Sunday, July 26, 2009

Battle of Ontario Darks

The weekend is over, and you're all expecting a post on the riding I did this weekend....Well sorry to disappoint. You'll just have to wait a bit before "Tweeting" or updating your Facebook status with "reading Stu's blog, and it is DA BOMB!!!!". Don't worry, soon enough, soon enough...

In the meantime, you can read my long awaited FIRST beer related post. Yes! Beer! Enough about bikes and a guy who shaves his legs and wears skin tight clothing! Now, I don't claim to be a beer "expert" by any means, but I enjoy a good beer, and I equally enjoy trying new beers. So the idea here is to share what little beer knowledge I have and maybe introduce you to a new favourite beer, or two. Lately, I've been on a bit of a quest to find a good dark ale, and (perhaps) by coincidence, many of them are Ontario beers. Hey, that's fine with the local economy (and the LCBO!). So, up to do battle are Wellington Brewery's County Dark Ale, and Upper Canada Brewing Company's Dark Ale.

The Contenders....

First up, the Upper Canada Dark. On their website, they describe this beer as having a "moderate bitterness" and "a well-rounded, robust malty flavour with a smokey, velvet like finish". Whew! QUITE the description. Well, right from the start with the first sip, I have to say that I didn't pick up on any of those aforementioned qualities, and as a dark ale, this beer was a little disappointing. I suppose you could say that the qualities of this beer were subtle, but everytime I had a bottle, I couldn't find any redeeming value. Overall, this beer wasn't bad, but like I said, for a dark ale, it was disappointing.

So almost by default the winner is.....

....the County Dark Ale.

This beer possesses what I couldn't pick up on in the Upper Canada Dark, especially the "robust malty flavour" and "smokey, velvet like finish." The Wellington website describes this as having malt, nut and toffee flavours. I definitley picked up on the malt, but really, my tastebuds are like a kid in remedial class, and I have a hard time trying to pick up on different flavours. Either I like a beer or I don't. Anyhow, this is a pretty good dark ale, but there are some serious contenders out there that could knock "Ol' Welly" out in the first round, and I'll get to those in a future post.

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