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The King Is Back!

It’s my favorite time of year for beer and all because of this delicious autumn seasonal. This is fall at it’s finest. I just cannot get enough. Southern Tier Brewery of Lakewood, NY has grown to produce more than 60,000 barrels of beer annually. Founders Phineas DeMink and Allen “Skip” Yahn started the brewery in 2002. Since then, have created some of the most unique and thirst quenching beers on the market. Their dessert beer line is an especially popular choice on our shelves. Who could dream of such palate pleasers like Choklat, Creme Brulee, or Plum Noir? But the “KING” is my absolute favorite and for many reasons. Just the pure smell upon opening gives aromas of fresh pumpkin pie, cinnamon, and nutmeg. And each sip leaves you wanting another. The 22 oz. bomber is the perfect package for sharing, or like myself, selfishly enjoying alone. For the ultimate treat, pour Pumking into a tall glass with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Best beer float of your life. Hail to the “KING”!

I will take this over a pumpkin spiced latte any day.

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ABOUT THE BEER
STYLE: Imperial Pumpkin Ale
BREWED SINCE: 2007
ABV: 8.6%
FERMENTATION: Ale yeast, two types of malt, two types of hops, pumpkin
COLOR: Deep copper
EFFERVESCENCE: Medium carbonation
NOSE: Pumpkin, pie spices, buttery crust, vanilla, roasted pecans
FLAVOR: Malty sweetness, vanilla, clove, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, pie crust
BITTERNESS: Low
BODY: Medium-light
SERVING TEMPERATURE: 40-48°F
GLASS: Goblet
AVAILABILITY: Autumn seasonal, August release / 22oz / 1/6 keg
CELLARING: 35-40°F

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A Truly Arrogant Ale

“This is an aggressive beer. You probably won’t like it. It is quite doubtful that you have the taste or sophistication to be able to appreciate an ale of this quality and depth. We would suggest that you stick to a safer and more familiar territory — maybe something with a multi-million dollar ad campaign aimed at convincing you it’s made in a little brewery, or one that implies that their tasteless fizzy yellow beer will give you more sex appeal. Perhaps you think multi-million dollar ad campaigns make a beer taste better. Perhaps you’re mouthing your words as you read this.”

This beer tells you that you won’t like it. It belittles you before you even take your first whiff. And that’s exactly what I like about it. It’s a true craft beer drinkers beer. Big and bold, full of hops, this American Strong Ale is one of my staple favorites. Amber in color, big on flavor, probably a little much for a newbie beer drinker, but perfect for the pros.

Located  in Escondido, California, Stone Brewing Company was founded by Steve Wagner and Greg Koch in 1996. Passionate about craft beer, these two friends teamed up as brewer and business man, creating a legend. I’ll let them sum up who they really are, because frankly, they do it best:

“We are a small, honest brewery with unrealistically high, yet cantankerously unwavering, standards. We concentrate on creating the most satisflying, big character ales imaginable, by using only the finest natural ingredients. And lots of ’em!”

Quick Facts:

I know they sound tough with their big scary beers, but they do appreciate the environment like true Californians. In 2008, they covered the roof of the brewery with solar panels, which cut operating costs in half.

Stone  started out with 400 barrels per year in 1996 and in 2009 they were up to 98,500 barrels per year. They were listed in the top 100 fastest growing San Diego businesses in 2004, 2005, 2006 in the San Diego Business Journal. They must be doing something right!

Stone features 8 year round beers and an assortment of limited and special releases as well as collaboration releases with Dogfish Head and Victory Brewing Companies. More information on their portfolio visit http://www.stonebrew.com

Beer Advocate Rating: A-

Arrogant Bastard Ale 7.2% ABV, 22oz $5.75

You can find Arrogant Bastard as well as other craft beers at Decanted 1410 Pine Ridge Rd, Naples FL 34108 or online at http://www.decantedwines.com