One thing you can say about me: I’m a creature of habit. I pretty much eat the same things, do the same exercises, wake up and go to sleep at the same time, and tend to drink the same beers. What can I say – I like routines.
So it’s not really a surprise to me that I decided to finish the Trader Joe’s trifecta this week by reviewing the Boatswain Heavy Lift Vessel (HLV) Ale. This is the third Minhas brew available in 22-ounce bottles, and sheepishly I can admit I hadn’t ever tried it, sticking so far with the American IPA and Double IPA, which are both quite similar in taste and appearance.
Make no bones, though – this is quite a different beer. HLV poured out a deep, dark brown color with some ruby highlights when held up to light, and sported a frothy chestnut foam head. The aroma was dominated by sweet roasted malt notes.
Tastewise, this is one rich beer. The same sweet roasted malt notes lead things off, and taste even richer than they smelled. Though the middle, I got lots of molasses notes with a ton of thick mouthfeel. Toward the end of the taste, I picked up some hints of coffee blended with super roasted malts. That combination stuck around through the end note and lingered on after the beer was on its way to my gullet.
Overall, this is a very good beer. But – it’s quite rich. To me, a piece of rich chocolate cheesecake is the most apt comparison. It tasted super good, but about halfway through, I felt like I’d had too much. If this were a single bottle of beer, it would perfect. As a 22-ounce 7% ABV, however, it could be a bit much for some people. Regardless, I’d highly recommend this brew, probably more than either of the other two Minhas varieties.