To describe this IPA from Bell’s Brewery in one word, the word would have to be bitter. Now don’t get me wrong, I love bitter, hoppy IPAs, but this one is a bit heavy on the bitter, and light on the hops and flavor. It’s a bit of a one note tune. I certainly enjoy it, but it just isn’t complex, flavorful, or interesting enough to be one of the greats.
I give it a 3.9 out of 5.
We’ve come to the last of the Highland, and the first spring seasonal. Little Hump is a refreshing and clean pale ale with pine-scented nose and excellent slightly bitter hop flavors. Beers like this make me happy that spring is on its way.
I give it 4.3 out of 5.
One of my favorite “expensive” beers. I first had this on tap when I visited my father in law in South Carolina. I’ve been a fan ever since.
A higher ABV (9.0), this isn’t a gulping beer. It’s almost mead, and works best in a pint or wine glass. It’s supposedly from a 2700 year old recipe from the tomb of King Midas (where it gets the name).
You can definitely taste the honey in it, and the muscat grapes also give it a champagne feel, too.
I give it a 4.5 out of 5.
A thick, dark beer, dark as a porter or Imperial Stout, Highland’s Black Mocha Stout is a weighty, heavy-bodied stout offering scents of roasted coffee and malts. The taste is strong with coffee and cocoa. It seems to be typical of Highland to temper the sweetness, and the Black Mocha Stout is no exception. Very little sweetness here, but excellent flavor. Another really good beer from the folks in Asheville.
I give it a 4.3 out of 5.
This is an amber ale, but with a distinctly strong, smooth and only slightly bitter hoppy flavor. It reminds me a lot of a good IPA and I’d say that it actually tastes more like an IPA than an amber ale. Very tasty, and very drinkable.
I give it a 4.4 out of 5.
Now that I’m in North Carolina, I’ve been seeking out new local brews to try, and Highland Brewing from Asheville has several that will be the subject of my next few reviews. Tonight it’s their Oatmeal Porter. I’m a big fan of Oatmeal beers, and this is no exception. There are chocolately notes in the nose, but it’s surprisingly savory, with very little sweetness in the smooth semi-bitter chocolate middle and a refined, fading hint of bitter hops in the finish. Not as heavy a body as a typical porter, but still a medium-heavy body.
I give it a 4.4 out of 5.
I’ve been remiss is reviewing beers lately…It’s about time I finished off the last of the winter beer, and started on the spring seasonals, of which I already have several among the dozen or so in my refrigerator waiting patiently to be reviewed. With that, I give you Bell’s Winter White Ale. A medium-to-full bodied wit bier, there is citrus in the nose, and the middle is sweet with a strong hint of orange. I really like Belgian ales and this is a good one. Not a great one, but definitely a good one.
I give it a 4 out of 5.