Food, Beer & Buffoonery - Hops

Review: Amarcord Amber Ale

Amarcord Amber Ale

I was at Cost Plus a few days ago, and I don’t usually buy beer there, as it’s usually overpriced, but I saw a selection of beers from an Italian Craft Brewery that I’d never seen before, let alone head of: Amarcord.  I couldn’t resist trying one. I chose their Amber Ale. It was a pleasant surprise.

The beer poured a very nice clear, light amber, with a surprisingly think, dense, creamy head. It had a nice malty smell. Slightly sweet smelling, with just a hint of fruit and hops.

The flavor was malty yet crisp. Just a little hoppy. Quite good. Very balanced. Medium carbonation.

At this point I noticed the alcohol content. 9%? Wow! I honestly was not expecting that at all after having had a few sips already. I would have guessed 6-7% maybe. There was virtually no alcohol “heat” or flavor. Very impressive indeed for a 9% beer.

I’m not a big fan of high alcohol beers – I enjoy easier drinking session beers. But this is probably the best high alcohol beer I’ve ever had. I had no clue I was drinking something so strong — which of course could be dangerous.

I’d definitely recommend giving this beer a try it you can find it. It’s quite good. Try a Cost Plus near you…

Smoked Tea Porter?

I just bought a tea from Twining’s called Lapsang Souchong Tea. It’s a tea that comes from China’s Fujian province and Taiwan. The tea leaves are laid out on bamboo trays and smoked over smoldering pinewood.

The tea has a very smoke flavor. Almost like a Scotch.

Of course, the first thing that popped into my mind was a Smoked Tea Porter. Or rather a Lapsang Souchong Porter. Anyone care to brew one? I imagine a strong quart of this poured into the kettle during the last couple minutes of the boil, or just after the boil, might make a really nice smoked porter.

Perhaps I’ll create my own recipe and post here.