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Thread: Thread O' Beer!

  1. #1701
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    Day 18 - Split Shot Espresso Milk Stout
    Sweet/Milk Stout | Elysian Brewing | Seattle WA


    You only see half a glass there because had I not split this with my wife, the coffee stout fan that she is, I woulda been sleeping on the couch these past few nights. And this is Elysian who, if the pattern continues, is gonna knock this one out of the park as well. And, yeah, they did.

    Taking a big whiff of the glass gives me expected aromas of chocolate, coffee, chocolate, and some roasty sweetness, too. And chocolate. A nice doormat, it beckons me to enter. Taste-wise, wow. Just, wow. It has a smooth and rich mouthfeel, chocolate and coffee are right there, then some plum joins the party, and as things start to wind down, the coffee lingers. And it's even better as it warms, where the chocolate and coffee notes become entire chords, the coffee notes hitting a particular crescendo. There is some bitterness, but the lactose keeps it from being biting. A supremely balanced beer with a pleasing amount of complexity and charm.

    This is the best stout I've had in quite a while. Easily a 4.5 out of 5 - awesome. The next time I try this, I'm going to let it warm a little and serve it in a snifter, something that can let the aromas play around a little. It may score even higher. In fact, I'm likely gonna grab a six tomorrow.
    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  2. #1702
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    Day 19 - Widmer Hefeweizen
    Wheat Ale/Hefeweizen | Widmer Bros Brewing | Portland OR



    Now here is a beer I have fond memories of, going back, shit, probably the 90s. My first time trying it, I was visiting some buddies in Portland, and, it just blew my damned mind. It was so unlike any beer I had tried before, with its thick body and refreshing sweetness. I was in love with the stuff, as much with the novelty as with the taste itself. I had never tried a hefe before, hell, never even heard of the stuff. There was nothing like it even available in my neck of the woods at the time, what with the craft brewery explosion still a good five years off yet. So, every time I found myself on the west coast, either visiting my buddies up in Oregon, or that punk Spun Lepton when he was living in San Fran, I would always seek Widmer Hefe out, and the beer remains indelibly linked to those good times in those good places.

    But nowadays, hefes are easy to find, and to be honest, I tend strongly toward the IPAs, generally avoiding the hefes, cuz I am rarely in the mood for something as heavy in the summer, when they seem to be in the most abundant supply, which i guess is a longwinded way of saying I haven't tried this in years, and my tastes have shifted in the mean time. Lets see if it is as good as I remember.

    On the nose, not a whole lot going on, really. Surprisingly bitter for a hefe, but an almost marshmallow like sweetness is there as well. It pours as cloudy as one would expect from a hefe, but the similarities more or less stop there. It's much lighter and noticeably more bitter than the traditional German hefes I've become acquainted with in the intervening years, likely to better suit American tastebuds. Another surprise is how dry the finish is. That I do not remember, or more likely that was something I was not really paying attention to in the halcyon days of my comparative youth.

    In the final analysis, the beer is not as good as I remember. While still pleasant, it is definitely not something I would pine for, nor something I would seek out if I found myself on the west coast. Nor would I even half to go to the west coast to find some, for Widmer beer has been available here for years. I'm gonna give this a 3/5 - serviceable. Sometimes you can't go home again.
    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  3. #1703
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    Day 20 - Pipeline
    American Porter | Kona Brewing | Kailua-Kona, HI



    Now, I can't imagine getting a hankering for a portal on the white sands of Hawaii, but what do I know. Perhaps that's why this beer is a limited release. Truth is, I don't have much to say about this beer. On the nose, not a whole lot I was picking up, but it has a nice relatively smooth, dare I say, creamy mouthfeel to it, quite roasty, with chocolate notes which fade (and ultimately finish) to coffee, tho definitely not with the aggression you would find in a stout. Somewhere in there I was picking up a vague plum sweetness.

    I'm gonna give this a 3.5 - good. Not a bad sampling of the porter persuasion.

    And we are down to four!
    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  4. #1704
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Much more my style of Christmas brew for a Monday Night Football game.

    Barbarian - ***
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  5. #1705
    Kept out of sunlight Gizmo's Avatar
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    bac0n, I think me and your wife would get along well on a beer tasting. Elysian, I'm pretty sure I've also always enjoyed, while Kona has almost always disappointed me, though pretty sure I've not tried either of the beers you had.

    Ezee, Anchor's Christmas wasn't bad, I think, but my favorite is probably still Great Lakes Christmas.
    *coming soon*

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  6. #1706
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    I've mentioned it before, but Anchor's Christmas Ale is pretty much my favorite. I always buy a case of the stuff before thanksgiving to squirrel away until December 15th, when it starts to become really hard to find. I also save two bottles for the next two years respectively; every year at the start of the Christmas season I do a three year vertical with whoever is willing to share with me.
    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  7. #1707
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Gizmo (view post)
    bac0n, I think me and your wife would get along well on a beer tasting. Elysian, I'm pretty sure I've also always enjoyed, while Kona has almost always disappointed me, though pretty sure I've not tried either of the beers you had.
    Well, the minute I figured out that InBev was the owner of all the breweries in this advent calendar, that instantly lowered my expectations some, otherwise, I woulda likely been disappointed by Kona just like you have been. Hopefully, I will find some of their taproom exclusive beers noteworthy when I visit them in the spring.
    Last edited by bac0n; 12-21-2021 at 06:54 PM.
    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  8. #1708
    Kept out of sunlight Gizmo's Avatar
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    21. Imperial Peanut Butter Jelly & S'mores Stout (The Garden Brewery)



    So.... this beer exists. I've had peanut butter stouts, and I've had s'mores everything, since s'mores are my favorite snack ever, but them combined....with jelly? I'm not sure what to think of all this. Not to mention, The Garden Brewery should maybe think about giving their beers a real name, as this was a lot to type out in here, and in google for the image search! But anyway, what about the beer? The aroma is light, and there's a fruit for sure, but couldn't pick out what exactly.... well it's on the can, raspberry and strawberry, I'll accept that. The taste is chewy, chocolate for sure, and somehow, a bit of marshmallow sweetness. I'm not getting the peanut, yet, maybe once it warms, but there is the subtle aforementioned fruits. Overall, it's not too bad. I thought maybe with all that they were trying to do, it'd be...loud? I guess. But it's pretty subtle all around, letting the flavors exist, but not overtake the beer. That said, it's also not that complex, and I think the one from the other day had more going on, with less in it. This is still good, and I could see me going back to see what else The Garden Brewery has on offer.

    Only 3 more beers until the fat man.
    *coming soon*

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  9. #1709
    Kept out of sunlight Gizmo's Avatar
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    22. Shove It(The Brewing Projekt)



    I need to keep better tabs on the things I buy for this, I really went ham on the fruited beers this year. Didn't realize, since I ordered them in 3 separate phases, probably about a month apart. Anyway, this is raspberry rhubarb, and it's also not a stout, at least. We've got us a sour, and that sour is buried beneath the fruit tartiness. The raspberry and rhubarb really come through, and the sour serves to compliment the berries. This one is very heavy, and I can literally see the berry puree in the glass, separating into 3 layers, the lower layer being the fruit puree, the middle being the heavier fruit juice, and finally, the beer on the top layer. I'm not sure I'd really relate this to a sour beer, since it's so fruity and sweet, but it's a very drinkable sour, so I could see going back to it.

    Only 2 beers to go.
    *coming soon*

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  10. #1710
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    Day 21 : Christmas IPA
    American IPA | Goose Island Brewing | Chicago IL



    It's The Solstice, the days are gonna start getting longer, it's only a few days left before Christmas, so I'm feeling festive, and.... oh, for shit's sake, not these clowns again. And another IPA? Oh, Jesus. Their first one crashed on the landing, their second one crashed on takeoff, and now they're trying to put lipstick on a pig by calling this a Christmas IPA, whatever the fuck that means. According to the can, it's a "smooth" IPA. Not sure what that means either. How I interpret it, is it looks like Goose Island is here to drop a big steaming yule log on my Christmas cheer.

    Okay, lets get this over with. The nose is inviting enough, with strong smells of citrus, a slight bite of acidity followed by caramelly sweetness. But I'm not getting my hopes up cuz the other two beers smelled good, only to pull a bait & switch when it got to my mouth. At first taste, it starts with a bit of a sharp bitterness to get my attention, but that is only for an instant. What follows is green apple, orange peel, and..

    ...wait...

    ...what is going on here...


    ...followed by a pleasant sweetness provided by a nice malt structure holding the thing up and...

    ...is this the twilight zone....

    ...this beer is.... good!

    ...okay, we're not out of the woods quite yet, my friends. Their regular IPA was good up until the end, only to finish on an astringent note. Can this one stick the landing?

    ...drumroll please...

    YES!

    It ends nice and juicy with plenty of citrus and a nice, dare I say, smooth aftertaste. And as it warms, it takes on an even more complex character, as hints of pine resin start to assert themselves. They actually pulled this one off! Holy shit!

    If I were running Goose Island, here is what I would do: Make this their regular year-round IPA. Their current IPA, they can just stop making. That So-Lo swill, I would recommend they ship to Russia with a note attached saying "To Putin, With Love, Your Pal, Don." and watch as the Kremlin descends into chaos.

    I'm gonna give this beer a 3.75 - good, borderline great. Goose Island, you have redeemed yourselves. Sorta.
    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  11. #1711
    Kept out of sunlight Gizmo's Avatar
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    23. Blaupause (Freigeist Bierkulture)



    For the 2nd day in a row, it's a fruit beer, that's not a stout, that looks like a thick fruity mess in the glass. This one, a weizenbock, not a sour, actually tastes more sour than yesterday's beer. Perhaps it's the blueberries bringing sour where the raspberries brought tart. Either way, it's not bad, and since it's like juice it goes down easy. Nothing very special, in all, and we'll hope tomorrow brings a stellar conclusion.

    Only 1 beer to go before Santa arrives.
    *coming soon*

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  12. #1712
    Kept out of sunlight Gizmo's Avatar
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    24. Psychadelic Pineapple (Cierzo Brewing Company)



    Well, it's another fruit, and this time I'm most thankful, as it's also a Goze, which are always miss or hit with me, as molded yeast isn't my idea of a good flavor starter. But I'm a fan of pineapple, and I've liked other gozes in the past when the sour isn't overpowering. This one is... mild. The sour is not too prevalent, thankfully, but neither is the pineapple. This one actually isn't much of anything. Quoting some guys at work when talking about some of the things they've drank "it's like drinking a seltzer water, while someone down the hall shouts 'sour pineapple'". Yeah, there's not much to like or hate, this is just a carbonated beverage that hints at being a few things. Not the most ideal end of the season, but that's another 24 new beers tried, and it ends with Christmas (a work day for me, but still Christmas). Looking forward to the mulled Leifman's Kriek that I've got ready for after work tomorrow while Skyping the family back home while finally attacking what's under the tree. Hope everyone has a good healthy, happy holidays.

    No more beers remain this year, but I look forward to another 24 next year.
    *coming soon*

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  13. #1713
    The Pan Scar's Avatar
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    I worry Bac0n and I are going to being playing catch up on his beers on the 26th....

    ....and mulled wine.
    ....and possibly Spun's EggNog
    ....and probably scotch
    “What we are dealing with here is a perfect engine, er... an eating machine. It's really a miracle of evolution. All this machine does is swim and eat and make little sharks and that's all.”

  14. #1714
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Good dessert beer. Vanilla doesn't hit too hard like the one I had earlier in this thread. Drank the full pint and it made me merry.

    Barbarian - ***
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  15. #1715
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Scar (view post)
    I worry Bac0n and I are going to being playing catch up on his beers on the 26th....

    ....and mulled wine.
    ....and possibly Spun's EggNog
    ....and probably scotch
    Haha - actually, I have been at least drinking the beers, all except #24. I've been too busy with Christmassery to type anything up. I should be able to finish up tomorrow and Monday. In the meantime, Merry Christmas, everyone!
    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  16. #1716
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Now we're hitting a stride. Merry Christmas indeed.

    Barbarian - ***
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  17. #1717
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    One last Christmas beer. This brewery does a wonderful Toasted Marshmallow Pumpkin Porter, but... and this may be more of a problem for me... but the gingerbread doesn't quite hit. It's fine, but I won't be buying it once a year like I will the TMPP.

    Barbarian - ***
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  18. #1718
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    Okay, the smoke has cleared, the dust has settled, and I have an opening. Lets bring this home.

    Day 22 : Golden State Cerveza
    American Lager | Golden State Brewing | LA CA



    A good, crisp and non-pretentious beer, the first of which is to be enjoyed as you mow the front yard, the second as you mow the back yard, and the third on the porch with some friends when you're through. Clean, if a bit bready on the nose, crisp and clean as it goes down, with just a touch of tang. Low bitterness makes for an easy drinking summer beer. I'm gonna rate this 3.5/5 - good. If macro brews are your speed but you wanna mix it up a bit, I bet you would enjoy Golden State Cerveza.

    2 beers to go!

    Day 23: Salt & Seed
    Gose | Elysian Brewing | Seattle WA



    My first experience with a watermelon'd beer was with 21st Amendment Brewing's Hell or High Watermelon, which is easily among the top three worst beers I've ever had. You would think the mild sweetness of watermelon would play great with beers, especially wheat ales, but, no, HoHW came off tasting to me like carbonated pickle water. BLEEECH! Needless to say, I've been leery of watermelon beers ever since.

    On the other hand, Elysian has been pretty solid this round. All of the beers they've offered up this month have been on the, shall we say, eccentric side, and all of them have been wonderful, so one would think if anyone can pair the sweetness of watermelon with the salty tones of a gose, and not make it taste like shit, it would be these guys.

    As it happens, I am happy to report that Elysian once again pulled a rabbit out of a hat - this is quite the tasty beer. While there is not much on the nose save a mild sweetness, the first sip hits you with a nice right hook of acidity, followed by a tart left, then it backs off so the watermelon can float on in and stay. True to form, there is just enough of a salt presence to brighten the beer up; it remains a smooth, inviting beer throughout, and finishes off nice and dry, beckoning you to take another sip, and be speedy about it.

    Don't know if I could drink a whole six pack of these, the flavors are very assertive, but I did enjoy this for what it was. I'm gonna give this a 4/5 - great.

    One beer to go! Quick, to the fridge!
    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  19. #1719
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    Day 24 (well, technically, Day 28, but whatever) : Winterhook Winter Ale
    Winter Warmer | Red Hook Brewlab | Seattle WA



    And we finish the journey, appropriately enough, on a winter warmer, which is pretty much a catch-all category for a beer released around Christmas that they don't know what else to call. Which is fine. There is enough to worry about this time of the year without getting hung up on semantics.

    This beer has a lot going on, that is for sure, especially as it warms up. Out of the fridge, not much to get a whiff of, but as it warms the fuck up, it wakes the fuck up. As it approaches room temp, the malts are going gangbusters, giving me a pleasant vibe of butterscotch, a touch of green apple tart, some brown sugar and, hell, I'm gonna say cotton candy while I'm at it, cuz why not.

    Taste-wise, a lot going on here as well. Up front, I am picking up caramel apple and, again, butter scotch, and quite a bit of bitterness. Not IPA level hop bomb stuff, mind you, but the bitterness asserts itself about mid way through, and lingers long after the finish, but not to worry, there is that cotton candy sweetness at curtain call, so you're not left hanging.

    At the end of the day, this is the sort of beer I would bring to a holiday party, to split with people. Interesting enough on its own, it would really lend itself nicely to a tasting, along with multiple other beers of its ilk. A sort of beer tapas if you will. 12 oz is about enough for me, but about 4 oz would be perfect. I'm gonna give this beer a 3.75 - good, borderline great.

    And that is a wrap, friends! And, ya know what, lets tally up the reviews by brewery, worst to first, to see how everyone did.

    Goose Island Brewing
    • IPA (Day:2 - Score 2/5)
    • So-Lo (Day:10 - Score 1.5/5)
    • 312 Urban Wheat (Day:15- Score 3.25/5)
    • Christmas IPA (Day:21- Score 3.75/5)

    Overall: 2.625 (mediocre to serviceable)

    Widmer Bros Brewing
    • Brrr Hoppy Red (Day:11 - Score 3.5/5)
    • Hazy Jack Pale Ale (Day:13 - Score 3.75/5)
    • Green Skies Hazy (Day:17 - Score 2.5/5)
    • Widmer Hefeweizen (Day:19 - Score 3/5)

    Overall: 3.1875 (serviceable to good)

    Kona Brewing:
    • Big Wave Golden Ale (Day: 1 - Score 3.5/5)
    • Longboard Island Lager (Day: 8 - Score 3/5)
    • Pipeline Porter (Day:20 - Score 3.5/5)

    Overall: 3.33 (serviceable to good)

    10 Barrel Brewing Co
    • Apricot Crush (Day:3 - Score 3/5)
    • Cucumber Crush (Day:7 - Score 4/5)

    Overall: 3.5 (good)

    Golden Road Brewing
    • Hefeweizen (Day:4 - Score 3.5/5)
    • Christmas Cart (Day:9 - Score 4/5)
    • Mango Cart (Day:12 - Score 3/5)
    • Golden State Cerveza (Day:22 - Score 3.5/5)

    Overall: 3.5 (good)

    Red Hook Brewlab
    • Storm Surge (Day:6 - Score 2.75/5)
    • Big Ballard (Day:16 - Score 4/5)
    • Winterhook Winter Ale (Day:24- Score 3.75/5)

    Overall: 3.5 (good)

    Elysian Brewing
    • Night Owl (Day:5 - Score 4.25/5)
    • Altered Contact (Day:14 - Score 4.25/5)
    • Split Shot Espresso Milk Stout (Day:18 - Score 4.5/5)
    • Salt & Seed Watermelon Gose (Day:23 - Score 4/5)

    Overall: 4.25 (great to awesome)

    And not surprisingly, there was a bell curve at 3.5/good, and the clear runaway winner is Elysian.

    And that, my friends is a wrap! See ya next year! Great job, all!
    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  20. #1720
    Director bac0n's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting bac0n (view post)
    Day One: Big Wave Golden Ale
    American Blonde Ale | Kona Brewing Co | Kailua-Kona, Hawaii



    ....All in all, my score is 3.5, a slight uptick from 3.25 a few years ago. A solid, good beer. Nothing to get too super-duper excited about, but I could definitely see myself enjoying this on a nice warm summer day - or on the stool of a brewery with a beach view. Suddenly, April can't come fast enough.
    I know you were all dying to find out whether or not Kona beer tastes better with a beach view, so here it is. The below picture was taken on Waikiki Beach last week, and, yes, Kona beer tastes 89.567% better in Hawaii with a beach view.

    Right now the jury is still deliberating as to whether that is because of the beer, or the beach.

    Losing is like fertilizer: it stinks for a while, then you get used to it. (Tony, Hibbing)

  21. #1721
    Producer Yxklyx's Avatar
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    So... if a place is advertised to close at 2 am, shouldn't you be able to drink your beer until that time? I got kicked out at 1:40 am - LAST CALL!

  22. #1722
    Kept out of sunlight Gizmo's Avatar
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    Well folks, I've found my way back to Matchcut, so I guess it's almost December. I really do mean to poke around more often, but I watch so few movies and tv shows. I'm coming back with my 24 beers of Christmas countdown. This year I was busy and didn't want to put in the effort of trying to find 24 different beers on my own, so I sucked it up and ordered one of the premade Advent calendar boxes. I do have a few extras I picked out, just in case I come across any doubles/beers I know I've had before. If you're joining in, you've got a month to get your 24.
    *coming soon*

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  23. #1723
    I'm the problem it's me DFA1979's Avatar
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    Sweet!
    Blog!

    And it's happened once again
    I'll turn to a friend
    Someone that understands
    And sees through the master plan
    But everybody's gone
    And I've been here for too long
    To face this on my own
    Well, I guess this is growing up

  24. #1724
    Producer Yxklyx's Avatar
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    So one thing I recently found out was that some bars control the amount of N2 and CO2 that go into their Guinness draft. One of my local pubs has been adding too much N2 so I can't drink more than one pint - I get entirely bloated. Another nearby pub has the correct mix and that's not an issue.

  25. #1725
    Quote Quoting Yxklyx (view post)
    So one thing I recently found out was that some bars control the amount of N2 and CO2 that go into their Guinness draft. One of my local pubs has been adding too much N2 so I can't drink more than one pint - I get entirely bloated. Another nearby pub has the correct mix and that's not an issue.
    This explains a lot. It has been my experience that not all Guinness drafts are made equal.

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