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FuzzyBrew Review: Weeping Radish’s Black Radish

September 05, 2011 By: mike Category: FuzzyBrew Review

Black RadishBrewery: Weeping Radish

Location: Grandy, N.C.

Style: Schwarzbier (Black Beer)

ABV: 4.6%

IBU: n/a

FuzzyBrew Rating: 4 of 5

Founded in 1986 by Uli Bennewitz, Weeping Radish specializes in German beers and is North Carolina’s oldest microbrewery.

The brewery sits on 24 acres that form the Weeping Radish Farm Brewery complex, which also includes a butchery & pub and a 14-acre farm that produces vegetables, eggs and herbs.

My parents visited the brewery this summer on a trip to the Outer Banks. They brought home a 22-oz. bottle of the Black Radish, one of Weeping Radish’s flagship brews.

It’s a very drinkable medium-bodied, dark German lager beer in the same style as the Samuel Adams Black Lager.

The chestnut brown beer has a moderate malty aroma and flavors of roasted malts, sweet chocolate and toffee. It pours a nice tan head and has a creamy mouthfeel. Nicely brewed to style.

Guest Review: Fischer Tradition Amber

June 27, 2011 By: grant Category: FuzzyBrew Review

credit: thebrewsite.com

The following is a guest post from University of Memphis journalism student Joe Fairbanks, aka Fairbeezy.

Brewery: Brasserie Fischer

Location: France

Style: Euro Dark Ale

ABV: 6%

FairBeezy Rating: 3.5 of 5

I discovered Fischer Tradition Amber completely by accident. I was in New York for my girlfriend’s 22nd birthday, we had been sightseeing and shopping and it was SCORCHING. They decided on a French restaurant for lunch. Coming from the “I can get a Budweiser anywhere” school of thought, the waiter’s offer of a new kind of brew made my ears perk.

I have to confess, I had never considered that French beer (or “Freedom Beer”, with Independence Day coming up) even existed. The waiter’s proclamation that his home country creates the finest wines and gourmet cheeses in the world did nothing to quell this American beer loyalist‘s anxiety. However, a quick Google search revealed that the Brasserie Fischer tradition began in 1821 in the Alsace region because of the clear, pure water. The company is now owned and run by macrobrewer Heineken, but the original recipe is still intact.

The first thing that struck me about the beer was the bottle. It was old-school for sure – a wire-frame top with a rubber cork. The minimalist paper label is wrapped around the neck. The brewery logo is forged into the body of the glass bottle, which is contoured like an hourglass. I liked it enough that I thought about taking it home, but Delta’s bag handlers cannot be trusted with such a fragile prize.

The beer, at first taste, appears to have a skunky flavor, like it has been exposed to too much light. It has a rich brown/copper color and a thick head. After the first sip, the beer goes into a slightly sweet, cidery taste. There was not a lot of malt taste in it, so it lacked balance, but wasn’t bitter like I expected.

The only real drawback to this beer is the aftertaste, which is sour, and required a glass of water to
cleanse the palate. It went beautifully with a bite of the $17, cheese-covered ham sandwich my sister’s boyfriend was enjoying.

Overall, it’s a pretty solid choice. It certainly isn’t democracy, existentialism or crepes, and I probably wouldn’t pick it over a Shiner Bock, but in the right setting it is nice and can be found in most any French establishment. It can be bought online at liquormart.com.

FuzzyBrew Reviews: Four of Sierra Nevada’s Best of Beer Camp brews

May 26, 2011 By: grant Category: Breweries, Craft beer, FuzzyBrew Review


Mike, Jeff, me and Drew, a friend of a friend, sat down and sampled four of Sierra Nevada’s Best of Beer Camp brews on Saturday. I recorded our initial thoughts on my smartphone.

California common

Jeff: I like it, it wasn’t what I was expecting, I think the only one I’ve had is Anchor Steam. I thought it was going to be darker. It’s refreshing, a little spicy. A little fruity. Good morning beer.

Grant: I thought it instantly tasted like a real champagne of beers. Kinda has a little champagney thing to it. Kind of like bubbly and like a sweetness, with a little bit of a bite.

Weizenbock

Jeff: I like it. It’s malty and spicy. A little heavy but I like it.

Grant: I think it’s a really good weizenbock, almost has a little bit of a sour.

Jeff: Little bit tang, yeah.

Grant: Pretty good. I like it.

Drew: I think it’s good. I like it for a weizenbock. My only complaint is I don’t think they masked the alcohol very well for being 6.8 %. It’s a little strong for me.

Mike: I get a little taste of lemon, you know, a little citrus taste. I found it pretty refreshing. It’s a good summer beer.

Juniper black ale

Jeff: I like it. Probably my favorite one we’ve had so far. It’s, like you said, it’s creamy —  kind of like a coffee scent.I don’t know juniper well enough to say I could pick it out, but there’s definitely something of an edge on the end of it. That’s probably it. I can’t describe what it is but I like it.

Drew: It’s good. I really, really like this beer. It is creamy. It has a nice mouthfeel. It reminds me of a stout on the mouthfeel, on the creaminess. And yeah, the juniper is nice. I’m not really sure what it tastes like but it has a nice finish  to it, and you kind of taste something strange if you will.

Double IPA

Jeff: Spicy. More than the citrusy I thought it was going to be.  Kind of wanted more in the nose, more dry hopping, but that’s probably from being spoiled from homebrewing. Um, it was OK.

Mike: I get mostly bitter and spice and almost no aroma. Not my favorite double IPA.

Grant: Not my favorite either. Actually think it’s a little grassy instead of piney or citrusy. Kind of dry on the tongue though. Decent. It wouldn’t be my favorite.

 

FuzzyBrew Review: Upright Seven

March 18, 2011 By: jeff Category: FuzzyBrew Review

Brewery:upright 7 Upright Brewing Co.

Location: Portland, OR

Style: Saison

ABV: 8%

IBU: n/a

FuzzyBrew Rating: 4 of 5

This beer came back in my suitcase from a recent trip to San Diego with some friends.  I’m a huge fan of saisons and I was also excited to get to try another beer from this Portland brewery that specializes in “farmhouse inspired beers with a Pacific Northwest twist.”

The beer is hazy yellowy-orange in color, with a long-lasting rocky head.  The aroma was filled with complex yeasty fruity esters.  Pears and old lemons if had to single a few out (old lemons in a good way). The fruity funk was balanced by a grassy spiceness from the hops.

High carbonation made the beer refreshing.  This beer wears its alcohol well.  It wasn’t until my second glass — and I realized I’d been trying to write the first sentence of this post for 15 minutes — that maybe the alcohol was higher than normal.

I drank this beer with take-out from India Palace. If I had one quibble with this beer it would be that I would have liked it to finish a little dryer.  Don’t get me wrong, though, this was a damn good beer.  As far as pairing it with Indian food, I’m thinking that I didn’t get my dish spicy enough because I was really enjoying both, but, separately not together.  You know life is good when you can spend a night analyzing Indian food and beer.

The brewer at Upright recently wrote about working with their Saison yeast on their blog.  It’s geeky but interesting.