Beer/Cigar Review Wednesday 1/25/17

Welcome to beer and cigar review Wednesday, our weekly look at any notable beers and cigars I’ve had over the past week and a special toast to Robert Burns who would have been  258 years old today. 😛

This week might not feature the usual just high-brow stuff but we’ve got some good stuff for you nonetheless. Let’s dive right in shall we?

Starting with the beer reviews:

Sam Adams Nitro IPA

Samuel Adams/Boston Beer introduced a three beers in nitro cans last year: a wheat ale, an IPA and a coffee stout. This is the IPA and it weighs in at 7.5% ABV and a deceptively high 100 IBU. Taking a look at it, it had the characteristics you’d expect from a nitro beer while being all its own.

Pours with the classic surge and settle appearance. Body settles into a bright yellow-orange color and the head sits down to about 1″ high and sticks around and leaves all kinds of lacing on the glass. Sharp, hoppy aroma of grapefruit and floral notes with the faintest tone of yeast. Big but smooth flavors of pale malt, yeast, piney and grapefruity hops. Not as bitter as the IBU would let on. Alcohol masked. Thick and creamy body, typical of nitro. Also chuggable as most nitro beers.

Though this drank more like a straight-up American Pale Ale as opposed to an American IPA, it was enjoyable, smooth and satisfying. My understanding is this beer is discontinued but I hope they bring it back. I really dug it, despite being for all intents and purposes a “mass produced” beer. Rating: 4/5.

Robert Earl Keen Front Porch Amber Ale

This beer hales from Pedernales brewing company in Fredericksburg, Texas. It is an American Amber Ale weighing in a diminutive 5.0% ABV and an unspecified IBU rating. This was an “out-of-curiosity” purchase on my part.

Pours a classic amber ale color of a clear red-orange. Thin 1/2″ of head that dissipates quickly into a small ring. Faint aromas of grain and a touch of sweetness. Bready, yeasty flavor with a touch of caramel malt and a delicate tea-like bitterness. Light in body and sharp carbonation. Easily chuggable and not filling.

Though not my favorite style or beer, it was pleasing enough. More of a refreshing beer or a session beer that you could easily kill several of after yardwork or at the race track. Light enough to have several but still has good flavor. Rating: 3.5/5.

And now for this week’s cigar reviews, we have a couple of variations of The Nub by Oliva. Both measure in at 4″ x 60 ring gauge and feature Nicaraguan long filler and Ecuadorian wrapper. I’d reviewed the maduro version prior and loved it so I figured I’d try a couple of others.

Nub 460 Connecticut

First light revealed a fairly loose draw (not at all surprising given the ring gauge) which produced plentiful mild/medium bodied smoke. The draw flavor was a slightly sweet cream and the retrohale featured a soft, zingy woody note. The flavors were consistent from start to finish, lasting about 50 minutes before the smoke got too hot for my liking so a good burn time for such a short stick.

Perfect construction and a razor-sharp burn not requiring any touch-ups. Though not the boldest cigar nor the most complex this was a great Connecticut blend. Went beautifully with a cup of coffee and had no detectable nicotine strength. Rating: 3.5/5.

Nub 460 Habano

First light revealed a perfect draw producing a high volume of medium bodied smoke. Flavors of toasted bread and a hit of generic sugar sweetness. Retrohale revealed an aged tobacco mustiness. Into the first third the toasted notes stay but the must and sweetness meld together into a caramel. Identical draw, finish and retrohale. Flavors remained consistent through the entire length of the cigar but melding together more getting closer to the end. First hot/acrid draw comes at 50 minutes, again a good burn time for a short stick.

Good construction with an acceptable burn for the ring gauge, requiring a couple of small touchups. Mild/medium nicotine strength, just barely enough to let you know it’s there. Smooth and tasty, just wish the flavors were a bit more intense. Rating: 4/5.

Thus concludes review Wednesday. Have you tried any of these? What did you think?

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