Tuesday, April 20, 2010

294. Heavy Seas Loose Cannon 420 Cask

This is our first beer from Heavy Seas, which is brewed by Clipper City Brewing Company in Baltimore, MD. Loose Cannon 420 Cask is a special cask with four five gram bags of fresh hops in the cask. Oh yes. We had this out of a growler that we brought home from the Trolley Stop; while I did have a pint or two before I got this home, who’s counting?

Hello beautiful...

Loose Cannon 420 Cask pours a hazy copper with a minimal (very minimal) white head; the nose is a spicy bright floral hoppiness—the cask hops give this beer a lovely aroma. Flavor starts with a soft caramel sweetness followed quickly by hop flavor that continues through the middle and into the end. Hop flavors include spicy, floral, and citrus; the bitterness starts in the middle and runs through the end as well, and lingers past the finish. The hop flavor is fresh tasting and both slightly sharp and young. The end features a return of the sweetness from the front, but mostly the hoppiness and bitterness dominate the conclusion, along with a bit of spicy earthiness that draws out past the finish. The mouthfeel and carbonation are soft, and the body is medium; the low carbonation gives the beer a smooth, even drinking feel on the palate, and allows the hop flavors to shine through. This is an excellent beer on cask; the dry hop additions in the cask shine in connection with the soft carbonation. We’d like to see more cask and firkin beer in general, and more casks of Heavy Seas beers in specific.

From the Heavy Seas website (although this is just for the regular Loose Cannon; couldn't find much on the Loose Cannon cask besides this): “Burnished gold with a rich citrus hop aroma, it is wonderfully drinkable with a big hop flavor. We’ve knicknamed it Hop3 (hop cubed) ale to reflect the enormous amount of hops in this beer: over 3 pounds per barrel! It is hopped 3 ways: in the kettle, in the hop back, and dry hopped.”

Does this make the Loose Cannon cask Hop4? I mean, the cask-hopping has to come into play somewhere, doesn’t it?

ABV: 7.25%


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