My attempt to try everything on the 44Stone Sunday Brunch menu continued this past weekend, and once again – they failed to disappoint.
Before I get into breakfast, lets talk about a few aesthetic changes at the pub.
For those of you who have been to pub, you know what the “Big Board” is. Taking up a majority of the North Wall, the Big Board carries a list of all the beers available at 44 Stone, with the upper left hand corner dedicated to what is on draft.
Now they have added two new boards over the bar – these are now the ones dedicated to tap (with other BIG news coming soon).
I really like this, as it allows them to highlight their offerings. In addition, they now display two prices: one for a full pour and one for what I have affectingly dubbed the “Beer Shot”- a snifter pour. This snifter pour really works for me, as now I can try several beers at one visit. Great Idea for reviews – with one in this very article.
One of the driving forces for me to go in early on Sunday was tapping of Sierra Nevada’s 'Hoptimium' Double IPA
Talked up by Dave, I had to make this my first pour of the day.
Appearance – Crystal Clear (amazingly so), coppery color and a nice creamy head.
Nose- Ok, I know this is a double IPA, so there should be some hops, but this had a really complex nose that included malts and oranges (surprisingly).
Taste – Not as overwhelmingly “Hoppy: as I thought. With a little bit of piney oilyness, there are a lot of different hops layers to this one. Of course this can be expected with 6 different styles of hops used in the process – what was surprising was that it was not overly hoppy, especially considering the 100 IBUs it was rated. Tastes of grass, fruit (orange and grapefruit) and a woodyness round out the beer.
Overall – I was fairly impressed with the complexity, yet mildness (for a hophead) of Hoptimum. Definitely an eye opener for early in the morning, I was glad I made the trip – everything after that was bonus. I know this available in bottles locally, but if you can catch it on draft – its definitely worth the wait.
A Solid Three (almost Four) Beers -
Speaking of Bonus – I would like to continue with breakfast – and in this case, English Breakfast.
I’ve always loved their bacon, but it might be replaced by the sausage, which is DELICIOUS and probably the best thing on the plate. Not to say anything else is bad – its just that good.
Even James liked the mushrooms (his tastes are growing up) and the eggs were cooked perfectly. The only thing I could have done without is the tomato, but that is due to personal preference…not due how it was prepared.
Another excellent meal that (by design) will stick to your ribs and keep you going all day. If only they had Guinness on tap to go with it – although one of the next two beers filled in just as nicely.
Perennial Ales Black Walnut vs New Holland El Mole Ocho
I decided, that with the new “Beer Shots” I would put two head to head – just add a little fun to the Sunday Morning.
I chose the Perennial Black Walnut for two reasons.
First, I wanted something “Dark” to go up against the El Mole Ocho. It doesn’t do any good to compare an IPA or Lager to a dark beer, and I really wanted to try the Chile Ale from New Holland.
Secondly, after I laid into Perennial for their Saison at the Missouri Beer Festival, I wanted to give them a second chance.
- Perennial – Inky black and opaque, this reminded me of a stout without the head.
- New Holland – Dark, Chestnut/Reddish Brown
- Perennial –Sweet, Walnut (obviously), Caramel, Wheat and Bread
- New Holland – Coco Powder, Maltyness, Nuts and a backend Spice (Pepper)
- Perennial – Dark Roasted Walnut, slight bitterness, toasted malts.
- New Holland – Dry Chocolate (powdery), little bit of heat with a mild chili pepper finish.
- Perennial –Sadly, Perennial still doesn’t work for me. The walnut flavor is overpowering – and not in a good way. I could possibly see this as a good “pairing” beer, but I am at a loss as to what it would work with. Until I found that match-up, I would rate it a weak two beers.
- New Holland – Unlike the Perennial Black Walnut, the Mole Ocho has some very subtle tastes, and works well as a stand alone. The fact that I get the whole “Mole Experience” when eating this is very intriguing, although I could see it not working for everyone….much like the Flat Branch Green Chili Beer. Me, personally, I would order this almost every time I went into a bar – its that solid. Debi also tried both (without knowing which was which) and preferred it to the Black Walnut, hands down. An excellent offering from New Holland and the definitive winner of the day – Four Beers