Beer Profile: Sierra’s Ken and Fritz’s Ale

Image courtesy

Style: Stout
Part of the 30 anniversary series at Sierra Nevada

Profiled by Ken Carman

I kind of figured this is what would happen. You combine Sierra Nevada and Fritz the founder of the whole damn craft beer industry, and what do you get? Damn near perfection. Perfect head that holds for quite a while, obsidian black, holds to the side of the glass as if slightly glued there. Hop, roasted barley, roast nose. Wow. I’d hate to have this in competition: so many good brewers would be pushed to the side, nose-wise. Not a ton: just right.

A little bit of a soured mouth sense: are these guys channeling Guinness? Just the right amount of bubble: not heavy… but there.

The problem, if any, is in the taste. This is a stout for those who like stouts and no compromise. Just a bit more of a Extra than a regular Stout. The alcohol is just a bit high. You like this… or you don’t: which to me defines some Extra Stouts. A little less of the roasted barley, more of the dark Black Patent sense than Guinness. I do like this, but I had to take time to adjust: kind of like I did when I first had Guinness Extra in Montreal at Finnegan’s: 1974. It took me a few to fall in love. And by the end of this 25oz champagne-corked bottle I was getting close.

What, no more?

Sniff. Sniff.

If you are beer geekish like me, buy it and make up your own damn mind, No matter what this took talent to do.

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