Monday, July 28, 2008

Rogue Public House San Francisco

I was very excited to give the Rogue Public House the Beer Philistine treatment while on my vacation in San Francisco. I have a healthy amount of respect for Rogue- they are a very prolific brewery that has a strong lineup of brews (with a few duds of course).

I was expecting the Rogue Public House to look less traditional than it did, but I am fine with your standard 'pub' look with some plastic skeletons and what have you on the walls. The place feels like it has history before Rogue took it over, but they haven't added much.

Look at all of those glorious taps! As soon as I saw those I knew the decision would not be an easy one.

If I lived anywhere remotely close to this place I would definitely put an effort into giving those taps a workout. Rogue had around a dozen guest taps even, but I was not here to sample those. It is nice to have a selection to pick from though, that is for damn sure.

The 'Cask Conditioned Ale' is only served at this location so that was a no brainer as my first order of business.

I have noticed that most cask conditioned ales are a brewermaster's excuse to get creative with a style of beer. I am open to that creativity and prepare myself for odd beers with little balance to them when I order a cask conditioned ale. This particuar beer tastes like an experiment gone awry. Yeast and coffee beans are about the only flavors I could pick out in this beer.

One thing that surpised me was how thin and dark this beer is, two things I thought to be mutually exclusive. This is probably the wateriest dark beer I have ever had.

Not very good stuff, but I was not daunted in my quest to drink some more exclusive beers at this fine establishment. Still, you can't say this beer is not unique.

Triple Jump Pale Ale- Rogue City (not pictured).

So I deleted the picture by accident. That is the kind of thing that seperates the real journalists from the bullshit bloggers like myself. Enjoy the picture of my pudgy self.

The Triple Jump pale ale was defintely an upgrade from the cask conditioned ale. Right away I could taste some bitter apple in the body and some slighlty acidic citrus in the aftertaste. The hops are just right for this style of beer- noticeable right away but not overpowering in the least.

In fact I get the impression that Triple Jump was brewed with balance in mind. From the carbonation to the malts this is a very drinkable beer.

The 'I2PA' India Pale Ale is one of the big beers they had on tap at the pub. Maltier than I expected but it still has enough of a hop kick to put your taste buds into shock. One of those IPAs that double up on all the ingredients, not just the hops.

There was strange flavor on the aftertaste that I could not figure out for the life of me- I wrote down 'bitter mint' in my notes which sounds awful and does not do this brew justice. I liked this beer for what it is but could not see myself ordering it with any regularity.

I thought it was a bit over priced, especially since it came in a smaller glass, but after a few more days in San Francisco I realized that every damn thing in that city is overpriced.

Worth checking out. If you can pinpoint what that bizarre flavor is please post a comment, I was lost.

You can't have a brewpub without good comfort food, something this one definitely lacked. Everything on the menu sounded great, but there was something lost in the actual meal itself.

Pictured is Kristina's plain Kobe beef burger which was fairly bland even considering that it was ordered plain. I had a burger with all the fixings and was not very impressed with the ingredients, especially for a $12 burger.

We had a conversation that Kuma's Corner probably ruined all other burgers for us, but this still wasn't too impressive.

All in all Rogue's Public House in San Francisco was decent, but not great. The beer selection was top notch but the food and decor (not to mention a bathroom that would be shamefully dirty for a bus station) just didn't do it for me. If I was coming buy just to take a crack at all the great beers they had on tap, I would be more than happy with the place. This pub has to do a lot of work on the periphials though if it wants to live up to the hype Rogue Ales has.

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