CHATHAM, NEW JERSEY
Open June 2016, Chatham, New Jersey’s TWIN ELEPHANT BREWING COMPANY retains a ruggedly rustic train-tracked neighborhood ambiance further enhanced by its interestingly carved wood fixtures.
Inside an old cement-floored tan stucco white brick warehouse with a black-doored entrance leading to a mid-space grain storage room then the main bar area, this unfinished space boasts a high aluminum ceiling with exposed pipes and dapper lighting.
There are twelve tap handles centering the reclaimed wood serving station and colorful old pallets rise above the bar. Railroad tie-planked benches and an angled community table fill out the dank interior. A tile-floored side deck utilizes barreled tables and strung Edison lights. Brew tanks are at the left overhead side door.
Crowding up Friday afternoon ’round four (August 2, 2019), the majority of Twin Elephant’s rounded fare stayed smoothly delicate and just a tad beyond stylistic tangibles.
Herbal lemon-rotted souring contrasted spritzy orange-candied sweetness for The Waiting Saison, a wet-grained farmhouse ale with peppery earthen whims.
Summertime lemonade alternative, I’ll Be Dat, a sophisticated collaborative with Melovino Meadery, spread orange blossom-honeyed lemon puree across sweet lemon-limed candy sugaring, ‘honey-doughed pilsner malting and mild cologne musk.
Boxing legend, Chuck Wepner, got celebrated with Bayonne Bleeder, a sharp Imperial Red Ale with tangy pineapple zest, honeyed orange spicing, grassy hop pining and ascending lemondrop souring.
Sunny grapefruit-peeled orange spritz and woody hop astringency stayed mellow as spicy pineapple-mango-guava tropicalia and sweet vanilla wisps brought sweet ‘n sour embrace to soft-toned True Believer IPA.
Steadily sharp Citra hop bittering serenaded tangy grapefruit-orange zesting as raw-honeyed pasty malts, lemon meringue tartness, herbal lemongrass snips and minor wood tones delicately underlie Dude…Maintain, a busy West Coast Double IPA.
Lactic milk-sugared Diamonds & Pearls Coffee Stout let its lemon-twisted coffee bean roast settle above dankly nutty barley-toasted Maris Otter malting.
Upon late February ’21 one-hour stopover, tried five more Twin Elephant offerings.
Approachable ‘Smoothie,’ Fuzzy Duckling Mango Banana, maintained a slightly sour fruited tartness and musty compost waft that differed from usual sweet weizen profile, leaving mango-caked banana cotton candy residue upon putrid lemon-rotted plantain dryness.
Stylishly bold, murkily golden-hazed, NEIPA-derived Lil Shimmy Ye Pale Ale couched its zestful Citra-Mosaic-hopped grapefruit, mandarin orange, peach and nectarine tang with dry English ale yeast, biscuity pilsner malts and herbal whims.
Zesty citrus tanginess picked up subtle lactic milk sugaring for The Synclavier Pale Ale, placing lemony orange-tangerine-grapefruit juicing, peachy mango-cantaloupe snips and herbal whims above oats-honeyed pale malting.
Briskly cryo-hopped Chicken Break IPA saturated its zestful grapefruit-peeled orange rind bittering with lacquered pine resin and dainty floral herbage.
Gooey milk-sugared Poison The Well Imperial Porter lifted voluptuous caramel-chocolate richness above toasted coconut and vanilla bean adjuncts as lusty marshmallow, pecan chew, hazelnut paste and creme brulee sweetness fortified decadent dessert treat.
My brother-in-law, Chris, a local Chatham resident, got me a crowler of superb Diamonds & Pearls Sout, a lactose cream-sugared coffee roaster with caramelized bourbon influence, maple oated brown chocolate syruping and barley roasted Maris Otter malting. It went well with Christmas Day ’22 dessert.