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K&L Staff Recommendations
From the brewery: "Bell's Two Hearted Ale is defined by its intense hop aroma and malt balance. Hopped exclusively with the Centennial hop varietal from the Pacific Northwest, massive additions in the kettle and again in the fermenter lend their characteristic grapefruit and pine resin aromas. A significant malt body balances this hop presence; together with the signature fruity aromas of Bell's house yeast, this leads to a remarkably drinkable American-style India Pale Ale."
From the brewery: "This beer couldn't have been done without the help from our friends at High West Distillery in Park City, UT and Chicago's-own Metropolitan Coffee. We brewed a rich, malty Imperial Stout with some of Metropolitan's Spice Island blend, then let it vintag-ize in High West Rye and Bourbon Barrels for up to 17 FREAKING MONTHS. It's good to have friends!"
From the brewery: "Named for The Big Lake of the Booming Rollers in Carl Sandburg’s "Rootabaga Stories"-- a beloved collection of fantastic children’s stories--this beer is an aggressively hopped Citra, Motueka, and Centennial IPA. It’s safe to say this will be the juiciest, mind blowing-est, most palate seducing creation to escape the Lomaland Fermentorium to date. The tropical hodge podge of hops and 6.8% ABV make it a prime candidate for crushing as we cruise into the heat of SoCal summer."
This India Pale Ale has a strong malt character and a large hop profile. This IPA is dry hopped with Simcoe and Amarillo hops to give it that great floral aroma and citrus finish. If you like a strong IPA, you'll find this one ...(wait for it)... .....just outstanding.
Hopped exclusively with the Centennial hop varietal from the Pacific Northwest, with additions in the kettle and again in the fermenter. A significant malt body balances this hop presence along with the signature Bell's house yeast.
"We bring this tropical treat to you as a reminder of Spring's coming, its rebirth and promise of sunny days forever. Lush is made with a hand-selected blend of malts and lush, tropical hops to help you bridge the last days of Winter and the coming of the Spring fever. We hope you enjoy this tropical treat, keep your sunglasses handy, and wash away your cares in the coming Spring rains." (Producer Notes)
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "Brewed with Citra and Mosaic hops, this IPA is wonderfully fragrant. It leads with a mélange of fruit aromas: mandarin orange, ruby-red grapefruit, passion fruit, mango, pineapple and papaya. Those notes carry through to the medium-weight palate, supported by flavors of bread dough and lightly caramelized malt. A dank stickiness adds depth to the palate and length to the finish." (9/2013) K&L Notes: A juicy citrus and grapefruit flavor profile. As if fresh Citra and Mosaic hops were squeezed straight into the bottle.
Firestone Walker proudly presents the 2017 Vintage of Bravo, an Imperial Brown Ale aged in retired American oak bourbon barrels: "Although Bravo was the first strong ale brewed for our Anniversary Ale blending program over ten years ago, it has yet to see its own bottled release, until now. Balancing rich toasty and chocolate malt flavors with a gentle balance of noble hops, Bravo is brewed to showcase barrel flavors with massive bourbon barrel notes that morph as the beer warms in the glass."
The brewery's "original hitter," this is a West Coast pale ale that is, according to the brewery, "chock-full of dank, aromatic hops, perfect for hoarding."
From the brewery: "Available September-March, this beer is a western charged firecracker, a conjuring of classics laid to rest on a bed of pale malt. Deep gold and ready to travel the distance."
From the brewery: "Amalgamator is a West Coast-Style India Pale Ale that's bursting with unique aromas and flavors. A light base of American 2-row malt makes way for the hops to take the stage. Amalgamator is hopped in the kettle with Amarillo, Warrior, Columbus, and Mosaic, a newer American variety. The dry hop is a massive charge of Mosaic that lays down an amalgam of passion fruit, dank resin, and citrus aromas."
Inventory: Redwood City
"Named after Fremont's most famous outdoor sculpture, Waiting for the Interurban, Interurban India Pale Ale offers the adventurous beer lover a warm embrace of Northwest Pale malt swirled with a hand-selected blend of Chinook, Centennial, and Amarillo hops. Interurban India Pale is bitter as an IPA should be yet balanced with copious aroma and flavor hops." (Producer Notes)
"Dark Star is part of our imperial series and is inspired by the wandering tribes scattered through the terrible journey of time and space and adrift in the dark matter between the spaces of then and now. Dark Star is a dark, mysterious yet silky oatmeal stout of grand proportions balanced by a firm hop handshake...go ahead, enjoy the journey...Because Beer Journeys Matter!" (Producer Notes)
Left Hand Brewery pioneered bottled nitro beers, and the milk stout is one of the originals. This sweet stout has notes of brown sugar, coffee and a delicious creamy mouthfeel provided by the nitrogen. Pour this hard (flipped a full 180 degrees upside down) to watch it cascade into the glass.
City of the Sun is a big, fruity, pungent, sticky, delicious IPA. Mosaic & Motueka give it a very fruity hop character, with Simcoe providing enough of a piney backbone to prevent it from going off the deep end. The complex but unobtrusive malt character gives it a medium body and a platform for the saturated hop flavor.
Small-batch brewing from San Francisco, California. This light and crisp Kolsch-style ale is all about balance: made from Warrior and Saphir hops to give it an American-style bitterness, plus German malts to provide balance a with creamy toastiness.
Inventory: San Francisco
"The Sister is the most imperious of our Imperial Series and is inspired by our desire to thank Sisters everywhere. Without our Sisters, we would have never learned the finer points of emotional warfare, or the art of huffing and puffing, or snide remarking, how long to carry a grudge, or the true meaning of loyalty when one of us is hurt. This Sister is fittingly bitter and a little sweet but she will always be there for you…Because Sisters Matter." (Producer Notes)
This bright, everyday beer is sparkling and fresh, and is expertly brewed using only the noble raw materials allowed by centuries-old German law. A showpiece of the brewing art in Bavaria, and a great treat for the beer expert or beer novice! 5.6% abv
"Fortem is a new-age imperial IPA that draws upon a range of influences, all while exhibiting DNA from our own forays into the IPA style. As such, it blends newer hop varieties from the Pacific Northwest and Hallertau, Germany along with pale malt, wheat malt and flaked oats for a full body and rounded mouthfeel. Fortem has been left unfiltered for a full hop impact." (Producer Notes)
Anchor Steam? The perennially popular beer brewed in San Francisco since 1896 derives its name from 19th century slang. "Steam" was a widely used nickname for beer brewed on the West Coast, and this Bay Area brew epitomizes NorCal charm. Made with an all-malt mash in a copper brew house, the beer has a malty nose with a hint of red fruit and caramel. Smooth and enjoyable.
A Gold medal winner at the 2013 L.A. International Commercial Beer Competition. Brewer's notes: "Brewed in the centuries-old Belgian tradition, our White Ale features the complex flavors of the classic witbier, including orange peel and coriander--all brewed with pure Icelandic water that delivers a cool smoothness that is flavorful and refreshingly drinkable."
CTZ, Idaho 7, Citra, Hallertau Blanc hops.
The February release from Modern Times is a lush, tropical IPA.
From the producer: "Old school meets new school in this fresh approach to the classic IPA. At 50 IBU’s and 6.5% ABV, Breaking Bud features the restrained bitterness and alcohol of a classic IPA with newer tropical fruit hop flavors and aromas of Mosaic. Also in the hop mix are Simcoe and CTZ, creating layers of mango, passion fruit, pine and dank. A malt bill with a pinch of crystal malt and a hefty dose of flaked wheat keeps the beer crisp while adding flavor complexity."
Founded in the small north-German town of Jever in 1848, the Friesian Brewery in Jever hasn't changed all that much since then, except that they use ultra-modern equipment. The Jever Pils is world-famous for its fresh, slightly herbaceous brew with a slight Friesian-bitter taste.
Inventory: San Francisco
94 points Wine Enthusiast: "One of America’s most cherished and sought-after pilsners, this is a terrific example of an American pils that’s sure to please any lover of the style. The hops are big and floral on the nose, with more biscuity malt in the mouth playing alongside the notes of fresh citrus. Full and creamy with moderate carbonation and low alcohol, a soft bitterness follows through the long finish and closes on a sweet hop oil note. An excellent companion to food, though certainly enjoyable all on its own as well. (LB)" (8/2010) K&L Notes: From Pennsylvania's Victory Brewing Company,... Read More »
90-95 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Highly Recommended* Rich amber color; silver-white foam. Dry, wafer-like notes of barley and brown rice at first; later nosings are sweeter and maltier. Palate entry shows a velvety texture and moderately sweet taste; midpalate bursts with firm, properly hoppy and wafer/cracker-like tastes. Ends up grainy, more dry than sweet and refreshing." (8/2005) K&L Notes: When I graduated from college more than a decade ago, I went backpacking through Europe. And while there's nothing unique about this in itself, I prided myself on finding places to visit that were off the b... Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
Who says great beer can't come in a can? Those people have obviously never cracked a can of Stiegl's Goldbräu. This Austrian beer is perfectly balanced, mildly hoppy and wonderfully refreshing. At just 4.9% ABV, it's perfect for game day, camping, hot weather or after work, and it drinks well on its own or with food.
Nothing refreshes more than this naturally cloudy wheat beer with its wonderful yeasty fragrance and taste. Goes especially well with that Bavarian speciality 'Weisswurst' or white sausage! Though hot dogs off the grill are not a bad substitute!
Hopheads rejoice! Citraholic is a "modern" West Coast-style IPA that's focused on Citra, one of our favorite hops. They also blend in Warrior, Columbus and Simcoe hops to round out the blend. It's double dry hopped for two weeks, and the result is intense citrus, tropical fruits, melon and gooseberry notes.
Now this is really Aussie for beer. The perfect blend of fruity and floral, up-front, with that classic, crisp Pale Ale bitterness. Naturally fermented, this is not racked off its yeast, giving it a fine, cloudy look.
Inventory: Redwood City
From the brewery: "The ale by which all others should be measured. With its famous cloudy sediment and its distinctive balance of malt, hops and fruity characters, the old "Red Labe" is a tasty slice of Coopers history. Little has changed since Thomas Cooper produced his first batch of Coopers Sparkling Ale in 1862. It's still brewed naturally using the century old top fermentation method, and it still tastes great!" Contains no additives or preservatives. 5.8% ABV.
Inventory: Redwood City
From the brewery: "We took a crisp, light-bodied cherry ale and hid it away in oak barrels that have held both bourbon and maple syrup. After a lengthy stint, it emerged a changed beer, blanketed in notes of warm vanilla and earthy sweetness. The wood proves itself the star of this beer, adding depth and taming the tart cherry while the maple imposes a velvety texture that lingers for not a moment too long."
Brewed to celebrate Beachwood Brewing & BBQ's 4th Anniversary. Citra, Mosaic, Comet, Galaxy, Millennium, and Equinox hops. 100+ IBUs.
From the brewery: "Expect lovely, warm smells of single malt scotch, oaky bourbon barrels, smoke, sweet caramel and roasted malts, a bit of earthy spice and a scintilla of dark fruit. It’s a kick-back sipper made to excite the palate."
From the brewery: "Villager IPA puts hop aroma first with a unique blend of bittering and aroma hops. These unusual suspects create an aroma that’s citrusy and floral with the faintest bit of forest. Its mild bitterness and simple malt bill keep it easy and drinkable. HOPS: JARRYLO, WARRIOR, CENTENNIAL"
Inventory: San Francisco
The Alexander is a blend of two thirds Rodenbach that's been matured for two years in oak foeders and one third younger ale that's been macerated with sour cherries.
Black House is an oatmeal coffee stout bursting with coffee aroma and flavor. Modern Times is one of the only breweries in the world to roast their own coffee, which allows them to be exceptionally picky about which coffees are used and how those beans are roasted. The result is an abundantly flavorful beer that's incredibly complex and aromatic, with loads of roast character and a chocolate-covered espresso bean finish. So creamy. So delicious.
From the brewery: "This is our take of the renowned Bohemian-style pale lager that you might find in Bavaria or the Czech Republic. Ours is a little more golden, rounder, and a little more malt driven than many other versions. The beer possesses strong hop character that is balanced by its rich, round, malty palate. Refreshing and balanced, this beer is a favorite of our winery friends during harvest."
2015 GABF Silver Medal. Track 7 Brewing's ales and lagers are hand-crafted 7 barrels at a time. They use nothing but the freshest ingredients to create these dynamic beers. During hop selection, a brewer will rub hops between his or her hands to tease out the aromatic qualities of a particular lot. During the 2013 hop selection in Moxee Washington, both Ryan and Geoff walked away with green, sticky, hoppy palms. The name stuck (literally and figuratively). Hoppy Palm is an American Pale Ale with light body, minimal sweetness and has been aggress... Read More »
Heavily hopped with American varieties such as Simcoe and Amarillo, resulting in notes of citrus, stone fruit and wonderful hoppy funk, all wrapped up in a super smooth body.
Based in Anaheim, California, Bottle Logic's credo is to "brew beers for people with curious minds and adventurous palates." Recursion is a moderately strong American IPA with a graceful balance of malt and hops.
According to the brewery: "The name 'Outcast' gives a nod to the origin of the Galazy hops used. The hops came from Australia, which was originally populated by English 'outcasts' or outlaws.
What is it about the West Coast that makes the local people so happy and the local beer so hoppy. And is there a connection? Alpine Beer Company was founded in 1999 and is known as "The Home of Pure Hoppiness."
From the brewery: "Intense fresh cacao flavors swirl with popping coconut aromas, all supported by a semi-sweet porter made from loads of dark chocolate and extra dark caramel malt. This limited release specialty comes around once a year to satisfy that sweet tooth, so get 'em while you can before they disappear. At 6.5% ABV and 25 IBUs, this choconut goodness will have you yellin' 'Pass. Dash. Hit.' all winter long."
From the brewery: "Brew Free! Or Die IPA is brewed with some serious west coast attitude. This aromatic golden IPA starts with a sucker punch of six different hops to the nose, quickly balanced by a solid malt backbone. Our top selling beer at the pub, this IPA starts big and finishes clean leaving you wanting more."
A modern-minded brewery indeed: in a can, and if you like it so much you want to make your own, Modern Times offers up the recipe. The word from the brewery: "Lomaland is an earthy, rustic Belgian-style farmhouse ale that's both complex and quaffable. It smells like hay, pepper, and friendly sunshine. Its dry, cracker-like body and lightly-hoppy finish makes it a beautiful [complement] to food. We named Lomaland after the brilliantly crazy utopian community that was the first settlement built in Point Loma, the San Diego neighborhood where our fermentor... Read More »