When you see this beer on the shelf, it's classy and elegant label screams out that it is something special.

Brooklyn Brewery calls this their "award-winning rendition of the Imperial Stout style, once made exclusively for Catherine the Great."

From the minute you open up and pour Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout, it lives up to it's name. It's jet black in color and has a strong but pleaseant chocolate smell.

This beer has a strong semi-sweet chocolate taste that gives way to a toffee flavor. It's very flavorful and Warms you right up. While this brew packs 10% alcohol, it's not overpowering.

I enjoyed my Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout with a bowl of ice cream, it would pair up well with chocolate cake or even some cheese cake.

BCS is a beer that is suitable for cellaring. It is also resonably priced, the four-pack set me back less than $10. If you missed out on it this year, you definetely should keep an eye out for it next year.

Even though this is Florida, I like the winter months because all the seasonal beers come out. Today’s selection is the Blue Moon Winter Abbey Ale. This beer is quite the departure from Blue Moon’s regular or summer beer. The bottle says that it’s a copper-colored ale crafted with roasted malts, Belgian sugar and a touch of wheat for a rich caramel flavor and a smooth toffee finish. After taking a sip, I couldn’t agree more – their description is right on. While many winter beers can be pretty heavy (not a bad thing, particularly if its cold out), this beer is considerably lighter in taste, likely due to the use of wheat. The beer is pretty sweet – perhaps a bit more than I generally prefer, but I thought it was quite good. Not something one will likely drink a lot of but it is definitely worth giving a try.

Florida Beer Company’s entry in to the winter releases includes Conchtoberfest, their German-style Marzen beer. While its brewed in Melbourne, the packaging is 100% Key West – with a relaxing look to the label and a quirky, blue glass bottle. The label indicates that it is manufactured in a way to be nice to the environment, including being carbon neutral and using 100% post-consumer content. While I didn’t hear the oompah band when I held it up to my ear, as promised on the label, the beer was enjoyable. It is a heavily malted beer in keeping with the Marzen style, but the sweetness was nicely balanced by a touch of bitterness that I could feel on the sides of my tongue. Caramel and butterscotch flavors are distinctly present, and the taste lasts well after the sip has moved its way down. Conchtoberfest is easy to drink – not too heavy but certainly not a light beer in taste and body. I look forward to the last few left in the six.

I recently asked Kevin from Bootlegger if he was interested in doing a guest review. Not only did he agree to do it, he picked a beer that just became available in parts of Florida. Check out....

The oldest and largest craft beer brewery in Texas, Saint Arnold Brewing Company, has begun distributing to Florida. Today I thought I would give you a brief review of one of its flagship brews, Elissa IPA.

I grabbed an assortment of Evolution beers when I was traveling not too long ago. Based on what I've tried so far, I'm wishing I would have gotten more.

Their Primal Pale Ale is a traditional pale with an ABV of 5%. It pours a clear golden-orange. It might not have been my best pour but I ended up with a thick, white head that dissipated pretty quickly, leaving behind a little lacing.

The aroma was definitely pine but there seemed to be a hint of citrus in there too.

There is some hoppiness to the mild pine flavor initially but is sort of seems to fade after the first couple of sips and gives way to to a little more sweetness with what seemed to be a weak grapefruit taste at the end. The carbonation was there but wasn't dominate, almost weak (could've partially had something to so with my pour) and could've used an uptick.

Overall, I found this to be a nice, clean sessionable ale that I could see myself sitting down with a six pack of to watch a game.

Since everyone has different tastes and preferences, not everyone is going to like the same things as me. Yes, I know that's hard to believe but it's true. I don't like mushrooms yet the mushroom industry flourishes. Go figure. Now because of this, I like to include guest reviews on the site so as to allow the sharing of other opinions and points of view. Fortunately Matt Murdick, aka @EatthisinkcMatt, was willing to share hisin the following review of Smoked Rye Imperial Porter by Santa Fe Brewing....

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