Our second brewery stop for July is 14th Star Brewing Co. in Vermont. And the origin story can’t get too much more dramatic than this, ” 14th Star Brewing Co. started as a daydream in the mountains of Eastern Afghanistan.”
Here are the beers that I would add to my first taster tray…
Recruit Golden Ale – ” a clean, crisp, and refreshing American Golden Ale with just enough bitterness to balance out the sweetness from the malts.”
Valor Ale – “Our flagship beer! Brewed with four American hop varieties, Valor is a hoppy Amber Ale balanced with citrusy hop flavor and aroma, clean bitterness, and a slight caramel sweetness.”
Follow Me IPA – ” a sessionable American IPA brewed with five American and Australian hop varieties — imparting balanced notes of crisp lemon and resinous hop oil.”
Dive Bomb Hazy IPA – ” Soaring hop flavor with a dive in ABV — Dive Bomb is a Hazy Pale Ale brewed with Mosaic and Ekuanot hops.”
Maple Breakfast Stout – “An Oatmeal Stout brewed with local maple syrup and Northern Bayou cold brew coffee — our Maple Breakfast Stout has flavors and aromas of dark malts, coffee, and maple.”
Our last stop in San Diego is electrifying… Kilowatt Brewing. With Locations in Ocean Beach and Kearny Mesa.
Here are the beers that I would add to a taster tray….
Easy Crusher American Pilsner Pre-Prohibition style Lager – “Straw colored Pilsner based on recipes brewed before the Volstead Act of 1919 using Pilsner malt, flaked corn, and German noble hops.”
Wir Trinken! Festbier - “A smooth, pale German-style lager with a strong malt presence balanced with a light hop character.”
250 kWh IPA American IPA - “Features Kohatu, Rakau, and Falconer’s Flight hops, with piney, fruity & citrus notes.”
350 kWh IIIPA Triple IPA – “Triple IPA brewed with 40 lbs of 7 different citrusy and tropical hops.”
Coconut Chai Porter American Porter -” Brewed with chai spices and conditioned on toasted coconut.”
We’re heading to Mill Street for our last stop in Eugene, Oregon at Coldfire Brew Co. Here are my choices for the initial taster tray that I would order.
Czech Pilsner – “This pilsner is both light and soft and has notes of spice, honey and lemon. Bohemian floor malted pilsner and Czech Saaz hops give this beer the classic underpinnings inherent in the style. A well rounded easy drinking lager.”
Don’t be Bitter! an ESB – “This traditional ale is a classic in every way. We start with a water profile that fits the style and selected only the highest quality English malts and hops. This beer is fermented with West Yorkshire Ale yeast, and dry hopped with East Kent Goldings for a truly beautiful combination of nostalgia and flavor. DBB drinks as a light; but malt forward ale with a balancing, refreshing bitterness that will leave you wanting one after another.”
Pick Me! a Pale Ale – “Crafted with the best Chinook and Mosaic hops available for a bright, classic, yet modern flavor.”
St. James IRA – “Winner of the 2017 – GABF Double Red Silver Medal! A malty, biscuity red ale balanced by generous additions of dry hops.”
Affogato coffee cream ale – “This coffee cream ale was brewed with traditional ingredients; but infused with milk sugar and high-quality, cold processed Columbian coffee. All of the traditional elements of the cream ale are apparent in this creation.”
Our final August stop in New York is at Torch & Crown. Say hello Lady Liberty and let’s see what beers I would order from this Vandam Street brewery.
Tenement IPA – “The “haze craze” of NE-style IPAs has already gotten pretty played out and just plain tired. But we’re in the city that never sleeps, god dammit, and it’s time for an energetic new take! This beer hits you with a buzzing aroma of fresh melon, and full flavors of citrus and stonefruit. It finishes with a crisp bitterness but adds a slight hint of acidity to accentuate those deep fruit flavors. (And yes, it’s still hazy.)”
…and that is it for now, except for another hopped beer, Darts on the Line.
Maybe this up and comer will make waves in 2019.
Our final stop on the Wyoming Ale Trail is in Sheridan at Black Tooth Brewing.
The brewery began in November of 2010 with a 10 BBL brew house. Co-owner Travis Zeilstra is also the brewer and graduate of the Western Culinary Institute. He was awarded “brewer of the year” award at GABF in 2007.
Here is what I would put in my initial taster tray:
Bomber Mountain Amber
“An Irish-style red ale with a complex malt profile of biscuits, caramel and cotton candy. A well rounded and balanced amber with a dry, crisp, finish.”
Hot Streak IPA
“An American Style India Pale Ale, copper in color and accentuated with American Hops. This beer imparts both pine and citrus flavors, while maintaining an ever present floral aroma.”
“This is a robust style porter characterized by a malty dark ale with a complex caramel, toffee, bitter chocolate and flavorful roasty character. We infused this porter with a variety of coffee from City Brew. The coffee infusion gives this porter a distinctive yet complimentary coffee aroma and flavor.”
“A German style Pilsner brewed with a classic German Pilsner lager yeast. Pilsners are straw colored lagers with noble hoppy bite that gives a light crisp finish.”
For the second stop in Wyoming we head to Cheyenne and Danielmark’s Brewing. The backstory is another homebrewer to pro scenario which shows, once again, how important home brewing is to swelling the ranks of breweries in all states across the country.
Now let’s get introduced to what I would pick for my initial taster tray if I found myself in the Cowboy state….
“Hello, I am indeed the CORSON. I was forced to briefly describe myself so here it is. I guess I’m a Pilsner, but that’s just because I hear people say I am. My makers always mad at me, I think it’s because I’m the odd one of the bunch and I take forever to make.Oh, well, I don’t like him either.”
“So my name is Bluesitra, I love Citra® hops. My maker tells me I am the best seller, which makes me the coolest beer here. I have Belgian roots and I love long stumbling walks on the beach. Did I say that I love Citra® hops?”
“Most people call me Old Regret, I’m named after a horse from one of my makers favorite movies. My friends call me Red, not sure why. I’m special because I overheard my maker tell someone I am his favorite. This is also why the others don’t like me.”
and throw in one seasonal
Hot Iron Chili Stout – On Tap November 5th Until Empty
Our first stop for May is at Zero Gravity who have two locations in Burlington Vermont. Let’s get some lagers into this virtual tasting tray…
Green State Lager
“A crisp, easy-drinking Pilsner beer that is influenced by the great brewing regions of the world, but that charts its own course through this elegant style. The Noble hops play a key role, but allow the malt to take center stage, providing a clean and satisfying quencher that is as welcoming as the Green State itself.”
Keller Dry-hopped Lager
“Our take on a rarely-seen classic. Start with one of our favorite lagers and add a boat-load of Mandarina Bavaria hops. A fine balance is struck between hoppy and refreshing.”
Sans Souci Farmhouse Pale Ale
“French for “No Worries,” this Farmhouse Pale was brewed exclusively with Pilsner malt to showcase Belgian yeast with an American hop. The yeast adds spicy notes, while El Dorado hops contribute tropical fruit and melon aromas to this light-bodied refreshing ale.”
Bretthead IPA with Brettanomyces
“We brewed our popular Conehead IPA with a wild twist. Single-hopped with Citra and fermented with Brettanomyces wild yeast, this beer stands at the crossroads of hoppy and funky.”
We finish up the month with our 3rd stop in Wisconsin. Aptly at Third Space Brewing.
You can thank Camp Minikani for introducing founders Kevin Wright and Andy Gehl to each other. Now they are brewing up beers like…
It Was All A Dream – Juicy IPA
“If you don’t know, now you know…It Was All A Dream is our newest special release Juicy IPA. Brewed with an awesome new and extremely limited experimental hop, Dream is super peachy with flavors of pineapple, passion fruit, and berry rounding it out. A slightly hazy complexion, mild bitterness, soft mouthfeel and juicy hop flavors make this beer a dream from which you won’t want to wake. This beer won’t be around long so get it while it’s good and plenty.”
Madame Grisette – Farmhouse Ale
“Grisette is a traditional Farmhouse Ale originally brewed for the miners in southern Belgium to quench their thirst after a long day on the job. Perhaps best described as Saison’s hoppy sister, the Grisette was a beer of the working class that is well suited for a brewery built in a historic factory. Our Madame Grisette is brewed with wheat for a light bready body. Spiciness from the Belgian yeast strain coupled with fruity hoppy flavors and a pleasant bitterness evoke notes of citrus, pear, bubblegum, peach and clove spice in a refreshing and flavorful beer.”
East Meets West – Dry-Hopped Saison
“Our first collaboration beer, brewed with our friends at Good City Brewing (on the East Side) and Raised Grain Brewing (in the West Suburbs), brewed right here in the middle at Third Space Brewing. This beer is found only in each of our tap rooms so come get some before it’s gone.”
Java Blanca – Coffee Cream Ale
“Java Blanca is the second beer in our java series with our good friends and neighbors at Stone Creek Coffee. This coffee cream ale is full bodied and pleasantly sweet with a creamy mouth feel from the addition of oats to the mash. South American coffee beans, grown at high altitudes, add a sweet and acidic character to this beer along with strong coffee aromas and a subtle coffee bitterness in the finish.”
Milwaukee Mule – Sour Ale
“Inspired by the classic cocktail, our Milwaukee Mule is a refreshing summer sour with a bright, tart acidity that is balanced with fresh ginger juice and pureed lime. This sour wheat ale is a perfect choice for hot summer days.”
Our final stop in the federal district is in the Ivy City neighborhood in Northeast DC at Atlas Brew Works and their 100% solar-powered brewery.
Here are the beers that I would add to my initial taster tray…
“Inspired by the beers that accompanied America’s westward expansion, District Common is fermented using lager yeast at temperatures common to ale fermentation. The result is a pale, well-balanced beer combining crisp lager character with fruity ale notes. The clean grain bill provides a refreshing drinkability and supports late aroma additions of Czech Saaz hops.”
South Cap Helles
“Named after the home field of the District’s favorite ball club, the 1500 is a crisp, craft lager perfect for a sunny afternoon in the bleachers. Made with aromatic Munich malt and earthy American hops, it is a Washingtonian take on a traditional German Helles.”
Home Rule IPL
“Home Rule, a style-defying India Pale Lager, is as delicious as it is unique. A pilsner malt base and Atlas’ house lager yeast provide a clean and crisp backdrop for late and dry hop additions of Southern hemisphere hops. New Zealand Waimea hops impart key lime notes that pair excellently with the tropical fruit notes of Australian Galaxy hops.”
Rowdy Rye Beer
“Made with three varieties of hops and a generous amount of specialty malts, Rowdy offers a complex flavor and aroma that is both aggressive and fun. The addition of malted rye to the grain bill lends a peppery and distinct character to the beer which complements the bitterness and floral notes of brewhouse hop additions. Finally, this copper-hued ale receives a liberal addition of dry hops in the fermenting vessel, imparting citrus aromas and a crisp, clean finish.”
Our 2nd stop in the Nations Capitol of Intelligence sharing is at Hellbender Brewing whose name is “inspired by the endangered Hellbender Salamander struggling to survive in our neighboring Appalachian rivers and streams…”
The brewery (like many others) is using brewing techniques to make an environmental difference so that the little creature can continue on.
Below are three beers from the core line-up as well as two somewhat recent tap room offerings that intrigued me the most…
Bare Bones Kolsch
“Traditional German-style ale light and crisp with a spicy finish from American-grown noble hops.”
Southern Torrent Saison
“A rich, golden colored farmhouse ale with a thick, white head. It finishes crisp and dry with hints of pear, citrus and apple in the aroma.”
Days Gone By Dry-hopped Belgian Tripel
“A collaboration with the historic St. Feuillien Brewery in Le Roeulx, Begium, Days Gone By is a traditional Belgian tripel brewed with a distinctly American hopping. Bright golden in color with a light corriander spiciness, it finishes with bold citrus and tropical flavor and aroma from Citra, Amarillo, Idaho 7 & Azacca hops.”
Oat to Joy Oat Pale Ale
Heartbreaker Nitro Red Ale