92 Captain Sig’s Deadliest Ale, Rogue Ales (OR). 5.9% ABV (2/09)
Burnished deep amber color with a resilient blanket of fine foam. Complex aromas of orange-raisin-fig compote and roasted grains and root vegetables follow through on a supple, round entry to a dryish medium-to-full body with great mellow balance and superb integration for fruit, nut and appropriate vegetable and earth nuances. Finishes with a long, ruby grapefruit peel and river stone fade. A decidedly British-styled amber ale with a full body and resonant core of American hops.
92 Truly Honest Amber Ale, Roy-Pitz Brewing Co. (PA). 6% ABV (3/11)
Deep copper color. Attractive honeyed peach and grapefruit marmalade aromas with a rich, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tangy, peppery grassy and leafy hop finish. Very rich and balanced for the long haul.
91 Irish Red Ale, Garrison Brewing Co. (Canada). 5% ABV (3/10)
Deep amber copper color. Deep, sumptuous aromas of toasted nut bread, brown sugar, cherry butter and delicate seared back bacon follow through on a round, silky entry to a dryish medium body with great integration and smoothness. Finishes with a touch of milk chocolate-dipped citrus peels and roasted root vegetables. A delightful session and food beer.
91 Organic Ale, Samuel Smith’s Old Brewery (England). 5% ABV (3/11)
Golden amber color. Aromas of praline cookie and doughy golden raisin scone with a round, lively dry-yet-fruity medium body and a toasty, multigrain bread, roasted corn pudding and wonderful crisp leafy, pepper greens hop finish. A fantastic food beer.
90 Blonde Bitch, Moorhouse’s Brewery (England). 4.5% ABV (3/10)
Pale golden amber color. Aromas of warm golden raisin and peach compote, and honeyed almonds follow through on a round, silky entry to a fruity-yet-dry medium body with good depth and an apricot butter cream and toasted nut-accented finish with long orange custard-like hops. Very fruity and tasty; try with chicken tagine.
90 Ripon Jewel Ale, Daleside Brewery (England). 5.8% ABV (3/10)
Medium amber color. Interesting herbal and roasted notes of winter mint, toasted nuts, grilled fennel and bubblegum follow through on a round, supple entry to a dry-yet-fruity medium body with honeyed cereal and toffee nuts notes. Finishes with a crisp, nutty fade with dried citrus and minty hop accents. Different and fun.