I love getting to travel to work. Well let me clarify. I miss my family and friends…but I get a hotel room all to myself, get to meet new people, get to see new things and try new foods, and most of all I get a free trip to try new beers.
My recent trip to Miami, FL was no exception. I got to go with a great crew, who were very adventurous about craft beers. And of course I went on the hunt for the Legendary Brewery: Cigar City!
Our first beer on the list was from the Florida Beer Co. Florida Lage:
The thick white foamy head topped the light reddish color of this beer. It had a piney aroma. The taste was low on malt flavors and high on the piney saaz hops. It was a very solid beer that reminded me of many German pilsners, especially Jever. Over all it was a good solid beer. On my scale of 1-3 stars I gave this * (Good).
I have heard a lot of good things about this beer, even reading it in many of my Beer Suggestion books. I had to give the beer a try. Like the Florida Lager it had a very clean piney aroma. It was almost identical in color to it as well. The taste is what sets these two beers apart. This one had low hops in the in the flavor, slight sweetness. I picked up a little bit of the honey, but I kind of would have liked more. Overall another solid brew earning a rating of *(Good)
Next on our list are two beers from Miami Brewing: Vice IPA and Gator Tail Brown Ale
Vice IPA: This dark reddish IPA started with a thick foamy white head. It had a really thick caramel aroma. It had a medium mouthfeel and left a piney/citrus after taste. The malty caramel came on strong through out the tasting. This is very much done in the British Styles of IPAs. It was a solid hit and perfect for sitting pool side on a hot spring day. It scored a *1/2 (Very Good) rating.
Gator Tail Brown Ale: This was the sleeper hit of all the beers I tasted on this trip. It pours thick and foamy with a tan head. It had a medium mouth feel. It was light on carbonation. It had a really robust sweet coffee aroma. It was the heaviest beer I drank, but still light enough for the Florida weather! Great coffee flavor, and a very well rounded beer. Fans of porters would enjoy this! It scored **1/2 (Excellent).
And last but not least we have two beers from the legendary Cigar City: Florida Cracker Belgian, and Hotter then Helles Lager.
Hotter then Helles Lager: This brewery lives up to the hype! This hazy gold elixir had a soft fruity apple aroma. It carried over into the flavor. Light biscuit notes from the malts. I have been to Germany many times, and this would go right up their with the best of the German Helles, easily. Rating is **1/2 (Excellent)
Florida Cracker: This hazy straw gold brew poured light with a thick foamy head. It had a great spicy aroma., most notably a coriander scent. Very well carbonated, light mouth feel. It had a spicy taste with a hint of cloves. This beer is enough to make you forget that Blue Moon even exists. Quite possibly the best Belgian Wheat beer I have ever had. Rating: ***(Awesome)
I am looking forward to getting down there again to partake in even more of these really awesome beers! Until next time keep those beer mugs full! PROST!