The New England IPA trend is continuing strong with a couple new labels and rotating varieties, stouts are getting more imperial as the weather gets colder and, in some cases, sweeter as we near Valentine’s Day, and a meadery goes Hawaiian.
WHAT’S ON TAP?
On Friday (Jan. 24), 603 Brewery in Londonderry is launching One S’More Time Pastry Stout (7.5 percent), which, as the name implies, is a rich and sweet pastry stout. It’s made with a selection of caramel and chocolate malt, as well as house-made graham crackers, toasted marshmallow and chocolate.
603’s marketing manager Morgan Kyle says the resulting beer is “reminiscent of your favorite campfire treat without the risk of burning your mouth on a flaming ‘mallow.”
It will be available in four-packs of 16-ounce cans sold at the brewery.
On Jan. 31, the brewery will also release Turntable IPA (6.03 percent), under their experimental EO9 label. A release party will be held at the taproom. It’s their second batch in a rotating IPA series. This batch has dank aromas of mango, citrus and pine, with flavors of peach and lime and malt sweetness.
On Jan. 29, Lithermans Limited Brewery in Concord will release Sunday Matinee English Blonde (5.7 percent). The blonde is described as pale yet malty, hopped with El Dorado and Lemondrop hops. It’s not bitter, with a mild hop character, and a bit fruity. It will be available in draft only.
Then, on Jan. 31, they’ll release Hot Sex on a Platter (9.4 percent), a chocolate-covered strawberry imperial stout, which will be very on-brand for Valentine’s Day. It will be available in cans and on tap at the brewery.
Earlier this month, they dropped their Barbados-rum-punch-inspired sour Throne of Gold (6.4 percent) on tap. That will be released in cans on Jan. 31 as well.
Great North Aleworks
Next week, Great North Aleworks in Manchester is releasing a new special beer called Vanilla Imperial Porter – VIP (8.2 percent), which is an imperial version of their popular year-round label Robust Vanilla Porter – RVP. It will be on tap at the brewery and in 16-ounce cans.
Great North is also coming out with their latest Hazy Rotation Batch 8 (estimated 6.5 percent), their rotating New England IPA. This batch is made with Loral, Glacier, Mosaic, Sabro and Simcoe hops.
Pipe Dream Brewing
Today (Jan. 22), Pipe Dream Brewing in Londonderry is releasing two new beers: U Juicin’ Bro? (9 percent) and West to East IPA on White Oak (6.8 percent).
U Juicin’ Bro? is a New England style hazy and juicy Double IPA, with notes of passion fruit, peach and lemon.
West to East IPA on White Oak is a variant of their flagship West to East label, aged on planks of raw white oak, which imparts amplified flavors of grapefruit, passion fruit and citrus, complemented by a smooth oak finish.
Also, keep an eye out for a new daytime coffee house being launched at the brewery starting Feb. 1. They’ll be serving lattes, brunch cocktails and sandwiches.
Ancient Fire Mead & Cider
As always, there’s a lot of stuff brewing at Ancient Fire in Manchester. To start with, they’re dropping Aluminum Falcon (6.1 percent), a honey seltzer mead with tart cherry and lime, on Thursday (Jan. 23). It’s a dry mead with lots of bubbles, and the only added sugar comes from the cherries.
Shortly after, on Jan. 29, club members will get an exclusive early taste of Goldenwood (15 percent), a honey-wine that has the complex flavors of three honeys and nine months aging in Four Roses bourbon barrels. The greater public will get to try it in early February.
Then, as part of its Tiki a Break from Winter event from Thursday to Sunday (Jan. 23 – 26), Ancient Fire is dropping five new Hawaiian-themed meads on tap.
Those include Made Of Fire (7 percent), made with Hawaiian lehua blossom honey, This is Love (7 percent), made with the lehua honey and pineapple, Orange You Happy (7 percent), made with lehua honey, orange peel and vanilla bean, Exotica (7 percent), made with lehua honey, guava and papaya, and Making Sand Castles (7 percent), made with Hawaiian macadamia blossom honey, which is earthy, lightly fruity and very distinct from the lehua honey.
See more information about the Tiki event below.
On Monday (Jan. 20), Martha’s Exchange in Nashua dropped Arkenstone Amber (5.8 percent) for the first time in about two years. This German amber ale has clean toasted malt in its aroma with a noble hop finish. It’s on tap now likely through February.
The following Monday (Jan. 27), the taphouse is re-releasing its First In Flight IPA (7 percent), a rotating regular that comes out about once or twice a year. The brewery says it’s made with “monstrous amounts” of Nelson Sauvin, Amarillo and Mosaic hops, and it has flavors of citrus, tropical fruit and white wine with a touch of bitterness.
Odd Fellows Brewery
Last Friday (Jan. 17), Odd Fellows Brewery in Nashua released its very first Russian Imperial Stout, called RISky Business (9.7 percent). Brewers describe it as being smooth with hints of chocolate and coconut.
To Share Brewing Company
Meanwhile, at To Share in Manchester, brewers are planning to release a Scottish ale called Bonnie MacMurray (6 percent) on Saturday (Jan. 25). It’s light brown, easy drinking and malt forward, with flavors of bread and caramel and no hop bitterness.
First up: tomorrow (Jan. 23) is the state’s annual Winter Wine Spectacular, held at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Manchester from 6 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $65, and our friends from Moonlight Meadery in Londonderry will be there, reppin’ their sweet wares.
Speaking of Moonlight, their exclusive Lunar Club Society is meeting on Saturday (Jan. 25) from 7 to 9 p.m. for its annual gathering. The event promises good company, a buffet and a pairing of mead and cider samples. Tickets are $40 per person and you must pre-register here.
From Jan. 23 to 26, Ancient Fire is hosting its Tiki Break from Winter festivities, where it will be featuring its aforementioned Hawaiian-themed meads. Sunday will run from noon to 5 p.m. The event will have pulled pork tacos with pineapple salsa, and a Hawaiian shirt contest.
On Saturday (Jan. 25), The Flying Butcher in Amherst is hosting the 4th Annual Craft Beer Super Tasting (event from noon to 4 p.m. They will have beers from 10 different breweries including locals like 603 Brewery and Stoneface and many more out of Vermont, Massachusetts, Maine and beyond. The event is free to attend.
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