Brewelist Advent Calendar 2016 – The Cure for Cabin Fever – Stone Brewing Company’s Cabin Fever Mixed 12 Pack

Buying beer for a crowd can be difficult. Like, very. You’ve got the guy who only drinks Bud Light, the guy who will only drink West Coast IPAs and the person who won’t touch anything they can see through. And then the person who swears they don’t drink beer because they don’t like how it tastes.

If you have one of those last people in your life, get rid of them. You don’t need that negativity in your life (though we kid).

The Cabin Fever Mixed 12 Pack does a decent job of coming thisclose to giving a little something for everyone. Alas if you’re only into Pilsners/Lagers/Weak Beer, you won’t be well served here. However, if you’re feeling adventurous, like some flavorful beers and are willing to spend around $22 for the people you love, you’ve got yourself a winner here.

Stone includes 3 bottles of their Delicious IPA, their Ruination Double IPA, their Coffee Milk Stout and, the star of the show, their Vanilla Bean Porter.

The Delicious IPA is, as advertised, delicious. There is a subtle sweetness and fruitiness that lacks the bitterness that some people don’t care for. It’s the second highest alcohol content in the pack, so take it easy.

The Ruination Double IPA 2.0 takes things up another level (and increases your chances of misery the next morning). This isn’t my favorite but it’s strong. So if you’re just trying to get through that awkward gathering you went to as a plus-one, hide in the corner with one of these. It’ll be over soon.

The nights, and our seasonals, are getting darker. This one has a clear coffee taste and a smooth flavor that makes it perfect to unwind after a long day.

My favorite, overall, is the Cabin Fever exclusive, the Vanilla Bean Porter. It’s not too sweet and you can taste the freshness of the vanilla. It reminds me of a cold latte or a milkshake. Stone – won’t you pretty please make this a recurring beer and maybe make it possible for me to get a 6 pack of it in the future? It is THAT good.

Yes, this pack will run you more than most variety packs (ones that are similar in content and styles around me run about $17), but this is more than worth it to offer something a bit different to your guests.

The Stats:

Stone Delicious IPA – 7.7% – India Pale Ale (Year-Round, available in six-packs, 22oz bottles and on draft)

Stone Ruination Double IPA 2.0 – 8.5% – Double IPA (Year-Round, available in six-packs, 22oz bottles and on draft)

Stone Coffee Milk Stout – 5.0% – Milk Stout (Seasonal, also available in six-packs or on draft)

Stone Vanilla Bean Porter – 5.9% – Porter (Exclusive, only available in this pack)

Brewelist Advent Calendar Day 24: Ellicottville Brewing Co.’s Lloyds Christmas Ale

Lloyd’s Christmas Ale – Festively brewed ale with fresh ginger and fig.

Where to find it: They distribute locally near the brewery and to select locations in New York and Pennsylvania. You can find their distribution map here:

ABV: 8%

Style: Belgian Brown Ale

Availability: seasonally in the winter

Taste/Smell: Smell- this had a very light and airy smell with a hint of ginger. Not a lot of extra flavor going on here. You can get some of the fig, just because it’s a unique flavor that isn’t normally in beer. The ginger was there, but just as a slight “bite” on your tongue.

Rating (out of 10): 7 out of 10 but this is the first year they’ve released it, so expect some tweaking of the recipe in the years to come.

Lloyds Christmas Ale

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Brewelist Advent Calendar Day 19: Blue Point Brewing Company Blueberry Ale

I first had this beer over the Summer, when fruity beer and shandys are all the rage. I had wanted to try something that was imbued with Blueberry flavoring, as it’s one of my favorite fruits and why not just mix it into alcohol? After trying a lot of disappointing offerings, I came across the Blue Point Brewing Company Blueberry Ale and just loved it. I had one and then went out and bought a six pack. It has the right kind of fruit to malt ratio that it’s competitors didn’t offer. As of right now, I have not found a better Blueberry beer.

Brewery Name/Location: Blue Point Brewing Company, Long Island NY

ABV: 4.60%

Style: Frut/Vegetable Beer

Where to find: Your local beer Store

When to find: Seasonal

Taste/Smell: Tastes like a blueberry pie and smells like your grandma’s house if she was someone who baked pies. Otherwise it just smells like a nice bake shop.

Rating (out of 10): 9/10

Blue Point Brewing Company Blueberry Ale

Brewelist Advent Calendar Day 22: Mr. Jump destroys your life, in a good way

You know those games that you become addicted to instantly but they are extremely frustrating to the point where you want to throw your controller at the screen but then pick it back up and beat the level? That’s the same thing that happens when you play Mr. Jump for the first or the fiftieth time. It’s an extremely fun game, but it’s brutal. It took me a long time to beat the first level and I’ve been stuck on Level 2 for weeks. Why do I keep playing it when I can’t get anywhere? Because there is a beauty in the simplicity of a game where a guy just jumps around and avoids spikes and pitfalls. It hearkens back to a simpler time in gaming where you didn’t have to invest 60 hours just to get to the end. You pick it up, you get pissed, you cheer when you beat a level, and you go about your day. It doesn’t get much better than that.

Publisher: 1Button

Genre: Platformer

Where to get it: App Store

Platform: iOs

Rating (out of 10): 9/10

Brewelist Advent Calendar Day 18: Flying Bison’s Bison Warmer

Where to find it: They distribute locally near the brewery and to Western, NY. Outside of that their distribution is unknown (not listed on their website)

ABV: n/a

Style: Winter Warmer

Availability: seasonally in the winter

Taste/Smell: Lots of malts going on with this. But that’s typical of a winter warmer. A slight roastiness with a lot of background flavors going on here I can’t pinpoint.

Rating (out of 10): 8 out of 10


Brian Beer God: Please follow me on Facebook and on my website to see more great pictures and read more reviews on your favorite brews.