Tag Archives: BETHLEHEM PA


Lagers Need Love Too – Caveman Makes Beer Year Round With CoolBot


Inside a detached garage at a rural residential neighborhood on the outskirts of Bethlehem lies fledging Lehigh Valley nanobrewery CAVE BREWING COMPANY. Taking a temporary step back from its original 3,400 square-foot South Mall locale (opened November 2018), Cave decided to scale down in the interim due to the Covid-19 epidemic.

An “underground under radar” small batch brewery created by Jeff Bonner, Cave’s future success will be guaranteed thanks to its well-crafted (usually one-off) fare. Inside his crowded two-room garage, a respectable can-bottle collection surrounds the above-head shelving and a beautiful hand-crafted wood top serving station sits in the midst.

I got to try four Cave brews at home afterwards and all were rewarding. Though I missed Blind Eye Barleywine for now,  there was a hefeweizen, Imperial IPA, oatmeal stout and strong ale to enjoy during December ’20 football games two days hence.

One step beyond a simply sweet hefeweizen, El Heffe Wheat stayed tart as lemon-rotted plantain, tannic green grape and dry cider illusions relegated its stylish banana-clove sweetness.

Smoothly crystalline New England India Pale Ale, HAF 5.0, a bold dry body, brought vodka-nipped tropical fruiting to juniper-embittered pine resin and mild whiskey-soured lemon juicing, leaving musky alcohol esters upon its ancillary black tea earthiness.

Muskier still, ethanol-grained 9.5% ABV strong ale, Blurred Vision, let bittersweet hard cider tartness and orange-rotted souring whither to peated Scotch-malted sweetness.

Inspired by one of Bonner’s s favorite brews – Bert Grant’s Imperial Stout, Bert’s Imperial Oatmeal Stout placed mellow dark chocolate-roasted coffee creaming alongside molasses-sugared oats and fudged toffee to contrast its peaty hop-roasted earthiness, picking up tertiary cola, hazelnut, vanilla and dark cherry snips. Splendid!


Seven Sirens Converts Parking Garage In Bethlehem To Future Brewery -  Breweries in PA


Occupying a spacious 8,500 square-foot converted garage, SEVEN SIRENS BREWING COMPANY came to fruition Valentine’s Day 2020. The Bethlehem-based beer hall’s rustic simplicity gets reinforced by its beautiful antique oak-mantled bar (with old fashion subway tiles and 20-plus draught handles), wagon wheel light fixtures, round metal tables, epoxy floor and exposed pipes.

A sturdy blue-stained concrete bar top complements the ocean blue-lit art display at the aquamarine-walled right side (with skeeball game). A few window seats and community tables fill out the front while brew tanks crowd the rear section. The rooftop beergarden adds extra seating and the Sirens Lair above the brewhouse is available for overnight visitors. A mid-floor open space shows off kegs assembled as a Christmas tree for the upcoming holiday.

Head brewer Joshua Divers was a former Sam Adams Longshot Homebrew competitor whose beers range far and wide from hazy IPA’s to a smoked red ale to a nitro stout and lactic sour on my initial perusal.

Though Seven Sirens is out of its best-selling mainstays, Stargazer IPA, and Hands-Free Satchel Milkshake IPA, my wife and I tried a dozen fab elixirs during our two-hour Friday night stay, early December ’20.

Seven Sirens Brewing Company – Beer that sings to you! Seven Sirens Brewing  Company  Seven Sirens Brewing Company Case Study | Fromm

Sweet oats sugaring picked up leafy Chinook-hopped oiling for soft-toned Harvey’s Tale, an autumnal harvest ale with desolate orange fruiting slipping into amber-grained Maris Otter malting.  

Another fall seasonal, Where’s My Uggs, a pumpkin-spiced pale ale soaked in rum oak staves, let perfumed ginger cologne upstage cinnamon-nutmeg sweetness and syrupy yam snips.

Cherrywood-smoked maple syruping sweetened alongside bacon-fatty cured meatiness for Liquid Breakfast Smoked Red Ale, a rauchbier-inspired moderation with earthen amber graining and light rye tones.

Wayward wintry-spiced saison, Pardon My French, let candied orange spicing, dry cherry licks and crystal-malted caramelized Scotch licks lay atop biscuit flouring.

Lactic tropical fruit waxing guided Dor Ray Doe, a Session IPA with wafting lemon cologne, delicate white wheated minerality and dry El Dorado/Azacca-hopped sour-candied tartness.

Another sessionable IPA, Smashin’ Passion, spread tart passionfruit goodness all over salted green grape-guava-kiwi tropicalia and grassy pine wisps.

Soft-toned, double dry-hopped Full Battle Rattle IPA brought perfumed citrus alacrity to earthen pine resin that seeped into pilsner-malted white wheat.

Mellow New England IPA, Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy, permitted yellow Pez-candied tartness to saturate mandarin orange, dry gin and herbal licks in a grassy hop setting.  

Smoothly creamed lactose sugaring guarded beige yellow-hazed double dry-hopped NEIPA, Please Scroll Up, allowing juniper-embittered grapefruit juicing to mingle with sour lemon liming and modest peppery spicing.

Yet another hazy NEIPA, Not So Silent Night, a tartly sour ale conditioned on banana, passionfruit and strawberry, put limey pomegranate acidity into its celery-watered herbage while its three adjunct fruits meandered.

Sweet-tart Zangerine Sour, a lactose-aided ale conditioned on tangerine-peeled cranberry, gained lightly salted citrus acidity and Pez-like powder-candied tartness.

Fascinating Irish Car Bomb knockoff, Cormac’s Revenge Nitro Stout, brought fudgy brown and white chocolate creaminess to the fore as caramelized vanilla, dry cocoa, caffe latte, chocolate eclair, creme brulee and black cherry notions circulated.



Bonn Place Brewing Co. - Distillery Directory & Distillery Map


In the midst of Bethlehem’s South Side at a former garage, corner cafe-styled BONN PLACE BREWING COMPANY came to fruition autumn 2016. Formerly residents of Weehawken, co-owners Sam and Gina Masotto moved to eastern Pennsylvania to set up shop at the beige freestanding building now housing their entrepreneurial business.

An assistant brewer at Newburgh, Chelsea and New Jersey Beer Company, Sam also tended bar for popular Manhattan watering hole, The Pony Bar. Originally learning the art of brewing from a Mr. Beer kit, he became obsessed with cask ales on a European stint and developed a few regal English bitters.

Inside the friendly red brick-walled Bonn Place confines, an L-shaped 10-seat bar with eight tap handles pours a variety of delicious suds from the left side steel tanks and oak foudre. There’s side entrance barrel seating, a windowed front table, industrial pendant lighting and a wooden wheeled chandelier as well as a few cornered tables with olden mirrors to complete the cozy interior.

On my Saturday afternoon August ’19 journey I discovered seven Bonn Place brews.

Softly creamed nitrogenated flagship, Nemo Dark & Mild, gathered mossy brown tea earthiness for subtle dried fruiting and chalky chocolate malts.

In homage to Boddington’s Pub Ale, smoothly eclair-creamed Mooey Ordinary Bitter brought dewy moss sweetness, fertile fungi musk and subtle citrus spritzing to its buttered biscuit base in easygoing fashion. Utilizing the same dewy malt base, lemon soda-like summertime softie, Mooey The Radler, left an herbal-spiced remnant.

Orange-juiced yellow grapefruit brightness fronted Moteuka-hopped pale ale, Don’t Look At Me, a candy-glazed moderation with sugary pale malts.

Dry-bodied hoppy wheat ale, Pretty Cool Dad, connected lemon-dried tartness to tea-like dewy earthiness and raw mineral grain resin.

Wood-smoked dark coffee roast contrasted milder pale-malted yellow fruiting for Some Pig Upon Monocracy, a well-designed mocha-induced pale ale.

Guest brewer: Sweet milk chocolate-y Imperial Stout, Stickman Breakfast For Dummies, retained toffee-sugared cinnamon and curry spicing to entice its milk-sugared brown chocolate frontage.




Hop Hill Brewing | Bethlehem PA


A tan aluminum garage-doored warehouse hosts HOP HILL BREWING COMPANY,  a worthy red brick-walled, cement-floored nanobrewery within Bethlehem’s rural southern Lehigh University radius opened February 2017.

The unassumingly spare red brick-walled pub features an aluminum-sided L-shaped 16-seat serving station with 12 aluminum tap handles, stringed light bulbs and a stucco left wall. A makeshift front patio with benches fills up during my early afternoon August ’19 stopover as I consume eight well-designed offerings.

Photo of Hop Hill Brewing Company - Bethlehem, PA, United States

Hop Hill’s lightest brew, dry-bodied cream ale, Drinking Games, linked sugar-salted lemon spritz to grassy hop astringency and musty pale malting.

Sweetly tart key lime-pied Belgian Saison contrasted lemon-candied banana sweetness and coriander-clove spicing against salty barnyard acridity.

Straightforward flagship moderation, House IPA, stayed simple as lemony orange tanginess and piney hop resin settled gently above caramel malt sugaring.

Perfumed citrus hops enlightened Hop Sloth IPA, revealing navel orange, yellow grapefruit and peach juicing above herb-speckled pale malts.

Juicy-fruited Brut IPA, Hop Siren, let its sweet champagne spritz and green grape tannins absorb dry pale malting.

Milk-sugared coffee awakened Protocol Porter, a delightful toffee-spiced java-bound brunch treat with dry black licorice snips.


Harmonious coffee-roasted breakfast calling card, Morning Blonde, draped roasted mocha malt goodness all over its mild lemon rind bittering.

Lovely bourbon barrel-aged Morning Wood caressed its roasted coffee bean splendor with sweet butterscotch-candied bourbon wining, leaving cream-sugared marshmallow, coconut and pecan illusions in its clean vodka wake.





North of Philadelphia near the Delaware River lies historic steel town, Bethlehem, a popular arts community with a large casino and spacious brewpub. Visited December ’05, friendly Main Street Commons Mall corner pub, BETHLEHEM BREW WORKS, is marked by windowed street corner copper kettles.

Upon entering, bar and peculiar metal-enforced seating booths are situated to right side while quieter dining area is leftward behind glass-encased brew tanks. Unique ‘Beer Infusions’ (liqueur mixers), excellent single malt Scotch selection, fine wines, martinis, and Christmastime ‘hot buttered rum’ contend with choice Belgian beer assortment (at downstairs bar) and several estimable Lewis Thomas-handcrafted brews.

Soft-toned grapefruit-lemony Hallertau-hopped Valley Golden Ale, raw-honeyed rye-dried tea-hopped dry-bodied Fegley’s ESB, and tame dry-fruited sugar-malted toffee-tinged Doppelbock soothe neophytes. Viscous brandy-wined orange-bruised apple-candied fig-slicked Big Bad Barleywine, mild espresso-fronted coffee-roasted black chocolate-dried walnut-quipped Steelworkers Oatmeal Stout, and especially, perfect 9.5% alcohol candi-sugared brandy-soaked Belgian-styled Rude Elf’s Reserve (with its cinnamon swirl and nutmeg-coriander twist) suit connoisseurs.