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Tag Archives: Euclid Hall

Ahoy, matey!*

Piraat Ale
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Belgian IPA
10.5% ABV

This somewhat sweet IPA pours clean with minimal head. Despite the high alcohol content, is a very easy drinking beer. One of the characteristics we have come to value most is balance. The drinkability of this beer is a testament to the well-matched hops and malts. The taste is reminiscent of a typical IPA with a more fruity and sweet aroma, like honey.

It is a tripel by strength; an IPA by history. This beer contains three times the malts of a normal beer and was designed to be taken by ship on long trips. According to legend, the daily distribution of a pint of ale kept the pirates in both good health and spirits.

Piraat is refermented in the bottle; a unique bottle that short and squatty but with a distinct neck. This style, also known as a “steinie”, was made popular in the 17th and 18th centuries. We like that it looks like a telescope — something you’d need on a ship. Wherever your travels take you, you should pack this beer as a stowaway.

*Warning: drinking Piraat IPA will make you want to talk like a pirate.

Scottish, Scotch

February 17, 2012

Bristol Laughing Lab

Bristol Brewing Company-Colorado Springs, CO

Scottish Ale

5.3% ABV

When you start drinking beer, really drinking beer, you find that styles are only the most basic overview of the characteristics of a beer. Scottish Ale can range from medium bodied to high alcohol, heavy, rich, strong beer. The latter, more characteristically Scotch Ale (versus Scottish Ale-such as the Laughing Lab being consumed here) is the malty beer Americans tend to think of interchangeably with Scottish Ale. Don’t be fooled by your misconceptions!

Once we wrapped our minds around this very important distinction, we started to appreciate the subtle toasty malted flavors. The beer poured dark, with mahogany tones, but not black or thick. The flavored was toasted, but not overly so. The browning of the malts came through as a natural flavor, more sun roasted than oven-roasted. It’s very drinkable but it is a light Scottish Ale.

An Apple A Day

February 17, 2012

Pomme Lambic

Brouwerij Lindemans-Vlezenbeek, Belgium

Belgian Apple Lambic

3.5% ABV

Let’s be honest, when we started this project we believed two things. First, we believed we knew a lot about beer. Second: we believed that Lambics were beginner beers, nothing more than alcoholic sparkling cider. Wrong on both counts.

Let’s start with the basics, shall we? Since we clearly couldn’t provide a satisfactory definition for Lambic, that seemed a logical starting point. Behold, the iPad app “BJCP Styles” (Beer Judge Certification Program) to the rescue. For those of us who are not beer experts, well-versed in styles and beer nuances, it is an invaluable tool.

Lambics are spontaneously fermented sour ales, from the the area in and around Brussels. They stem from a farmhouse brewing tradition several centuries old. Hops are used for a preservative effect rather than to provide bitterness. While lambics tend to be tart (think about the bite that a green apple has) they shouldn’t be vinegary or particularly acidic.

Before we aquired this knowledge about Lambics, we were biased. We imagined a smooth apple juice flavor with no depth. Considering our mutual, mostly negative, feelings going into the Lambic tasting, we were pleasantly surprised. The scent of apples was like a swift kick in the face. Despite a sweet start, it finishes bright, crisp, and clean. It certainly isn’t one note; the taste changes on your palate as you sip it. We can imagine serving this for Easter dinner with smoky glazed ham. It would also be a great brunch beverage, replacing the traditional mimosa.

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A Little Birthday Salvation

February 3, 2012
Russian River Salvation
Russian River Brewing Company-Santa Rosa, CA
Belgian strong dark ale

9% ABV

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Sal.va.tion, n 1. Deliverance from the power or penalty of sin; redemption

2. The agent or means that brings about such deliverance

For most, beer may not be synonymous with “salvation”. But in our opinion, Russian River Brewing Company got it right. When you are about to get blitzed by a snowstorm of epic proportion (at least, that was the forecast) there is only one way to wait it out. Clothed in layers, armed with cameras, and wearing loads of eye makeup, we braved the snow. We were ready to celebrate the birthday of 1/2 of the Denver Darlings team and neither snow nor sleet nor blustereing winds would keep us from a glass of something delicious. Our reward was a strong dark ale, Salvation. It was strong, yes, but not heavy. It poured a cloudy dark amber with a very slight head. The aroma was all of the sweet nuances of honey and stone fruits, very “plummy”. The first sip was clean with the same notes of plums, apricots, and honey. There was a lingering bitterness, but not overwhelmingly so.
We paired it with a snack of salty cured meats and crisp chips, the sweetness of the beer balanced the saltiness of the food. It was a great snack but we could just as easily see this beer paired with a stone fruit salad or a fantastic cheese course.

Two Girls Walk Into a Bar

We don’t know how many friends can honestly say they’d jump at the chance to co-write a blog. While drinking craft beers at one our favorite beer halls in Denver, the idea for showcasing the best of what our city has to offer was born. 
 
Euclid Hall’s opening was our gateway drug. Lia has the distinct honor of being one of Euclid Hall’s first regulars, darkening their doors on day one. Stephanie was in Prague, loading up on Czech beer (as it is cheaper than water!) but became hooked on Euclid upon her return. Before Euclid Hall we were beer drinkers, to be sure. We drank craft beers from Old Chicago’s list, seeking out breweries we’d never been to, Deschutes in Bend, OR; Stone Brewing Co., in San Diego, CA; and of course Dogfishhead in Delaware. We were initially overwhelmed by the beer list at Euclid Hall but quickly found favorite beers and made lots of friends. 
 
There was one failed attempt (though we firmly believe that any opportunity to drink beer can’t possibly be considered a failure) at drinking the beer list at Euclid Hall. We learned from this attempt and now have a plan, some focus, and real goals to get us through the rest of winter and spring. Our roles in this endeavor are equal. We both love craft beer and real food. Luckily, Denver is an incredibly walkable city and we can work off some of the calories. This project is a long time coming. We’ve had ideas floating around for years, we just didn’t know how to make it happen.