Friday, July 11, 2008

Missouri Session

I went on vacation last week, visited relatives in Oklahoma, then stopped by my folks place in Missouri on the way home. While there, we went to Wal-Mart, of all places, to buy beer. There we got Boulevard Pale Ale, Boulevard Lunar, and New Belgium 1554. Why can't my Wal-Mart carry good beers like these?

On the way back from the store, my sister wanted a bottle of liquor, so we stopped into a liquor store to get that. I also picked up a sixer of New Belgium Blue Paddle. Here's what I thought of these:

Boulevard Pale Ale

Apparently, I have tried this before, since I already reviewed it on I said it was a good example of the style, and one of the better Pale Ales I've had. I wouldn't say it smells/tastes like a Sierra Nevada, but it's that same style. It has a decent smell, and just the right amount of hops.

New Belgium Springboard

Dad already had these in the fridge when I got there. This was a nice example of a simple Belgian Ale. Not necessarily a whit, not a triple, just a light ale. A decent summer beer.

New Belgium 1554

I had just a sample of this at the Flying Saucer in Houston one time. I thought it was a Schwarzbier. While it looks like a Schwarzbier, it finishes more like a Belgian ale. Nice yeast in this one. Light, but dark in color with ruby highlights. I really started to appreciate this when I got near the end.

Boulevard Lunar

The description on the outside of the box would have you believe this was a brown ale. As I drank it, I thought it was a bit clovey for a brown ale, but something was familiar about the style, I just couldn't place it. So I looked it up on and sure enough, this is a dunkleweizen. A very good example of a dunkelweizen, too.

New Belgium Blue Paddle

I've been looking for a decent American pilsner. My favorite German and Czech pilsners all come in green bottles, which skunks the beer, and disappoints me. This one was in a brown bottle and was very nice, with a great hop profile, golden clear in color. I totally recommend this one.

On the way home we stopped at Trader Joe's in Orland Park where I was able to pick up a mixed six pack of Victory Hop Devil and Victory Prima Pils. I'll give those a try and let you know what I think.


Jay said...

Wow, I thought Boulevard Lunar Ale was just a simple amber ale. I love it - had it twice in Kansas now, and I think it's the best of their "regular" beers.

ZRC said...

Great beer reviews from your trip. I encountered Boulevard beers in the same manner you did, except while driving through Missouri. This was a nice surprise because their pale ale and wheat are both extremely well done. I have enjoyed many New Belgium beers and my favorites are the Sunshine Wheat and 1554 ( I think it was a Brussels style black ale). Great beer, awesome company, but their seasonal beers are always similar to previous selections with a small twist. I would like to see them tap into more styles, but overall excellent beer. I only wish that all the New Belgium brands were available to me in good ole Wisconsin. Great reviews, I will for sure check back every Friday. Keep in touch @