REVIEW: Schneider Weisse – Tap 4 Wiesen Edel-Weisse

20140529-175147-64307171.jpgThis organic wheat beer is brewed in the tradition of Georg IV Schneider by Germany’s Schneider Weisse. Its golden and refreshing, showing off what a German wheat beers should be like.

From the brewery:
“A shiny-brass colored organic wheat beer, certified Naturland organic. An aroma of hops and citrus with a spicy note perfectly balances the malty character with the easiness of the hops. Refreshing and full-bodied at the same time.

The recipe for TAP4 Mein Grünes dates back to Georg IV Schneider. This refreshing wheat beer with its hoppy notes is brewed after the Oktoberfest-beer the Schneider family brewed as long as production was in Munich: „Georg Schneider’s Wiesen Edel-Weisse“. It is now brewed as an organic, „Naturland“ certified wheat beer. Outside Europe, we may still sell it under its original name.”

And what did I think?

Appearance: Golden. Good carbonation, clear, with no head to speak of, which is surprising from a wheat beer.

Aroma: Sweet and fruity with a slight malt presence and no hops. Cherry, currant, and clove note highlight the aroma.

Taste: Clean and light with a bit of the carbonation flavour appearing. Very much lager-like and very easy to drink. Some grassiness and clove coming through.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with appropriate high carbonation.

Overall: Easy drinking and refreshing. Balanced nicely with some of the classic wheat beer flavours coming through, but restrained to make it very approachable.

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REVIEW: Boxing Rock – The Vicar’s Cross

Boxing Rock - The Vicar's Cross

Boxing Rock is a craft brewery located in Shelburne, Nova Scotia founded in 2012. Using their 17HL brewhouse they produce a growing list of beers.

The Vicar’s Cross, a Double IPA, is one of the flagship beers for Boxing Rock.

From the brewery: “British soldiers stationed in India receiving their daily beer ration would never have expected this. The Vicar’s Cross has all the bitterness a double IPA demands, yet it is remarkably smooth and well balanced.”

And what did I think?

Appearance: Amber, bight and clear, with a nice off-white cream head that is long-lasting. Great lacing on the glass that is still there when the beer is all gone.

Aroma: The first thing, and most dominate thing, in the aroma is sweet hops. The hops are fruity, piney, and a bit grassy, with some nice freshness to them. There is a bit of the malt that lends some sweetness in the aroma.

Taste: As this hits the palette it’s the hops that are there first – piny and resin, bitter – but there is a bit of sweetness from the solid malt backbone to balance. There is a good amount of bitterness in this ale, but the brewer has done an excellent job of crafting the malt bill to support the bitter with just enough sweet.

Mouthfeel: The body is medium with a creamy texture that is quite pleasant.

Overall: This is an excellent beer. Well made, well balanced, and quite enjoyable. Surprisingly easy to drink considering the large amount of hops and high alcohol. The brewers at Boxing Rock have done a great job of making this beer big and bold, but balanced and refreshing.


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BEER MONDAY REVIEW: Duchy Originals from Waitrose – Old Ruby Ale 1905

20140519-170511.jpgDuchy Originals was set up in 1990 by Charles, Prince of Wales and is a brand of organic foods sold mainly in the UK. Fortunately for me they do export some products and a kind friend picked my up the fine bottle of Organic Ruby Ale.

Appearance: Pours clear copper/ruby red. Light carbonation, in tradition with British ales, only gives a slight, off white head.

Aroma: The aroma is slight with notes of malt and caramel and hints of fruit and orange.

Taste: The flavor is rather mild and clean with a good balance of malt and bitterness. Some fruity esters and slight yeast tang. Notes of pear and cherries and an earthy hop flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium to med-light. Light British style carbonation creates a silkiness on the palette.

Overall: The is a quality ale. Well made and clean ale with balance of flavors and esters making it very drinkable. This is a good introductory ale for those North Americans looking to experience British ale.


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BEER MONDAY REVIEW: Lindemans Lambic Flight

Lindemans Brewery was founded on a family run farm in 1822. By 1930 farming actives stopped due to the demands on the production of their lambic beer.

Lindemans produces its lambic beer in a traditional manner by allowing the wild yeast and bacteria to to inoculate and ferment the wort. The beer is allowed to ferment for one to three years. This produces a beer that is tart and acidic, much like wine is. Fruit can be added to produce a fruit flavour beer.


IMG_1146From the brewery: “In origin, this sweet-acid drink was obtained by adding fresh black cherries to a barrel Lambic of 6 months young. The addition of fruits provokes a new fermentation in the oak barrels. After another 8 to 12 months, only peels and stones left and the Kriek-Lambic is ready to be filtered and bottled.”

Appearance: deep red with next to no head and crystal clear.

Aroma: lots of cherries. Slight funk, a little earthy. No malt or hops in the aroma.

Taste: cherries. Little tart and a bit sweet, but not too over powering. Clean and refreshing.

Mouthfeel: light bodied with moderate to high carbonation.

Overall: nice and refreshing, easy to drink. Well made and a nice balanced flavour. Excellent.




IMG_1149From the brewery: “Long before hops were common in most beers, various fruits and vegetables were used to season beers. The acidity of Lambic beers blends perfectly with raspberries. Taste: Magnificent aroma, delicate palate of raspberries with undertones of fruity acidity; elegant, sparkling clean natural taste.”

Appearance: deep ruby red. No head at all. Can see a bit of carbonation in the glass.

Aroma: strong raspberry aroma, not much else.

Taste: loads and loads of raspberry. A touch of malt. No funk and a bit of tart. Balanced with the sweet.

Mouthfeel: light bodied. Moderate carbonation.

Overall: refreshing clean and fruity. Tasty, but maybe a bit on the artificial side (whether thats actually artificial or just a perception), but otherwise not too bad.




IMG_1154From the brewery: “A version of Belgium’s “wild-fermented” wheat beer, which is the result of blending Lambic of “one summer” with old Lambic and chaptalized with candy sugar. Faro is an intriguing balance of wineyness and sweetness. This was probably the beer being served in Breugel’s paintings of Flemish Village Life.”

Appearance: golden in colour. Very clear with a sight head.

Aroma: funk is the first thing that comes through. Theres a bit of malt and a little caramelly sweetness.

Taste: this one is sweet. Theres a bit of apricot and a little burnt sugar on a back of the tongue.

Mouthfeel: light bodied. Sugary slickness and light carbonation.

Overall: a bit sweet for my palette. Unique in the family of lambic beers, for sure. This would be best as a dessert beer with the sweeter flavour.



Cuvee Rene

IMG_1155From the brewery: “Before the bottling of the Gueuze, a blend is made of 2/3 young Lambic and 1/3 old Lambic. The right ratio young/old is depending on the maturation degree (end attenuation) of each of them. The bottles, with the wild-spontaneous yeast flora, are refermented in the cellar (Method Champenoise). After 6 months the Gueuze obtains a golden color and a cidery, winey palate; reminiscent, perhaps, of dry vermouth with a more complex and natural flavour.”

Appearance: clear and pale gold. Nice bit of carbonation and a good bit of head that fades quickly.

Aroma: sweet summer fruit. Pears. A touch of funk. Just a hint of malt.

Taste: a bit of tart/funk, a bit bitter (not hop bitterness, but a tart bitterness). A bit of leather. Some apple notes.

Mouthfeel: light bodied, and a good bit of carbonation.

Overall: not as flavourful as I was expecting. Honestly, I’m underwhelmed, but not totally disappointed with this beer. I psyched myself up and it just wasn’t what I expected, but not bad. Its a decent lambic, but not the best I’ve had.


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BER MONDAY REVIEW: Wells Banana Bread Beer

Brewed by Wells and Young in the UK, this is definitely a unique beer. The brewery describes it as a “unique brew combines all the traditional qualities and style of a Charles Wells beer with the subtle flavour of banana … Tempting banoffee aromas tempered by a grassy, lemony nose all leading to a finely balanced, fresh, delicate flavour of peppery hops with a lingering dry finish.”


Ok. To be honest I was given this beer and was a bit afraid. It sat in the fridge longer than most beer and I kept looking and wondering. Well, I manage up the courage (which wasn’t actually much and I was looking for something different) and poured it – very surprised, and in a good way.

Appearance: Copper/amber, with a nice bit of off-white head. Clear.

Aroma: Dominated by banana with spicy notes. Some sweetness and maltiness.

Flavour: Malty, with the banana becoming subdued. It has a firm bitterness and is fairly balanced with some hops and spice. The finish is crisp and dry.

Mouthfeel: A fairly thin body but with the dryness it is still refreshing.

Overall: I was impressed. Maybe it was the fact it wasn’t terrible, but more likely it was because it actually was well made. Granted, this is not the type of beer for everyone, but those who are looking for something different, give it a try.


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