you just don’t see anything you like, then buy some liquor-yes, they do sell liquor!

Well, that’s all for this week.  And as the holidays are fast approaching, always remember that beer makes a great gift!  Coming from a guy’s perspective, I’d much rather get a 6 pack of beer for Christmas than….well…..pretty much anything! 

Also, Huron Market’s single bottle section would make for great stocking stuffers, just sayin’.

Also, always remember:  They don’t serve beer in hospitals or prisons, so please drink responsibly!

Cheers, ya filthy animals!



Went and tried Kentucky bourbon ale...awesome