Off Flavor Taste Test #3: Benzaldehyde

Today is the off flavor taste test for benzaldehyde, colloquially known as “almond”, although I don’t really think that’s a good descriptor of it. The almost I know is a earthy, crunchy, dry, and nutty flavor. Although I understand now that they mean more of a ‘candied almond paste’ effect, like marzipan, calling it almost […]

Off Flavor Taste Test #2: Acetic Acid

As a continuation of my comprehensive taste test kit I bought from Siebel Institute, last weekend I conducted off flavor taste test #2 and #3. If you missed #1, acetyldehyde, think…raw pumpkin and fresh cut grass. But today we are going to be talking about acetic acid, which is probably much more easily identifiable, but harder […]

Off-Flavor Taste Test #1 : Acetyldehyde

About two weeks ago I decided to bite the bullet and purchase Siebel Institute’s Comprehensive Sensory Training Kit to improve my craft beer tasting skills. It was pricey at $250, but because I’ll be using it myself I can get a few tests out of each flavor. Each vial is enough to dose 1L of […]

IPA Tasting #2: Descutes, Lagunitas, Sierra Nevada, New Belgium

This week I had originally planned to do a saison tasting, but a trip to Save Mart changed my plans unintentionally. Surprisingly, they had a 6 pack of Drakes 1500 (not featured here)…then I also noticed a Deschutes Fresh Squeezed IPA. Once I had 2 six packs, another 2 weren’t a big deal, so I […]

Tasting Notes for West Coast (American) IPA: Green Flash, Dogfish Head, Red Hook, Stone

I was pretty excited to do my IPA tasting for two reasons. One, my ESB tasting (link) last week went really well and I think I learned a lot. But the biggest reason is that hops are a huge part of brewing craft beer (and beer in general), but I still can’t identify the various hop flavors very well. The difference between floral, grassy, citrusy, earthy, and other hop flavors is still a mystery to me.