It's not my first taste by any means. By now I have 4-5 beers that I can drink and really say that I enjoy drinking them. But, I have never tried Sam Adams and I have been told that they have some great brews.
Boddingtons from a can is nowhere near as good as Boddingtons on tap. It's been a year and half since I had one in a can, but I distinctly remember thinking that it wasn't as good and had a tinny, metallic flavor. I don't know if that's the can, the nitrogen or something mental, but I'd recommend getting one on tap before you write them off.
I just came home from my dad's where I had a Landshark. He picked up a case in Florida a couple weeks ago and I don't think it's something that's for sale locally. My first impression was that it was just a slightly better Budweiser, but I was drinking it by itself. When I paired it with some food (a ribeye and some yam fries), it wasn't too bad. I wouldn't personally drink it since I'm not a fan of the style in the first place, but it's drinkable. It's actually brewed in Jacksonville, so I may try to get tour the brewery in January when I'm there visiting family.
Actually I got a 4-pack of Boddington's a couple of months back and had pretty much the same reaction. I don't think I even finished the can I opened. Not sure if my tastes have changed over the past year or so since I've had it in a real bar, or if the cans just suck.
Interesting, I've never had Boddington's from a can, but still thorougly enjoy it on tap. My local pub Trials (highly recommended for anyone in the SF Bay area) serves it in a real Imperial Pint glass as well. How are you pouring it? I learned a trick from some bartender friends a few years back, basically you want to crack it open then tip the can upside down in the glass as quickly as possible. As the glass fills up, you slowly lift the can out, keeping the opening near the top of the contents of the glass. Not exactly sure what it does, but I've tried it a lot with Guinness from a can and it certainly tasted a hell of a lot better than other methods I'd used in the past.
My father turned me on to Warsteiner Dunkel the other night. Hot damn if there wasn't a beer I could drink all day long, there certainly is now.
Warsteiner Dunkel and Spaten Optimator were two of my favorites for a long, long time. Also try to catch Kostritzer Schwarz if you can - that is a dreamy, creamy schwarzbier. Love it, love it, love it.
p.s Warsteiner also makes little pony kegs of the Dunkel which is great for picnics and the like.
I actually just got a 6 pack of Spaten Optimator this weekend, and wasn't really digging it. I'm not sure why, as when I was in Munich this summer I couldn't get enough of the local Dunkels. Maybe the pack I got was skunked or something, it just tastes a bit off.
I noticed that liquor stores are starting to get into "pumpkin beer" mode again. A search of this thread revealed some negatives reviews of Shipyard's Pumpkin Head, but that's one of my favorites. I find that it's one of the only ones that really has a pumpkiny flavor; most brands just go for "generic lager with a funny aftertaste".
I haven't tried dozens of them, but the best pumpkin beer I've had was at Boston Beerworks. I hope they brew it again this year, it was the shit.
As far as pumpkin brews I've had go, I'd say that Smuttynose Pumpkin ale is probably my favorite. Didn't care too much for the Seadog Pumpkin, no balance between the spice and pumpkin. Both the Cambridge Brewing Company Great Pumpkin and Beerworks Pumpkin are killer, but I haven't had them in 1-2 years though and I find subsequent brewings of the same style lose something from their initial offering, at least with the other styles they have. So much of what I like about those two brewpub styles come from the food it's paired with, so unless the food's the same, my perception changes alot.
Originally Posted by Deris
I've always been wary of any of the Fruit/Vegetable beers, with exception to Dogfish Head's Raison D'etre. I've never tried a pumpkin brew, I will pick one up and give it a shot.
Pumpkin is probably the most solid addition a beer can have, simply because of the spicing the most often accompanies it. You can sometimes find a decent blueberry brew, but it all depends on the quality of what they add. I find the ones that use syrup or extract to have an overly fake and saccharine taste, while the ones that add whole or chunked fruit directly to the mash fare better.
As for saying that Guinness fills you up, a pint of Guinness has 500 calories - that's 1/5th of the average male's expected daily income. Drink 2 pints and that's 1000 out of 2500....
It's also a bit hard to judge whether Guinness is "nice or not" depending on where you get one. I've never really had a "good" pint of it other than in a pub in wicklow (the country), that's probably the only place where i've actually enjoyed one.
It has been mentioned a time or two in this thread already, but I'd like to pile some praise on Three Floyds Brewing for their lovely Dreadnaught IPA. This beer is amazing, in my opinion, and if you love well-hopped IPAs then this is about as good as it gets, and you should do everything in your power to get ahold of one. The aroma alone is strong enough to make you feel fuzzy inside, and the pour and taste is quite an experience. I love this beer.
It is quite pricey - I picked up a 22oz bottle a few weeks back for $12 thinking there was no way it would be worth the price; but I had to try it. I went in my local store today with no intention of getting it again, but somehow I walked out with one in my hand and a receipt I knew my lady was going to be very unhappy with... but it will be well worth it.
Most Guinness that you buy in a store or in a restaurant is actually bad :P
Guinness has a notoriously short shelf life, but most Americans (including restaurant and store owners) aren't used to beers going bad and keep on selling and chugging lifeless Guinness. Its really quite sad because the 'fresh' stuff is amazing.
Two personal favorites include Alaskan Amber and Kalik. Kalik is a Bahamian beer that you can only buy in the Bahamas--it's got the same spirit as Corona but with a cleaner finish and a more robust, rich flavor. And Alaskan Amber is just flat out delicious. Probably my favorite beer outside of Germany (the local brewery in Peine makes the BEST hefeweitzen. Hartz mountain beers are the shit.)