Thursday, December 22, 2011

White Birch...RedStone

Thanks to Jeff, one of the handful of people that frequent this blog's comments section, I have a new favorite beer store. Ironically it is about a mile from my house, but I had not been there in years. It is called Redstone Liquors and the new owner Kamal knows his stuff and is genuinely friendly. It is great to see such a small place dedicate itself to quality products and great service. I am very troubled that I had no idea how good their selection is. I am sold and will be going back on a regular basis. I picked up a number of bottles, including a Dogfish Head 120 Minute IPA to add to my brother's belated birthday beer bonanza bag. I also grabbed my first White Birch Brewing beer, Hooksett Ale, and it was a nice surprise:

Batch 10 - 7.5%abv. Pours a beautiful copper color with a frothy white head. Incredible Belgian lace clings to the glass all the way to the last sip. Interesting combination of flavors. First sip is ripe fruit and bready malt. Orange zest hops. Candy sugar and citrusy hop flavors become more noticeable toward the end for the glass. Caramel and the mildest touch of cloves from the Belgian yeast. The 7.5% alcohol is incredibly well-masked, so much so that this could be mistaken for a session beer. This is the first beer I have tried from this brewery and it is quite well done. Again, kudos to Redstone Liquors in Stoneham, MA for introducing me to this line. I had not seen it anywhere else.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

It's the most wonderful time of the year...

Beer number 2001 in my database. 5.5% abv. Pours a rich ruby brown color. Milk chocolate, citrus, and juniper on the nose. First sip is totally balanced. Rich malt flavors with a piney sprucey hop flavor that just spells Christmas. Perhaps a touch drier than usual at finish, but this is a great seasonal session beer. Hop flavors dominate slightly, but dark dried cherries, some milk chocolate, cocoa, and bready malt flavors balance it off nicely. Orange zest, pepper, clove, and maybe nutmeg flavors release about mid-glass. Could be one of the most complex and flavorful lower alcohol beers that you will ever taste. I just love this beer. A case might not be enough this year.

Anybody else out there tried it yet, what do you think?