Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Brutal Truth: Savvas's Belgian Thing

Behold, the latest poor bastard up for a go-round in, The Brutal Truth:

Let's do this thing. Because he's not sure what this is, I'm gonna put it in Belgian Pale Ale for him. The only stats we know are that it's in the neighborhood of 6% abv and was built as a kit from somewhere that he got for a gift.

Aroma: Mild banana and custard-ish aroma. Nearly heaven, in fact. It's very light, but distinct. No off flavors noted here. A touch of maltiness in the aroma as well. 10/12

Appearance: Color is good for style, but clarity is a might bit less than clear.. The head poured well and stood for some time, and persistence is very good so far, with a mousse like consistency. Gorgeous, in fact. If only it were crystal clear.. 2/3 

Flavor: Soft and delicious in every describable BJCP manner. It's hops are so restrained, but the malt comes through *so* well to make up for it. This is to style, however. The beer invites sip after sip, and does not disappoint. Bitterness zips right in to hit the tip of the tongue to let you know it's there, but fades off to nothingness after you swallow, leaving the fantastic maltiness in it's wake. Very well done! I cannot place whatever hop was used in here at all.. and this is also to style. As this beer nears the end of it's day, I almost want to call out an extremely mild peppery-ness in here, but I'm not positive on that. I also think I want perhaps one more thing here.. either a bit of orange peel or it's ilk, or maybe a whiff of aroma hops.. I need just one more dimension to reach perfection. As a result, 17/20

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is fine and persistent. Body is medium in feel, overall. 4/5

Overall Impression: This is a solid, well-done, very drinkable, kick-ass product. I find no faults with it, from a brewing standpoint.. I think a higher score would be found with just a hint more of *something*.. but this is a damn fine beer as it stands. I'd be proud of this one, were it mine. 8/10

Score: 41 of 50 (oh, snap!)

Oh yeah, this one is good! Nice work Savvas, and thanks for leaving this one here for me to run through the wringer!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Garden update.. July.

Just a bunch of regular and a few macro (with a crappy camera) photo's of the garden and how things are growing in early July.

Here's the very first flowers from the Earthbox Habanero's on the deck. The ones in the beds out back aren't popping just yet, but they seem like they're *just* behind the Earthbox units.. so far, I'm happy with the results the Earthbox has given me. It's an interesting idea and it's very easy to maintain day to day. It's also extremely consistent with it's process, it's completely resistant to bugs and pests thus far, and hell.. it's beating the pants off the raised beds. So far, it's only drawback is that it's not an 8x4 sized unit and it costs money to make. But if all you're looking to do is grow a few plants, this is a great tool. Hmm.. didn't intend to make this an Earthbox review just yet. Let's save the rest for the end of the season, eh?

Here's a shot of the Earthbox from a couple steps back..

Here's a pic of the newly forming cones from this years Cascades crop. It's not gona be much of a crop, since I'm still building the soil quality up.. but it's looking to be much beter than last year. Which isn't saying much, really, since last year was a joke. Soil is important, I'm finding out.. 

Here's a pic of the Jalapeno's in the bed out back that are really coming along nicely. You can see two good sized ones on the plant in this shot.. these are the two biggest so far, but the others are packing, too.

Check these cherry tomatos just coming out from the bottom of one of the plants in the lower bed. Nice work, guys!

And finally, a pic of the lettuce, taken just yesterday. STILL cranking out the leaves, hard core..