Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Imperial Southern Tier...

Have you tried any of the beers in the Southern Tier Brewing Company's Imperial series? Why not? For me it all started with the Unearthly Imperial IPA. Extreme does not always mean good, however Southern Tier does a great job with these beers.

Unearthly is an insane 11% with 153 IBUs. I give this beer a whopping 4.7 out of 5. It is loaded with floral, citrus and spicy hop flavors and is remarkably drinkable for such an intense offering. This is not a one dimensional hop head beer. Somehow a caramel malt sweetness helps balance it a bit and the mild burn from the alcohol really makes this beer more complex than I expected.

On the opposite end of the spectrum the Imperial Choklat, which also weighs in at 11% abv may just be the ultimate dessert beer. It is brewed with tons of cocoa and delivers and incredible chocoholic experience. It smells absolutely amazing and gets better and better with each sip. Choklat just may be a failsafe cure for the doldrums of winter.

Other beers in the series include: Imperial Punkin, one of the best pumpkin beers I have tried; Imperial Oat, an excellent oatmeal stout; and Imperial Hoppe--weighing in at 10% abv and 83 IBUs. I also have Imperial Big Red and Imperial Jah-va cellaring right now. The Jah-va is an Imperial Coffee Stout brewed with Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee--12% abv and 125 IBUs. I don't drink coffee, but I am so looking forward to cracking this bad boy. I think I will let it sit for at least a couple of months to let it mellow out.

Bottom line, if you see any of these Imperial beers, pick them up, they may not be around forever. Extreme can be a good thing, a very good thing.


Jason said...

I haven't had the Imperials yet, but I have had their regular IPA and I was very impressed. Great beer.

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