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Ugly Pug and Iron Thistle Earn Accolades, And Sampling Samuel Adams Wee Heavy

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If you're not too debilitated by the Irish Flu, lift a pint to (and from, preferably) Rahr and Sons, as the brewery took home two awards at the United States Beer Tasting Championship. Results were announced yesterday.

Ugly Pug took First Prize in the Dunkels Lager category in the Rockies/Southwest division, and Iron Thistle earned an Honorable Mention in the Scottish-Style Ale category (losing out to Oskar Blues Old Chub).

Rahr is the only Texas brewery to place in the competition, which judged 403 beers from 112 breweries in two blind tasting sessions in July and December.

If you want to congratulate them in person, Rahr will be featured in Beer 101 at Whole Foods Fairview today from 6 to 8 p.m. Or take the Saturday brewery tour from 1 to 3 p.m. tomorrow for $7.

And speaking of Scottish-style ales, Samuel Adams sent over samplers of their Wee Heavy from the Imperial Series. After the jump, it gets the full brunt of the Hophead Beer Ranking System.

Samuel Adams Wee Heavy
Appearance: Opaque dark brown with sticky tan head and ruby-brown highlights. 9/10
Nose: Smoky and roasty with some hints of coffee and chocolate. The peat-smoked malts dominate. 10/10
Taste: Peat smoke is far and away the dominant element in this big malt bomb, more conspicuous than in any other scotch ale I've ever had. The earthy East Kent Goldings and Fuggles hops blend right in on the sweet, roasty finish. 35/40
Body: Thick and rich, with a slight alcohol warmth. 9/10
Finish: Leaves a tongue-coating sweet, roasty toffee residue behind. 8/10
Style/Originality: This is the scotchiest scotch ale I've had. It's as if Samuel Adams said, "You want peat-smoked? We'll give you peat-smoked. How about THIS?" It's a well-done, if extreme, version of the style. 10/10
Party Factor: At 10 percent ABV and a suggested retail price of $9.99 for a four-pack of 12-ounce bottles, this has a factor of 4.
Total: 85

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