Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Tweet!! Tweet!!!

Let's see how this works. I have been very hesitant as I have little time as it is to update my blog as often as I would like. But I went ahead and joined Twitter. So please follow me on Twitter, and whenever I update the Blog, I will send out a Tweet. Click on the link at the top of my blog or just go here: http://twitter.com/karlisbeer and start following my posts. Thanks for your support!!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Cuidado con el chupacabras!!!

Last night we had an excellent dinner. My all-time favorite mexican restaraunt (and the first mexican food I ever ate when I was a kid back in 1978 or so) opened a new restaurant in my city. They are called Carmelita's and I used to go to their original place in Roseville back in the day. What a coincendence that they open up a new place 500 miles away in my city. The food gods must have been smiling on me.


Anyway, I ordered their Coloradito Burrito which is what I always had when I was a kid. It tasted exactly as I remembered it to be 20 years ago! Burrito Heaven! They slow cook the beef in chiles and onions and tomotaoes. I have never had a burrito that tasted like theirs. Very unique.

So when ordering our food, I was expecting the usual mexican beers to be on the list: Tecate, Corona, Negra Modelo, Bohemia. But there was a new one: Cucapas Chupacabras Pale Ale. It is brewed out of Mexicali, MX. I really wasn't expecting it to be very good, but I'm always up for something new so I gave it a go.

Upon pouring I was surprised to see that for a pale ale, it was actually very dark copper/amber color. Had a good foamy head, though not much aroma. Had some definite hop taste and was actually a bit more malty than I would expect from a pale as well. But overall it was a very good beer that actually tasted a bit like a homebrew rather than commercial brewery. It paired real well with my burrito and salsa roja. Find out more about the brewery here:



Saturday, August 1, 2009

Sam Adams Longshot 2009: Vanilla Baltic Porter

I just received my results from the Sam Adams Longshot homebrewing competition. I had entered a Vanilla Baltic Porter which was my own recipe using extract and partial mash. I used whole vanilla beans added during secondary fermentation. Pretty satisfied with the results as my final score was a 37.5. That's right between ratings of "Very Good" and "Excellent".

The funny thing is that I didn't think this beer would fair very well because I thougth I used WAY too much vanilla. It almost tasted like medicine to me. But the two judges said "light vanilla flavor" and "just enough vanilla". One judge said that it just needed a few "tweaks" and that I would have a winner.

One other thing that both judges said was that there was a hint of astringency. This seems to be a recurring theme with my beers. This is proabaly from sparging too hot or too long. Also they said there was just some slight phenolic/estery characteristics. I guess I need to get serious and get a fridge for my fermentation so I can control the temp better.

So overall, another encouraging competition result.