Saint Somewhere is a small brewery in Tarpon Springs, Florida. Last year they produced less than 400 barrels of beer. Two of Saint Somewhere's Saisons are distributed here, despite being 1500 miles away. I don't understand the magic behind the distribution game but I'm thankful we can get these small batch beers in the Midwest. This bottle of Saint Somewhere Cynthiana is especially exciting because it is a Saison brewed with Norton wine grapes. Norton (aka Cynthiana) is one of the styles of wine I really enjoy because it is so bold and dry. I'm hoping to find a little of that in this beer.
With this bottle of La Trappe Isid'or I will have had at least one beer from each of the seven Trappist brewers. This is a fact that just now dawned on me... I probably should have built this event up a bit more, but there's really no pomp and definitely no circumstance. This bottle of Isid'or has been sitting in a cupboard for about two and a half months. I meant to get to it sooner because I'd never had it, not because it would complete some Trappist drinking achievement... Oh well, I'm glad to finally say I've had a beer from all of the Trappist brewers even if it were something I almost overlooked.
Belgian Pale Ales are something I've only started to really enjoy over the past year. The beer that convinced me I should drink more of this style was Poperings Hommel Bier. Since then I've been looking for other pale Belgian style ales with bright hops and sweet underpinnings. This Hommel Bier from Perenial in Saint Louis gives the style an American slant, with hops from the Pacific Northwest. It's evident when you drink this beer that it's hoppier and more bitter than something like Poperings, but shares a similar grain bill and yeast profile so you still get a touch of sweetness and a hint of Belgian character.
Rochefort 10 is a very, very special beer. This beer is almost as highly regarded among internet beer geeks as the legendary Westvleteren 12, but is far easier to obtain. I held off on drinking this beer for the longest time, in fact this is the first bottle I've had in the United State. I didn't abstain from the Rochefort 10 because I don't like Quads or I don't like Trappist beers, quite the opposite... I love both. I'd known for at least a year that I was going to spend some time in Belgium last year and I couldn't resist putting a visit to Westvleteren on my list... and since I'd waited this long to try Rochefort 10, I might as well do a side-by-side with Westy. Needless to say, I had a great time in Belgium...
Gueuze is a style of beer I've only recently started to appreciate. I've had just about the entire Lindemans line up and I've always enjoyed the intense fruit spiked Kriek and Framboise as a dessert beer, but I never bothered to pick up a bottle of their Gueuze. Cuvée René is Lindemans base Lambic sour that has been aged and blended back with younger Lambics. After a recent trip to Belgium, where I found I had an affinity for the style, I found my self craving a nicely chilled bottle of Gueuze and decided to give Lindemans a try. There aren't many options as far as Gueuze goes in my neck of the woods, so I'm hoping it's one I can keep going back to when I want to reminisce about Belgium.