Free Dive IPA – Coppertail Brewing


From Coppertail Brewing in Tampa Florida comes their “Free Dive IPA”.  The beer pours a golden yellow colour with a white head.  The aroma consists of citrus, grapefruit, citrus rind, pine, floral hops and maybe a dank note or two.  The flavour is of grain, citrus, citrus rind, resin, pine, bitterness, earth, herbal hops and bitterness.  The alcohol content comes in at a good 5.9%.  This was a really nice India Pale Ale and a great introduction to this brewery.

Commercial Description:  Whether you’re diving for stone crabs under Tampa Bay’s Sunshine Skyway or just wishing you were, this beer’s got you covered. Expect huge hits of citrus and pine aromas layered over a bright malt backbone. Perfect for a day on the water.

Food pairing as per brewery: Spicy grilled shrimp

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Bell Cow Milk Chocolate Porter – Jdub’s Brewing Company


From Jdub’s Brewing Company in Sarasota Florida comes their “Bell Cow Milk Chocolate Porter”.  The beer pours a deep brown colour with a brown head that dissipates quickly.  The aroma consists of sweet milk chocolate, roasted malts, lactose, malt and some sweetness.  The flavour is of roasted malts, milk chocolate, molasses, lactose, some earth and bitterness.  The alcohol content comes in at 5.6%.  This is definitely a desert beer but you can never go wrong with a good desert beer!

Commercial Description:   Think of a sweet milk chocolate candy bar, dessert.

Marshal Zhukov’s Imperial Stout 2017 – Cigar City Brewing


From Cigar City Brewing in Tampa Bay Florida comes their “Marshal Zhukov’s Imperial Stout” 2017 Vingate.  The beer pours a jet black colour with a brown head.  The aroma consists of roasted malts, molasses, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, chocolate and some alcohol.  The flavour is of roasted malts, burnt coffee, ash, molasses, caramel, toffee, dark chocolate, anise, dark fruit, maybe some umami, alcohol and a bitterness in the finish. The alcohol content comes in at 11.2% with an IBU of 70.  This is a seriously big beer and right up my alley.  I wish I could have brought more of this beer back or visited the brewery while in Florida but there is only so much room in your luggage and we had to leave Florida in a hurry to avoid Hurricane Irma.

Commercial Description:  This Russian Imperial Stout is dedicated to Georgy Zhukov, arguably one of the finest generals of World War II. Opaque black in color, with notes of espresso, chocolate, dark toffee and hints of blackstrap molasses. The English hop varietals provide a subtle herbal dryness, and the beer finishes with a hearty slap of roasty espresso. Pair Marshal Zhukov’s with mushroom solyanka, dark chocolate, cherries and ground wars in Russia.

Muy Bonita Double Brown Ale – Funky Buddha Brewery


From Oakland Park Florida’s Funky Buddha Brewery comes their “Muy Bonita Double Brown Ale” a beer with apple, cinnamon and vanilla.  The beer pours a deep brown colour with a brown head.  The aroma consists of apple, cinnamon, vanilla, toffee, coffee, chocolate and an overall sweetness.  The flavour is of cinnamon, vanilla, toffee, chocolate, coffee, apple, mild roasted malts with some bitterness and alcohol in the finish.  The beer came in at 8.5% with an IBU of 35.  This beer is desert in a bottle and well worth picking up if you find yourself in Florida or anywhere their beer is sold.  Funky Buddha Brewery is now owned by Constellation Brands.

Commercial Description:  The big sister to our Bonita Applebum Apple Pie Brown, Muy Bonita is a bigger, badder ‘bum. This double brown ale flaunts a bodacious body and a stunning combination of real cinnamon, vanilla, and apples. So thick, she’s like a hip hop song.