Brewed by: Pipeworks Brewing Company
Chicago, Illinois USA
Style: American Amber / Red Ale
ABV: 8.5 %
Commercial description: In this epic battle, the Blood of the Unicorn has been shed by the sword of the deadly assassin of the east. One sip of this aggressively hopped red ale clearly reveals what drives these, the greatest of, hop heads of lore. Is this the end of the mythical horned horse? Or will he rise like the phoenix to fight another day?
Pours a dark, murky ruby red with some brown hues mixed in. A thick, light khaki head forms on the pour and sticks around for quite some time. It recedes very slowly to a thick cap and collar that leaves some sticky sheets of lace behind..
Lots of dank, herbal hops up front on the first whiff along with some spicy black pepper and earthly peat. Generous dried biscuit malts, some sweet caramel and berry fruitiness on the finish.
Follows the nose with loads of herbal hops, nice fruity flesh and citrus grapefruit are up front, but it gets really down and dirty with some earthy peat and subtle pine. The malt bill comes on strong at the finish with some nice caramel notes, dark spiced bread and a slight toasted bitterness. Finish has lingering bitterness with dank hops and spicy black pepper.
Medium bodied with a slight bit of oily slickness. The finish is sweet and creamy with a nice medium carbonation level. Semi-dry finish with a hint of booziness detected but is generally well-hidden.
OVERALL IMPRESSION (9/10)
These guys are definitely on my beer radar. A really nice Imperial Red. Drinks like a Brewdog 5 AM Saint on steroids. Although on first sniff this beer seems like it’s going to be massively dry and hop-centered, the malt profile was ample enough to level things out and make a wonderfully balanced imperial red. Another wonderful offering by Pipeworks!
FINAL SCORE (46/50)
Brewed by: Elysian Brewing Company
Seattle Washington USA
Style: American Amber / Red Ale
ABV: 5.6 %
Commercial description: A portion of the net proceeds from every Mens Room Original Red sold goes to helping support the families of our military vets through the VA Puget Sound Fisher House and Ft. Lewis Fisher House. The Mens Room Original Red is brewed for The Mens Room Radio Show on 99.9 KISW The Rock of Seattle.
The beer pours a hazy, dirty orange color with a two finger frothy khaki head that very slowly settles into a thick lasting ring. Glass is left coated with soapy lacing.
The nose is of a slightly grainy caramel and sweet bread malts that nearly cover up some piney and citrusy hop notes. Pleasant and appropriate for the style, just not terribly strong in the nose.
Malt up front; graham crackers and caramel. The floral hop character comes through in the middle to a sharp bitter. Some hop bitterness to balance, but the sweetness is lacking, from what you would expect from a red/amber. Citrus notes exist along with a bit of spiciness and a peppery finish.
Good mouthfeel, a little sticky. Alcohol, though not strong pulls some of the cracker like dryness off your tongue, leaving an unusually clean feeling palate.
OVERALL IMPRESSION (7/10)
Pretty nice and drinkable beer…nothing too exciting. I wouldn’t go out of my way for it, but I wouldn’t turn it down either. Besides, it’s for a good cause.
FINAL SCORE (39/50)
BrewDog 5 A.M. Saint
Brewed by: BrewDog
Location: Fraserburgh, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Style: Amber Ale
Serve in English pint, Shaker
Serving temperature: 40-45°F
Commercial description: 5 A.M. Saint is The Holy Grail of red ales. We live in a world of disposable deities. Someone, somehow has managed to press that big, flashing moronic override button and we’re hard wired straight into the pockets of false idols trying to make a quick buck. Sadly, for a lot of people the same mentality applies to beer. But who’s to know what’s worth worshiping when monolithic advertising budgets have you sucked down the rabbit hole in the blink of an eye? At BrewDog we are on a mission to open as many people’s eyes as possible. Cast away any aspersions and let the crook of BrewDog be your guide in a whirlwind of conformity and mediocrity. Once this ruby liquid forms a foamy halo around your glass, you’ll never want to look back. Malts: Marris Otter, Crystal Malt Hops: Simcoe, Chinook, Nelson Sauvin, Centennial Twist: Loads of late hops and bucket-loads of dry hops.
BrewDog was founded in 2006 by friends James Watt and Martin Dickie. The brewery at the Kessock Industrial Estate in Fraserburgh produced its first brew in April 2007. It claims to be Scotland’s largest independently owned brewery producing about 120,000 bottles per month for export all over the world.
BrewDog produces bottled and canned beers in a variety of styles such as ale, stout, IPA and lager, some of which are also available in keg and cask ale containers. The bottled beers are widely distributed to British supermarkets and are exported worldwide to countries including Japan, Taiwan, Estonia, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, The Netherlands, the United States of America, Canada and Australia. The kegs and casks are available in a small number of locations throughout the UK and Ireland.