Hola! Green Flash Brewing Company! You have really done it this time with your Dia De Los Serranos brew. Released in February 2016 as a year-round beer, the brewers over at the San Diego-based brewery have added a little bit of spice to the lineup of delectable beers. This American Stout that comes in at 8.8% abv has the perfect blend of roasted malts, minor chocolate notes, and a beautiful mild chile backdrop. We recommend wrapping this mildly-spicy beverage in your favorite 22oz Bomber Jacket, slapping some barbecue onto the grill and pairing them together for the perfect combination.
The day of the Serranos! The name already had me chomping at the bit to break this bad boy open to see what it’s all about. Beers containing chile peppers can be hit and miss, so I kept my excitement at the bare minimum. However, immediately upon cracking the bottle top, some strong roasted notes and mild carbonation escaped from the top. Immediately I grabbed my favorite pint glass to get a good look at what this guy was all about. A nice hard pour left dark as night brew with a mocha-colored, thick milkshake type of head to it. It poured beautifully, and the aromas were already popping out at me. I could smell the serrano peppers hiding gently behind a nice layer of roasted malt, dark chocolate and some smoky characteristics. So far, everything was muy Bueno!
The taste was much more than I was expecting, and I was pleasantly surprised that the peppers were not overwhelming. The heavier roasted malts do a nice job of balancing out the heat, but are present enough to still be noticeable on the back of the tongue. Much like the aroma, a nice dose of smokiness and roasted malts greeted the palate, and finished with a big, dry finish. Surprisingly, for this brew nearly pushing 9%abv, the alcohol is very well hidden, and is much easier to toss back than expected. What can I say? This beer had me ready to scarf down some carnitas on the side or pair it with some good, smoked meat.
Green Flash has consistently put our some very good beers for some time now, and sometimes beers like this can fall on their face, if not careful. However, they kept the peppers at a mild level, which can be difficult to do because of the varying degrees of heat and spice that is found from one batch to the next. We recommend that you snatch up a few of these bottles, fire up the charcoal or wood-burning grill, and show off your favorite beer bomber koozie that reduces warming rate by 50% so that you can enjoy this spicy beauty until the last drop, and get to drinking! Taste La Dulce Vida!
A 22 oz. bomber of this hop monster is the way to go, and from the moment your crack the top of this thing, you will be met with a big hop flavor that mixes well with some hints of tropical fruit and peaches. A nice hard pour with give you a beautifully golden, darkish amber creamy white head, and again, the aroma will just leap out of the glass and straight up into the nose. Can’t say it enough…the hops come through big time in this release, more so than some of their previous special releases. The use of Ahtanum hops come through big time, and just in case you don’t think there was enough out of this world aroma, Stone was sure to add some Simcoe, Delta, Target, and Amarillo hops near the end of their boil. But that wasn’t it—the then decided to dry hop this monster with Galaxy, Nelson Sauvin, Motueka and Helga hops. Might seem like a bit of overkill, but let’s get to the taste.
As one would expect, the hops nearly dominate this beer, but the somewhat dryness, and some smooth malt and a nice touch to this beer. It’s right on the verge of being too much of a hop-bomb, but thanks in part to some of the pungency and notes of peach, this beer balances out a little better than expected. At 88 IBU, and 9.4%, you pretty much know what you’re getting—an intense hop flavor that will nearly fry the nose hairs, but tickle the palette with a moderately carbonated brew.
Stone has really hit the nail on the head with these Enjoy By beers, both from a brewing standpoint, and as a clever marketing tactic. These brews are meant to drink fresh, and are not meant for keeping on the shelf, or stashed away in the closet for aging. What keeps them interesting is that each batch is tweaked, and consumers are always presented with a new and unique beer. It’s never quite the same, so there’s time when they will really nail the latest release, and other times where it will fall a bit flat. This latest Enjoy By 12.25.15 is definitely on the side of being a winner. The clock is ticking, and it’s ticking fast to go out there and grab this one. However, if it’s a bit too late, just look for their next release, and go out there and stock up on some 22 oz bombers of these traditionally hop-dominated beers.