Posts Tagged With: Blind Tiger

XBeeriment Black Force One

Beer:  Black Force One
Brewery: XBeeriment
Style: Imperial Stout
ABV: 10.4%

Serving Style: Draft
Glassware:
Snifter
Drinking Establishment:
The Blind Tiger, NYC
Primary Consumer(s):
Ally & Kerensa

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OVERALL RATING:

Sight: Black, with some amber edging.  A thin tan head quickly recedes to bubbles around the edge of the glass.

Scent: Vanilla coffee, with an alcoholic or acetate note (like that of nail polish).

Flavor:  Initially, a semisweet chocolate or coffee taste, with notes of smoked roasted malts; but then the bitterness of the coffee emerges.  It’s like a dark chocolate-covered espresso bean.

Feel:  Thin and smooth, with low-to-moderate carbonation.

The defining characteristic of the Danish brew is its bitterness–any chocolate-like sweetness gets outshined–but it is pleasant overall.  Despite its high ABV and its slightly alcoholic aroma, you don’t taste the alcohol (you just feel it–woo!).  This is a rare find on tap–worthy of making a trip over to Denmark…or the Blind Tiger.

Concluding remarks: The XBeeriment Black Force One is a good representation of an Imperial Stout–but we couldn’t do more than one of the tiny glasses it came in, lest we find ourselves passed out in front of the Blind Tiger fireplace.

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Harviestoun Old Engine Oil

 

Beer:  Old Engine Oil
Brewery: Harviestoun Brewery
Style: English Porter
ABV: 6.0%

Serving Style: Cask
Glassware: Mug
Drinking Establishment: The Blind Tiger, NYC
Primary Consumer(s): Ally & Kerensa

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OVERALL RATING:

Sight: Pitch black, with a thin tan head.

Scent: Like that of creme brulee–sweet, vanilla, and caramelized sugar.  There is a note of alcohol in the aroma as well.

Flavor: A fascinating combination of hops in the form of pine, hiding beneath roasted malts and a sweet caramel coating.  We also tasted notes of citrus pith and chocolate.

Feel:  Thin but creamy, with no carbonation due to it being a cask beer.

Concluding remarks: Soulful.  Balanced.  Delicious.  Drinking the Old Engine Oil Porter is like walking through the forests of Scotland (Harviestoun’s homeland) while eating a caramel-dipped dark chocolate-covered orange and finishing the night with a bottle of red wine.  In other words, the best day (and night) ever.

CASK CAVEAT: The only reason we didn’t give this Porter a full 5 Pint Glasses is that we tried it from a cask; we eagerly await an opportunity to try the Old Engine Oil in another form, with perhaps a bit more carbonation.

PORTER CAVEAT: Have you picked up on the fact that you just read a Porter review during Stout month?  No, we didn’t get confused, but the Blind Tiger did: they had the Old Engine Oil listed on their menu board as a Stout.  We won’t hold it against them, though, because we are ever-so-glad we got to experience this beer, so much so that it was still worthy of a write-up (despite it being two months late).

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Lagunitas Imperial Stout

Beer:  Imperial Stout
Brewery: Lagunitas Brewing Company
Style: Russian Imperial Stout
ABV: 9.9%

 

Serving Style: Draft
Glassware: Mug
Drinking Establishment: The Blind Tiger, NYC
Primary Consumer(s): Ally & Kerensa

——–

OVERALL RATING:

Sight: Black with a golden brown tinge. The creamy tan head dissipates quickly.

Scent: Roasted, with a hint of bread and a note of astringent alcohol.

Flavor: Initial note of roasted alcohol, as if the alcohol has been blended with molasses; but then a strong flavor of floral, earthy fruit comes through, like that of papaya or passionfruit. (Weird.)

Feel:  Thin, with virtually no carbonation (as is the case with cask beer).

When we hear “Imperial Stout,” we think bold and roasted–exactly what this beer is not.  Call us crazy, but we taste the fruits of the Amazon here.  Granted, this Lagunitas offering was in cask form, which tends to bring out the fruit and earth notes of a beer (there was a bit of peat moss mixed in with the passionfruit and papaya), but the cask did nothing to enhance our beer-drinking experience.

Concluding remarks: While we will not be picking up the Lagunitas Imperial Stout in the near future, we are considering developing a recipe for a passionfruit beer…

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Spider Bite Boris the Spider

Beer:  Boris the Spider
Brewery: Spider Bite Beer Company
Style: Russian Imperial Stout
ABV: 10.0%

 

Serving Style: Draft
Glassware: Snifter
Drinking Establishment: The Blind Tiger, NYC
Primary Consumer(s): Ally & Kerensa

——–

OVERALL RATING:

Sight: Opaque black, with a thin mocha head that recedes to an even thinner layer of tiny carbonation bubbles.

Scent: Sweet, like a Boston cream pie–mostly cream, with a hint of chocolate.  In a blind taste–er, smell test, we’d call this a Milk Stout.

Flavor: Overly sweet, with some roasted malts.  Like its aroma alluded to, it tastes like a Milk Stout, with a hint of licorice, and even ethyl alcohol.

Feel:  Creamy, with a low carbonation that gets overpowered by its creaminess.  As it rests, it loses some of its viscosity.

Boris the Spider is not representative of his Russian Imperial heritage; he’s not robust, or malty, or bitter, but simply offers a generic sweetness more indicative of–can we reiterate it enough?–a Milk Stout.  Where are the eight different malts used to brew this guy?  Where are the complex aroma and flavor he boasts?  Maybe he left them on his Aeroflot flight over from Sheremetyevo International.

Concluding remarks: This is all spider and no bite. While Spider Bite Beer Company is a local brewery located in Holbrook, Long Island, we would rather take a quick jaunt over to St. Petersburg than drink Boris again.

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Founders Porter

Beer: Porter, “Dark, Rich & Sexy”
Brewery: Founders
Style: American Porter
ABV: 6.5%

Serving Style: Draft
Glassware: Pint glass
Drinking Establishment: Blind Tiger, West Village
Primary Consumer: Kerensa
Consumption Companion: A Park Slope resident

——–

OVERALL RATING: 

*EDITOR’S NOTE: This was five or six beers into the night, as a caveat.

Sight: Luxuriously dark, rich, black velvety body with a warm dark brown head.

Scent: Smells of coffee and hazelnuts.

Flavor: Full-bodied, complex flavor. Coffee and caramel on the forefront, roasted malts throughout. Chocolate at the end.

Feel: Smooth and full with a balanced amount of carbonation.

A quintessential example of the American Porter, Founder’s offering has quiet a complex flavor profile, rife with the three Cs (coffee, caramel and chocolate). The sweetness of the added coffee and chocolate is balanced with the right amount of hop bitterness. This is by far one of the most, if not the most, enjoyable American Porter I’ve had.

Concluding remarks: Get this beer ASAP. It will keep you warm throughout the winter…perfect for those long walks back to the subway in the middle of January (on those nights that aren’t 60°F). It is an excellent example of how American brewers have really made this style their own. I wouldn’t recommend drinking it with dinner, but it would make an excellent companion to a dessert. Or, even just as a dessert in its own right. Serve it just slightly colder than room temperature, maybe at 50°F or so. Prost!

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