Friday, May 27, 2005

Rogue Review, part two

After a week-long rain delay, we were back. Another Thursday, another softball game, another Rogue visit.

Suffice it to say, our great beers there two weeks ago were not a fluke. Ken started out with his beloved Mocha Porter. I was debating between the Juniper Ale and the Half-e-Weizen, both of which have won awards in various beer competitions. But since they were out of the Juniper, the Half-e-Weizen won out. I was happy... good refreshing flavor right off the bat, full mouth, nice spice (they say coriander and ginger)... definitely Brian Hawkins' spices. Not your run of the mill 'lemon'ish hefeweizen. The girl next to me (who declared her hatred of spicy beers last week), ordered the Chipotle Ale I tried last week. Classic. The girl on the other side of me, who prefers lighter, sweeter beers, ordered the Honey Cream Ale. I tasted it -- rich creamy flavor without being heavy. The creaminess was akin to Beamish or some other nitro beer, but it wasn't. I don't know how they did it. In terms of flavor, it was nicely sweet without over doing it. Perfect beer for people wanting a summer beer that isn't a lager or hefeweizen.

For seconds, Ken ran down the list of dark beers.
"I've had them all", he says.
"Ooh, but not that one" I reply, pointing to the Russian Imperial Stout at the bottom of the menu. An XS next to the name.
His eyes light up. "Ooooooooh, I want that one. What does the XS mean?"
The waitress informs us that it means "extra small, extra strong". With 12.4% alcohol (plato number 26), they're not kidding. They serve it in a small draft glass (like the draft glasses at the Bambi bar in Tucson). I accidentally tasted it before Ken even got to it. Oops. XS is definitely true. If you're expecting it to be beer, it will make your eyes roll back in your head. If you're not expecting anything, then you'll get to appreciate it's robust flavor and good mouth-feel. Our waitress, Krista, recommends cutting the Imperial Stout with other beers for a fun twist, although I can't remember which she recommended (perhaps the chocolate stout or the mocha porter?). I would try anything she recommends; she tends to be right on.

For me, I flip through the menu before deciding on the Morimoto Soba Ale. Mostly sucked in because everything about the name sounds like food. As their description says
Soba (also known as buckwheat) is not a type of wheat but a member of the rhubarb family (a fruit, not a grain!)
And it's made in collaboration with the Iron Chef. Yep, I was sold and orderded the pint. It definitely has a familiar flavor yet one I can't place. Everyone around the table tries it. Most seem to like it; you can definitely taste the fruit in there, so even the "light and sweet girl" liked it (but didn't prefer it to her Honey Cream Ale). Again, nobody could quite place the flavor. Then it was nailed, square-on. "If Snapple made a beer, this would be it". So true. It tasted exactly like snapple iced tea. Everyone took another taste and agreed. Very bizarre.

It was now last call, so we picked up a case of mocha porter from their 'garage sale' for 20 bucks. All cases are 35% off until the end of the weekend. Can get the big 22 oz bottles in case form too.

Look forward to next time and trying the Juniper. I love Rogue Thursdays.


  • At 1:33 PM, Blogger Lisa said…

    Got on the Rogue mailing list and sent them some comments. Got this back. I think I'll have to try their "mole" beer.

    Greetings Lisa,

    Thanks for visiting Rogue Ales' web page and sending your
    comments. We appreciate your interest in and support of Rogue!
    Love hearing how Rogue brings friends and families together,
    thanks for the note... and if you were not aware, this weekend
    is the annual warehouse sale at all Rogue pubs! Empty
    the trunk and get some sweet deals, while they last.

    2005 brings both packaging changes and new styles to the
    Rogue Ales line-up. All the commercially available beers
    we brew are listed on-line along with sell sheets you can download:

    Try the Chipotle blended with the Chocolate Stout for a
    Rogue Mole' style beer blend...chilis + chocolate = perfect together!

  • At 10:19 AM, Blogger marsha said…

    mmmmmm i love the honey cream ale and i am definately going to try the ale - i love snapple iced tea.


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