Saturday, April 28, 2012

New Mass Brewers

These past few years we have witnessed a golden age in Massachusetts brewing with new nano and microbreweries springing up left and right. Here are some of my newest samplings:

Backlash Declaration, 6
7.2% belgian ipa. aggressive bitterness and sweetness make this less than drinkable.

Blatant IPA, 7
a solid ipa, although a little less hppy than i would like. would buy this again though.

Cody No Name IPA, 5
substandard, but i will give them another try.

Wormtown Be Hoppy, 8
good hop flavor and easy drinking. recommended.

Takes the cake:
Mystic Saison Aged in Sauvignon Blanc, 10
classy bottle with great description of brewers approach to saison's on label. barley and oats provide coarse element. yeast is magnificent, makes beer. white wine qualities come through but in correct proportions. excellent.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

A mixed six of first timers

Clown Shoes Eagle Claw Fist, 7
found on tap at public eat + drink in north adams, a solid beer bar. this hopped up red weighs in at a healthy 8% abv. 

Gulden Draak, 9
pretty sure i have had this before but never wrote it up. dark, sweet, and sour all at once. delightful. 

Harviestoun Old Engine Oil, 8
a dark, malty 6% porter. imagine it would be even tastier on tap, or better yet, nitro. 

Keegan Ales Mother's Milk Stout, 6
one of several milk stout's floating around the states with this name. good not great. 

Oskar Blues Dale's Deviant IPA, 9
big fruity hop flavor in a can! an excellent double, just be prepared to pay for it at $14 for 4 tallboys. much better than their GUBNA. 

Wandering Star Mild, 4
4.3% porter. in my opinion, mild's should be light enough to be sessionable. this was not.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Worcester's best

For my 30th birthday last weekend we were looking for someplace exciting to go for dinner. And Armsby Abbey, Massachusetts #1 beer bar, is as exciting as it gets!

Only my second visit, Armsby Abbey managed to once again exceed my sky high expectations. Plenty of interesting beers I had never tried on tap, rare top-notch bottles (although you will pay for the privilege with some topping out at $50), and wonderful food. My plate of duck confit over brussel sprouts in a mustard-cream sauce was spectacular. But on to the beer! 

Beer Here Hopfix, 7
i think this is the second brewer i have tried from denmark after mikkeller. a clean, hoppy ipa.

d'Achouffe Biere du Soleil, 4
the maltiest saison i have ever tried... tastes more like an amber. no hop presence, dry, dull.

Jack's Abbey Cascadian, 7my first beer from this new framingham-based brewer. a very roasty schwarzbier, perhaps a little heavier than i prefer. encouraging though.

Port Mongo, 8no shortage of citrusy, grapefruit hops here. nice to get port on tap.
Sixpoint Spice of Life Nugget, 8
light colored and cloudy, tangy grapefruit hops. not a bad hop to build a single hop beer around afterall.

Thornbridge Kippling Pale Ale, 6
musty off-note was too much, even for a british pale

Best in show:
Cigar City Marron Acidifie, 10
this big bottle was a $38 splurge. i chose wisely at least. a collaborative brew by two personal favorites: the bruery and cigar city. pours a murky red with great lacing. tart cherry and oakiness defines flavor and leads to dry, puckering mouthfeel. sweet notes are what sets this one apart and allows it to keep semblance of drinkability. (glad i had some help drinking it though.) complexity you would expect in beer designed to be paired with a cigar. one of the best american sours i have had.