Sunday, March 10, 2013

Day 36 cont'd: Beers 38-43: Taster Flight at Mother Earth Brewing Co.

A circle of six beers from the fine brewers at Mother Earth Brewing Company in Vista, California. I've visited them one year before, and since, their recipes have only improved. The taster flight covers the spectrum of brews, and enjoyed with my weekend guest blogger, expert homebrewer and fellow beer aficionado Cristopher Spencer.

Mother Earth Brewing Company started out in a garage, and now specializes in supplying homebrewers with everything they need to create their own brews as well as providing an extremely popular tasting room in Vista, California.

Now, onto the beers!

Beer #38 - Rysing Tide Rye IPA

A delicious start - a hoppy sample with an amazingly fruity aroma. Honey is used to balance out the hoppiness of an already fairly decent IPA, but the sweetness is just an undertone to the hops. This was my favorite beer of the night and a creative turn on the usual India Pale Ale.

Cris' Opinion: "Fave as well. And I said it first, Travis copied me. Incredibly tasty beer."

Beer #39 - Red Dog Rye Extra Pale Ale

Named for their four-legged mascot Cody, Red Dog Rye brings a citrusy hops flavor and is one of the easiest drinking "extra" pales I've ever had. Extra Pale Ales means extra pale, with less bitterness, (like Strong Pale Ales, which can have a higher bitterness and/or alcohol rating.) Red Dog wasn't as citrusy as Hazed & Infused, so with an orange highlight, the light bitterness works to flavor the beer as opposed to being too basic. It's simple done well.

Cris' Opinion: "*Tilts hand back and forth in air* Ehhhhhhhhhhh." (Travis: "That's not an opinion." - Cris: "Eh.")

Beer #40 - Lil Tart Belgiweizen

The first disappointment, Lil Tart was an odd experiment, rare for Mother Earth, who has built a reputation on taking old standard recipes and perfecting them. The sweetness was stronger than any citrus tart and felt like two separate beers simply poured into the same glass. Uncomplicated Belgian beers tend to fail in a artificial medicine sweetness and failed Hefeweizens have a similar sweetness but tend to balance it out with some tart flavors. Lil Tart may win over extreme fans of the two styles of beers, but with so many better options out there, this one could use a few more tweaks to the recipe.

Cris' Opinion: "In the interest of those that actually like this type of beer, they would like it more than me. ... I did not like it."

Beer #41 - Pin Up Pale Ale

Pin Up is a true So Cal Pale Ale, and its ideal balance of malts and bitterness could make it the start of an entirely new category of Pale Ales. The alcohol and bitterness ratings aren't too high, so it doesn't qualify as an IPA, and it combines a sweet fruity aroma with a taste of caramel-wrapped hops. Pin Up was the first beer bottled by Mother Earth and the complexity of the taste show this is a recipe that has been near-perfected over time.

Cris' Opinion: "Outside of my style again, but not a bad beer."

Beer #42 - rEvolution Chocolate Amber Ale

For an amber, rEvolution is incredibly dark ale and has lingering stout-styles due to the chocolate malts added into the mix. It's not nearly as heavy as most chocolate flavored beers, and finishes off with a roasted flavor that lingers a bit. Malts can be roasted and blackened much like roasted coffee beans and contributes to that almost-smoky aftertaste dependent on the malts used. rEvolution is a delightful beer that's dark without being too dark.

Cris' Opinion: "What makes stouts good in ale form. Mmm. Good beer."

Beer #43 - Roundabout Chocolate Oatmeal Stout

An Oatmeal Stout for the masses! Roundabout isn't too strong of a stout and its light coffee taste make it much more palatable for those that aren't too overly fond of heavy stouts. It still has enough to win over most stout fans with some oatmeal flavor and chocolate malts similar to those in rEvolution. Roundabout definitely qualifies for those beers that are great gateway brews for drinkers that want to try new styles.

Cris' Opinion: "Loved it. No, wait, Loooooooved it. Needs that extra emphasis."

Rysing Tide Rye IPA
Alcohol Rating: 7.3%
Class: India Pale Ale
Rating: 9 out of 10

Red Dog Rye Extra Pale Ale
Alcohol Rating: 5.7%
Class: Extra Pale Ale
Rating: 8 out of 10

Lil Tart Belgiweizen
Alcohol Rating: 5.4%
Class: Belgian-Style Hefeweizen
Rating: 2 out of 10

Pin Up Pale Ale
Alcohol Rating: 5.6%
Class: Pale Ale
Rating: 8 out of 10

rEvolution Chocolate Amber Ale
Alcohol Rating: 5.7%
Class: Amber Ale
Rating: 7 out of 10

Roundabout Chocolate Oatmeal Stout
Alcohol Rating: 6.1%
Class: Oatmeal Stout
Rating: 6.5 out of 10

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