Viking and Einstök

Moving across the country in Iceland meant new hotel, new happy hour. Wow, this hotel in Vik actually had a 3-hour Happy Hour – 4pm-7pm. We could stay out late doing tourist stuff!

The two brews on tap we sampled in Vik were Viking Lager and Einstök Pale Ale.


Viking Lager, per the site: The most popular draught beer in Iceland for some years, it is pleasantly mild with a slightly sweet flavour. Less filling and more refreshing than many other beers, it’s ideal for those who prefer a medium-strength beer with less bitterness. Tasting notes: Light golden, little sweetness, light, limited bitterness, corn, beans. ABV 4.5%.

My notes: A bit on the light side, nonetheless good. I like my beer to have a bit more body.

Einstök Pale Ale, per the site: Brewed 60 miles south of the Arctic Circle, we balance three kinds of hops with pure Icelandic water to create an ale unlike any other. It can only be described as an Arctic Pale Ale and it’s truly one of a kind. Cascade hops give it American character, while Northern Brewer and Hallertau Tradition add just enough bitterness to make this ale refreshingly Icelandic – and to make everything else pale in comparison. Key Ingredients: Pale ale malt, crystal malt, chocolate malt, American and Bavarian hops.  ABV 5.6%

My notes: Good crisp beer, not hoppy, good body and color, perfect to drink after a day on the road.

And, since these were both enjoyed at happy hour, bargain price at 50% off bringing them to about $8/pint. Cheers!


Noble Shepherd Craft Brewery

Awhile back I visited another great craft brewery, this one in the Finger Lakes.  It’s Noble Shepherd Craft Brewery.  It was started by a couple a few years back as they just wanted to move onto new things.


Opted for a sampler while visiting and the brews tasted included:

-Mosaic Foundation Pale Ale – 6.4% ABV
-Watermelon Wheat – 5.5% ABV
-20A IPA – 6.3% ABV
-Belgian With IPA with Spruce Tips – 6.6% ABV


The Mosaic was definitely my favorite.  I would give you a great description of it but I didn’t write it down and they don’t have it on tap anymore so I can’t copy/paste it from their site.  So all I can say is that it was really good.  We left with a growler.  How does that sound as additional endorsement?

The other cool thing is they have the machine that put the tops on the large cans if you want to leave with one of those.  So much fun to watch it in action.



Check this place out if you’re up in the Finger Lakes area. Definitely worth the visit!

DC Brau

Finally made it to a pretty well known local DC brewery, DC Brau.


I knew it was somewhere in NE DC, but wasn’t sure where.  Finally as I was getting there I figured out it’s in one of the developing areas, right off 50, near the relatively new Costco.

Went on a Sunday, a bit after they opened so it was pretty quite.  Opted for a sampler so that I could try several of their brews.  Ended up with the first six on the list.  Of course there is a quite a bit of power to most of them.


Info on the beer, straight from the DC Brau’s site:

Brau Pils was our newest summer seasonal alongside El Hefe Speaks, NOW YEAR-ROUND.

EL HEFE SPEAKS! is a traditionally brewed German-style Hefe. It is fermented around 65°F and hopped with German Tettnang hops. 11 IBUs and 5.3% ABV make this one extremely drinkable.

The Citizen is one of the original flagships brewed here at DC Brau and draws inspiration from the stronger ales made famous over the centuries by the Trappist and Abbey brewers of Belgium. Although the label denotes “Pale ale” this is mainly a reference to the color of the beer and not the bitterness of the beer as is commonly associated with American Pale Ales.

The Public™ Pale Ale is brewed in the classic American Pale Ale style. Assertive bitterness backed by C-60 and Vienna malts which lend notes of rich, yet semi-dry caramel. Then followed up with a nice white grapefruit and citrus aroma that begs for a follow up sip.

The Corruption™ IPA is DC Brau’s take on a Pacific Northwest IPA. Brewed with Pale 2 row, C-10, Honey and Victory malts. Exclusively hopped with 40 lbs of Columbus hops per brew to ring in at 80 IBU. “The Corruption” comes in at 6.5% ABV. This beer straddle’s the line between IPA and Imperial IPA and has a supportive malty backbone with an assertive hop presence that smacks your mouth with a dank, resinous bitterness followed by pleasant aroma’s of pine sap and burnt spruce.

The Hefe was great with the Citizen being another great one.  The Imperial IPA was a bit strong.  Overall, a great time and the staff was awesome to talk to.

The final one is a cask beer that changes all the time.  Very strong…

The Hefe and Citizen were probably my favorite.  Overall great time at the brewery, chatting with the staff and enjoying some local, cold beer.



Cheers to Beer(s) in AUS

Ok, there is of our amazing wine in Australia and New Zealand.  But, one must not forget about the brew!  Some amazing stuff come from malt, yeast, hops and water.  Some were enjoyed with aforementioned meals in posts.  The couple below were ‘just’ enjoyed in Cairns, AUS near the Great Barrier Reef.  The James Squires Pale Ale was perfect.  Not hoppy, just smooth.  The Golden Ale was a bit light, but nonetheless refreshing!

The XXXX Australian was one of those to just drink because it’s hot out and you wanted to try local beer.  Think Foster’s.  The picture of it focuses more on the beautiful water because of that.


From Om to Omission

I’ve had some great beers the past couple weeks.  After the Om feeling, I happened to try some Omission Beer while at the weekly golf league at Red Gate.  My friend is gluten intolerant and while we normally enjoy sipping some great wine together, that doesn’t happen on the golf course, during or directly after.  So, I tried some of her Omission Pale Ale and had she not handed it to me, I would never had known it was gluten free.  It was a bit darker tasting than I expected for a Pale Ale, but still darn good!  I found out later (by reading the back label and checking out the site) it’s produced by/at Widmer in OR and Redhook in NH.  I enjoyed one after the round because come to find out she and I tied (as a team) for first place that night in the league.  Cheers to that!




And in the food world, a common thought when it comes to HOP is just plain old hops and beer.  Bring me that IPA.  And on the history of IPA, Wikipedia is once again that great place for just random info you never realized you were going to look up.  If you want it, here’s your easy link.

There was a beer tasting yesterday of the wonderful Sierra Nevada Brewing Company.  This phenomenal brewery comes to us from Chico, CA and has (biased opinion) one of the best pale ales.  They were also sampling two other brews.

The Celebration Seasonal has a ‘medium-high’ hop level.  They brew this with fresh hops (vs wet hops) and these are the “freshest dried hops to come from the fields, typically within seven days of harvest.”  I could taste some tree in this beer, pine-y, in a good, seasonal way.

The other beer they had out was the Torpedo Extra IPA.  This is definitely way up there in hoppiness (or you could translate that to happiness?) but the balance of flavors in it make it a very unique brew.  Trees, citrus and just dang good beer!

Thanks Sierra Nevada for the hops, IPA and great brew.


Then, wouldn’t it be nice to enjoy one of those beers in the Sierra Nevada?  The view there is amazing!!!