On tap at Beef Trust, unspecific hybridized pale ale salutes indie rock heroes, the Flaming Lips, with brewers’ off-center spring ’18 pale ale. Subtle strawberry-kiwi-like dragonberry and bland cranberry-pomegranate-like yumberry tartness combine with neutralized black carrot and pear juices as mild hop phenols rise above its salty bottom. Lightly soured lemon liming, musty cherry dryness and mild green apple pucker waver. Not too dry, sour or sweet; evasive flavor-wise.
Rich oak-aged vanilla beaned 17% ABV Imperial Stout retains syrupy molasses-sugared chocolate creaminess. Deep vanilla essence receives velvety bourbon licks as well as delicate port, sherry and brandy daubs. Setback dark chocolate fudging picks up gooey anise sway and dried-fruited black cherry, rum raisin and plum undertones. A trusty dessert nightcap with loads of gusto.
On tap at Taphouse 15, vibrantly full-bodied Truth Serum spikes juicy pineapple, grapefruit, peach, melon and mango tang with creamily sugared molasses malts. Brisk lemon zest surge encounters mild pine needling and dankly resinous hop oiling. Inspiring.
On tap at Cloverleaf, hybridized weizenbock/ brown ale (8% ABV) lets subtle floury carob pod influence get aged on Madagascar vanilla beans above mildly creamed caramel malting. Bittersweet chocolate-vanilla conflux stays moderate as distant Bailey’s Irish Cream Coffee, Irish whiskey, cacao nibs, earthen truffle and plummy raisin illusions dry out at the chalky mocha finish.
On tap at Growler & Gill, sharp ‘lupulin-loaded’ coconut-centric IPA lets brisk orange-peeled mango, pineapple, grapefruit and peach tang override dehydrated coconut water adjunct and parched wood snip above dry barley-flaked oats. Toasted coconut midst loses potency and weird floral-cologned waft appears while citric bittering ascends.
On tap at Growler & Gill, “liquid soundtrack welcoming warmer weather” brewed with kiwi juice and hibiscus flowers retains floral gooseberry-perfumed citrus spritz, subtle perfumed hop prickle and mildly acidic brininess. Dainty kiwi-juiced lemon, grapefruit, mango and pineapple tropicalia softly settles on the tongue above tranquil crystal malting.
On tap at Amazing Grapes, ridiculously complex and thoroughly gratifying milk stout utilizes rich Guatemalan Antigua cold-press coffee creaming to support syrupy maple molasses sweetness and pig-fatty scrapple flouring. Applewood-smoked barley, oats-flaked roasted chicory, black-peppered cumin spicing and ashen hop char reinforce mighty mocha molasses fortress of fascinating breakfast coffee alternative.
Substantial spruce-infused pale ale contrasts refreshingly pine-needled spruce tip frontage and brisk juniper berry bittering against zesty lemony grapefruit tang and sugary crystal malting. Just below the surface, minty cologne musk and floral marigold-dandelion-lavender-lilac bouquet ride alongside sweet orange peel juicing. Resinous Douglas Fir-like conifer oiling drapes crisply clean citric-spiced finish.
Sessionable beige-yellowed sour ale provides brisk lime peel and black lime adjuncts to coriander-spiced sea salt brininess for interesting Kolsch-Gose-Berliner Weiss blend. Sweet-tart mandarin orange-like effervescence glides across fresh lime parch. Not as dryly mouth-puckering as bigger, bitterer sour ales.
Lovely floral-herbal spicing buttresses lingered sweet ‘n sour citrus tang with “lavender, marjoram and bay leaf” adjuncts as well as chamomile, thyme, basil, saffron and fennel illusions above dry rye malting for culinary delight. Sugared lemon, key lime, mandarin orange and peach tones brighten the surface while nutmeg hints further sweeten lustrous saison.
Marrying zesty IPA citrus fruiting with dry-hopped mango and apricot adjuncts as well as sweet ginger herbage, well-designed medium body will appeal to expansive tropical palates. Candied mango, peach, fig and melon sugaring and sweet orange peel dollop deepened by honeyed pale malting. Just a tad slick.
On tap at Dogfish Head – Rehoboth Beach, this superior coffee stout takes its name from the Replacements rampaging beer anthem, “Beer For Breakfast,” one of famed brewer Sam Calagione’s favorite tunes. Dousing Dogfish Head’s Chicory Stout in maple syrup thickens its anise-spiced dark roast coffee frontage, bittersweet black chocolate rampage and applewood-smoked barley resonance. In the bottle, rich medium-roast cold press coffee penetrates brown chocolate thickness, leaving recessive cola, hazelnut and walnut illusions as well as anise-spiced black cherry snips in the bitter wood-charred hop wake. Highly recommended.