I've liked pretty much all the beers by Stone I have had but do have pick a time when I can have one. All big bottles of big brew. Except I picked up this one at C's of Oswego yesterday and it was neither big... or big. My traveling man on the inside at the brewery told me that this the lighter side of Stone has recently been sent out to take over the eastern half of the continent. Which means we over here on the lightly tie dyed side now get to find out what the Satanic can do with the session.
The beer pours a bright smoky orange amber under a thick fine head. Plenty of hops on the schnoz, including a bright note of what I am going to say is Goldings but likely isn't - it just has that sharp smack of hop aroma that I associate with opening a pack of hop pellets when home brewing. In the mouth, this is clearly a Stone beer with a hard edged balance of multi-layer hop bitterness with raisin malts tempered by lush moreish water. You may be a-feared of a CAMWA beer of the year candidate yet it's almost one third of the strength of Stone usual big bruisers at just 4.4%...but with 45 IBU. Which means you can have one of these chewy hopsters on a Tuesday without ending up later drooling on the sofa pillows as the TV test pattern glows upon you from the corner of the rec room.
Like it a lot. Solid BAer approval meets a little hydrophobia.