Tag Archives: Apple Cider

Boxing Bear and Bosque Brewing Albuquerque New Mexico

Boxing Bear

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Boxing Bear recently won some awards for their overall quality and it shows in the beers I tried. They have a nice roomy tasting room with plenty of seating. While they are a bit further out from central Albuquerque, they are worth the trip. Their pilsner was chewy and floral with a good crisp finish, one of the better pilsners of my trip. While it isn’t up to my favorites in San Diego, it is above average and very impressive. Their IPA was balanced and dank with a mild bitter finish. While it didn’t have a ton of aroma, the balance of flavors made it very drinkable.

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I only tried the cider because of a friend’s request and it was quite fantastic, sporting mild apple sweetness and a crisp dry finish. Hopefully one day the brewery will be able to put this in six packs and grab the local college crowd that is now drinking Angry Orchard (owned by AB InBev). The chocolate milk stout was roasty and mildly sweet with notes of coffee. A solid milk stout, true to style. The Vanta Black was creamy and thick, mildly sweet with hints of licorrice and a dry finish. I didn’t much care for the liccorice notes but my husband enjoyed this one a lot. The slap happy double IPA was herbal and strongly bitter with mild fruit notes. I didn’t care for the herbal hops but it was a fairly average double IPA. I would recommend sticking with heir single IPA.

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Top 2:
IPA
Cider

Bosque brewing

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Bosque has a kitchen connected to their tasting room, located in a strip mall. They keep the indoor quite dark with the use of a number of shades, which is great, until someone opens a door and the bright outside light comes in. Their lager was super light body with some mild fruity hops. It was good but could have been better with just a bit more body and more malt character. The scotch ale was strongly boozy with notes of dark fruit. I would have liked it more if it was more restrained or more roasty. As is, it was fairly average.

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The IPA was soft and fruity and not too bitter with some notes of perfumy hops. This was their best of the bunch, a good balanced IPA. The milk stout had notes of caramel and mild lactose sweetness with a creamy body on nitro. A solid milk stout, true to style. The Imperial Stout was intensely bitter, hoppy, and dry. I didn’t enjoy it either as a black IPA or an imperial stout. It didn’t have the aromas necessary to make a good black IPA or the roast character for a good stout. I especially would recommend staying away from this brewery if you don’t like hoppy beers. Their Elephants on Parade fruit beer was a nice mix of cranberry, raspberry, and grapefruit with tasty fruit character and not really tart.

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Bosque had a few solid beers and is worth a stop if you are in the area. I liked the food selection they offered but we went in between meals so I didn’t try anything.

Top 2:
IPA
Milk stout

Paul McGuire

Paul McGuire is a craft beer enthusiast. He likes to travel with his husband and enjoy the great outdoors. In his day job, Paul is a divorce attorney focusing on serving the San Diego LGBT community.

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Portland Beer Adventures Part 6 – Velo Cult Bike Shop and Beer Bar

I probably never would have stopped by Velo Cult if I hadn’t gotten a groupon. Velo Cult is a bike shop where they decided to set up a craft beer bar that can offer a good variety of beers. The taps offered plenty of variety when I stopped by and because I had the groupon I ended up trying a few that I wouldn’t normally order. Sadly, the people I went with didn’t end up sharing the beers all that much so I ended up drinking the majority of the 8 tasters and 2 pints.

In total I got to try a dry-hopped cider, the Caldera Porter, a dry-hopped Saison from Commons Brewing, Terminal Gravity IPA, Little Saison, La Guillotine Belgian Blonde, Boneyard Triple IPA, and Evil Twin Lil B Porter. I really liked the dry-hopped cider. The hop flavors helped balance out the tart flavors of the apple. The Caldera Porter was a solid chocolate and coffee porter in the middle range.
Beer selection when I visited.
Beer selection when I visited.
The dry-hopped saison from Commons Brewing was really good. The Belgian yeast blended perfectly with the citrus hops to create a drinkable middle of the road beer. I ended up coming back to this for one of my two pints. Terminal Gravity IPA lived up to its name with flavors mostly leaning towards heavy malts. I wasn’t very fond of this one.
Round 1 of tasters.
Round 1 of tasters.
The little saison was a lighter version of a saison with lighter flavors similar to a session. The flavor was a bit too light for me but it would be very sessionable for sure. The La Guillotine Belgian Blonde was one of my favorites out of the set. It was strong enough that it was almost a triple. I loved the sticky sweet flavors that reminded me of burnt sugar like in a creme brulee. This was a nice change of pace from most stronger Belgian style beers that tend to lean towards heavy spice flavors.

Boneyard Triple IPA was so delicious that I wish I had gotten a chance to drive out to Bend Oregon to visit the brewery. At 12% it is one of the strongest IPAs I have ever tasted. The higher alcohol made it a bit more on the sweet side but it still had plenty of citrus, tropical fruit, and grapefruit to balance everything out. This was the best beer I tried while visiting Portland and I really savored the 12oz pour that I ordered after I was done with all the tasters.
Boneyard Triple IPA.
Boneyard Triple IPA.
The Evil Twin Lil B Porter was a really thick chocolate and plum porter though I thought the plum flavors were a bit too heavy. I don’t think plum mixes very well with the chocolate though I tasted a number of beers blending those two styles in Portland. This beer was also quite sticky sweet, good and solid.

I really liked the atmosphere at Velo Cult and the mini skateboards that they used for holding the tasters. The bartenders were both¬†knowledgeable¬†about beers and enthusiastic about certain ones. I also appreciated the ability to do flights at a bar that isn’t a brewery because that is the best way to try a bunch of different beers.

Paul McGuire

Paul McGuire is a craft beer enthusiast. He likes to travel with his husband and enjoy the great outdoors. In his day job, Paul is a divorce attorney focusing on serving the San Diego LGBT community.

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