posted by dave on Saturday, October 4, 2003 at 10:32 PM in category daily, drink

...there's good beer.

Cone Smoker is back! After a couple of weeks of suckiness Rich O's has moved onto a new batch of Cone Smoker and it's got the smoke once again.

What a delicious brew! My only complaint and this is only because I'm such a lightweight, is that at 7.3% ABV the Cone Smoker beer is a little too strong for me to build an evening around it. Two 20oz. glasses and I'm done.

Despite the high gravity, I'm still delighted to see Cone Smoker back in its enjoyable form. I've now tasted four distinct batches, and experienced three distinct tastes. To review:

Batch #1: Good, well balanced, with a good smoky taste.
Batch #2: Very strong smoke flavor, a little too strong at first but by the end of the glass the smoke seems just right. Very good batch. My favorite of all.
Batch #3: No smoke at all. Hoppy taste predominates. If I wanted high gravity and hoppy taste I'd just order an Arrogant Bastard.
Batch #4: See batch #1.

This beer is rapidly becoming one of my favorites. Once they pick a style and stick with it it may even surpass Alaskan Amber as my all-time favorite beer.

Tonight, in between glasses of Cone Smoker, I also tried a pint of BBC's Bearded Pat's Barleywine Ale.

This was my first taste of a barleywine, and I suppose it was okay. Just imagine regular wine without any grapey taste, and add a hint of hops. That's what tasted like. It was okay, but I cannot imagine having more than one in an evening. This has been described to me as a "World-class Barleywine" and I trust the source of that recommendation. I'll just add barleywine to the list of beer styles that I've tries and found acceptable but not great.

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