2013 November Beer Series

Posted by on Nov 11, 2013 in Beer Blog, Newsletters | 0 comments

Mint Chocolate Stout
Shipyard Brewing Company
Portland, Maine
Shipyard mint chocolateAt almost 20 years old Shipyard Brewing Company is one of the grand old men in the craft brewing industry. Now one of the largest craft breweries in the country, the company has its roots in the picturesque seacoast village of Kennebunkport Harbor, where, in 1992, entrepreneur Fred Forsley and master brewer Alan Pugsley started Federal Jack’s Restaurant & Brew Pub, the birthplace of Shipyard ales.
The craft brew industry was just starting in Maine and Alan had recently moved there from England where he’d learned to brew under the legendary Peter Austin at the world-famous Ringwood Brewery in Hampshire. The launch of Federal Jack’s coincided with the birth of America’s craft beer industry and, just two years later, demand outpaced the brewing capacity at the pub and Fred and Alan opened the Shipyard Brewing Company in Portland in 1994. By 1996, the company was the fastest growing craft brewery in the country.
While the engine that drives Shipyard is their Pumpkinhead, they make many high quality beers. This is a new product for Shipyard made as a strong American Stout. Beginning with a basic English/Irish Stout recipe, many American Stouts infuse coffee, or in this case chocolate. Chocolate and anise are lead flavors while spearmint pops up in the finish.

Attic and Eaves
Slumbrew Brewing Company
Somerville, Massachusetts
Slum ATTIC & EAVESSlumbrew is all about the synergy between craft products and every day consumption. Well conceived, locally-sourced, quality products should be an every day part of our lives – not a unique occurrence. This is the spirit of Slumbrew.
Slumbrew is the research & development brand and concept of Somerville Brewing Company. Their mission is to brew unique, ingredient-driven beers that challenge common notions of what a beer should taste like. It is the result of nearly 15 years of beer travel and research by Caitlin Jewell and Jeff Leiter; and a decade of Jeff’s homebrewing recipe formulation.
While they produce a lot of small-run, pilot beers at the Slumbrew Beerlab, only a small number make their way to commercial production. The Somerville Brewing Company contracts with regional breweries to make the best recipes for wide-spread commercial release, but each recipe is an evolving process of refinement. This model for beer production provides an opportunity to experiment with innovative local ingredients to produce craft beers that stand apart from typical formulations.
Attic and Eaves is among my favorite seasonal from this local producer. We have been promised a couple of cases of their Christmas offering, Yankee Swap, a holiday brew made with Massachusetts valley malt and has a hint of maple, provided by syrup from Hadley’s Maple Sugar Shack. Let me know if you want some bottles put away for you.
The key grain in this ale is toasted buckwheat groats, otherwise known as Kasha. The buckwheat gives a nutty flavor and texture to the ale. Also, buckwheat is technically a fruit seed and not a cereal grain making this a good choice for those who don’t like or can’t tolerate wheat. As a seasonal, limited release beer, its nutty characteristics offer a great companion to colder climate cuisine. A bright hop finish from Cascade and Fuggles balance the toasted grain notes to create a new expression of autumn brown ales.

Reboot – White IPA
Boulevard Brewing Company
Kansas City, Missouri
boulivard RebootFounded in 1989, Boulevard Brewing Company has grown to become the largest specialty brewer in the Midwest. Their mission is simple: to produce fresh, flavorful beers using the finest traditional ingredients and the best of both old and new brewing techniques. Boulevard beers are known for their full flavor, distinctive character, and unsurpassed quality. Their beers are currently available in 25 states and the District of Columbia.
Here are the brewers notes for Reboot:
“This re-release of our 2011 Collaborations Series No. 2 White IPA brings back the unique marriage of a classic Belgian witbier to an American IPA. We enjoyed the experience so much the first time around that we happily pressed Control+C (Command+C for Mac), and Reboot was born. Version 2.0 has upgraded its spicy aroma, with hints of bubblegum and clove. Bold flavors will launch upon uncorking, as sage and lemongrass balance the tangy, zesty wheat malt profile. Rather than merely blending a wittier with an IPA, Reboot harmonizes distinctly fruity Belgian yeast overtones with big, fruity American hop notes by creating an herbal bridge between these two somewhat contradictory flavors. The beer’s complexity os supported by a spritzy effervescence, finishing dry, with lingering hop notes.”

Black Bear Stout
Bear Republic Brewing Company
Cloverdale, California
Bear Republic Bear-Black stoutIn the modern town of Healdsburg, lies one of America’s best and most inventive brewpubs. Bear Republic is a little brewery with a growing reputation among craft beer enthusiasts. The pub is part sports bar, part eclectic left coast idealist – it celebrates life and all of its offerings. The brewery distributes its offerings in 22 ounce bottles in select markets across the country, including Massachusetts.
As the name implies this stout is as close to black as stout comes, with a tan foamy head. It has deep rich flavors and aromas of molasses and unsweetened chocolate. The smooth, creamy mouthfeel belies the 8.1% alcohol it carries.~ 100 points Beer Advocate

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