Friday, August 9, 2013


My favorite thing that happens in cross-country or cross-border beer trades isn't necessarily the acquisition of long sought-after "whales" - though that certainly is friggin' awesome - it's receiving a nondescript beer chosen by your trading partner that ends up blowing the doors off of everything else you've been drinking. There also seems to be one in every trade. A few months ago I swapped 6 bombers for 6 bombers with Mark C., who runs the Kaedrin Beer Blog out of Pennsylvania. I thought the big winner in his batch was going to be that CLOWN SHOES/THREE HEADS imperial red called "Third Party Candidate" that I wrote about here. Turns out the one I'd "aged" for six months - i.e. the last unconsumed beer from the trade, lonely and forgotten about in the beer fridge - turned out to be even better.

It's from YARDS BREWING. They're a long-running Philadelphia brewer that I really only knew about from Mark's blog and from The Drunken Polack, a blog which sadly died this past summer. Anyway, I wouldn't have expected Yards' winter seasonal "TRUBBEL DE YARDS" to knock me for such a goddamn loop, but it's amazing! The gimmick is that their gimmick totally works. "Spiciness of a tripel, maltiness of a dubbel". It's exactly that, and then some. It truly is a blend, and it's exceptionally enjoyable. It has a real biting spice, and a nice malty Belgian-style aroma. It's not difficult to drink in the least, but it has a fresh and meaty sort of complexity that helps key you in to its craft. It's 9% ABV, and has all the hallmarks of a great beer: balance, flavor (toffee, candi sugar, caramel - along with a dry mouthfeel), aroma and uniqueness. A total stunner and a big 10/10 from me.

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