North Country Brewing Co. -

One of the best brewpubs in Pennsylvania, Slippery Rock’s sterling Western-styled hunting lodge, NORTH COUNTRY BREWERY (visited during April ‘06 West Penn jaunt), had an earthen hippie atmosphere underscored by ramped left side bar, rustic wood floors, cozy dining coves, low ceiling fans, and bark-sidled walls.

Basic sandwiches, burgers, and salads were organically prepared. Right side front-windowed brew tanks contained basic fare and amazing rotational seasonal selections.

Sharply hop-spiced, orange-peeled, grapefruit embittered, peach-tangy, currant-bitten Paleo IPA was unbeatable while incredible Belgian Nightmare Tripel saturated bruised orange, overripe banana, and loud cherry with malt-syrupy alcohol whir.

Cask-conditioned Bucksnort Stout had rigid black licorice frontage, coffee-roasted beam, cocoa bean spleen, and soft black cherry seam, countering stylistically similar black coffee-soured, barley-roasted, walnut-tinged, tar-like Stone House Stout.

Wheat-cracked blackberry-raspberry-tart Fruit Bowl, yellow-fruited tea-hinged rye-tinged Paddlers Pale Ale, tea-honeyed fig-date-backed The Other One Strong Ale, and Irish-styled tea-stained fig-sugared pear-hinted Station 33 Red proved admirable, though raw dry-hopped maize-addled wheat-chaffed Worth Your Weight In Gold stayed dismally phenol.

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