Michael Heniff

Michael Heniff's picture
Beer Judge

Mike brewed his first few homebrew batches in college in 1994 and began regularly brewing in 1997.  Since then, he has brewed over 150 batches of beer, mead, and cider.  He has won over 200 medals and numerous major awards in competitions across the country.  His highest accomplishments include winning the Templeton Award (most points) of the Dixie Cup (one of the largest single-site homebrew competitions in the world) a record four times, Gulf Coast Homebrewer of the Year, and Lone Star Circuit Homebrewer of the Year.  He has had his recipes brewed at commercial breweries seven times.

Mike particularly enjoys traveling to find new beers.  He has made numerous travels abroad to find great beer, most frequently to Belgium and Germany.  He has logged over 6200 beers in his tasting journal, including over 580 beers from Belgium alone.  Mike has had brewing and beer travel articles published by Brew Your Own and Zymurgy magazines.

Mike is a current member of the Houston Foam Rangers Homebrew Club where he has held numerous officer positions.  He is also the founding President and a current officer of the Lone Star Circuit. He currently ranks as a Grand Master III BJCP judge.  He has judged in over 70 competitions across the United Stated, frequently serving on Best of Show panels.

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My reviews

16-Bit Double Pale Ale

16-Bit Double Pale Ale Tallgrass Beer
Judges Rating:
87
Appearance:
6 / 6
Aroma:
20 / 24
Flavor:
36 / 40
Mouthfeel:
8 / 10
Overall Impression:
17 / 20

The initial aroma fails to scream “IPA” with moderate-light aromas of floral, herbal, and apricot hops. The lower-than-expected hop intensity and character follow through to the flavor along with a light body and light malt character with an aggressive bitterness. The light body certainly makes... Read More

Saddleback

Saddleback, Uinta Brewing
Judges Rating:
93
Appearance:
6 / 6
Aroma:
22 / 24
Flavor:
38 / 40
Mouthfeel:
10 / 10
Overall Impression:
17 / 20

Saddleback by Uinta Brewing is a Brut IPA and is being evaluated as a Specialty IPA (category 21B of the 2015 BJCP Beer Style Guidelines). Brut IPA is a recent addition to the ever-evolving family of IPAs and has not currently been categorized by the BJCP as of yet. Brut IPAs are noted for their... Read More

Oak Aged Yeti

Oak Aged Yeti Beer Great Divide
Judges Rating:
86
Appearance:
6 / 6
Aroma:
20 / 24
Flavor:
34 / 40
Mouthfeel:
9 / 10
Overall Impression:
17 / 20

The bomber bottle warns of a “massive” and “complex” opaque black ale with a huge dark brown head, and that's exactly the experience it delivers. The aroma is strong roasted chocolate and treacle with a light vanilla and a warm, toasted oak character to complement the malt. The flavor matches... Read More

Judges Rating:
88
Appearance:
6 / 6
Aroma:
18 / 24
Flavor:
38 / 40
Mouthfeel:
10 / 10
Overall Impression:
18 / 20

This fruited Berliner weisse presents as a very hazy, golden beer with a big, fluffy, white head that quickly fades with quite a “crackle and pop”.   The initial aroma is a prominent, off-putting sulfur without much else to be discriminated behind the strong sulfur character.  As the sulfur... Read More

Bastogne Ardenne Stout

Bastogne Ardenne Stout by Brasserie de Bastogne
Judges Rating:
88
Appearance:
6 / 6
Aroma:
20 / 24
Flavor:
36 / 40
Mouthfeel:
9 / 10
Overall Impression:
17 / 20

Ardenne Stout by Brasserie de Bastogne is a Belgian Stout and is being judged as a Mixed-Style Beer (category 34B in the 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines). The Mixed-Style Beer category is a catch-all category for hybrid beers that are not covered elsewhere in the guidelines. Belgian Stouts are... Read More

Velvet Rooster

Velvet Rooster Tripel Tallgrass Beer
Judges Rating:
89
Appearance:
6 / 6
Aroma:
20 / 24
Flavor:
36 / 40
Mouthfeel:
9 / 10
Overall Impression:
18 / 20

Wow! A strong Belgian-style beer in tallboy cans – what a wonderful world it is that we live in! This crystal clear, golden ale starts with a prominent bready maltiness with a background of pear and melon esters and white pepper phenolics. The bready malt character is again in the forefront of... Read More

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