Monday, 11 July 2016

Beer on the Fourth of July

A week ago, on the day our American cousins celebrate their independence from British colonial rule, I was inspired by this video to order some bottled beers from Brooklyn Brewery via my favourite online beer shop.

I first tried Brooklyn Lager, an amber, all-malt beer classified as a Vienna lager, about a decade ago, after picking up a bottle in the supermarket, and was very impressed by its full-flavoured hops and malt taste, but hadn't tried any other beers from Brooklyn.

Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout (10% abv)

Brooklyn's attempt at a Russian Imperial Stout. Not much carbonation or mouthfeel, and doesn't really drink its strength. Some nice, lingering roasty notes though, and I can imagine it being a decent "winter warmer".

Brooklyn Brown Ale (5.6% abv)

I expected this to be similar to Sam Smith's Nut Brown Ale given that beer's popularity in the US, but it's actually more like a heftier version of Newcastle Brown Ale: dryish and with a very pronounced caramelly taste. A bit more carbonation and my favourite of the Brooklyn bottled beers I tried.

Brooklyn Sorachi Ace (7.2 % abv)

This, described by the brewery as "an unfiltered golden farmhouse ale", is Brooklyn's take on a Belgian saison: hoppy, sourish and with a refreshing lemony taste. Not that I'd fancy drinking a pint of it though.

Brooklyn East India Pale Ale (6.9% abv)

I suppose this is what Americans think of as an IPA: pale, hoppy and above average strength. I'd call it a best bitter or a strong golden ale. A long-lasting head and nice balance of malt and hops, although the latter (not sure which variety they are, might be Cascade) give it a slightly weird lemony aftertaste.

1 comment:

  1. Thank for sharing that link, Matt. I particularly enjoyed the video with Garrett Oliver talking us through Brooklyn’s range of beers.

    I had the pleasure of meeting Garrett at GBBF one year, when he was signing copies of his beer and food matching book, “The Brewmaster’s Table,” which was one of the first publications to take an in depth look at matching beer with food. I bought a copy, and still refer to it, from time to time.

    Reading through some of your descriptions, they aren’t a lot different to my own. It’s good to see Brooklyn continuing to turn out interesting beers, and good that we can get to try them on this side of the Atlantic.