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Featured Beers
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Home Featured Beers

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Featured Beers

Welcome to our Featured Beer section. Here, you'll be able read about any of the beers we've featured in Alcoholmanac Magazine, plus a few web exclusive beers. You can browse the beers by category by selecting from the options above.

Alternately, you can seek out a specific beer by using our drop down boxes. Simply select a beer category from the left box, then select a beer from within that category from the right box and hit "go." It will take you directly to that beer's write up!

Don't forget that you can visit our "Learning Center" by selecting the option from the main menu on the left. There, you can select "beer" to learn all about the different beer categories and learn some interesting beer facts.



Klaster Dark Beer PDF Print E-mail
Featured Beers - Brown Ales

Klaster Brewery
Czech Republic


They Say:
“Clear, sweety taste, with carameliness and slight hop bitterness.” [We love their use of the English language.]


We Say:
So, I went to a second import for the next brown ale, from a Czech brewery called Klaster. You might expect that finding a good brown ale from a Czech brewery would be like finding a good Irish whiskey coming out of Russia, but they have done it. Unlike the Newcastle, you’ll find this beer in a green bottle—much better for keeping out the pesky sunlight. I am pretty sure that the bottles that I sampled from were pretty true to the taste that was intended. This brew shared the characteristics you would expect from a traditional brown ale. The pour revealed a lighter, reddish body with a medium full, off-white head. The scent was light and fresh with a slightly caramel odor. It felt light on the tongue with a crisp, yet smooth bite. Klaster Dark tastes sweet, light and somewhat fruity. It finishes with a mild, almost “appley” (to use their nomenclature) aftertaste. I think a bit more pronounced hops flavor would have made this a perfect beer, but it’s light, sweet and fruity taste makes it very drinkable.


Photo by: Joe Szebeni - True Image Photography




 
Newcastle Brown Ale PDF Print E-mail
Featured Beers - Brown Ales

Picture of Newcastle Brown Ale

Newcactle Breweries, Ltd.
Newcastle, England


They Say:
Well, this beer must be so widely known and consumed that they apparently didn’t feel the need to write up a true description of their famous beer. Their web site does contain phrases like “smooth, never bitter,” and “full flavored, yet easy to drink.” We guess that will do.


I Say:
This is the most popular brown ale in the world, and it is the standard by which all others are measured. It stakes claim to being the best-selling bottled beer in the UK, as well as all of Europe. It has a link to English pub lifestyle so strong, that it is nicknamed the “dog.” This comes from men using the excuse, “I’m going to walk the dog,” or “I’m going to see a man about a dog,” which really meant they were going to the pub. Newcastle boasts a gorgeous, reddish-brown body under a light golden head. It should be sweet, mildly hopped, with a creamy mouth and smooth finish. It should be one of the easiest drinking beers you can have, and has long been one of my favorite brews. Unfortunately, that was not my most recent experience with the fabled beer. I sampled two bottles of Newcastle for this article from two different stores, and each one was flat-out spoiled. Spoiled by light exposure, and spoiled by heat. It just has to be hotter than 65 or 70 degrees Fahrenheit to damage the beer’s flavor. Long shipping overseas, trucking across country, sitting in warehouses, and then the time on the store shelf all leaves the beer vulnerable to mishandling. Inconsistency in the quality of imports is always an issue, but Newcastle’s use of clear bottles only compounds the problem. You see, nothing is more damaging to beer than sunlight, and clear bottles not only allow all of that gorgeous reddish-brown beer shine through, but also allows all of those UVs to be soaked up, too. Nevertheless, this beer is still the king of all brown ales, and I encourage you to try it, but I would find a pub that serves the beer on tap, cleans their lines often and goes through a lot of it. That’s the best way to assure that you’re getting the best quality import you can.


Photo by: Joe Szebeni - True Image Photography




 
Blackout Stout PDF Print E-mail
Featured Beers - Stouts

Bottle of Stout

Great Lakes Brewing Company
Cleveland, OH


They Say:
A Russian Imperial Stout with a hearty malt body and bold hop flavor. A.B.V.: 9.0%. A.B.W.: 7.2%.


We Say:
At first glance, this beer looks like an ordinary stout — dark black body with a heavy, caramel-colored head. Hops dominate the aroma. The mouth is between creamy and oily. It’s not until the flavor hits you that you realize what makes an Imperial stout an Imperial stout, and what makes this Imperial stout a pure example of one: alcohol. 9% alcohol by volume. We’re talking strong ... just shy of rocket fuel. But in my book, if you’re going to drink a stout you should be serious about it. The good news is that this strong alcohol content is well balanced with a rich, creamy, heavily roasted flavor. That helps take the edge off.


Availability:
February - March


Photo by: Joe Szebeni - True Image Photography


 
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