I had a novel idea when I was out choosing my review beer for this week. I was at Old Town Wine & Spirits yesterday (and I totally ousted some dude named Steven Greenleaf as the Mayor on Foursquare...but I digress) and I saw a bottle of New Albanian Solidarity Baltic Porter in the cooler. The idea immediately came to me that I would buy this 22oz bottle, bring it to work today, and share it with my co-workers as, wait for it....a sign of solidarity. My plan was virtually foiled by one co-worker who has apparently given up alcohol for Lent and another who was getting ready to rush out the door for his wife's baby doctor appointment. Luckily the latter stuck around to at least share a glass with me so that I could preserve my journalistic brilliance.
Solidarity pours a very dark, dark reddish brown color, and this one had virtually no head to be spoken of. I had let it set for a while already; so it was warm enough to let the flavor out immediately. I love Porters and this Baltic Porter was no exception. It has a delicious, malty backbone with not a lot of hop character. I picked out nice caramel flavor with a slight alcohol bite on the very end. There is soft carbonation and this beer isn't as heavy as one might assume initially. If you try it, you're going to notice some chocolate, coffee, and maybe even some dark fruit flavor hiding in there as well.
At 8.5% ABV this is certainly a beer that I'm glad my co-worker shared with me so that I wasn't stumbling around like I would have been had I finished the entire bottle alone. Throw in 30 IBUs and you have very little to worry about as far as hop bitterness, but they're there. The ladies and gents contributing to Ratebeer.com and Beeradvocate.com give Solidarity ratings of 94 and 81 respectively. So here's what you do...go grab a bottle or two, get a group of friends who you enjoy sitting around and drinking with, and bask in the fact that, in that moment, you are standing up for what you believe in...good beer.
I'll share some solidarity with you...no, not the beer, do you think I have enough money to buy everyone beer?? I mean on Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, and NOW even Pinterest through Lville Beer. So lets all stand together and say it loud...I like beer and I'm proud!
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