On many occasions we’ve regaled you, Gentle Reader, with tales of hoppy valor on the part of Tampa’s Cigar City Brewing Company- their flagship IPA (Jai Alai), Brown Ale (Maduro), and Imperial Stout (Marshal Zhukov) need no introduction, and have spawned numerous highly-rated derivations. In our last shipment from the snowbird Sixpacks, we received a collection of beers unrelated to these familiar standbys. With gusto, Herr Hordeum and I tucked into bombers of Big Sound, a Scotch Ale from our favorite Florida brewery.
NOTES: Slouch’s Beer Cave and Hordeum Ranch via Skype, rocking the Cigar City snifters.
STYLE: Scotch Ale
Hordeum: An aggressive pour. No issues with this foaming up like the Seabass.
Slouch: Pours like cola…
Hordeum: C-O-L-A cola, … but smells more like grape soda.
Slouch: Same fizzy, tan carbonated head resembling cola, disappearing just as fast.
Hordeum: Two fingers worth.
Slouch: Very little to speak of here.
Hordeum: But the carbonation is very fine, giving the beer a creamy texture.
Hordeum: Aforementioned grape soda, Flintstone’s vitamins, a little peaty funk but not as pronounced as some other scotch ales.
Slouch: Maple syrup, coffee, offset by a lactic sour aroma, burnnt rubber, bandaids.
Slouch: Take Shelter! Someone just detonated a malt bomb.
Hordeum: Maybe that is the “big sound.” Definitely not silent-but-deadly.
Slouch: Slight hop bitterness on the closing credits. Too little, too late?
Hordeum: This is a fruit bomb as well: tart cherries, prunes (wait, no, dried plums), raisins (wait… currants, that’s more pretentious), and other things I will make up later.
Slouch: Three words for you- “Dark Stone Fruits”
Hordeum: Oh man, my pancreas is kicking into gear. It could use some more hops to balance out the sugar.
Slouch: This beer could use more hops like William Wallace could’ve used a little help from Robert the Bruce at Falkirk.
Hordeum: Robert the Bruce (Three Floyds) is a better beer than this. While we are doing understatements, this beer could use more hops like Mel Gibson could use a sensitivity workshop. This beer could use more hops like “Blaster” could use more “Master”.
Slouch: Two men enter! One man leaves!
Hordeum: This beer could use more hops like “The Man Without a Face” could use a …. face?
Slouch: I’m gettin’ too old for this shit.
Slouch: Frickin’ thick. This could come in a plastic bottle shaped like a woman of color.
Hordeum: Like a woman who is dating Uncle Ben?
Hordeum: Oh man, that is a big bottle.
Slouch: Yes, drinkability is low. But it is 40 degrees and raining outside (just like Scotland) so screw it.
Hordeum: The bright fruit flavors are intriguing, but when it comes down to it, this is just too sweet.
Slouch: If this was some other brewery, I’d probably rate it lower, but I’m afraid to give Cigar City a bad review.