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Brad Darnell

Brad Darnell's picture
Beer Judge

Brad became interested in the science behind beer while taking a senior Chemical Engineering elective course, Biochemical Engineering, where the professor spoke of enzymes (among other things) and took the class on a brewery tour. He has since begun home brewing and earned a BJCP Grand Master II rank, currently serving as the Mountain/Northwest Regional Representative and Associate Exam Director while continuing to judge competitions around the U.S. and educating himself and others. In his spare time Brad visits breweries around the world, always on the hunt for those who produce world-class examples of hard-to-find, obscure or innovative styles.

My reviews

Quad Stack

Quad Stack

Georgia
United States
Quad Stack, Pontoon Brewing
Description 

Our first Belgian quad, layered with real Vermont maple syrup to create a rich base, adorned with notes of light brown sugar, ripe figs, and robust molasses. Big in body and sweet to the finish, this quad hits on all the areas that you would want and then some with the subtle layer of real maple syrup.

Beverage Profile
ABV: 
11.0%
Served at: 
50 - 55º F

 

 


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Judges Rating:
92
Appearance:
4 / 6
Aroma:
22 / 24
Flavor:
38 / 40
Mouthfeel:
10 / 10
Overall Impression:
18 / 20

Quad Stack by Pontoon Brewing is a Belgian Quadrupel-style ale (a Belgian Dark Strong Ale in BJCP categorization) brewed with maple syrup. I am judging this according to the 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines, Category 31B, Alternative Sugar Beer, due to the maple syrup... Read More

La Gosa Rita

La Gosa Rita

Wisconsin
United States
La Gosa Rita, Lakefront Brewery
Description 

All the makings of a margarita, minus the tequila. Bright lime tartness, a bit of orange and agave sweetness and just the right amount of sea salt saltiness, brought together in this super refreshing Margarita Ale.

Beverage Profile
ABV: 
4.5
IBUs: 
15
Served at: 
46 - 54º F
Malts: 
Rice Syrup, Agave Syrup, Orange Juice, Lime Juice
Hops: 
Willamette, Zeus

 

 


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Judges Rating:
82
Appearance:
3 / 6
Aroma:
20 / 24
Flavor:
35 / 40
Mouthfeel:
8 / 10
Overall Impression:
16 / 20

La Gosa Rita by Lakefront Brewery is being judged according to the 2021 BJCP Style Guidelines, Category 31B – Alternative Sugar Beer.

I am presented with a glass full of a lightly hazy yellow beer with rising bubbles that congregate... Read More

The Peanut Butter Solution

The Peanut Butter Solution

The Peanut Butter Solution, Gnarly Barley Brewing
Description 

A formidable Imperial Stout brewed with a dynamic and expansive malt bill, including several layers of dark malts for plenty of roasty char, coffee, brown sugar and chocolate notes. Dosed up with peanut butter which really brings the room together! And if that wasn’t enough we stashed it away in Heaven Hill Bourbon Barrels to smooooth the edges and accentuate the depth and complexity.

Beverage Profile
ABV: 
12.0%
Malts: 
Two-row, Chocolate Malt, Crystal 30, Carafa II, Crystal 120, Pale Chocolate, Midnight Wheat, Wheat, Oats, Belgian Dark Candi Sugar
Hops: 
Cascade

 

 


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Judges Rating:
92
Appearance:
6 / 6
Aroma:
22 / 24
Flavor:
38 / 40
Mouthfeel:
8 / 10
Overall Impression:
18 / 20

The Peanut Butter Solution by Gnarly Barley Brewing Co., an Imperial Peanut Butter Stout Aged in Heaven Hill Bourbon Barrels, is being judged according to the 2021 BJCP Style Guidelines, Category 33B – Specialty Wood-Aged Beer.

I am... Read More

Judges Rating:
95
Appearance:
5 / 6
Aroma:
23 / 24
Flavor:
39 / 40
Mouthfeel:
9 / 10
Overall Impression:
19 / 20

Epitaph by Heathen Brewing is a Russian Imperial Stout and is being evaluated as an Imperial Stout (2015 BJCP Category 20C) according to BJCP guidelines. For this style expect bold, roast malt, sometimes lightly burnt and definitely with dark fruits and varying sweetness from bittersweet to... Read More

Judges Rating:
93
Appearance:
5 / 6
Aroma:
23 / 24
Flavor:
38 / 40
Mouthfeel:
9 / 10
Overall Impression:
18 / 20

East Brother Belgian Tripel by East Brother Beer Co. is a Belgian Tripel and is being evaluated as a Belgian Tripel (2015 BJCP Category 26C) offering according to BJCP guidelines. For this style expect a clean malt flavor and a spicy, dry, strong character that is fairly aromatic.

The... Read More

Braggadocious

Braggadocious

Louisiana
United States
Braggadocious, Pontoon Brewing
Description 

Leprechauno Meadery and Pontoon Brewing present Braggadocious, an Imperial Berliner-style braggot with Tahitian vanilla and strawberries.

Beverage Profile
ABV: 
13.9%
Served at: 
40 - 50º F

 

 


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Judges Rating:
90
Appearance:
3 / 6
Aroma:
23 / 24
Flavor:
37 / 40
Mouthfeel:
10 / 10
Overall Impression:
17 / 20

Braggadocious by Pontoon Brewing is a Braggot-style ale, an Imperial Berliner Weisse with Vanilla Mead and Strawberries. I am judging this according to the 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines, Category M4A, Braggot.

Moderate strawberries and sweet vanilla greet me as I... Read More

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