Kersus' Original Tastings List

Kersus\' Amateur Beer Tasting Notes


United States

Miller Genuine Draft
Cold Filtered Beer at 4.7% alc./vol. in a 473ml clear plastic bottle.

Upon pouring, there is ziltch for head.  It\'s clarity is mostly clear with a healthy urine colouring.  It has a heavy aroma of yeast.
There is a tiny bit of sweetness followed by a definite bitterness, yet with very little aftertaste.  
There is a moderate amount of carbonation and the body is light but sticky.
You can taste burnt plastic and yeast.  I\'d compare it more with a poor skunky Molson Canadian.  It\'s blunt and to the point, yet easy to drink.  As you toss it back, it gets lighter and more watery.
This used to be an old standby when in the U.S. and I couldn\'t get any non-yank beers - but these new plastic bottles seem to affect the flavour.

Coors Light by Molson
The Silver Bullet
4% alc./vol. - 341ml brown bottle - Brewed under license from Molson Coors Global Properties
Brewed in Canada, but a U.S. recipe.

This beer has almost no head to speak of, with a clear watery pale yellow colouring.  It\'s aroma is of moderate malt and yeast.
It has a low sweetness and a low-moderate bitterness with very little flavour (the aroma is stronger).  It\'s aftertaste is that of ashes.  
This drink has moderate carbonation and a very light body.
Carbonated pale yellow water with a touch of bitterness and a weak but ashy aftertaste.  It is very easy on the stomach and great for people having... problems with other beers... or lemonade.
One taster quoted this to me:  \"If Goldilocks went into the house of the three bears and there were three beers on the table, this would be the baby beer drink.\"


Austria\'s Finest Beer.
5.2% alc./vol.; 500ml can

When poured, it has a thin but steady head.  It\'s clarity is quite clear with a colour of pale yellow.  It has almost no aroma with just a negligible touch of hops.
A taste hits you with an initial sweetness and then a fair amount of bitterness that almost disappears after swallowing.  It has a moderately high carbonation and a very light body.
The cautious bitterness actually builds over time, but the light weight of this beer settles upon you very easy and comfortably.  Overall a mild beer.  It\'s not so much clean as it is crisp.  A gentle and fine beer.

Note: The 330ml green bottled Gösser has a slightly skunkier (malty to some) taste that lingers a bit.

FAXE: Amber; 5% alc./vol.; 500ml can
Danish Amber Beer

While the head is dense, it is small and clears quickly, leaving but a ring around the edge of the glass.  It\'s clarity is clear and the colour is a dark amber.  This beer has a heavy sweet malty aroma.
There is a fairly low sweetness along with a moderate amount of bitterness with a hopsy aftertaste that lingers.
There isn\'t much carbonation and it has a middling body.
This is really a nice little number.  It has a bitterness that fades as you drink it and there is a hint of molasses.  It\'s far more crisp than most Ambers.  Faxe Amber is roasty yet not sharp.  It is actually a fairly subtle drink, and is the best Faxe I\'ve tried yet.  Those who dislike bitters, may not find it to their liking.

FAXE: Festbook; 7.7% alc./vol.; 500ml can (Tall Boy); served near ice cold.

Head: Almost non-existent.
Clarity: Barely translucent - dark but not cloudy.
Colour: Blood red.

Aroma: Red wine.
Sweetness: NOT!
Bitterness: Certainly bitter!
Aftertaste: Added a bitter coating to the tongue.  Even so, not super-long lasting.

Carbonation: A fair amount.
Body: Surprisingly light.

Final: Drinkable but highly bitter.  Likable, yet the carbonation and bitterness limits how many one might drink in a sitting - nice for a couple pints or to round out the evening (shocking your tastebuds back to reality).

FAXE: Extra Strong Beer; 10% alc./vol.; 500ml can (Tall Boy); served ice cold in a short wide glass.  Imported from Denmark.
Generally pricier than other Faxe brews.

It sustains a small lingering head, is fairly clear and caramel in colour (deep dark gold).
It\'s aroma is malty sweet and alluring.
At first taste you are hit with sweetness that is gone in an instant.  The bitterness however is strong.  The aftertaste is that of a lingering hops that grows each second for quite some time.
It has a middling to high carbonation also with a middling body.  It really isn\'t a heavy body, but you also wouldn\'t mistake it for light.  For this style of drink though, it may be lighter than it\'s comparables.
STRONG flavour it has!  You won\'t forget you\'re drinking an extra strong beer, nor will you be tricked otherwise (severely inebriated doesn\'t count - yet it still might shock them sober for a few seconds until they pass out).  You can taste the potency.  The aroma, colour and clarity can deceive you while the taste alone might wobble your knees.  
Roasted, earthly, and rustic!  These are the best words I can find to describe it.
Ultimately the flavour isn\'t bad and the drink has a hefty kick.  As advertised, you could use it as an alternative to mixed drinks and cocktails.  You could probably serve it on the rocks as well as neat.  Perhaps if you took a Pale English Bitter and souped it up with some 200 overproof, it might taste like Faxe Extra Strong Beer.  I wonder what the Danes would think of that?

DAB Original
The Real Dortmunder - 5% alc/vol - Since 1868

Poured from a 500ml tall can into a short wide glass.
The look!  Upon pouring, it has a light but solid head that slowly dissipates.  It is almost clear with a colour of light gold.  It\'s aroma seems like that of a fairly standard German brew except maybe lighter than many others.  
It\'s initial taste is bittersweet, and the sweetness leaves as soon as you swallow, leaving you with a long lasting aftertaste that increases in bitterness every second.
It is moderately carbonated with a middling body.  It\'s not light, but not really heavy either.
DAB is a distinctly flavoured brew that gets more and more bitter as you climb through it.  It has a lingering sourness upon completion and some might consider it skunky.  Another taster commented that \"I think it hurt my insides.\"  This may be an instant love or hate.

Mythos by Mythos Brewery (Greece)
Hellenic Lager Beer - 4.7% alc./vol. - 330ml green bottle. - Greek

This fine looking drink has little to no head, is very cloudy, and of a pale amber colour.  The aroma is a light skunky pine.
It\'s sweetness and bitterness are both balanced in the mid-range.  The aftertaste isn\'t notable.  Mythos is highly carbonated and has a light body.
Crisp but a little disappointing.  The singular poor flavour at least doesn\'t linger.  It\'s light and drinkable - very easy on the stomach and possibly even a little addicting.  Ultimately it\'s nothing special, but is sensible (very affordable - few beers are cheaper here).

Marston\'s Oyster Stout
It\'s labeled Dark, Rich, Smooth.  4.5% 500ml.

It\'s a more traditional bitter stout - but smoother than the other bitters I\'ve tried.  It does give a rich smooth full-bodied flavour.  It claims to be good with oysters and other shellfish and is noted that Marston\'s is the official beer of England.

Honestly.  It\'s not bad.  It isn\'t as good as Guinness Draught, Blackwych, or Hockley\'s stout, but I\'d put it at the #4 Stout I\'ve had with all the others I\'ve tried being pretty terrible.  It\'s drinkable and mildly enjoyable if you already like stout.  This isn\'t as much a newcomer stout as Guinness Draught, but if you\'re trying regular stouts, this would be a good one to test.

Innis & Gunn (Original)
Product of Edinburgh Scotland
6.6% Alc./Vol.; $3.45 per 330ml bottle (including $0.10 deposit) - LCBO

Grab your bottle opener as it\'s not a screw-off top.

It immediately cascades the area with it\'s deep, full-bodied scent upon opening.  In a nice clear bottle showing off it\'s sharp labelling and dark honey-hew - the first taste tells you it truly is an oak barrel beer finishing with a slight caramelized/malty flavour.  The flavour is distinct and not to be questioned!  It does not seem fair to compare it with other \'normal\' beers as it\'s like comparing a generic cheap whiskey with an expensive well-aged scotch....  (Innis & Gunn being the well aged scotch).  Innis & Gunn is indeed a relaxing drink for me - and one worth savouring although I think some might find it\'s body to be overpowering.  It is as advertised - \"Like no other Beer.\"

It\'s humble label tells you of it\'s uniqueness and being \"Supreme Champion 2004\" at the international beer competition.  It calls itself a smooth Scottish beer carefully natured for 77 days in select oak barrels prior to release.  \"I&G: Unlock the Flavour!\"

I offered some I&G in a taste test with another.  This is what we came up with:

Upon a fresh poor, it showed a thin bubbly head.  Held up to the light it was translucent Amber in colour.  As we swirled it under our noses, we detected a herbal buttered mellow oak scent.  The first taste swishing around our mouths started bittersweet with a long lasting and bountiful mellow aftertaste that lingers on.

It is full-bodied with little carbonation while each taste is better and smoother than the last.

Spitfire - The Bottle of Britain
Premium Kentish Ale by Britain\'s oldest brewer (1698); 4.5% alc./vol.; 500ml clear bottle (2.2 UK units)

It was initially brewed in 1990 to celebrate The Battle of Britain (turning point of WW2) and obviously named after the legendary aircraft.  The brewers themselves have been at it since 1698.

Spitfire Taste 1 - There is little to no scent upon opening. You feel like it\'s alcohol content is weaker than advertised, and the flavour is quite harsh.  It isn\'t an easy-going drink.  This doesn\'t mean bad though.  It has some charm, and I\'m glad I tried it - but I won\'t be seeking it out like it\'s namesake sought out the enemy!

This was ice-cold - and some Ales are better just slightly chilled , so I will have to try one warmer sometime.

Spitfire Taste 2 - I cleansed my palette this time with a Molson Ex after a nice workout.  When I popped the cap (no twist off here) I found the faint scent of a bitter cigar upon opening.  Still, it was ice-cold.  I find it has less of a body initially, but then kicks in during the aftertaste.  It\'s like an Innis & Gunn gone foul.  It tastes a little like Borkum Riff pipe tobacco smells.  This Ale is all about the lasting aftertaste.  I could see how it could grow on you.  It\'s very possible it will quite nicely compliment a cigar or pipe smoke.....

While you feel like the alcohol content is weaker than advertised - it does seem to hit you harder later than it should.  It certainly doesn\'t improve my poker skills.

Spitfire taste 3 - Special note: Maximum units a day as recommended by UK chief officers: Men 3-4, Women 2-3  Poured into short wide glass to get a better whiff:

Spitfire has a short, thick and cream-looking head.  It\'s clarity is clear and the colour is auburn (dark orangey-red to brown).  It has a distinctly sweet hopsy aroma.  The bottle advertises a smell of hops, fruit and toffee, but the hops overwhelms any other smell.

It has a mild but certain sweetness and an intense bitterness.  The aftertaste is one of a lingering bitter.  This brew is heavily carbonated and of heavy body.

Full flavoured (you can easily pick out the hops and malt as separate flavours), with a sweetness overwhelmed by the bitterness.  As you drink, the bitterness gets stronger and the Ale feels creamier.  Spitfire hits hard and plays for keeps.  Expect to be shot down if you drink too many.

This is a great bitter Ale that grows on you.  Easily a classic bitter.

\"Old Speckled Hen\" by Morland
English Ale at 5.2% alc./vol. in a clear 500ml bottle.

The Hen has a thick head that dissipates quickly.  It is slightly cloudy with an orange-red colouring (more orange - topaz to some).  It has a strong sweet aroma.

A taste reveals a heavy sweetness and a high end bitterness that fades quickly, leaving only the sweet coating of the tongue for the aftertaste.

It has moderate carbonation and a very heavy body.  

A nice autumnal drink; a rich bitter with a mild roasty flavour.  One of few beers that can balance weighty sweetness and spicy bitterness with success.  Sweet and heavy.    

Bah Humbug! by Wychwood Brewery (England)
Christmas Cheer (Spiced Ale) - 5% alc./vol. - 500ml brown bottle.

The head is creamy and isn\'t in a rush to dissipate (mediocre pace).  It is quite cloudy, the colour of rust, with an aroma of medium malt (standard beer fare).

Mild on the sweetness and medium-high on the bitterness.  The aftertaste is one that lingers with a growing bitterness.

It is highly carbonated while being surprisingly light.

Smooth, rich, yet not full-bodied.  It\'s odd at first but becomes a \'cozy at the fire\' type drink.  Easy drinking, I wouldn\'t be far off calling it the apple cider of beers (no it doesn\'t have the taste of apples, but it feels like the apple cider of beers).  It should ease you out of any Scrooge-like symptoms.


Cold Filtered Light by Niagara Brewing Company
Cold Filtered for a crisp refreshing taste.  4%
341ml brown bottle.

A pour gives you a light head that quickly builds in thickness well after pouring and then nearly dissipates.  Mostly clear, it is of a golden hue.  The aroma is quite full for a light beer and some may find it potent.

A first taste gives you a middling to high sweetness.  This taste also grants a slight initial bitterness that fades quickly.  You receive very little aftertaste - but there is a light lingering of a balanced bittersweet flavouring for a few seconds.

It\'s highly carbonated, but not so much as to trigger mild ulcers or worry of general acid reflux.  Even the high carbonation reacts lightly with the body.  It is indeed a light brew, but perhaps granting the flavour of a slightly heavier brew.  It\'s simply, light, but not too light.

A refreshingly crisp lager with a subtle, clean, and spritzy flavour, but little aftertaste.  This is a great summer beer or one to relax with after some sweaty work (or play).  It\'s easy on the gut now and the next day.  I would label this \"The encouraging pint!\"

This was a quick tasting - I\'ll likely do a more thorough tasting with more people again later in the year.

Laker Ale by Brick Brewing Company
Proudly Canadian Since 1984.  4.8%
341ml brown bottle

When checking the head, it has almost zilch.  The clarity is clean and clear.  The colour is that of caramel.  It has the generic moderate beer scent.  This brew has both a high sweetness and a high bitterness.  It\'s short-lived, but lingering aftertaste is perfectly balanced and does not overstay it\'s welcome.

There isn\'t much carbonation, which adds to it\'s smoothness.  It tastes light, but is rich without being oversweet.  It seems to retain a balance.  Do not mistake this for a light beer as it hits harder than the 4.8% would lead you to believe.

A smooth but rich Ale that refreshes and relaxes.  It has a nice bouquet of flavour that is a little rustic and autumnal.  While it may be unique for an Ale, it is more flavourful than a lager.  For me, it\'s the cold weather beer.

Bohemian Lager
Brewer: MOLSON
Alcohol Content: 5.0%
Type of Beer: Lager
Bohemian lager has been refreshing drinkers for over 75 years with its smooth and easy drinking taste.

I couldn\'t find a nice Ale recently, and broke down to try the lager \"Bohemian.\"

5% and has apparently won medals for brewing excellence.  Currently brewed by Molson - it\'s been around for over 75 years.

It has a nice mix of full-flavoured/bodied while being crisp, clean and refreshing.  While heavier than Canadian for example it brings together the nice aspects of a heavy drink (eg. Labatt 50) with the nice aspects of a light drink (eg. Sleeman Clear).

It should make for a nice summer drink, returning to the Laker Ale for the winter.....  Perhaps....

Cracked Canoe by Moosehead Breweries
Premium Slow-Brewed Light Beer - 3.5% alc/vol

Tasted from 341ml green bottle poured into a short wide glass.

Let\'s have a looksee.  It has no head and a clear pale gold sky.  It\'s aroma is a slight sweet soapy scent touched by mild yeast.

It has a very balanced bittersweet flavour upon first taste that gives you a short-lived sweet aftertaste.  Very lightly carbonated, it is easily the lightest Canadian brew I\'ve ever had.

Cracked Canoe is a bland and light beer that may give you an initial zip, but one that quickly fades.  It seems to be easy drinking, but in volume one may find the filler to overwhelm you before the meek amount of alcohol.  In fact, even it\'s slight carbonation is more likely to cause an ulcer before the alcohol gave you a buzz! ;)  

I would rate it a solid non-alcoholic beer.

Raspberry Wheat by Kawartha Lakes Brewing Co. (Amsterdam Brewing Co.)
A perfect balance of German hops and Belgium wheat and pure raspberry essence gives this beer it\'s signature aroma and flavour.  The taste is distinguished by the fresh raspberry bouquet and slightly tart taste. - 4.5% alc./vol. - 473ml can

When poured, this beer has a thick bubbly head.  The drink itself is almost perfectly clear and of a dark amber bordering on brown.  It\'s aroma is that of strong raspberry and wheat, with mild hints of hops and yeast.

It is very sweet and moderately high on the bitterness scale.  The aftertaste is slightly bittersweet and fades quickly.

It is very highly carbonated and has a middling to light body.

It isn\'t as fruity as it smells.  It is creamy, mild, and wow, it has a lot of carbonation.  The bitterness from the initial taste fades as you finish the drink.

50 aka Canadian Ale by Labbat
Authentic Ale - 5% alc./vol. - 341 brown bottle

Upon pouring, this ale has a thin but steady head.  It\'s mostly clear with a very pale tan colouring.  It\'s aroma is that of Malt, malt, malt, and a little more malt.

You might be minding your own business and take your first sip, then THWAP, a sweet kick in the head!  Bam! Sweet!  Wow!  There isn\'t a number high enough.  Y\'know that cold headache you get from ice cream?  It\'s like that but multiplied by infinity.  

It does have a mild bitterness that lingers as an aftertaste (your sweet taste buds being dead now).

It has a moderate but long lasting carbonation.  It is indeed a heavy drink.

Malt!  Is this just fermented malt?  This is easily the sweetest drink I\'ve tried.  Pepsi has nothing on 50.  It\'s the beer that grows on you... if it doesn\'t kill you first.

Canadian by Molson
Premium Lager - 5% alc./vol. - 341ml brown bottle

The clarity of this golden yellow pint is clear and it has a light head when poured.  If you really try hard you might sense the very mild aroma of yeast.

As you swirl the first taste around your mouth, you\'ll note a light sweetness and a moderate bitterness.  It has a mild aftertaste.

This pint has a light to moderate carbonation level with a light body.

Canadian is a (if not \'the\') baseline lager by which we compare other lagers.  It is a subtle beer with a mild yeasty flavour.  Clean, crisp, light, balanced, and easy drinking.  

355ml can (Duty Free entering Canada)
As compared to the brown bottle Canadian.

A higher but just as thin head that quickly dissipates.  It is a slightly more golden colour.  The scent is slightly stronger being still a mild yeasty aroma.  The sweetness and bitterness is a little better balanced (if such is possible).  There is no aftertaste to mention and the carbonation is moderate (more than the bottle).  The body is also lighter than in the bottle.

GAHAN BREWERY - Charlottetown, PEI, Canada
All Gahan tastings were draught and done by LurkingGrue and Kersus.

Sydney Street Stout - roasted; while barley it was very similar to oatmeal stouts but lighter on the stomach, yet full tongue flavour. Perhaps a touch of coffee.  A light but bitter stout.  Decent head.

1772 India Pale Ale (Copper) - no scent whatsoever (some smell a mild caramel you have to really work to notice).  A lot of punch.  Malty, strong flavour for a copper.  Stays with you.  A bitter aftertaste.  Low carbonation.  Medium to light weight.  The back of my tongue still burns.  Some felt it a little nutty at first.

Iron Horse Brown - dark amber. Near opaque.  Mild toasty scent. Creamy and light at first with a slightly bitter aftertaste.  Low carbonation.  Smooth like butter.  A little weighty (heavier than the stout).

Island Red - clear copper colour.  Mild ocean scent.  Basic red flavour, maybe a little lighter (much lighter than Rickards).  Highly carbonated.  Caramel finish.  Not for me but I generally don\'t like reds so you can frame this.

White - opaque and cloudy.  Mid head.  Yellow cream look.  Strong citrus/wheat smell.  Starts light and sooooo smooth.  Yet a slight bitter spike that smoothes out.  The most complete flavour of the bunch with a heavy body.  The citrus is prominent - some say clean.  I found it very heavy.

Harvest Gold Pale Ale - golden to muted yellow.  Heavy head.  Crisp clean smell.  Translucent.  Mild flavour, incredibly light and airy on the tongue.  Low carbonation.  You\'re not even sure you drank anything.  Very very mild bitter.  Almost no aftertaste (very light and short malt).

Sir John A -  clear light yellow, mild soapy scent.  Tastes like a forest smells.  Earthy and woody.  Some say it\'s easy to drink, however sane people realize it\'s heavier than they thought.  An easy clean flavour with no aftertaste.

Mix - Sir John A and Iron Horse Brown - basic amber, oaky scent with a basic red style smell.  Strong mid (hop/malt) flavour at first with a bitter oak finish.   Heavy body, fully flavoured, almost odd mix.  Long hop aftertaste.  The bastard child of two fine beers.


So I did a little taste testing session with a few ciders.  Presented below are my findings.  (Oh, for you Yankees, it\'s apparently called \'hard cider\' over there).

England\'s Dry Cider 5.3%
This is a staple in most English Pubs.  The scent is very much that of wine, but the flavour is a crisp, light, champagne-style apple juice.

Others at the tasting mentioned it seemed like it would go well with a Belgian lager (an Evabite).  After something like Brandy it just tastes like apple juice.

Personally I never liked the Guinness/Strongbow floats (which has several names).

English Cider 6%
This is many times the next step after starting out with Strongbow.  It is heavier, more flavourful with much less scent.  It does tend to have less carbonation as well.  

Others at the tasting found it had a more wine flavour with less appliciousness but much smoother than Strongbow.

Magners Original Vintage Cider
Irish Cider 4.5%
This cider is intended to be served over ice but we drank it straight as with the other ciders.  This drink has a scent much closer to non-alcoholic apple cider.  It easily had a more full-bodied flavour than the others we tried.  It also had this excellent refreshing feel.  I felt you could taste the Irish in it.

Others noted it had a very wine-like smell and one mentioned that you could taste all of the angst and hate of the English!  Another said they could taste leprechauns!

William\'s Sir Perry
Traditional English Style Perry 6%
Perry is a pear cider as opposed to an apple cider.  It actually smells similar to Strongbow.

Another taster mentioned it tasted similar to Blackthorn, while another felt it tasted more like traditional wine.

Swedish Pear Cider From Vimmerby (Wild Berries Flavoured) 7.0%
The head of this cider immediately dissipates upon pouring.  It is almost completely clear with a rosy colour.  

It gives off an aroma of mixed berries with raspberry being the strongest.  With almost no bitterness at all, a drinker can\'t help but be overwhelmed by it\'s sweetness.  After a taste and swirl, it\'s crispness leaves behind a lingering fruity aftertaste.

With heavy carbonation (beware those with acid reflux) it is also quite weighty for a cider.  Perhaps not as much as the heaviest of beers, but from middling to heavy body to be sure.  

You wouldn\'t even know it had any alcohol in it by taste.  It\'s basically fruit juice hiding your oncoming drunkenness.  It is highly likely this one is too sweet for many, being more of a desert unto itself.  

Conclusion: Girly Drink.

Gaymer\'s Original Cider
English Cold-Filtered Cider 4.5%

It has a longer lasting head than most ciders that never quite disappears.  Clarity is clear and it\'s colour is that of shiny gold.

Upon swirling and sniffing you detect what can really only be described as a winy taste - possibly a little yeasty.  It is dry with moderate sweetness and a touch of bitterness yet with very little aftertaste.

There isn\'t much carbonation and while the body is very light, it isn\'t crisp.

This might be a nice starter cider for those coming from wine.  With little flavour and a light body, it\'s easy to drink - but not something I\'d recommend for an experienced cider drinker.


Oedipussy Rex's picture

Too bad you can't try an Old Style from Heileman's Brewery, but the label has changed hands I don't know how many times over the past 20 years. On the bright side, I've heard that whoever owns it now has gone back to krausening. Be sure to grab a case the next time you're in Lake Geneva.

Sorcerer Character Has Warrior Adventure

Disappointing Mom since 2010.

Kersus's picture

Will do! I hope to be there in March, but who knows.

Oedipussy Rex's picture

I missed this the first time.

For a long time the Best Beer I'd Ever Drank was Dab Dark on tap. Unfortunately, I haven't found a place that serves it since moving 20+ years ago.

A few year back I had my next Best Beer I'd Ever Drank, Beck's Dark of all things. Got it on tap at the German Pavilion in Epcot.

Sorcerer Character Has Warrior Adventure

Disappointing Mom since 2010.

Kersus's picture

Dark beers are hit and miss on the extreme ends of the spectrum for me. I either love or hate them. I would most certainly give Dab Dark a try and will if I come across it.

Beck's Dark? I would try it but it is surprising. I'll keep an eye out for it.

I lean toward Guinness, Innis & Gunn, German wheat beers, and will try anything from Scotland like Tenant's on a hot Summer day. Locally I very much enjoy Steamwhistle.

Kersus's picture

While I don't really use maple syrup much, I do like maple flavoured darsk as well as maple liqueur.