This was my first blind tasting I’ve ever done and if I learned anything it’s that I have a long way to go.
On my way to becoming Cicerone Certified (a beer sommelier) I decided that I would start doing blind tastings (tastings where I have no idea what type of beer has been poured for me) and see if I can correctly guess the scents, tastes and beer styles of each beer that I drink.
My partner in crime (@littlemariii) and I went to Total Wine & More in Kendall and Mari selected a Total Wine beer package that had 8 beers; I actually went off and picked out other beers we would drink later on in the night.
Here were the results of my blind tasting:
Drum roll please…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………
I’m pretty upset about that; but I learned that I have a long way to go before I get Cicerone Certified and I decided to get better that I will to do these tastings biweekly.
From 1st to last I will list my scent & taste notes & I will then reveal the beer and their actual scent and taste notes:
- 1) Alcohol: Medium; Body: Heavy, fills you up; Notes: Hops later in, it’s like a pale ale, has some citrus and bitterness; Conclusion: Pale Ale
- 2) Alcohol: Medium; Body: Medium; Notes: Malty, smooth, less bitter; Conclusion: Amber Lager
- 3) Alcohol: High; Body: High; Notes: Coffee notes, stout, bitter; imperial maybe? smooth finish, chocolates; Conclusion: Stout
- 4) Alcohol: Medium; Body: Light; Notes: Citrus, very hoppy, fruity, bitter; Conclusion: IPA
- 1) Actual: Left Hand Brewing Company Study Abroad Belgian Style Ale; 4.5% ABV/ 35 IBUs; Notes: Belgian yeast gives this light-bodied ale a distinct spiciness with mild fruit esters. Results: / (meh). I guessed a Pale Ale when it should have been a Belgian Ale; counting it as wrong.
- 2) Actual: Inlet Brewing Company Monk In The Trunk Organic Amber Ale; 5.5% ABV/ Notes: This unique copper-colored ale derives its fruity, slightly spicy aroma from authentic Belgian Abbey yeast. The subtle nutty and malty sweet flavors sing in harmony with the freshest organic hops available. Monk In The Trunk devotees are known to chant about its most intriguing quality, true drinkability. Results: -. Wrong.
- 3) Actual: Left Hand Brewing Company Milk Stout; 6% ABV/ 25 IBUs; Notes: Roasted malt and coffee flavors build the foundation of this creamy sweet stout. Results: +. Right!
- 4) Actual: Highland Brewing Company Daycation IPA; 4.9% ABV/ 40 IBUs; Notes: Lively and light-bodied, Daycation celebrates Mosaic®’s ripe stone fruit notes, while an Azacca® and El Dorado® dry hop adds layers of tropical fruit and lemon. Balanced by a varied malt profile, with enough bitterness to satisfy hop enthusiasts. Results: +. Right!
- 5) Alcohol: Low; Body: Medium; Notes: Malty, choclates, slight bitterness; Conclusion: Winter Porter
- 6) Alcohol: Medium, like 6%; Body: Medium; Notes: Bitter, slight hoppiness, pepper notes; Conclusion: Amber Ale
- 7) Alcohol: Medium, like 6%; Body: Medium to heavy; Notes: Winter flavors, spiced like winter drinks, malty but balanced, nutmeg, cinnamon; Conclusion: Belgian Dubbel
- 8) Alcohol: Medium; Body: Medium; Notes: hoppy, citrus/mango flavors grapefruit? hops stick around; Conclusion: Double IPA
- 5) Actual: Magic Hat Brewing Company Howl Black As Night Lager; 4.6% ABV/ 32 IBUs; Notes: Howl is a black lager born on the wailing winds during the darkest of nights. In its depths, we discover a medium body, rich with deep roasted malt flavors of dark chocolate and coffee, and a smooth hop bitterness pacing the horizon. Brewed with Caramel 80L, Caramel 120L, Midnight Wheat Malts, Apollo, Hallertaur Hops, English Ale Yeast. Results: -. Wrong.
- 6) Actual: Rogue Ales Brewery Dead Guy Ale; 4.9% ABV/ 40 IBUs; Notes: An ale inspired by the style of a German Maibock, brewed using our proprietary Pacman yeast, Dead Guy Ale is deep honey in color with a malty aroma, rich hearty flavor and a well balanced finish. 9 INGREDIENTS: 2-Row, C15, Munich, Rogue Farms Dare™, Risk™ Malts; Rogue Farms Revolution™ & Independent™ Hops; Free Range Coastal Water & Pacman Yeast. Results: +. Right!
- 7) Actual: Magic Hat Brewing Company Jinx; 6.9% ABV/ 20 IBUs; Notes: An Ale Inspired by Medieval Chemists. Earthy, rich and steeped in autumn’s peculiar magic; Jinx is strangely haunted by memories of waning summer and anticipation of that first mysterious frost on freshly abandoned fields. A toast to dancing bonfires and falling leaves, jinx is a medium-bodied scotch ale boasting hints of chocolate and caramel malts with a slightly smoky finish. Brewed with English Pale, Cara, Crystal, Peat Smoked Malt Malts, Apollo, CTZ Hops, English Ale Yeast. Results: -. Wrong.
- 8) Actual: Uinta Brewing Company Detour Double IPA; 9.5% ABV/ 96 IBUs; Notes: Our trail blazing double IPA hauls a bold hop profile featuring heavy pine, orange rind, and guava with a sweet malty finish. Results: +. Right!
I got a 4 out of 8.
So stay tuned till the next one and hopefully you’ll learn as much as I do and get a greater appreciation for all of the complexities in craft beer!