Central City Bolg Belgian Style Tripel

Central-City-Bolg-TripelBrewer: Central City Brewing, Vancouver, BC
Style: Belgian Tripel
ABV: 9.5%
IBU: 35

Description: The third installment in Central City’s The Hobbit series, this beer is appropriately made in the Belgian Tripel-style and is named in honor of the third film’s chief protagonist.

Tasting Notes: I was quite torn by this beer. On the one hand, like every beer in this series, it’s endorsing movies I don’t like, and it all seems a bit crass and consumerish. On the other, it’s nice to see a Canadian brewery snagging a lucrative cross-promotion like this. And above all, the beer itself is quite good! A strong malt base, some coarseness, the notes of candi sugar and Belgian yeast, and a good alcoholic punch. Definitely comparable to some of the better Tripels I’ve had in recent years.

Appearance: Deep golden, clear, good foam retention and carbonation
Nose: Rich malt, sugar, yeast, honey, floral bouquet
Taste: Strong malt, candi sugar, yeast, coarse finish, alcoholic bite
Aftertaste: Lingering coarse malt, alcohol and yeast flavor
Overall: 8.5/10

Central City The Hobbit Smaug Stout

smaug_stoutBrewer: Central City Brewing, Surrey, BC
Style: Stout
ABV: 8.5%

Description: As one of three beers released in time for the premier of the final movie in the Hobbit Trilogy, Smaug Stout pays tribute to the namesake of the second installment in the trilogy – The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. The beer combines chili peppers with a strong stout base, resulting in a brew that is both potent and spicy.

Tasting Notes: I’m often not a fan of the Baltic Porters or Imperial Stouts, so this beer already had a strike against it. And while I’m not a fan of the Hobbit Trilogy, I still respect what they’ve done with this particular beer. The combination of a strong stout and a kick of chilis is interesting, as are the earthy tones and mild burn that come through in the end. Well paired thematically with a Tolkienesque dragon.

Appearance: Black, opaque, good foam retention and carbonation
Nose: Rich, dark malty nose, notes of licorice, coffee
Taste: Strong malt, mild sweetness, hint of licorice, coffee, strong hop, earthy finish
Aftertaste: Lingering hop bitterness, mild chili spice burn
Overall: 7.5/10