My new beer fridge was getting low and I decided to do some bottle shopping. I was excited to see the Boulevard Smokestack Series on the shelves. These are high gravity, bottle-conditioned beers from Boulevard Brewing (Kansas City, MO). They are a limited release available in corked 750ml bottles, priced at around $10.99. The are four beers in the the series- Double Wide IPA, Saison, Sixth Glass Quadruple, and Long Strange Tripel. I only picked up the IPA on this visit, but I have sampled the Saison and it's worth trying.
Double Wide IPA (Boulevard Brewing Company, Kansas City, MO)
Description: Double-Wide I.P.A. uses Zeus and Magnum hops for both bittering and aroma with Ahtanum hops added for aroma. There are two additional dry hopping regimen, employing Ahtanum, Centennial and Chinook hops. The resulting beer is hop forward aroma, redolent of peach and apricot. The assertive flavor bursts with the citrus qualities of blood orange and lemon with a slight caramel malt backbone to balance the intense hop flavor. There is little restraint in the flavor of this beer; it is certainly not for the pedestrian palate. 8.5% ABV
Smitty's Review: Pours hazy orange- amber with a huge retentive light beige head. Nice aroma of fresh hops that give off notes of sweet exotic fruit. Medium bodied with a mild earthy texture (from the bottle conditioning). Initial flavor of caramel and toffee-esque malts that transitions to a huge bitterness mid palate, which is lemony and grapefruity. Clingy and resiny hoppiness on the finish with some slight alcohol warmth, and perhaps a bit of citrus like acidity. I am someone who is very picky with my IPAs, and this one gets my seal of approval (and was also a hit a recent tasting of beer aficionados). This beer is $7.99 in other states, but runs around $10.99 here thanks to our wonderful TN beer laws and second highest beer tax in the nation. While that seems a bit high, it's around the same price as a bottle of good budget wine. Sometimes you have to pay a little more for craftsmanship and quality in a beer. If you are wanting to try this one, I would suggest you grab it ASAP. IPAs are in their prime when fresh, as the hop flavors and nuances fade rather quickly.
Recommended Food Pairing: Spicy (but not hot) foods like buffalo wings, bbq, and cajun dishes. Would also pair well with many white cheeses, grilled chicken, and steak.
Where To Buy: Midtown Wine and Spirits and Frugal MacDoogal (liquor store side), Mr. Whiskers, Red Dog Wine and Spirits (Franklin)
check back for August beer of the month
Posted by Smitty at 10:04 AM