Bringing ‘good vibes’ to the Bay State’s Pioneer Valley, SKYLINE BEER COMPANY began slingin’ suds in Westfield during December 2019. A cafeteria-styled tan paneled refuge perfect for families and friends as well as voyaging beer aficionados, Skyline’s rangy brewpub offerings go well with casual pub fare.
Previously, Skyline operated in downtown Westfield, converting a 32-seat coffeeshop into a craft beer bar carrying the best local beers and selling beer supplies. At this friendly epoxy-floored farmhouse outpost, the quaint pine-barked polyurethane bar (with top shelf liquor competing with 12-plus taps) services three windowed corner pews, two large community tables, a right side dining area and spacious outdoor deck. Spiffy orange-red-floored brew tanks regale the rear and stakes were placed where the inevitable backyard expansion will begin.
Head brewer Dana Bishop concentrates on more traditional styles such as pilsners and stouts while assistant Lisa Pac pushes for ‘outta the box’ sour ales – kinda going outside Bishop’s comfort zone. Meanwhile, experienced chef, Dan Osella, delivered delicious wings and a marvelous Caprese sandwich to my wife and I during our late August ’20 dinnertime sojourn.
Happily, we discovered twelve irresistible brews, well-balanced and creatively detailed, before heading out.
Brusquely musky moderation, Noble View Pilsner, retained earthen grain must for its mild herbal-tinged lemon pith bittering expiditiously.
Maize-dried lemon rot scoured lagered yeast moderation, Landscape Kolsch, leaving a barnyard-leathered Noble hop kale trail.
Clean-watered pineapple puree briskness embellished citric Mosaic hop sunshine and piney Eldorado hop resin for Summa Slammah Pale Ale, brightening its sweet ‘n sour pineapple tartness with tangy lemon-peeled grapefruit zesting.
Tart lemon-swirled raspberry pureed fruit ale, Raspberry Jam, gathered green grape, cranberry and oaken cherry souring to elevate its candied raspberry theme over delicate white wheat malts.
An even fruitier experience, Strawberry Fields, spread tart strawberry jam atop cinnamon apple sweetness, cranberry bittering, boysenberry buttering and Graham Cracker sugaring.
Soothingly tropical-fruited Imperial IPA, Cobble Mountain Critter, allowed dry-hopped grapefruit-peeled orange zest to enrapture spiced peach-mango sweetness as dank hemp resin spread across its grassy basin.
Brilliant NEIPA, Fire, amplified zesty lemon luster and grapefruit-peeled orange rind bittering above mild pale malt sugaring, relegating its sour strawberry rhubarb tinge.
Fabulous Pina Colada knockoff, Escape IPA – Milkshake, brought mild lactic souring to salted lemony pineapple and coconut puree tartness as well as pink guava snips, rummy Margarita licks and resinous pine tones in a creamy vanilla setting.
Subtle blood orange tartness picked up spritzy lemon-limed salting for Margarita-soured Berliner Weiss, Blaze Orange, a gently woodruff-syruped cocktail.
Lemon-limed white wining absorbed raspberry vinaigrette acidity and dry limestone salting for beet red-marbled Triple BerryTrail Mix, a fruited sour ale with tertiary blueberry tartness and hard cider bite.
Dry Irish “Goodbye” Stout let coffee-stained dark chocolate, cocoa and carob pick up lightly walnut-seared hop bittering and raw-honeyed oats toasting.
Bitter coffee-induced dark chocolate black malting gained brown-sugared maple oats sweetness for Bumby’s Black Oat Imperial Stout, grafting hop-charred nuttiness onto its mocha-spiced finish.