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  • Well, the world didn't end... Let's drink Frambozen!

    Let's be real for a minute. Deep down, in bowels of my heart/imagination (and maybe yours, too) I was looking forward to the apocalypse. I was thinking fire-y comets raining down, zombies (the old school, slow kind), and subsisting on expired canned food for the rest of our lives. We would be fighting for survival, reminiscing for those that met an unfortunate, un-dead type of conclusion, and enjoying the day-to-day grey color (like in The Road, or Portland). It was going to be pretty sweet. But, alas, the end of days was a no-go. But, I guess, the day's not over yet, it could still happen, maybe.

    But really, for now, let's assume it's not going to happen. And with that, we need to press on. And pressing on means the holidays. Do you have your gifts, and beers, and all that ready? You don't? Well, I am here to suggest purchasing some Frambozen (as a gift, or for drinking (with family and friends of course), or both, I guess). It's a delightfully sweet raspberry brown, brewed just for the holiday season.

    Let's do a quick review...

    Visual: A deep, dark garnet. 

    Aroma: A roasty-raspberry. Sweet and tart at the same time with the darker malts poking their heads through.

    Flavor: A tart, fresh raspberry. The darker malts come through for some backbone here too, but the berries are on highlight.

    Body/Mouthfeel: A light/medium body, and a dry/tart finish.

    Overall: I love this beer for lots of reasons, the raspberries, the small timeframe it's available, the associations with the holidays. But the biggest reason I love Frambozen is that every year there exists subtle changes. The raspberry crop is always different and the way they interact with the beer changes. The 2012 Frambozen is a bit lighter in body than in the past, less sweet and a bit more tart. I love it every year, but this year especially so. It makes me want to stuff raspberries on my fingers and dance around in an orange jumpsuit... It's that good.

    Point Counter: 9 out of 10 possible.

    I would go out and grab this beer while you can, the window is closing. Here is a link to the Beer Finder for all your Frambozen finding needs.... Also, it ages very well, so maybe buy an extra 6er to put aside till next year, and then, when next year's Frambozen comes out, try them both, side by side.

    With that, I'm out. Enjoy your holidays and let everyone you love know that you love them.



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  • Red Hoptober is a new beer for fall, and it is really good...

    Fall is here! At least it is in New Belgium seasonal-beer land... Starting August 1st Red Hoptober is officially on beer-shop shelves and in tap lines all across our distribution area. When you're in line at the bar, trying to decide what you want, look for this handle, and then order it. You will not be disappointed (at least I hope not). 

    Let me give you a quick rundown:

    Red Hoptober is the perfect beer for warm days, or cooling nights. Fall is a strange time of year that can require a backpack full of clothes to make it comfortably through a day. You can spend the afternoons hiking around, soaking your cut-off jean shorts in sweat, and then the evenings chilled in a pullover, standing next to a warming campfire. You don't want summer to disappear quite yet, but when it does you might as well have the right beer for the job. And Red Hoptober will make this transition easier...

    Red Hoptober pours a deep and dark red, almost burnt. The foam comes up a tannish-white and billows high, like decorative pillows on the most comfortable bed in the world. The aroma is bold and hoppy. Red Hoptober is dry hopped with Centennial and Eldorado hops, and those are the first things off the nose, lush floral and citrus tones float right up your smell-holes. A malty sweetness is present as well. Some caramel and coffee aromas are unmistakable, but they are hiding behind the hops for sure. When you get into the flavor the hops back off a touch to make room for some fig and toffee and roasted nuts, but the hop bite shows up in the end (for sure). It brings bitterness to refresh and clean your palate. There is a balance in Red Hoptober, but it's teetering towards the hoppy side. It finishes soundly bitter and clean and leaves you wanting more. This beer scores high in my (very biased) book.

    To finish, here is a very big and dramatic shot of a poured up glass of Red Hoptober.

    Now it's time to start your hunt for Red Hoptober...

    Thanks for reading, 


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