KING’S COURT BREWING COMPANY

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POUGHKEEPSIE, NEW YORK

In the laidback downtown neighborhood of Poughkeepsie, KING’S COURT BREWING COMPANY came into existence August 2018. Founded by UC-Davis educated brewer, Cortlandt Toczylowski, a dry beer lover skillfully concocting sessionable suds, colourful IPA’s, hybridized novelties, dark ales and nitrogenated varietals at his 7-barrel red brick pub, King’s Court occupies a former elite hotel with rustic mainstream American pub appeal.

A beautiful gray marble bar top with aquamarine tiled frontage is the centerpiece of this one-room, brick-walled ground floor brewery. There are right side dining tables and the brew tanks are stationed to the far left as well as to the right of the wood-floored bar.

Currently, Poughkeepsie’s brew scene is thriving as King’s Court, Mill House and Zeus all exist within walking distance.

My dog, Roscoe, and I initially visited King’s Court June ’21 on a steamy Sunday afternoon after perusing Walkway Along the Hudson.

Easygoing dry kolsch, Poughkeepsie KSA, stayed light on the tongue as spritzy lemon-oiled green grape tartness delicately frolicked alongside wispy herbal spicing above biscuity pilsner malts.

Caramel-toasted amber graining and mellow dried fruiting merged for Frog King Amber Ale, a leafy-hopped moderation with latent tobacco roasted crisping.

Spiced lemon zest brightened the mineral grained tenacity of Sunrise Wheat Ale, a summery lawnmower-boating quencher.

Dryly tart coriander-salted Gold Sunset Gose let orange, tangerine and pineapple adjuncts reach brisk lemon-limed bittering above mild pilsner malting.

White-peppered cologne perfumed ginger roots inundated Mr. Ginger, an herbaceous ginger pale ale with timely lemon lime zesting.

“Everyday” West Coast pale ale, Halfspace, brought lightly lingered IPA-like piney grapefruit-peeled orange rind bittering and a mellow lemon twist to the same dry Simcoe-Amarillo-hopped wood tones utilized for Back To Basics IPA, a bolder medium body with lacquered grapefruit-orange tang permeating its clay-like hop stead.

Soothing lemony grapefruit-orange-pineapple bittering graced Rainbow Mist, a hazy IPA with raw-grained earthen resin raising its dry edge.

Sharp mango-pureed IPA, Mangoberry Milkshake allowed milk-sugared vanilla sweetness to contrast bold juniper berry bittering and modest blueberry-raspberry-boysenberry tartness while mango-juiced kiwi, guava and pineapple wisps floated by.

Then, there were three nitro-gassed beers onboard as well.

Using Harvest Wheat Ale as its crystal-wheat malt base, Wet Willy Watermelon Wheat – Nitro maintained an easygoing cucumber-watered watermelon rind earthiness.

Mildly creamed Moon Jammin’ Imperial Black Lager - Nitro invited subtle plum, blackberry and dried cherry fruiting into its earthen walnut-charred hop oiling, leaving dry bourbon snips at the dark-roast mocha finish.

Nutty brown-sugared dark chocolate usurped the creamy vanilla sweetness and dry espresso tones of Bat Exodus Milk Stout – Nitro, picking up slight sour soy saucing.

TAVERN 5

Tavern 5 Neighborhood Restaurant - Home - Pompton Plains, New Jersey -  Menu, Prices, Restaurant Reviews | Facebook

POMPTON PLAINS, NEW JERSEY

An elegant brick-based tan-sided neighborhood pub and restaurant, TAVERN 5, entered the local bistro scene in August 2016. Perfect for serious brew hounds, local families and sports bar fanatics, there are plenty of TV’s surrounding the pristine cement-walled interior.

Its rustic railroad-tied block wood entrance leads to a marble-topped U-shape bar with beautiful black-gold tiled ceiling, twelve centralized tap handles and upscale booze. A large green-turfed back patio with hanging lights adds wood bench and table seating under a canopy.

Tavern 5′s kitchen serves fine gastropub fare such as the bacon potato clam chowder I tried on initial June ’21 afternoon sojourn. Interesting cocktail specials also captured my attention, including hybridized martinis and pina coladas.

I down lactose Beach Haus We Were Made For Peach Other IPA and Lakefront Hazy Rabbit IPA (reviewed in Beer Index) before heading home for Lightning-Canadiens Stanley Cup finals.

CAPITAL CRAFT – EAST HANOVER

Capital Craft Taphouse and Grill is coming to East Hanover - Morris Focus

EAST HANOVER, NEW JERSEY

At East Hanover Plaza since 2019, CAPITAL CRAFT TAPHOUSE & GRILL is a spacious mall-bound gastropub with a right side open kitchen serving fine appetizers, dinners and brick-oven pizzas alongside the finest draught fare (24 rotating taps), bottled craft beer and top-shelf spirits.

An upscale cafe-styled sportsbar venue, Capital Craft’s black marble-topped central bar station (with multiple TV’s) services surrounding four-seat tables as well as a separate front-windowed dining area. At the back left wall is an intriguing bulb-lit wood-trayed CRAFT sign. Several illuminating yellow green cushioned corner booths dot the main space and Hershey Kiss-like lighting shines thru the crystalline interior of this gray farmhouse-styled pub.

On my initial June ’20 trip, I discovered three previously untried Jersey-brewed suds (reviewed in Beer Index), including Cypress Pulled Back In Witbier, Ross Manasquan Witbier and Magnify Double Barrel Aged Point Of Divergence Imperial Stout. Also quaffed Springdale Not Stirred Paloma Sour Ale, a tequila-based wild ale from Jack’s Abby offshoot in Massachusetts.

 

EXHIBIT A BREWING COMPANY

Exhibit A Brewing is the Cat's Meow of Framingham, MA

FRAMINGHAM, MASSACHUSETTS

Just half a mile down the road from Jack’s Abby, Framingham’s EXHIBIT A BREWING COMPANY was established by entrepreneurial brewmaster Matthew Steinberg during 2016. A highly experienced, well known Massachusetts zymurgist, Steinberg enjoys crafting a wide variety of brews utilizing mostly locally sourced ingredients.

Exhibit A’s large outdoor community-tabled beergarden leads patrons to the black aluminum warehouse currently staging storage but marked for a future beer hall. Across the parking lot lies the current brew room where large brew tanks sit across from the quaint epoxy-floored tannish barroom (with 12-plus taps, bronze ceiling tiles, casual high chair seating and countertop stands).

On a sunny Saturday afternoon, June ’21, my wife and I drag Roscoe the dog to an empty outdoor table to consume a few durable Exhibit A products.

Look Inside Exhibit 'A' Brewing in Framingham

Dry lemony orange-rotted fizziness gained a slight sour-candied glaze for wispily herb-spiced Goody Two Shoes, a mild clear yellowed kolsch with crisp bread crust bottom.

Vintage 2020 barleywine, Weights & Measures, stayed mildly caramel creamed as its brown-sugared bourbon licks gained dewy rye spicing to back its bittersweet cherry-bruised orange tang.

 

JACK’S ABBY BREWING

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FRAMINGHAM, MASSACHUSETTS

Designing some of the most impressive lagers, dark ales and barrel-aged stouts in the entire country, Framingham’s JACK’S ABBY BREWING has tripled in size since opening in 2011, becoming a premier New England craft beer haven on a grander scale than the fabulous, less glorified Ipswich Ale Brewery. The pride of Jack, Eric and Sam Hendler, three Massachusetts-based brothers originally inspired by German beer culture, Jack’s Abby now encompasses an enormous red brick warehouse (with forest green aluminum siding).

Presently the largest microbrewery in the state, Jack’s Abby occupies a high black-ceilinged 1,300-barrel taproom with multiple barrels, brew tanks and canning operation connected to its community-tabled bar area. A food station with wood-fired pizza oven serves fine pub fare. A roomy side deck offers further capacity.

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Entrance to Springdale Beer Co. pictured above

In 2016, the maverick Hendler brothers decided to expand their empire to include SPRINGDALE BEER COMPANY, an offshoot taproom and blendery experimenting with sour ales, tarts, cocktail-inspired knockoffs and barrel aged fare.

I’d already tried at least thirty Jack’s Abby and a dozen Springdale offerings before my initial June ’21 visit to purchase a few new brews, including stylishly enhanced Samoa Bourbon Barrel-Aged Framinghammer Baltic Porter, semi-dark Czech lager Co-Pilot: Leopold, Pride and Parquet Hoppy Lager and Ray Catcher Lemongrass Lager (reviewed in Beer Index).

LOST SHOE BREWING & ROASTING COMPANY

Lost Shoe Brewing and Roasting Finds Firm Footing in Marlborough,  MassachusettsDaily Coffee News by Roast Magazine

MARLBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS

Occupying a red brick professional building (with black stucco top) in suburban downtown Marlborough, LOST SHOE BREWING & ROASTING COMPANY came to fruition springtime 2019. Besides slingin’ delectable homemade suds, Lost Shoe is also a well-known local coffee roastery.

Lost Shoe’s wood-emblazoned emblem sits atop the front door where the cement-floored patio with four glass-rocked firepits is situated. Taking the place of a 4,600 square foot nightclub, this olden wood furnished taproom features a railroad tie-fronted aluminum top serving station, 17-plus tap handles and multiple glass-encased brew tanks. The noirish black ceiling contains crowned Edison lights and exposed pipes. And a black-leathered lounge area adds casual upscale splendor.

On my June ’21 pre-dinner visit, my wife and I try grab an outdoor table to enjoy three wonderful hybridized varietals plus one nitro stout, one German and two Belgian ales. In the two years Lost Shoes has been operating, it has crafted at least forty nifty one-offs.

It seemed every Marlborough-Framingham brewpub visited had a kickass li’l kolsch. Lost Shoe’s second anniversary Kolsch retained crisply crystalline clarity as its orange-oiled lemon zesting picked up herbal hop astringency, mineral grained earthiness and cracked wheat neutrality.

Next up, dryer-than-usual witbier, Whit’s Way, let sour lemon rot pervade its orange-peeled coriander expectancy and mild chamomile-lemongrass snips.

Light molasses creaming draped brown-sugared dried fruiting for sassy dubbel, Size 6, leaving plum-prune-raisin scrum and cocoa-pecan-butternut daubs upon the dewy earthy bottom.

Bright orange-peeled grapefruit tanginess and juicy pineapple zest stayed atop the piney herbal resin of Crossroads of New England: Nugget & Motueka.

For a sweet cocktail derivative, orange-glowed cream ale, Lakeside Avenue Orange Creamsicle, combined cara cara orange zesting with milk-sugared Madagascar vanilla bean richness. Its pulpy orange concentrate juiciness outweighs the sugared vanilla aspect, slowly integrating nearly cloy perfume-candied pineapple, peach, tangerine, cherry and watermelon swipes.

Creamily milk-sugared cold-brewed coffee tones settled softly atop nitrogenated New Pair Of Brews: Vamp, a Madagascar vanilla-beaned mocha stout with coconut-hazelnut hints that stays airy and light on the tongue.

Milk-sugared coffee creaming picked up toasted coconut and Madagascar vanilla sweetness for New Pair Of Brews: Vamp, an ethereal nitro-injected coffee stout.

BRIX CITY FLASHY AFFAIR 6TH ANNIVERSARY IMPERIAL PASTRY STOUT

On tap at Taphouse 15, decadent 6th anniversary pastry stout subtly dabs Buffalo Trace whiskey across lactose-aided Madagascar vanilla creaming, cinnamon-spiced maple syruping and honeyed Graham Cracker spine for French Toast breakfast cereal-inspired knockoff. Dough-fried churro, spiced bourbon and mint chocolate illusions add recessive pleasantries.

Flashy Affair - Brix City Brewing - Untappd