Another year and another countdown to Christmas. Although my countdown does not consist of chocolates and small gifts, but beer! And in my opinion beer is always better than chocolate! So here is our annual Paws For Beer 2015 Beer Advent Calendar.
December 1st: Iversion IPA from Deschutes Brewing. A 6.8% ABV and 80 IBU. Floral and piney hops are used in this beer, not my favorite hop flavors. I like their Chainbreaker White IPA much better as it is citrus hopped.
December 2nd: Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout from Big Sky Brewing. A 9.5 ABV and IBU 39. Color is as dark as night with flavorful roasted notes. This beer has me thinking I should be drinking more imperial stouts.
December 3rd: Homestead Pale Ale from Double Mountain. A 5.4 ABV and a 50 IBU. A decent pale ale with a hazy pale amber color.
December 4th: IPA No. 5 from Ground Breaker. 5.6 ABV and 60 IBU. A gluten free beer from a gluten free brewery. Interesting flavor, perhaps from the candi sugar they used in the brewing. Tastes pretty sweet but still has the bitterness from the hop. Pine notes overpower the citrus notes.
December 5th: HUB Hard Cider from Hopworks Urban Brewery. 6.8 ABV. Nice crisp flavor.
December 6th Soul Style from Green Flash Brewing. A 6.5 ABV and 75 IBU. A mix of floral and citrus hops. Tasted more floral than citrus. Decent beer but not one I would go to often.
December 7th: Crisp Apple from One Tree Hard Cider. A 6.5 ABV. Cider has a light sweetness with a slight haze.
December 8th Yellow Stone IPA from Rouge Ales & Spirits. A 6.6 ABV and 82 IBU. Tastes like an Oregon beer, hop forward. Pretty yellow in color, probably alluding to it’s name.
December 9th Magnanimous IPA from Fort George. 7 ABV and I can not locate an IBU. This beer is brewed with fir tips and pairs up with Simcoe and Chinook hops. The flavor is not overly piney and has a nice light amber color that appears slightly cloudy. This brewery does interesting things with trees. I have also had a beer brewed with spruce buds and no hops.
December 10th Jet Star Imperial IPA by NoLi Brewing. A 8.1 ABV and 115 IBU this beer is aggressive. Without knowing what the IBU was I took one sip and thought to myself ‘whoa that’s bitter’. My feeling about high IBU’s is welcomed however I enjoy a brewer who can balance the bitterness and not whack you over the head. This is a whack you over the head kind of beer. If you enjoy a lot of bitter this beer is for you.
December 11th Evil Twin from Heretic Brewing Company. A 6.8 ABV and 45 IBU. Stunning red color and a nice malty yet flavorful hop. This beer is tasty!
December 12th Oak Aged Cider from Schilling Cider. A 6.5% ABV. Strange flavor, especially aftertaste. I can’t really pinpoint what it is but the tasting notes say there are notes of clove and cinnamon. Perhaps it’s the clove flavor. The cider is really light yellow in color, slightly unexpected as I would have guessed an oak aged cider would pick up the coloring from the barrel.
December 13th Velvet Merlin from Firestone Walker. 5.5 ABV and 27 IBU. When you roll the dice on stouts sometimes you get a coffee one. Not my favorite flavor but this beer is decent in color and has good flavor even though it’s a flavor I do not enjoy.
December 14th Cavatica Stout from Fort George Brewery. A 8.8 ABV and unknown IBU. This is a smooth, velvety beer, however it’s tasting notes did not indicate a coffee flavor and I picked up notes of what I believed to be coffee. Perhaps it was the roasted black barley that gave it that flavor. This beer is brewed with the favorable Cascade hops so it does have a nice citrus hop flavor.
December 15th Universale Pale from Fremont Brewing. A 5.6 ABV and 30 IBU. This beer is dynamite! The beer has a nice hoppy flavor to be expected from a pale ale but does not over power the beer. This would be a great all day during the summer.
December 16th Almanac IPA from Almanac Beer Company. A 7.5 ABV and 60 IBU. This beer has a real citrus hop profile which is always enjoyed by me. Flavors of grapefruit, tangerine and pineapple pair up with a piney flavor that offers a nice balance between the two profiles.
December 17th Winter Ale from Alaskan Brewing. A 6.4% ABV and 22 IBU. This is an interesting beer as it is brewed with spruce tips. This beer had a unique taste that I attributed to the spruce tips giving almost a sweet flavor to the beer.
December 18th Single Hop Ale from Bitter Root Brewing. This beer is a 6.3% ABV and 38 IBU. This pale ale has a nice citrus hop flavor. The beer is dry hopped as so stated on the can as “ridiculously dry hopped”. I would not say it is ridiculously dry hopped, but it does give the beer a nice light bitter finish.
December 19th Breakbeat IPA from Elysian Brewing. A 6.8% ABV and no IBU listed. This beer is part of the Manic IPA series making it seasonally available. It has a nice citrus flavor however the tasting notes state green pepper which I did not taste.
December 20th Pollux Imperial IPA from Ecliptic Brewing. A 8% ABV and 75. Another citrus hop profile but not my favorite. I am not sure what it was about the flavor, perhaps the wide selection of hops used: Amarillo, Azacca, Citra and Columbia were an aggressive combo for me. I should have liked this beer more I felt as it is named after one of the two Gemini stars and I am a Gemini!
December 21st Double Jack Imperial IPA from Firestone Walker. A 9.5 ABV and 85 IBU. I pretty much love (note above the exception) everything that Firestone makes (my favorite beer is the Wookey Jack Black IPA). This beer did not disappoint in flavor but it was not a unique beer as I have had it before (and apparently had forgotten). This beer has grapefruit notes that are pleasing to the taste.
December 22nd Citrus Mistress IPA from Hop Valley Brewing. A 6.5% ABV and 80 IBU. With a name like that how could I not like it? The beer is a pretty orange color and full of flavors inclusive of citrus and other fruits.
December 23rd Bad Santa from Pelican Brewing. A 6.7 ABV and 70 IBU. I had been waiting for this beer all month. A Cascade Ale (AKA Black IPA) that I almost could not wait to have! At first taste I was a little taken back but my second sip reassured me that it was a beer worth waiting for. A rich and roasty flavor that is perfect for the winter months.
December 24th Black Butte XXVII from Deschutes. A 11% ABV and 60 IBU. Every year it is the same, WOW! This beer is brewed with cocoa nibs, pomegranate molasses, apricot puree and the best part brewed in whiskey barrels. This is one beer I always look forward to every year and always end my countdown to Christmas with because nothing really can top it!
Did you taste any new beers this holiday season? Or did you stick to an old favorite? Drop me a line in the comments.