Mad Capper Reviews: Dirtoir Black Lager

While the style of this week’s beer arguably originated some 3,000 years ago during the Iron Age in northern Bavaria, Germany, Rogue Farms Dirtoir Black Lager is a variation on a variation, making it a very modern interpretation of a classic German schwarzbier (“black beer”). Rogue’s history started in 1988 with a brewery and 60-seat […]

Mad Capper Reviews: Val-Dieu Brune

This week’s beer is Val-Dieu Brune, a Belgian dubbel from the Brasserie de l’Abbaye du Val-Dieu located in the town of Aubel in Liege Province, Belgium. The abbey was founded in 1216, and brewing began not long thereafter. While the abbey church was destroyed and rebuilt four times over the course of several hundred years, […]

Mad Capper Reviews: India Pale Weizen

This week’s beer is particularly exciting, as it is the result of a collaboration between two of my favorite breweries—BrewDog and Weihenstephaner. The beer is BrewDog’s India Pale Weizen, a fusion of a hoppy pale ale and a spicy, fruity wheat ale. Judging from its specs, it looks as though the wheat side will only […]

Mad Capper Reviews: Big Daddy IPA

A couple of shady mobsters form the stylish design of this week’s beer, Speakeasy Ales and Lagers’ Big Daddy IPA. With an ABV of 6.5% and 60 IBUs, this India pale ale promises to be a hefty hop showcase. Founded in 1997 and stationed in San Francisco, Speakeasy Ales and Lagers offers a lineup of prohibition […]

Mad Capper Reviews: Left Hand Oktoberfest

This week’s beer is the Left Hand Brewing Company’s Oktoberfest Märzen Lager. Somewhat uncharacteristic in its darker color (21 SRM) and higher alcohol content (6.6%), this modern take on a traditional German beer packs a pretty good punch while showcasing the style’s characteristically clean, malty sweetness. Although Märzen beers came into existence sometime during the […]

Mad Capper Reviews: Scrimshaw Pilsner

This week’s beer is North Coast’s Scrimshaw German Pilsner. With 22 IBUs (international bittering units)―three points lower than the typical low end for the style―and an ABV of 4.7%, Scrimshaw is a featherweight compared to the previous two full-bodied brews. Nevertheless, there is a time and a place for light beers, and their delicate nature […]

Mad Capper Reviews: Old Engine Oil: Engineer’s Reserve

Another malt-heavy brew from Scotland, Harviestoun Brewery’s Old Engine Oil: Engineer’s Reserve is the subject of this week’s review. An offshoot of Harviestoun’s 6.0% ABV Old Engine Oil, Engineer’s Reserve boasts a ramped-up ABV of 9.0% in response to feedback from U.S. consumers. Stylistically, Engineer’s Reserve falls under the category of porter, though its higher […]

Mad Capper Reviews: Skull Splitter

Please welcome Josh the Mad Capper to the Beer Sensei Blog. Starting today he will be penning a beer review column every Friday. Check back weekly for his recommendations on your weekend libations. Today I have the pleasure of introducing Orkney Brewery’s menacingly named Skull Splitter Scotch ale. Taking its name from the 10th-century Viking […]