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Craft Beer Advent Calendar – 2015

My wife gifted me the Craft Beer Advent calendar again this year.  24 different beers from North America.  As I did last year, I plan to blog about these beers again.  Every day.  That means 24 posts, hopefully.  Here is how the post will be organized:

  • Beer name, location, and style of beer.
  • Description of the style, origins and information about the brewery.
  • Rating of the beer based on the following:
    • Appearance (Body, Colour, Head, Retention) (%5)
    • Smell (20%)
    • Taste (45%)
    • Mouth feel (Light, Medium, Heavy, Smooth, Coarse)(10%)
    • Overall (20%)
    • Do I like it (Yes or No) and why.

I want to make a note on the ratings.  I’m not a beer judge, and even if I was, I don’t always take stock in what people rate beers at.  Perhaps someone doesn’t like a particular style, or they don’t think the beer is good.  It doesn’t mean I, or someone else, won’t like it.  So, while I do plan on rating these beers, it is more for my own personal reasons to keep track of which ones I liked the best throughout the process.  You can take my ratings as you like, either listen or don’t.  Ultimately, I want people to try new beers and take chances.

There is one hitch.  I will be travelling from the 22nd of December until the 7th of January.  I will be doing my darndest to try these last two beers before I go, cheating slightly, but giving myself the opportunity to write the posts and have them get posted on the 23rd and 24th.

The first post will be coming later today.  In the meantime, here is my round up of last year’s Craft Beer Advent Calendar.

Stone Crazy Imperial IPA – Parallel 49 and Powell Street Brewing

Stone Crazy - Imperial IPA

Well apparently I haven’t been able to do one a day.  I guess that was a little ambitious given that it was a long weekend and I was travelling.  As well this week is a crazy work week so I would not expect to be able to post much until it’s over.  So, this post will have to carry you through.

Today’s Brews Brothers Beer is called “Stone Crazy” and it’s an Imperial India Pale Ale done in collaboration with Powell Street Brewery.  I’ve already gone over who Parallel 49 Brewing Co is and I’ll just take this moment to thank them for their great mixer pack.  You’ve brought together a great pack of collaborative beers.  So, who is Powell Street then?

Powell Street Brewery is aptly located on Powell Street in Vancouver BC.  They don’t post a lot of details about their brewery on their website in respect to who founded it and why.  What they do tell us is that they are a 4500 sq ft brewery capable of 17.5hl micro brewhouse with a 3.5hl nano brewhouse as well.

They sell a number of different beers ranging from Pale Ales to Porters and do growler fills, glasses and bombers right out of the brewery, something I hope we will be able to see more of here in Winnipeg.  The beer that they’ve done in collaboration is named Stone Crazy.  This entire pack is blues themed and this name comes from the song Stone Crazy by Buddy Guy with his soulful guitar rhythms and voice this beer really captures the smooth and soulful feel of this song.

Essentially what we have here in an Imperial IPA is a double IPA.  The names are fairly synonymous.  The term Imperial tends to come from the Russian Imperial Stout, a style of strong stout that was originally brewed in England for the Russian Imperial Court.  Double IPA tends to be the most common/preferred term and essentially indicates that you have an incredibly hoppy beer on your hands with high alcohol content and good robust malty balance.  IBU on these beers tend to range from 50-120 (although 90+ it’s hard to tell the difference) depending on the brewer.  Let’s get to the beer!

Rating: 87/100

Appearance:  Cloudy golden brown coloring with a good 1” head that retains well. Some sediment at the bottom that needed to be left behind.
Smell: Hoppy, citrus (pineapple at the front with some lemon and some orange) with some sweetness coming through on the backend from malt (some caramel notes).
Taste: Not as big and bold on the hops but not necessarily a bad thing. The hops are definitely there with the sweetness of the malt backbone bringing in some caramel notes to give this particular Imperial IPA a smooth and well balanced taste. The hops bring in their resinous citrus tones to blend in with that caramel malt to give you a dangerously easy to drink 9% ABV beer.
Mouth feel: Good mild carbonation with a smooth mouth feel.
Overall: Nice and smooth double IPA.  Alcohol content is at 9% but not noticeable in this beer.  Sweetness is great to and blends well with the hops which don’t assault the taste buds letting you enjoy all the complexity in this beer.  Overall a very strong double IPA.
Do I like it: Yep.  Big fan of this one. I love IPAs and this one is well balanced and smooth giving a drinkable double IPA that brings some nice hop bitterness that isn’t overpowering. Very tasty.

Half Pints – Doc Emmett Brown Ale

Half Pints - Doc Emmett Brown Ale

Today’s review comes to us from a local brewery of which I am very proud to be able to support.  Their creativity and attention to detail allows for some really tasty and unique beers to be produced.  The introduction of growlers in Manitoba has only allowed for this creativity to increase and they have gone so far as to produce 50 litre test batches of a beer that they wanted to try out.  Yes folks, I am talking about Half Pints Brewing Co from Winnipeg, Manitoba.

When I first moved here from the maritimes I felt like there was something missing, a creative craft brewery.  There were two local breweries around when I first arrived, Fort Garry and The Agassiz Brewing Company. Both were good, but they produced their beers and didn’t really stray outside that box.  When Half Pints came along I was incredibly happy.  They brought with them some unique brews as well as a penchant for coming up with some fun and seasonal beers as well as some event specific brews (like Peddle Power for example).  This has continued and increased I’d say and I’m always interested to read what they’ve got coming next.

Now, knowing that I will be talking about Half-Pints more than once, I’ll give a bit of a backer on how they got started.The head brew master/president of Half Pints Brewing is David Rudge.  David started his path towards Half Pints in 2000 when he enrolled in the American Brewer’s Guild Craft Brewing Science and Engineering program.  After finishing this program he began searching for a job as a brewer.  He began he career as the Assistant brewer in BC at Backwood Brewing Company (now Dead Frog) where he started learning the practice of brewing at a full scale brewery.  After finding that the lower mainland didn’t agree with them, he packed up and headed to Regina where he worked for 3.5 years as the head brewer for Bushwakker brewing company.  A variety of twists and turns along life’s road brought him to Winnipeg Manitoba in July of 2005.  Having all this experience under his belt the plunge was taken and after A LOT of work Half Pints Brewing Co opened its doors in February 2006 and started selling their delicious brews that July.

I’m always incredibly impressed with the creativity of the brewing coming out of Half Pints as well as their involvement in the local Home Brew scene and willingness to assist others.  I’m hoping to sit down with Mr. Rudge should I get the chance so I can chat with him a bit more, we shall see if I am lucky enough to snag that chance.  The beer I’ll be reviewing is their most recent 1000 litre growler batch, aptly named for 2015 the Doc Emmett Brown Ale.

Brown ales are a style of beer that get their name from their color, mostly.  The term was first used by brewers in the late 17th century and was used to describe a more mild ale.  This term is rather different than how we use it today, but originally these brews were lightly hopped and brewed with 100% brown malt.  Today these beers are brewed in a variety of different regions and are used to describe a few different flavor profiles from sweet, low alcohol beers, medium strength amber beers of moderate bitterness, and malty but hoppy beers.

They range from deep amber to brown in colour and typically have caramel and chocolate flavours evident in their profiles.  This is a North American Brown Ale differ from their English counterparts.  Instead of using exclusively brown malts, American Brown Ales tend to use American Crystal Malt, which gives a sharper edge to the beer, as well as often roasted chocolate or coffee malts.  They are also often hopped, unlike the English ones, which tend to make them drier than their English counterparts and give a citrus accent and medium body due to the American hop varieties.  Let’s get to this particular beer tho and see what we’ve got!

Appearance:  Luscious dark brown with a nail’s width of head that retains well and provides some rimming around the glass.
Smell: Definite chocolate notes right up front with some almost hickory notes hidden away on the back end likely from roasting or perhaps something added I’m not aware of.  Notes of hop are there as well possibly a cascade or Amarillo.
Taste: That chocolate malty flavor comes through right on the first taste which then flows into a slightly bitter dry finish which is really rather nice.  It cuts the initial sweetness and leaves you wanting more. That hickory smell doesn’t come through in flavor but there are some bitter notes from the hops. Not a ton of complexity in there, but it was solid flavor wise.
Mouth feel: A little heavy on the carbonation with a coarse mouthfeel.
Overall: Excellent example of a North American brown ale that seems to almost draw from the bitterness of some of the English folks while still maintaining that North American dry finish.  Described as being made with 1.21 Jigawatts of deliciousness, this Brown ale does not disappoint. My only complaint really was the higher carbonation, though not a huge detractor for me.
Do I like it: I’m not usually a huge fan of brown ales.  This one was pretty good though and I’m not upset to have an entire growler to consume.  The carbonation was a little bit high for me on this one but overall I was really impressed with the flavours brought out in this one, even if I didn’t find huge complexity, it was nice and well-rounded. The bitterness cutting the sweetness from the malt was good making this a beer that is good for those who may not be huge fans of overtly malty beers.  Overall I like it and I’d buy it again.

Garrison Brewing Co. – Imperial I.P.A.

Garrison - Imperial IPA

I am very happy that when I was in the Maritimes I grabbed some beer to bring back with me.  There are so many out there that are fantastic and the brewery scene is growing every day.  While I was back in Fredericton, NB two new breweries officially launched, Trailway Brewing Co and Grimross Brewing Co.  I had the opportunity to try beers from both of them which I will be blogging about in the near future.  Today though, I’d like to review Garrison Brewing’s Imperial IPA.

Garrison Brewing is located in the largest maritime city, Halifax.  The name comes from the fact that this one was of the major garrison sites for the protection of Canada being the largest eastern port.  As well, Halifax has a long history of brewing with William Steel opening shop as the first brewer in 1754 in order to serve the early settlers and troops who were stationed at Citadel Hill.  By prohibition, Halifax was home to some 20 brewing operations!

Garrison itself tries to follow this concept of independent micro-brewing and set this at their heart when they opened in 1997 with their first brew “Irish Red Ale”.  They have continued to produce and grow serving hand-crafted ales that use the best ingredients available.

After 15 years in business, in 2013 they expanded to develop over 13,000 square feet of industrial space to become their new home. Their setup is made up of tanks and equipment that were designed and fabricated in Charlottetown, PEI (keeping it local, very nice) and consists of a single-step infusion mash tun and a propane-fired kettle and whirlpool.  It takes them an average of 10 days start to finish to ferment and condition.  You can read all about their brewing process here.

The beer from them that I am excited to try is their Imperial IPA.  Launched in 2007 at the Halifax Seaport Beerfest, this unfiltered double IPA comes in at a strong 81 IBU (international bitterness units) and is sold all year round. It uses Cascade, Amarillo and German Magnum hops balanced with 2-row pale, caramel, dextrin and Munich malts.  I received word from Garrison yesterday that they have shipped a pallet to Manitoba, so I’ll be down at the MLCC looking for some soon!

Essentially what we have here in an Imperial IPA is a double IPA.  The names are fairly synonymous.  The term Imperial tends to come from the Russian Imperial Stout, a style of strong stout that was originally brewed in England for the Russian Imperial Court.  Double IPA tends to be the most common/preferred term and essentially indicates that you have an incredibly hoppy beer on your hands with high alcohol content and good robust malty balance.  IBU on these beers tend to range from 50-120 (although 90+ it’s hard to tell the difference) depending on the brewer.  Let’s get to the beer!

Rating: 90/100

Appearance:  Cloudy golden brown coloring with a good 1” head that retains well.
Smell: Hoppy, citrus (lemon, grapefruit and some orange) with some sweetness coming through on the backend from malt (some caramel notes).
Taste: Initial sweetness followed by some extreme hoppy bitterness with the citrus being front and centre.  Good resinous hops that balance with the caramel notes from the malt and the sweetness from the alcohol.  Long dry finish.  Certainly does not disappoint on the hop front as they overpower the malts.
Mouth feel: Good mild carbonation with a smooth mouth feel.
Overall: Very strong double IPA.  The hops chosen for this particular beer balance well together providing some good meshing with the choice of malts.  Alcohol content is at 8% but not noticeable in this beer.  Sweetness is great to start and balances well with the following Hoptacular assault.  Overall a very strong double IPA.
Do I like it: Yep.  Big fan of this one.  I love IPAs and the more bitterness the better for me.  Double IPAs are at the top of my favorite styles when they can be well balanced and don’t tread into the sickly alcohol sweetness neck of the woods.  This one had a strong IBU but was balanced well.  The hops went well together and complimented each other rather than competing for the spotlight.  I’ll be drinking this one again.

A new year, a new blog – What to expect

Welcome to Beer Winnipeg.  I wasn’t sure that I would want to run my blog talking about different styles of beers and reviewing them.  Having had the Craft Beer advent calendar gave me the opportunity and then the confidence to do so.  So, welcome, to Beer Winnipeg.

The goal of this site will be to discuss a variety of things.  First and foremost I will post reviews about beers.  The reviews will contain the following information.

  • Beer name, location, and style of beer.
  • Description of the style, origins and information about the brewery.
  • Rating of the beer based on the following:
    • Appearance (Body, Colour, Head, Retention) (%5)
    • Smell (20%)
    • Taste (45%)
    • Mouth feel (Light, Medium, Heavy, Smooth, Coarse) (10%)
    • Overall (20%)
    • Do I like it (Yes or No) and why.

I like to be detailed and provide information about the brewery as well as the style of beer.  For me, knowing about the brewery allows for me to understand the concept of the beer a bit better and helps me appreciate it a bit more.

The rating scale is not my own, I have taken the scoring system from the site Beer Advocate as I felt it provide the most opportunity to rate beer effectively based on various notes.  I added into the rating the last section of do I like it.  This is completely subjective but I will tell you why I like it or not and hopefully these details will help you decide if it is a beer that you would like.

Secondly, I hope to talk about the state of beer here in Winnipeg and Manitoba.  We are far behind the rest of Canada when it comes to craft beer and the ability for craft breweries to shine.  I will talk about the breweries we have as well as any news that is beer related here in Manitoba.  For example, the Craft Beer action committee created by the Minister of Liquor and Gaming.  I will report on what news comes from this.

Thirdly, I hope to do some profiles on breweries.  Hopefully I can visit them, but I will profile some strong Canadian breweries as well as up and comers in the craft beer world.

Finally, I’ll likely be talking about anything that is craft beer related especially if it happens to be here in Winnipeg!

Beer is one of those beverages that is so simple yet incredibly complex.  The ability to shift ingredients and great a completely unique flavour is amazing to me.  My hope is that by following this blog you will gain an understanding about the many different styles of beer and an appreciation for their complexities.  If you already like beer I hope you would find my reviews useful.

Thanks for following along.

-Beer Winnipeg.

Craft Beer Advent Calendar – That’s a Wrap

Craft Beer Advent Calendar - All 24 Beer

The craft beer advent calendar, 2014, is complete.  It has been a really interesting 24 beers with a lot of variety and a veritable world tour of brews.  My wife asked if I’d be interested in doing this again.  ABSOLUTELY.  It was a fantastic experience that gave me the opportunity to try beers that I might never have the chance to try again.  I certainly hope I can for some of them, others…I’m okay not having them again.

So, let us wrap up the post with some statistics.

  • We had 24 beers all of which were a different style or variation on a style.
  • We visited:
o        United States (3)

o        Israel

o        Netherlands (2)

o        Germany (2)

o        Brazil (2)

o        Guyane Francaise

o        England (2)

o        Belgium

o        Norway

o        Austria

o        Scotland

o        Iceland

o        Mexico

o        New Zealand

o        Australia

o        Italy

o        Finland

o        South Africa

  • We managed to hit 6 continents through this with the following stats
    • Europe (Scotland, Finland, Norway, England, Iceland, Austria, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, and Italy)
    • North America (United States, Mexico)
    • South America (Guyane Francaise, Brazil)
    • Asia (Israel)
    • Africa (South Africa)
    • Oceania (Australia, New Zealand)

Certainly the majority of the beers came from the European countries with absolutely NONE coming from Canada.  We had some repeat countries as listed above with 3 coming from the United States as the top contributor.

Now.  My favorite beer for the entire 24 days.  It’s actually rather funny that I should have my favorite beer on the fourth day of the Calendar!  My favorite beer from the entire calendar comes to us from:

Peak Brewing Company in Portland, Maine and is the Hop Blanc

Thanks so much for following along.  I hope that you enjoyed these reviews and found them useful.  I hope that you continue to follow along as I continue to blog about beer news and reviews.

– Beer Winnipeg

Craft Beer Advent Calendar – Day 23

Beer 23

Today’s beer comes to us from Israel making it another Asian beer.  The beer is called Mosco and is brewed in the Judean Mountain in the village of Zanuch in Israel.  Annoyingly the website is down for them to update it and so I can’t find any information the brewer or brewery other than its location.  Seems that a variety of the beers in the calendar are trying to sabotage my ability to review them.  Oh well, we shall just move into the beer style and its review.

The beer is a Strong Blonde ale brewed in the Belgian method, so a Beligan Pale Ale essentially.  Blonde ales are very pale in color and are usually clear, crisp and dry.  Being brewed in the Belgian style means that it will use wheat malts which will make it cloudier than you’d expect but it should still hold the same coloring.  Blondes are from the Pale Ale variety of beer and usually have a lighter body with a subdued malt character and large hop profile.  They aren’t hoppy by any means, but they typically are not malty either.  Think of Coors or Coors light. Onto it then!

Rating: 67/100

Appearance:  Cloudy with a straw coloring and quite a bit of yeast sediment.
Smell: Yeasty on the nose with caramel malts and grassy/lemony notes from the hops.
Taste: Cool and crisp with a dry finish.  Slight fruitiness with a sickly sweetness making it taste far more alcoholic than the 6.5% abv should account for. Not as crisp as I would expect as the wheat malts make for a creamier mouth feel so the taste is subdued a bit on the end.
Mouth feel: Light body with creamy mouth feel with good carbonation.
Overall: Not the best Belgian style beer I’ve had in this variety nor even in this calendar.  The yeast sediment is a big turnoff for this style of beer as was the overly sweet character to it.  Overall this beer was below average for its style and not really a good showing for this calendar.
Do I like it: No, I did not enjoy this beer.  The sweetness was too much, it didn’t have the body and flavor that I would expect in a Belgian beer. I would not be interested in drinking this one again.

Craft Beer Advent Calendar – Day 22

Beer 22

The 22nd beer from the advent calendar was a Winter Saison produced by the gents at Rooie Dop, a brewery out of the Netherlands.  Interestingly enough, while these gents do brew small batches at their own brewery located in Utrecht, their large batches are brewed by the Brouwerij De Molen who produced our 19th beer!

Rooie Dop is a brewery that wants to make some flavourful and sometimes experimental beers.  They do a lot of collaboration with their beers and don’t really care about the rules for brewing particular styles of beer, they “care about flavor” as they say on their website.  The brewery was started y three friends some years ago.  Mark Strooker is the one who calles the shots at the brewery and is an IBU extremist according to his profile (I like this guy).  Overall the brewery sounds unique, creative, and over all talented based on being rated one of ratebeer.com’s 2013 best.

The beer we get to try today is a Winter Saison.  Again, Saison’s are broadly defined pale ales that are higher in alcohol content, highly carbonated and generally spiced.  They are traditionally a Belgian style of beer which means they include the wheat and barley malts which produce a creamier mouth feel.  This particular Saison is called “Final Countdown” and was produced using smoked malts and rye.  It was specifically made for inclusion in this year’s Advent Calendar and that is pretty exciting. Onto the beer!

Rating: 80/100

Appearance: Cloudy amber colored beer with good head that dissipates rapidly.
Smell: Smoke and apricot are right at the front.  Interesting combination that isn’t unappealing, actually.
Taste: Very smoky with a hint of fruit notes in there.  Sweet malty balance that goes well with the smokiness of the beer.  Reminded me a little bit of being at a  campfire though, which wasn’t wholly appealing, but not terrible either.
Mouth feel: Good carbonation, creamy mouth feel, light body.
Overall: Definitely a unique beer for me.  I’ve had smoked beers out of Germany before which taste like you are drinking the campfire.  This one was lighter and had that pleasant creaminess of a saison.  As a Saison I’d say it was good with a unique flavor balance and some risks taken that turned out pretty okay.
Do I like it: I enjoyed this beer for the risk that was taken in producing it.  Adding smoked malts to a saison is an interesting idea that I didn’t know if it would work.  Overall it worked well enough to taste good, but I wouldn’t drink it again.

Craft Beer Advent Calendar – Day 20

Beer 20

Today’s beer comes to us from the Colorado brewery located in Ribeirao Preto, Brazil.  It is one of the oldest craft breweries in Brazil and was founded in 1995.  Rather than try to copy American and European style beers they decided to use local malt, cassava flour, unrefined cane sugar, coffee and hops to create uniquely Brazilian beers.

The beer in the calendar today was their Imperial double IPA called Vixnu.  It is made using local malt and dry-hopped with American hops. Rapadura, a traditional Brazilian candy, is added as well to add a unique sweetness.  I’m excited to give it a try, so let’s get to it!

Rating: 79/100

Appearance: Dark Orange Amber, slightly cloudy with quite a bit of sediment floating around inside. Good head which retains well.
Smell: Very malty nose with loads of caramel and some floral and pine hop notes.
Taste: Very hoppy with the cane sugar sweetness that finishes off on the tongue.  Good piney hops as well as woody and resinous flavours with slightly herbal notes.
Mouth feel: Good carbonation, coarse mouth feel, light body.
Overall: The floaties inside were a little off putting.  Made it difficult to swallow not knowing what they were.  After getting past that, this is a well-balanced and nicely hoppy double IPA.  It is not the best one that I have tasted in this style.  Fairly average but surprisingly smooth for a 9% beer.
Do I like it: I don’t dislike it.  The beer is a reasonably well-balanced double IPA with good hop and nice sweetness.  Sadly, the floaties were a bit off-putting and made it difficult for me to find the appeal.  The flavours were reasonable and while there are other double IPAs I like a lot more, this one wasn’t bad.

Getting close to the end of the Calendar.  I may double up on my reviews to try and get more than one done during the day.  I’m excited to get through the Calendar and given that the days have all passed, I guess there is no reason to wait.  I still enjoy the excitement of finding out the new beer each day.  In any case, thank you for following along and Happy New Year!

Craft Beer Advent Calendar – Day 19

Beer 19

Good day everyone.  I am glad to be back in Winnipeg once more and to get back to blogging about the rest of the Advent Calendar beers.  I apologize for not posting much while I was away.  I took notes and have lots to blog about, I just was busy spending time with family and friends and could not find the time to sit down at a computer.

Today’s beer comes to us from the Brouwerij de Molen in the Netherlands.  It is a Winter Porter aptly named “Winterporter”.  The breweries name means “The Mill” and is located inside a historic windmill building called De Arkdulf, which was built in 1697.  As well as a brewery they also have a retail business on site and a restaurant which creates food to pair with their beers.

Founded in 2004 by head brewer Menno Olivier, this brewery can produce 500 litres per batch with an annual production of 500 hectolitres.  The equipment at the brewery includes converted dairy tanks which are used as fermenters and the bottles are still capped and corked by hand.  Today the brewery is able to produce 2500 litres at a time and has an annual production of 6000 hectolitres due to the purchase of a new building 200 meters away from the mill.  One interesting thing about this brewery is that they do not dispose of unsatisfactory beer.  Instead, this beer is distilled into a “beer liqueur” at 20% abv and is then sold as well, reducing the spoilage of the beer and allowing them to still make profit off bad batches.

Porters are style of beer we have seen already in this calendar and are a dark style of beer that was originally developed in London from well-hopped beers made with brown malt.  Originally this style of beer was created by mixing an old ale (stale or soured), a new ale (brown or pale ale) and a weak one (mild ale) to combine and create a new beer altogether than balanced the flavours and left a pleasing beer that was neither like the new nor the old.

Porters and Stouts are of the same stock.  In fact, when Guinness first launched its world renowned stout it was as a focus on the mass-production of Porter.  At the time there were two strengths of porters, either X or XX.  Stout at the time simply referred to a strong or robust ale, it has since developed due to the advent of coffee roasters and many of the malts that they could use to impart both colour and flavor, but originally this was its meaning.  Porters were part of this thread.

This Winter Porter is essentially a Winter Warmer, a malty, hopped dark beer that has reasonably high ABV (6.5%).  Its light body adds some differentiation from the stouts and warmers we have had, as well as being brewed in the traditional porter style.  I’m excited to give it a try, so let’s get to the beer!

Rating: 73/100

Appearance: Dark brown in the glass allowing little light to pass but showing ruby highlights when held to the light.  Strong head that retains well.
Smell: Chocolate notes on the nose with a light sour fruity note as well as some yeastiness mixed in there.
Taste: Some sour fruit notes, reminded me a bit of grape juice to be honest, with some chocolate notes and a finish earthy/hoppy bitterness.
Mouth feel: Low carbonation, smooth mouth feel, light body.
Overall: Not an overly appealing beer with the sour fruit notes in it.  The light body is deceiving when drinking such a dark beer.  For a porter it is not bad.  I have certainly tasted better but this one brings some interesting tasting notes that I wasn’t expecting.
Do I like it: I do not like this beer.  It’s not a bad beer by any means, it just is not a good beer either.  Having just returned from the Maritimes and having some fantastic stouts, porters and other beers, I find this one to be lacking in some areas.