"...for something a bit more light and fun, this month's topic revolves around the brewing activity itself. Brewing is an extremely rewarding endeavor, especially after sipping on the end product....a delicious pint of cold carbonated beer. But in the process of making it, it's not always 'a walk in the park'. I'm interested to hear about what areas in the brewday brings joy and stress"
Friday, May 29, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
This past weekend, I was in Brooklyn for a bachelor party. Luckily, the party started at the Brooklyn Brewery! We took a tour and sat in the "tasting room" (it was more like a bar) and sampled their awesome line up of beers. I left there a very happy beer lover! I took some pictures, which are the the bottom. Sorry about the quality, but they're from my cell phone.
The tour was short. Not in time, but in distance traveled. You move from the tasting room, over to the brewery room and listen to the tour guide talk about the history of Brooklyn Brewing Co, the building and their current state. All in all, it was about 30 feet. As someone who wants to open my own brewery I thought the tour was very cool, and yes they started as home brewers!!! At the start, they did contract brewing with F.X. Matt (Saranac) up in Utica, NY. To this day, the majority of there beer is still produced at the Matt Brewery. Only a few beers (Local 1, Local 2 and others) are actually brewed in the Brooklyn Brewery.
Next we moved back to the tasting room and sat at some of the tables they had set up and began to sample their brews. I started off with the Brooklyn IPA, which they called E.IP.A. (East India Pale Ale). This was golden in color and had a great head. Huge hop aroma's and it packed a wallop of hop bitterness.
Next up was the Brooklyner Weisse. Their Bavarian yeast strain gave it lots of the traditional Banana esters and some great flavor as well. I've had some Hefe's that were just too overpowering with the banana/clove ester combo, but this was perfect. It didn't get in the way of the backbone of the beer, the wheat!
Beer 3 was just a quick sample, the Intensified Coffee Stout. Had this beer been lower in alcohol (8.5%) I probably would have had a few, but since we had a LONG day of bachelor party drinking to do, I only gave it a taste. WOW!!!! I could smell the coffee aroma before I even stuck my nose in it! The first sip was amazing. Big coffee flavor, with a great rich malty backbone. The maltiness and coffee flavor really mask the alcohol in this, which is part of the reason I shied away from it.
The Brooklyn Brown was next. I'm a huge brown ale fan and this beer did not disappoint. It poured a deep dark brown color and had hints of some roasty malt character. The chocolate malt was evident and very pleasant. The hop character was a little restrained from what I was expecting. Not a lot of bitterness, but subtle flavor and aroma. One of the main reasons I liked this beer so much was it reminded me of my American Brown. When I brewed it, the judges told me it had a roasty character that is not traditional in the style, and it was too dark. Color wise, my brown is the same. It made me smile and I know I will be back to the drawing board to figure this one out!
As we were leaving, I grabbed two bottle to take home.....famed Local 1 and Local 2. I have yet to try these but I've heard and read a lot of great reviews on them, so I'm very excited to get into them. If you're ever in Brooklyn, or NY for that matter, definitely take a trip to the brewery and check it out. You won't be disappointed!!