Ah, another installment of the summer beer series. Here's some good selections. The rating scale remains the same...1 to 5, with 5 being the finest nectar from the streams of Mount Olympus. Which leaves the lower ratings to be piss water. You understand. Support indie beer, and support your local craft breweries. Fuck corporate beer monopolies and their greed.
GOOSE ISLAND - INDIA PALE ALE (Chicago, IL) - 4.5
This cloudy amber IPA pours with a thick white head and ornate lace on the glass. Masterful! The nose is spicy sweet, with lovely hops. Glorious hops. Taste is strong and bitter grapefruit, with a strong malt backbone to balance the bitter acidity. Goose Island has a standout here, with a superior IPA worth returning to. Let's hope Anheuser-Busch retains this rich and flavorful beer's character as they absorb Goose Island into their corporate portfolio
BELL'S OARSMAN ALE (Comstock, MI) -4.0
This cloudy yellow ale pours with a small head and no lace. Average presentation, but the nose says otherwise -- I get bread and orange peel. Promising. The taste is surprising -- fruity malts up front, with tart citrus notes dancing around the tongue. The slightly hoppy finish closes it out with gracefulness. A delightful light beer for the warm months, and one I'd return to again.
ALEXANDER KEITH'S NOVA SCOTIA-STYLE BROWN ALE (St. Louis, MO) - 2.0
Truly a brown ale here, clean and brown in tone with decent foam and no lace. Nose is sweet and maple--like. Flavor is sweet and malty, with hints of fall leaves and maple. Not much complexity here, just an over-sweet malt bomb. Not a favorite.
GOOSE ISLAND - SUMMERTIME (Chicago, IL) - 3.0
This clear golden kolsch-style beer pours with a luxurious white head, and attractive webbed "bicycle-spoke" lace. Nice! Aroma says lager yeast, grains. Not too spectacular. The taste is malty, bordering on sweet, but with a nice (but subtle) hops infusion somewhere in between. A very mild, but drinkable summer brew.