Drink (49)

Back to Basics: New England Double IPA

Winter is back, readers, and this beer writer is tried of fruits, berries, and funky adjuncts. With the sun setting at 4 PM, I'm done with fluff and back to basics, which, at this point in the year are, #1. Alcohol and, #2. Hops! What better way to resume appreciation of more convention beer styles than to taste some Double IPA? This week, we'll focus on a sub-genre of Double IPA that's close to my…

Take flight with galactic beers

In the western brewing tradition, beer is spiced with hops like foods are spiced with, errr, spices. Hops, the flower of the herbaceous vine Humulus lupulus, used to be responsible strictly for only the bitter, herbaceous quality of many beers. As growers developed new varieties and brewers developed new techniques, we've seen a profusion of beers that feature the more subtle, unusual flavors and aromas of the hop flower. Now, it's possible to find beers…

The Gourd Horror: Pumpkin Brews

We all have our fears. Some dread a visit to the proctologist. Some tax season. As a beer writer, I have a special horror of one terrible week that combines unique horror of all fears plus the possibility of a dreadful hangover. Yes, loyal reader, it's that time of year where brewers add bloated orange squash to perfectly good beer, douse it in laboratory-derived flavoring agents and cackle with the keening, disturbing laugh of a…

Cheers to Cherries

Fall is mad this year, loyal reader. First, it's 40 degrees, then it's 70. I suppose we shouldn't complain, because it's October in Maine, but the wild gyrations in weather are driving my palate crazy. I’m not ready to begin my traditional cold weather descent into heavier, maltier beers, so we're going to continue our exploration of beers with added fruits, berries, and other interesting ingredients by tasting cherry beers. Cherries are a perfect fruit for…

Liquid Gold — Lemon beers to treasure

I'm still sipping beers that use fruits, berries and other adjuncts to achieve unusual flavors. This week, we'll try a few beers that incorporate the most familiar of the citrus fruits – the lemon! Much of the characteristic flavor of the lemon is due to the citric acid it contains, giving it a sour, biting flavor. Lemons also contain a significant quantity of vitamin C, and the peels are rich in essential oils that carry…

Passionate about Passion Fruit Beers

Passion fruit is the fruit of a flowering vine, whose reportedly comes from the religious, rather than the sexual, meaning of the word passion. Apparently, Missionaries in South America named it in reference to Christ's suffering on the cross. The indigenous meaning of the word is less symbolic "nursery for flies." The flavor of this enigmatic fruit is somewhere between these definitions, both divine and earthy, with a profound flavor that mixes acid and sweetness.…

Sipping On Raspberry Sours

With the first day of fall already behind us but temperatures still in the seventies, I'm craving a return to summer. In acknowledgment of this brief spell of warm weather and the cold that's sure to come, I'm tasting some sour beers that incorporate raspberries. The sweetness of the raspberry heralds the warmest days of summer, and the tart sourness is a reminder of the six months of winter still to come. Hold one of…

Strawberry Beers Forever

In these waning days of summer, I'm tasting beers with added fruits, berries, and other unusual ingredients. Earlier, we tried three beers brewed with added strawberries. Two weeks ago, I reviewed a notice that two breweries I follow were releasing strawberry beers and I took it as a sign. Summer ain't over yet, and there's more strawberry to drink!   Hidden Cove Fragola ABV: 6.0% Format Sampled: 16 oz corked bottle Availability: Purchased at Bow Street…

Keg Count: What's new at Barreled Souls Brewing

I first got to know Chris Schofield and Matt Mills during my time as a driver and guide for the Maine Brew Bus. Back in those days, they had just opened their hole-in-the-wall brewery in a basement on route one in Saco. Their Burton Union system (a process through which all of their beer is fermented in oak barrels) was unique among northeast brewers, and they are quite possibly the only brewery anywhere using such…

Dreaming of tangerines — Respect the fruit

In the waning weeks of summer, I'm sipping beers that include fruits, berries and other unusual adjuncts. This week, we'll explore beers with tangerine flavors. Many citrus fruits are surprisingly natural additions to beers, because they contain chemicals that echo the flavors of popular hop varieties. Tangerines are no exception to this rule. In fact, this particular variety of citrus fruit contains a unique and varied mixture of essential oils, many of which are also…
Subscribe to this RSS feed