Good evening all,
as mentioned in the heads up e-mail there’s loads of new beers to let you know about, so we have another two part e-mail for you. Part two will follow after this one. Let’s get to the beers straight away.
First, we have another seasonal Mead from B. Nektar, Dwarf Invasion. This is a Mead infused with cherry juice, similar to the Zombie Killer we have in stock year round, but this one is dry hopped with Styrian Golding hops. So it’s kind of like a hoppy Kriek, but with honey as the base instead of malt. Dwarf Invasion’s ABV is 6% and it’s available in a 500ml bottle.
Also still available is their Miel de Garde, made with the most select orange blossom honey and then aged in oak barrels for 18 months. I recently had this at a good friend’s birthday celebration and everyone I shared it with agreed it was pretty amazing liquid. If you fancy any of the honey Whiskies, this would be something worth trying, only this is far smoother and a bit sweeter. Available in a 375ml, this is something you can treat yourself with on a special occasion.
New from Starr Hill of VA is their The Love Hefeweizen, available in 6pk bottles and singles. The Love has an ABV of 4.6% and is an easy drinking brew that you may have seen at area concert venues on draft. Here’s my review for The Love:
aroma: Banana and clove the most evident. Some wheat notes as well.
taste: You have to like banana to really appreciate this brew. I’m a big fan of banana, coconut and coffee flavours, so this hit my sweet spot. I’ve had loads of Hefeweizens, including Weinhenstephaner and other Germans, but I’ve never tasted such a ripe banana flavour on any of them like this one. Think of going to a supermarket and buying a bunch of bananas that still have green on the skin and when you peel them the flesh inside is still firm. That’s what this tastes like…a ripe banana. The clove and wheat flavours are also there as well, but the ripe banana flavour makes this beer, IMO.
mouthfeel: Crisp and moderately carbonated, light on the palate with a smoothness that makes this very sessionable.
Anchor Brewing of CA has a new brew to their year round lineup, California Lager, available in 6pk bottles and singles. This 4.9% ABV Lager so far has an 83 rating. It’s flavours are bready malts, crackery grains and a bit of honey with notes of lemon, grassy hops, herbal and spicy hops and a soft hint of pine. A good Lager to try when thirsting for something smooth and sessionable.
Next up we have a handful of local/regional beers to tell you about.
New to us is Free Will Brewing of Perkasie, PA. They have graced us with 2 of their offerings.
Coffee Oatmeal Brown is a Brown Ale brewed with coffee from a local coffee shop. The distributor rep told me Free Will orders just roasted coffee beans from the shop as needed to make this beer, so it’s always fresh with flavour. COB is available in 6pk bottles and singles. It’s ABV is 8.3% and it has an 86 rating with over 30 reviews thus far. COB’s flavours are roasted coffee, toasted oatmeal, cocoa and toffee with a bit of hazelnut and herbal hops for balance. This is a most curious sounding brew, especially for those who love things coffee flavoured.
Free Will’s next brew is Techno IPA, available in 6pk bottles and singles. Techno is a 6.6% ABV IPA with a solid 88 rating with over 30 reviews. Techno has a bready malt base with hints of apple and white grape and hoppy notes of citrus (orange, grapefruit, tangerine) and tropical fruits (pineapple, mango) with a touch of pine. A bright and flavourful IPA for the hophead.
From Neshaminy Creek Brewing comes a season offering, Neshaminator Weizenbock. This Wheat based Bock beer is 8.5% ABV with an 85 rating in the early going. It’s available in a 22oz bomber. Neshaminator has flavours of caramel, chocolate, dark fruits, honey (they brew it with orange blossom honey after all) and slightly spicy hops. A good dessert beer or something to sip on a cold night.
From Manayunk Brewing we have another new offering available in 4pk cans and singles, and that’s Session Blonde Ale. This 4.6% ABV Belgian-style brew is pretty much brand new, so no rating yet. It’s an easy drinking brew made with a simple clean malt bill with yeasty and hoppy notes of lemon zest and pepper spices. Why not pick up a 4pk and see how sessionable it is?
With the coming of cold nights we also get more bolder and higher ABV brews. Weyerbacher’s Quad is no exception as it makes it’s seasonal return to us once again. Quad is available in 4pk bottles and singles. This hearty 11.8% ABV brew has an 86 rating with nearly 800 reviews. Quad has an array of tree fruits (apple, cherry, pear, banana and plum) with caramelized and brown sugar, toffee, Belgian yeast and notes of nutmeg and clove spices. This one is surely a sipper on a cold night.
Another seasonal local brew is Yards Poor Richard’s Tavern Spruce Ale, available in 6pk bottles and singles. This 5% ABV brew has an 81 rating with over 300 reviews. It’s based on an old Colonial recipe that’s attributed to Ben Franklin himself. Tavern Spruce’s flavours are toasted bread with a bit of nuttiness (similar to an Irish Red Ale) with caramel, light molasses, brown sugar, a bit of a mint tea like quality, Earthy hops and of course spruce as it’s brewed with spruce tips. A good selection for a holiday brew.
Also from Yards is their Olde Bartholomew, a 10.3% ABV English Barleywine available in 750ml bottles. Olde Bart has an 84 rating with over 50 reviews. It’s flavours are toasted bread, caramel, toffee, honey, molasses with fruit notes of apricot, plum and raisin, brown sugar and cinnamon and citrus hops. A bit of a different take on a traditional English Barleywine that’s worth a try.
From Telegraph Brewing of CA comes Stock Porter, available in 750ml cork and cage bottles. This is a bottle conditioned Porter, so a Porter with a Belgian-style twist. This 7.5% ABV brew has an 80 rating with over 70 reviews. Stock Porter has flavours of roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, dark fruits (raisin, plum) with hints of oak and vanilla and a touch of red wine sourness from the yeast. As I said, a Porter with a Belgian-style twist, which is Telegraph’s MO.
A new release from NY brewery Ithaca is their 15th Anniversary Dark Rye Ale, available in 750ml bottles. 15th Anny is a 8.4% ABV brew with an 87 rating on over 50 reviews. It’s flavours are bready malts, toasted grains, spicy rye, fruity yeast, Earthy hops, dark fruits and a hint of citrus. An interesting mix of flavours to round this one out.
Hoppin Frog has released their Barrel Aged Outta Kilter Scotch Ale, available in 22oz bombers. BAOK has an ABV of 8.2% and an 87 rating with over 70 reviews. It’s aged in Kentucky Bourbon barrels that were previously used for Barrel Aged BORIS Imperial Stout. Hmmm, really? BAOK’s flavours are toasted malts, caramel, toffee, honey, brown sugar, raisin, apple and from the barrels hints of vanilla, oak and Whiskey. If you like barrel aged brews then this one should get your attention.
That’s the end of Part One.