Monthly Archives: November 2015

824. Lost Nation Brewing The Wind

Lost Nation The WindI travel to Vermont often and for the past couple of years we have made the trip out for Hill Farmstead’s Festival of Farmhouse Ales a two day trip spending the night in Montpelier on Friday and then heading to Hill on Saturday for the event. Each time we spent a significant amount of time (and money) at Three Penny Taproom eating and drinking some great beer. The highlight of this years trip to Three Penny was The Wind from Lost Nation. Before going to Three Penny I had no idea this beer even existed but after having it I knew I had to find some bottles. Fortunately a few months later Lost Nation released another batch and I made a point to visit the brewery to grab some bottles.

For those that don’t know The Wind is Lost Nation’s Gose dry hopped with Citra and grapefruit added. Their Gose is excellent by itself but add some more hops and grapefruit and it makes it even better. Appearance is a pale yellow with a thick white head that disappeared quickly leaving a small rim around the glass, pretty typical of the gose style. Aroma give you a nice mix of citrus and grapefruit, no real surprise there. The Citra hops are essentially lost in the flavor leaving a tasty gose with plenty of grapefruit. Carbonation is low but seems intentional.

This beer is every bit as refreshing as the original Gose and bit more flavorful with the grapefruit coming through nicely. Excellent beer and if someone out there happens to have the Brett version of this beer let me know as I would really like to try it.
Pros:
Cons: 
Alcohol Content: ??% ABV
Calories: ???
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Lost Nation Brewing
Brewers Description: Introducing our latest bottled beer, The Wind. The Wind is our classic Gose dry hopped with Citra hops and grapefruit. Some of you may have had this beer in the past as a cask beer. Well we liked it so much that we figured out how to bottle it.

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823. Enlightenment Ales Illumination

Enlightenment Ales IlluminationThe Belgian IPA or Hoppy Saison is not a style I drink a lot. I like IPAs and drink a lot of them and I like saisons but rarely do the styles mix and create something worthwhile. Hugh Malone from Allagash may be the only memorable beer within the style and this year’s Hugh Malone was even better than the one reviewed above. I got this bottle from a friend and decided to give it a shot.

Illumination pours a very bright and clean copper color with a very thick soapy white head. Aroma was an interesting mix of floral hops, saison yeast and a bit funky. The hops are there in the aroma but they really shine in the flavor with a big blast of citrus and floral hops to start. When I say big I mean big relative to the style, there is enough there to satisfy an IPA drinker but you won’t be overwhelmed by hops. Finish turns more towards that traditional saison with some spice and yeast coming through and a very mild bitterness.

Overall a very interesting and complex beer from Enlightenment Ales and one of the best of the style that I have tried.
Pros:
Cons:
Alcohol Content: 6.8% ABV
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Enlightenment Ales
Brewers Description: Illumination is a beer inspired by two of my favorite brewing traditions: the rustic farmhouse ales of Belgium and the generously hopped IPA’s of America’s West Coast. Born from a grist of barley, wheat and rye, and fermented with a blend of infamously expressive farmhouse ale yeasts, Illumination begins its life as a classic Saison, only to be transformed into something unique through robust additions of American dry hops. The result is a beer with an intensely tropical aroma, a juicy, citrus flavor, and a dry, crisp bitterness. While this beer may not provide immediate illumination to the mysteries of life, it’s sure to at least brighten the corners.

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822. Baxter Brewing The Daughters of Poseidon

Baxter Brewing The Daughters of PoseidenThis is actually a really old review that I had the notes but couldn’t find the photo and then came across it so decided I would post just in case this beer came back around. If you still have a can of this chances are it has changed a lot as it would be about 18 months old.

Daughters of Poseidon is a black IPA and if you follow my blog you know this is not my favorite style. Color is almost entirely black with a thick off white head. I find these canned shaped glasses often increase the size of the head significantly. Aroma was almost entirely roasted malts; chocolate, coffee with a bit of citrus hops and some alcohol present. Taste follows with a big roasty start and the hops come through only in a big bitter finish. Not sure where the oysters come in but this beer was brewed with oysters at some point in the process.

If you like black IPAs you would probably enjoy this one but it seems to be a style that many craft beer drinkers avoid. 
Pros:

Cons:
Alcohol Content: 8.0% ABV
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Baxter Brewing
Brewers Description: Black India Pale Ale brewed with Oysters

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821. Lost Nation Brewing Vermont Pilsner

Lost Nation Vermont PilsnerPilsners are often overlooked in the craft beer world but there are a few good ones out there with my favorite being Banded Horn’s Pepperell Pilsner. Lost Nation does a great job with their beers so when I came across a 4-pack of Vermont Pilsner I grabbed one to take home.

This beer is a crystal clear yellow with a very deep white head and plenty of carbonation. Aroma is entirely earthy with some crackery malts and some nice grassy hops. Taste is very similar to the nose with those same grassy hops, lightly sweet malt base and a very crisp and clean finish.

A solid craft pilsner that will not disappoint and could be enjoyed by craft beer drinkers as well as non-craft drinkers. 
Pros:

Cons:
Alcohol Content: 4.8% ABV
IBU (Bitterness): 20
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Lost Nation Brewing
Brewers Description: Our golden lager is a crisp, clean, easy drinking beer that has a full, balanced hop finish. This Franconian style Pils is perfect for any occasion

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820. Neighborhood Beer Company Alien Garden

Neighborhood Beer Co Alien GardenThis may have been my favorite of the three beers I tried from Neighborhood Beer Company. They describe it as a light brown ale which is a fair description of the appearance but it certainly does not taste like an American Brown Ale.

Appearance is a deep copper which could be considered light brown with a finger thick white head. Aroma was pretty light but what was there was bready and pleasant. Taste was also malt forward but relatively light for a brown ale style. You don’t get the big roasted malt or nutty flavors often associated with a brown ale but you do get a malt forward beer that is super smooth and easy to drink.

Really enjoyable but from a style that I don’t drink often so not something that I will seek out again. 
Pros:

Cons:
Alcohol Content: 4.9% ABV
IBU (Bitterness): 35
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Neighborhood Beer Company
Brewers Description: Alien Garden Light Brown Ale is a smooth and refreshing style featuring a nice herbal finish. This well-balanced ale is made in the style of a Westphalian country ale from western Germany. A limited release style, get your Alien Garden now because it might never return.

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819. Bissell Brothers Brewing Lux

Bissell Brothers LuxBack to back hoppy rye beers with Light in the Window from Burlington Beer and now Lux from Bissell Brothers. I believe this is the last of the Bissell Brother’s beers for me to review. I will have to go back through and update some photos as they now have brand specific cans for Lux and Baby Genius and I am sure Noah and Peter will have some new options soon enough.

Lux pours a deep hazy orange, not nearly as murky as some of their other beers but still far from clear. Head is bright white with big soapy bubbles that left a fair amount of lacing on the glass. Aroma is a mix of spicy rye and lemon and taste pretty much follows with the rye dominating and the hops there for some added flavor and complexity.

Overall a very good beer from Bissell but I prefer most of their others over Lux. 
Pros:

Cons:
Alcohol Content: 5.1% ABV
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Bissell Brothers Brewing
Brewers Description: This rye ale is our tropical escape to a sunnier state of mind.

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818. Burlington Beer Light in the Window

Burlington Beer Light in the WindowThere are so many great breweries out there and Vermont seems to have a lot of them. Burlington Beer may not get as much attention as The Alchemist, Lawson’s or Hill Farmstead but Joe is making some truly unique beers in Williston. Yes Burlington Beer is not actually located in Burlington but in the town right next door Williston. Everything they do is just a little different making them one of my favorite breweries. It’s Complicated Being a Wizard was the first IPA in a long time that was truly unique and you can check out their website to see the many other offerings from Burlington Beer including Strawberry Whale Cake and Bee Keeper.

This beer is their Rye IPA which generally I am not a huge fan of but this one worked. Appearance is a slightly hazy burnt orange with a solid white head. Aroma has loads of floral, earthy hops and a bit of citrus and spice from the rye. The taste was very interesting and complex with some citrus, grapefruit but also a fair amount of peppery spice. Very earthy and the finish is dry and slightly bitter. All of this might sound like an odd mix of flavors but it works.

Light in the Window is another unique offering from a very talented brewer. If you haven’t tried any of Joe’s beer yet let me know and I will bring some back on my next trip to Vermont.
Pros: Unique
Cons:
Alcohol Content: 5.9% ABV
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Burlington Beer Company
Brewers Description: A crispy Rye IPA brewed with barley and rye. Densely hopped and bursting with grapefruit hop flavors to compliment the soft and spicy nature of rye. We’ve balanced the soft malt profile with a fresh and aggressive hop flavor.

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817. Newburyport Brewing Melt Away

Newburyport Brewing Melt Away Session IPAIt seems like most breweries added a session IPA or session pale to their line up during 2015. Some were excellent and some just seemed like watered down versions of other beers. Some of my favorites include Rising Tide’s Maine Island Trail, Baby Genius & Diavoletto from Bissell Brothers.

Melt Away appears to be the newest can release from Newburyport Brewing adding a session beer to an already solid line up. This beer pours a slightly hazy pale orange with a solid white head, really nice looking beer. Aroma is abundant for a session beer with plenty of citrus and tropical hops. Taste follows with plenty of hop flavor on top of a light malt base. Slightly creamy and very little bitterness making this a super crushable session IPA.

This will definitely be added to the list of beers for my golf cooler next summer. 
Pros: 

Cons:
Alcohol Content: 4.6% ABV
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Newburyport Brewing
Brewers Description: A refreshing session IPA shining with Citra and Amarillo hops uniquely balanced by malt sweetness for a crisp, easy finish. A tasty way to kick back and melt away.

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816. Two Roads Brewing Road 2 Ruin

Two Roads Road 2 RuinTwo Roads may be best known as the place that contract brews Lawson’s Finest Liquids Sip of Sunshine and Super Session #2  but they also have a pretty solid line up of their own beer. I have also heard that it is a great place to visit so if you find yourself in Connecticut check them out.

Road 2 Ruin is their double IPA and I purchased a 4-pack of cans on a recent trip to Vermont. Their beer is also available in Maine and may even be in New Hampshire now. Appearance is a deep slightly hazy orange color with a fluffy white head. Aroma has some floral and pine but is not as pungent as many other DIPAs. Taste has a sweet start, a little pine and then a huge bitter finish. The bitterness seemed to dull down a bit as I drank the beer, not sure if this was me getting used to the beer or a change as the beer warmed.

The can says “Plenty of Bite” at the bottom and that is certainly true.
Pros:
Cons:
Alcohol Content: 8.0% ABV
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Two Roads Brewing
Brewers Description: A big, hoppy IPA with plenty of bite! Our assertive, hop-centric Double IPA has a lean malt backdrop and is brewed with four American hop varieties – Summit, Palisade, Cascade and Magnum. Piney, citrus, floral, not-for-the-timid!

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815. Deciduous Brewing Aggregation

Deciduous Brewing AggregationI have been really enjoying the variety of low ABV and very flavorful beers being introduced by many breweries which includes several gose style beers. Aggregation from Deciduous may be the lowest ABV gose so far at only 2.4% ABV.

Love the clean pale yellow of this beer with only a small halo of a head, pretty typical of the gose style. Aroms is a great mix of spice and lemon. Taste is slightly tart with more lemon than coriander and very little salt coming through.

A super easy drinking beer that you can enjoy any time of day and also have more than one without having to worry about driving home. Really excellent beer and looking forward to trying Cumulation their gose at 4.5% ABV. 
Pros:
Flavorful and low ABV
Cons:
Alcohol Content: 2.4% ABV
IBU (Bitterness): ??
Rating: 
Brewers Website: Deciduous Brewing (Facebook page)
Brewers Description: Our interpretation of a Table Gose. Brewed with acidulated malts, 60% white wheat, fresh coriander from Stock & Spice in Portsmouth, NH, and sea salt varieties from Salt Cellar in Portsmouth, NH. Think a gentle lemonade made with Moroccan preserved lemons.

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