Thursday, July 30, 2009

New Beers- Ain't She a Butte?

Sorry, I know I haven't posted in a few days. But I'm back, with new and exciting beers to tell you about!

Deschutes has released Black Butte XXI, a bigger, barrel-aged version of their Black Butte Porter. Not only is this 11% beer aged in Stranahan Whiskey barrels, it is also blended with cocoa nibs and over 1,000 pounds of coffee. Remind me to drink this beer in the morning. It is said to have much more of a pronounced coffee flavor than last year's version, which I believe I drank too early. This beer needs some time to mellow out, as the alcohol is very hot when drunk fresh. In fact, the bottle has a "Best After" date rather than a "Best Before" date. Mine says best after 10/17/10. Geez. I paid $11.99 to be put on a waiting list.

We all know that "new" is a relative term when referring to a beer released in Albuquerque. Stone's Cali-Belgique IPA was introduced in August 2008, and has finally made the trek across two states to us! This beer uses what is basically Stone's IPA recipe, using the same Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook hops (though Chinook is used for dry-hopping in the Belgian version). The alcohol % and even the IBUs are the same (6.9, 77). The wildcard is the use of the Belgian yeast strain, giving that funkiness to the beer that is so often a characteristic of a Belgian beer. The $8.49 price tag is also more in line with a Belgian beer than Stone's normal bottle prices. Even the 11% Russian Imperial Stout or 10% Double Bastard never sold for over $6.49. Must be that fancy imported stuff driving up the price!


Jason said...

I enjoyed the Cali-Belique - definitely agree that the yeast is what makes the beer.

Unknown said...

I feel like Stone beers are always in the $9 range, am I confused?

Unknown said...

I bet the stone is old and malty tasting now. I will not be trying, but maybe. Yay!!! for the Black Bute!! I still have XX as I told you the other night and am really excited to try it.

ABQbeergeek said...

Freedomj- For 22 oz. releases, Stone prices are around $3.99 for Arrogant Bastard, IPA, and Smoked Porter; $5.99 for Ruination, and $6.49-$6.99 for the special stuff (Double Bastard, Imperial Russian Stout, Old Guardian, Anniversary releases).

It came out a year ago, but it is a year-round release, so you don't have to worry about it losing hops. I was surprised at how much I liked it.

gmurch said...

Hey abqbeergeek,

I have been looking for the Cali-Belgique in the stores around Abq, but haven't seen it. Any suggestions? Live in NE, but am all over town.

By the way, I had this beer at the Stone Brewery outside of San Diego a couple of years abo and it is fantastic.