Category Archives: Product Reviews

Beer of the Week: Boddington’s Pub Ale

Boddingtons is one of the most ubiquitous time-honored of the British imports. This beer was brewed for over 200 years at the Strangeways Brewery in Manchester City. Boddingtons managed to remain an independent brewery until 1989, when it was sold to Whitbread. Eventually, through a series of sales, Boddingtons ended up as just one of the many companies owned by InBev, the largest beverage company in the world.

Boddingtons comes in a nitro can at 4.7% abv. Thanks to the widget, the head is amazingly dense and creamy. It has a clean and crisp flavor with roasted malt and hints of a floral, hoppy bitterness. It has a smooth, creamy, and soft mouthfeel, which is really one of the highlights of canned Boddingtons and just another reason to love the widget. The aftertaste is pleasantly bitter. While this beer is different than most available here in the US, Boddingtons is a beer everyone should try at least once. Cheers!

Beer of the Week: Alaskan Oatmeal Stout

One of the top ten oatmeal stouts of 2010 according to the US Open Beer Championships, is Alaskan Oatmeal Stout.

Oatmeal stouts include oats in their predominantly barley grist, resulting in a pleasant, full flavor and a smooth profile that is rich without being grainy.
Alaskan’s Stout pours a nice solid black with a dirty dark tan head, not too thick, but bubbly and firm. Classic stout looks. It has a great smell with lots of coffee, lightly cocoa-y and dark roasted malts with almost no hops. It has decent malt flavors with a distinct nutty flavor. Slightly spicy hops are present in the aftertaste. Feels pretty good, smooth and fairly thick bodied.

In the pacific northwest this is not a beer that is as easily found as the rest of Alaskan’s offerings. However, it is one that is worth searching out. Cheers!

Beer of the Week: Young’s Double Chocolate Stout

For my first beer of the week in 2011, I have chosen Young’s Double Chocolate Stout. Brewed in London by Wells & Young’s Brewing Company Ltd, this great tasting stout combines pale, crystal and chocolate malt, special blend of sugars, Fuggle and Goldings hops, and real dark chocolate.

At a relatively low 5.2%abv, this beer has an rich, full bodied flavor that is very drinkable. The taste opens up with a soft butterscotch flavor and finishes with a rich chocolate flavor. The nitro widget in the can contributes to the smooth mouthfeel. This beer would pair well with a variety of foods and desserts. If you are fan of beers with chocolaty notes, you will probably be a fan of this one. Give it a try and let me know what you think. Cheers!

Spirit Reviews: New Amsterdam Gin

As with the evolution of anything, the longer things are around the more they stray from their traditional forms, and such is the case for many of the gins on the market today, New Amsterdam Straight Gin falling smack into the middle of that category.  Packaged in an attractive, geometrically shaped, diamond glass bottle, featuring the Empire State building on the inside, this gin exudes the confidence of a gin in a much higher price point.

As you twist the cap off the bottle, you get that familiar whiff of your traditional London Dry gin, but that is where the similarities end.  If you are looking for a gin with a big bold flavor, then this is not the one for you.  Rather, this is a gin for those who are looking for a softer gin.

Winner of a double gold medal at the 2010 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, New Amsterdam gin is incredibly smooth, and opens with a sweet, citrus and floral aroma. The palate is smooth and tangy, with more citrus notes than juniper. The finish is thick, filled with citrus and considerably dry.
  The promotional materials claim you can enjoy this straight or over ice, and while that isn’t my personal style, I will say that yes you can.  Where this gin really shines is mixed into a great cocktail.  New Amsterdam, makes a great G&T, Collins, Clover Club, or any other cocktail that contains citrus or fruit.   Unlike other non-traditional gins, such as Dry Fly, or Hendricks, the New Amsterdam will fit into any role that a  London Dry would traditionally fill, albeit with less of a juniper kick.

Priced around $14 for a 750ml bottle, New Amsterdam is a great gin at an excellent price point, and would make a good addition to any bar. It has a place in mine. Cheers!

Rating: ★★★★☆

** The New Amsterdam Straight Gin reviewed was provided to me by DeVries Public Relations. For my policies on reviews and product samples, click here.