Monthly Archives: September 2015

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/30/15

A little late but better than ever, here are the Five Articles.  We start off with two more GABF articles and then jump back into our regularly scheduled programming of distribution fights, arguments over regulation, and beer consolidation.

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/29/15

The US craft beer world is still recovering from the GABF as the final “local brewery does good” articles are published.  Here are today’s Five Articles. I apologize in advance.  I am in a foul mood today and you will be able to tell when you read some of the bullets.  I’m usually more circumspect in my criticism of bad writing.

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/28/15

Good morning.  You remember me?  I have a beer blog.  It has been a minute, but I’m back.  I don’t plan on taking another extended break like that again.  What are the Five Articles about today?  What do you think?  The Great American Beer Festival.  I missed this year’s event, but I will be in Denver next year.  Here are a few different perspectives on the event and what it means coming at you.

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/17/15

It is Thursday.  That’s all I have for an introduction.  I plan to have another blog post this week or I’ll have two next week with another review.  Things are fluid at the moment. Anyway, the Five Articles jump into the merger that is all over the beer world. There is also stuff on the silliness of beer laws and a little on race and craft beer.

Taste Test, Double Barley Double Dubbel

One of the best ways to study is beer, is to go by country. Breaking up beer into categories to makes it easier to study. One of the ways I like to see beer broken up is by country. Studying one of the three traditional European brewing traditions, British, German, and Belgian breaks beer down to digestible bites.

I have rotated my explorations between these three traditions over the years.  Yet, the most interesting and most vexing is the Belgian style. The reason for that is the Belgian styles are usually not governed by guidelines.  They are general attributes of a beer family.  Then there is the Dubbel.

The Dubbel is one of the few beer styles that has a definitive origin story. It was created in the mid-19th century at the Trappist Westmalle Brewery as a brown ale. Then tweaked just after World War I to become the somewhat sweet, dark, high ABV beer we know today.

As I said, the Dubbel is one of the few Belgian styles that have an actual style definition.  Dubbels are dark copper with a malty sweet, slightly dry, strong beer with dark fruit esters. Most descriptions of Belgian styles are like this one for witbier in the 2015 BJCP guidelines: “Overall Impression: A refreshing, elegant, tasty, moderate strength wheat-based ale.”  That tells you nothing.

20150916_110940American brewers are famous for fluctuating between devotion to the traditional style and pushing the edges to find something new.  The Double Barley Double Dubbel is a beer that seeks to celebrate the original Belgian Dubbel.

The Double pours a dark coppery color with a thin quickly dissipating head.  It has the aroma of sweet white bread with little hop presence.  You get a lot of dark cherry and dark fruit esters that kind dominate the malt aroma.

For a beer that checks in at 8.8% ABV, the alcohol taste is rather mild.  There is a slight herbal, earthy hop taste.  There is a nice sweetness from the malty white bread sweetness.  It also gets the sweetness from the candi sugar providing a dark cherry, pruny taste.  It has a slight carbonation and has a dry medium length finish.

This is a well-made representation of the Belgian Dubbel style. I prefer my Dubbels to have a little more sweetness at the front to balance out the dry finish. If you’ve never had a Dubbel before this is a good beer to make your first because it is such a good version of the style.

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/16/15

I took time off yesterday. It was my birthday.  Unlike previous birthdays for like the last 10 years, there wasn’t a lot of existential navel-gazing. For the first time in a very long time, I am content where I am in life.  So, it was spent figuring out how to restructure my day to get all my writing and work done.  Anyway, here are the Five Articles.

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/14/15

The Five Articles were delayed today because it is a gorgeous morning and I sat outside and drank a pot of Earl Grey.  Hang out a few hours and there will be another post today about the Belgian Dubbel in preparation for a review of a Belgian Dubbel.

Five Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/11/15

Sleep is a good thing.  Also, I promise new content is coming next week.  On to the Five Articles.  There are stories about liquor cops, collaborations, and craft beer festivals.  Enjoy.

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/10/15

As my body gets used to my new schedule, the Five Articles have been coming out a little later.  Today’s five includes two articles on the big purchase from a couple of days ago.  These are well-written articles that are not silly screeds against big beer and selling out.  Don’t worry, I’ve read too many.  Kick back and take a road trip that goes from Raleigh to Durango to Petaluma to London to Amsterdam.  Enjoy.

Five Beer Articles You Need To Read And Why, 9/9/15

There was some big news in craft beer yesterday.  That’s as much as I want to talk about it.  This isn’t because I don’t think it is important.  It is because everyone in the craft beer blogosphere is commenting on it.  Here are today’s Five Articles.