PD’s own dissect beer. Leave the pretentiousness on the curb.
I jumped onto the Urban Artifact wagon a bit late. “Better late than never” is a cliche that I find myself faced with quite regularly. Needless to say, I became an instant fan of the brewery’s vast array of spectacular beers that often steer away from the typical IPA and other popular beer styles we’ve come to expect in the craft beer circle. My first dive into their collection was while watching a soccer match at a local restaurant that sells numerous beers, canned and bottled. I saw Urban Artifact’s Keypunch, a key lime Gose, and my mouth instantly started watering. I had two of those sweet, flavorful Goses. Later, I learned of their other varieties. One stopped me in my tracks when my brother-in-law introduced it to me. Urban Artifact Pickle is a dill pickle Gose. It intrigued me enough to return again and again for more salty and sour sips to refresh during the dog days of summer.
The craft beer explosion in unique to everyone depending on location. Once the contracts are signed, state distributors awash the bottle shop shelves with rows of new possibilities. These beers become exciting mysteries; sold as 1 to 2 bottles per customer to get everyone’s attention to the hot new kid on the block. Years will go by, some breweries will go away, but others stay thanks to their long lasting quality. Maine Beer Company fits all these descriptors when it arrived in my state years ago.
It’s not every day that you get to taste a truly marvelous beer – a beer that defies expectations across flavor, aroma, body; that leaves you “oohing and ahhing” at every sip. Personally, when this happens to me, I feel the need to share it, to sing its praises. I send texts, take notes and, as demonstrated with this post, divulge all the details here on PorchDrinking. The Matryoshka, from Fort George Brewery, is such a brew – and is perhaps one of the best beers that Iâ€™ve been able to get my hands on this year.
With a name like Fruit on the Bottom, it would be easy to mistake this kettle sour from 4 Noses Brewing Co. for a yogurt parfait. Alas, dear readers: I can confirm that it is indeed beer.
While my go-to beverage in a heat wave is usually a salty gose, every once in awhile itâ€™s time to switch things up. Iâ€™ve enjoyed everything Iâ€™ve had from this Broomfield-based brewery so it seemed like a worthwhile gamble.
Have you ever had a beer that changed your mind about that entire style of beer? I’ll admit, I’m a fan of a huge variety of beer styles and I’m usually try something new. That said, Saisons have never done it for me. I’d go as far as to say I despise them but that feels a tad dramatic.
This opinion quickly changed at the recent Square Roots Festival in the Lincoln Square neighborhood of Chicago. Like most summer street festivals, this one had no shortage of food and drink options. To really show off, Square Roots Festival had a “Brew Lounge” for attendees to try more “exotic” options, which happened to be mostly local to the Ravenswood neighborhood (how exotic). It was there that I tried Flight of the Rooster by Ravina Brewing Company.
Hershey, Pennsylvania, is more than just The Sweetest Place on Earth! Beyond the chocolate bars, the town is also home to the 27th largest craft brewery in the U.S. based on beer sales volume. This brewery, Troegs Independent Brewing, has been around since the late nineties. Throughout the years, they have created a variety of beers including lip-puckering wild ales like Apricot Farmette.
I’ve declared that my Summer of Beer 2019 will include a return to some styles that have sort of fallen off my beer list, namely Hefeweizens and Witbier. Witbiers are Belgian-style ales that are usually unfiltered which gives them a pale and cloudy hue on the pour. They are usually spiced with a fruit such as coriander or orange peel, and are both crisp and wheaty on the tongue.
I find them to be refreshing with an orange slice, but some people don’t care for the extra fruit.
People heavily involved with craft beer have been saying for quite some time that lagers were going to make a comeback and see gains in popularity. If you were one of those people, you were spot on and I applaud you. Lagers have been killing it in 2019 and it shows no signs of slowing down. Arizona Wilderness Brewing Co. isn’t new to the lager game, but they’ve been ramping up their lagering efforts lately. One of their more recent releases was a light lager called Camp Light.
With the 2019 release of Summer Landscape, Industrial Arts Brewing Company moves into the second year of its Landscape Series. These seasonal beers are meant to highlight New York State ingredients, and are entirely produced with materials grown within the state. This latest version is another success for the brewery.
Odell Brewing Co. has always had a great beer lineup. Whether you are a fan of hoppy beers or more unique and/or aged beers, it seems as if Odell makes a beer that you’re bound to enjoy. Since Colorado has an abundance of fantastic breweries, it’s quite an accomplishment that Odell is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. To celebrate, they decided to pay tribute to their flagship beer from 30 years ago, 90 Shilling.
Bread and beer have some very obvious connections. Which means there’s always plenty of breweries using bread as a clever ingredient or naming convention. And that is exactly what is happening in Cincinnati, Ohio, with Fretboard Brewing and Klosterman Baking Co.
I’m not sure about everybody else, but this summer seems to be going by way too quick. Sometimes, however, certain things come up that remind you of school in all the best ways. Drekker Brewing, out of Fargo, North Dakota (yes, that’s a real place) has given me a true sense of nostalgia with this fruited sour ale that I recently tried.
Crystal Lake Brewing may be located on the outer edges of the Chicago Metropolitan region, but the brewery is as much a “Chicago beer” as any brewery located within the city limits. So much so, the Crystal Lake Beach Blonde Lager has become a staple at the Signature Room, a posh restaurant & lounge located 1,000 feet above Chicago on the 95th & 96th floor of the John Hancock Center. And now, the brewery has created Top View Brew Golden Wheat Ale exclusively for the Signature Room and Signature Lounge. “Aside from occasionally being on draft at the Crystal Lake Tap Room, it’s only available 95 floors up in the Hancock building. Guests at the restaurant will be able to order this beer year-round while they enjoy the great menu and amazing views of Chicago,” explained Crystal Lake Sales Manager, Jesse Able.
Michigan’s magic is in its power to make locals forget winters exist. We suffer for half the year as ice-pops, then thaw for a couple months of good season. Thankfully, summers around here are peak. Life blooms, lakes warm, that ice cream truck jingle haunts our city streets. Best of all: fruit. We have bushels coming out the ears, blueberries and tart cherries especially, but also apples, peaches, pears, plums, grapes—the list goes on. For brewers, it’s not a question of if they can find fruit for beer, but which ones they’ll pick. For Barrel + Beam Terre Magique, blackberry is our lucky winner.
Triptych Brewing started from a successful Kickstarter campaign back in 2012 but didn’t push out their first beers until February of 2013. Located in Savoy, IL (a small village just south of Champaign, in the middle of the state), the brewery has released more than 200 beers in the past six years and recently just expanded distribution so you can find them all across central and northern Illinois.
With the brewery’s recent expansion, I am finally able to enjoy its beers. Today, I found a four-pack of Triptych Brewing Wake Up, Neo: a Double IPA “brewed the hazy way.” This variation was brewed with Citra, Ekuanot and Mosaic hops and is sold in four-packs of 16-ounce cans that cost $17. The good news is each pint has a solid 8.4% ABV.
There are moments when we don’t appreciate the constants that exist in our lives. When we don’t stop to wonder in awe of electricity, the access to nonstop show binging, the simple and comforting knowledge that every California brewery is going to have a truly pine-sapping West Coast IPA on their tap list. But a haze has set over California, and not just Karl the Fog. It’s nice to see the West Coast IPA embraced again on taproom boards and specialty can drops.
In the heat of the summer, a beer ideally hits on three marks: refreshing, light, and delicious. Sometimes there are exceptions, like when a somewhat seasonal style–for example, a Stout–can’t be left alone for several months out of the year. Guilty. Similarly, nobody will blame you for drinking your wheat or sour beers throughout the entire year, either.
This time of year nothing’s more American than watching a baseball game with a beer in hand. Everyone knows the power of singles, doubles and triples in baseball’s major leagues, but few are familiar with Belgium’s similarly-named heavy-hitters. Belgian-style of Dubbels and Tripels often cause confusion since they aren’t as intuitively familiar as counting the bases in the ballpark.
Starting with the basics, the majority of craft beers fit the category of a single, or table beer as the Belgians would say. These beers typically fall into the 4 – 6 percent ABV range and encompass a wide range of styles and flavors.
Great Lakes Brewing Company has been busy this year, releasing two new beers during the first few months of the year. So far, we have Great Lakes IPA now out for year-round distribution and Midnight Moses as a part of their Holy Moses variety pack. Late last month, a third offering arrived ready to meet our taste buds during this summer season. Great Lakes Brewing Company’s Buckin’ Mule Moscow Mule Ale is a unique and refreshing alternative to the mainstays one normally comes across in the beer cooler.
The Pinelands National Reserve, or Pine Barrens, crosses seven counties and encompasses a total of 22% of New Jersey’s land area with 1.1 million acres of National Reserve. More than 400,000 people live within 60 miles of the pines, as well. In fact, the area is so much more environmental and culturally diverse than the northern part of the state that people jokingly say it’s a different state entirely. The lush forested area creates a different way of life and Pinelands Brewing Company is located here in Tuckerton, New Jersey. Tucked within a vast line up of beers at PInelands Brewing is the always awaited, and incredibly popular, release of Paradise in the Pines.