2015 – A beer in review

Pardon the pun at the top.  But it had to be done.  2015 was a magnificent year for drinking beer (Lets be honest, every year is a great year for drinking beer).  In 2015, we saw new breweries open up.  We had new styles becoming insanely popular.  And overall, we just had a great time.

Before I talk about the year in review, I will admit that Sam and I are very behind in reviewing our beers.  To be honest, I was going to count up all the breweries we visited from my swarm/untappd check ins and I started to get annoyed scrolling down the page and counting.  We were around 100, and maybe have blogged 1/3 of those.  We even went on several brewery trips around the United States that we hadn’t mentioned much about in the past since this is a Washington beer blog, not a Arizona, Colorado, Dallas, Calgary, Scotland beer blog.

Continue reading “2015 – A beer in review”

Entry 35: Scotland the Brave (Part 2)

….. continuing from Scotland the Brave (Part 1)

While we only went to 2 breweries the entire time, we ended up going to 3 different BrewDog in Scotland/England.  Hell, I even hit up the Glasgow one twice and the Edinburgh one thrice. (Also went to the one in Newcastle, England)  They had great beer and I enjoyed it.

For those who are unfamiliar with the show, BrewDog makes some unique beer.  They will add funky ingredients and make high gravity beers, which is fun.

Lets start off with the two crazy beers we had.  Nuclear Penguin and Sink the Bismark.  Each being 32% and 40% alcohol respectfully.  We drank them like shots, which is crazy, since obviously the don’t come in pint sizes.  Sam was not a fan at all, but I enjoyed them both, even though they were just little sips.  I wanted to bring on home, but nooooo, a bottle ran about $100.

Now their regular beers.

The only decent damn IPA I could find was at BrewDog.  If you have a chance to drink their Punk IPA I would.  I don’t believe they ship to the United States yet, but from talking to them, it seems like they’ll be out here soon enough.  Also other enjoyable beers were the Hardcore IPA (Double) and Hop Fiction.  Maybe this trip just proves that I love beers with damn hops in them.  Which is something you cannot find in Scotland.

While we only went to two breweries, I probably had 50 different types of beer while in Scotland.  Ranging from cask to lagers and all of them were ‘meh’ at most.  Which is disappointing.  But at the end of the day, we didn’t go to Scotland for the beer.  We went for the Scotch.  And we didn’t leave empty handed.   We ended up stopping off at 4 distilleries and brought home 9 bottles of Scotch.  (If you want to see all the beers I tried, friend me on untappd – Husky13836)

Enjoyable trip.  I highly suggest you go to Scotland.  For the Scotch.  Not the beer.

WP_20150826_056Haggis Pizza at BrewDog

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Entry 34: Scotland the Brave (Part 1)

Location:  Scotland, England

Brewery:  Drygate, Brewdog (Edinburgh, Glasgow and Newcastle)

Reason:  Sometimes you need to travel for beer

Roaming the glens and lochs of Scotland, Sam and I continue our trek for beer.  Normally we don’t venture far from the safety of Washington State, but we needed to cross the pond for beer.  And alas, we did.  Our first stop was the city of Glasgow in Scotland.  The hustle and bustle of cabs, people with thick accents and sleepyness of jet lag stood in our way, but we were not scared.  In fact, we were thirsty.  Thirsty for Scottish beer.

Drygate brewing was the first stop.  Located next to the giant that is Tennants, Drygate is a decent enough Scottish craft brewery.  With the slogan, “Brewed Fearlessly” we had to remind ourselves not to be scared, it was just beer.

The first thing you notice when you step into a Scottish brewery is that half the beers are on cask.  Which in my mind is great!  But, unless you love malty 3.8% ABV beers, it may not be your jam.  In the United States, I love cask beers, normally cause they are IPAs, that is not the case in Scotland.  They love their beers malty and flavorless.  Which is very disappointing.

The beers I had there were the Gladeye IPA, Reflex Red Ale and Emery Bell.  The IPA was fine. It is nothing like our IPAs, since the IBUs were only at 42.  Which is a pale in my mind.  But it was a good beer.  Nice caramel flavor to it, I think they add a  bit more hops, and I’d love it.  The Red ale and Emery Bell were average.  The Emery Bell was like 3% abv, where is the fun in that?  Sam thought there beer was average too.  But the brewery had an awesome feel to it, and we actually went to it twice, we enjoyed that whole feel of it.

From Drygate, we eventually make our way to Brewdog Brewing.  TO BE CONTINUED….