Wednesday, August 30, 2006


Last week I wrote about the nirvana that was achieved when I fed MOYLAN'S HOPSICKLE to some weary British houseguests. The party did not end there. We followed up the Hopsickle with something perhaps a little more reminiscient of Old Blighty, Sacramento's HOPPY BREWING COMPANY and their TOTAL ECLIPSE BLACK ALE. You may recall back in April when I shellacked and lambasted their STONY FACE RED ALE, but a few months later and a 22-oz. bomber of this stuff later, I remember why it my favorite brewery/restaurant in Sacramento when I made a tour of that city's offerings back in 1999/2000. This black ale wasn't off-the-charts fantastic or anything, but it was just terrific with Thai food (counterintuive, right?) and was light-bodied and smooth as glass. I really enjoyed how creamy it was and what felt like a hint of a burnt/bitter aftertaste. For the most part, though, it was clean and delicious all the way through. I gave it a 7/10, and my British guests thought it was near-amazing - and them Limeys know their black ales across the pond, hunh? The only way for a San Francisco resident like me to get their hands on one of these big boys is to drive nearly 2 hours east, or fork some cash over to a Sacramento-based co-worker to import it in (my gambit). I'm thinking I'm going to need to keep going in my exploration of this brewery's beers - they're now redeemed for the decidedly weak Stony Face Red Ale.

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