Next to pristine Sovereign Bank Stadium on the outskirts of York’s industrial center lies LIQUID HERO BREWERY, an enticing red-bricked microbrew pub opened in 2012. Co-owners Matt De Prato, Christian Quinlivan and Josh Hoke, all present on my initial May 2013 sojourn to this Lancaster County hotspot, present a fabulous array of stylistically diversified ales.
In the maroon-walled tasting room are six wood tables and a seven-seat bar (where a large TV, blackboard beer list, tap handles and several collectible bottles reside). Rustic wood crossbars, exposed ceiling ducts and gray concrete floors give the elevated backroom brew tank area an oldfactory feel. Local Pennsylvania wines (listed on a sign near the Dogfish Head insignia) are available at the brass top bar as well as appetizers, salads and entrees (Fish & Chips, Cuban Pretzel Melt, Bacon Cheeseburger and Triple Decker Sandwich).
Settling at the middle of the bar next to Quinlivan, and soon after, De Prato and Hoke, the gracious bartender serves nine samples in beautiful six-ounce goblets. My wife is totally pleased by the awesome wheat beer triumvirate available this Saturday afternoon.
First, we share soft-toned Hero Weizen, a mildly creamed banana-clove-centered delight with lemony orange brightener and wispy white wheat sedation. Then comes Schweet, a fruitful strawberry wheat ale caressed by cranberry-raspberry-blueberry tartness to its Graham Cracker spine.
Blending the Schweet with Hero Weizen, The Mix brings candi-sugared crystal malting and sharper hop astringency to sweet ‘n sour strawberry-raspberry fruiting and ancillary banana-clove-bubblegum nuances (while arguably bettering the two original brews).
Liquid Hero’s flagship offering, American Hero Amber Ale, goes beyond mainstream sessionability with its coarsened hop-spiced bittering and toasted caramel malting receiving a mosy earthen dewing.
Brand new Pale Ale sharpened its citra-hopped bite with juniper berry bittering and mildly perfumed orange-lemon-grapefruit serenity.
Even more pungently engaging, Irregardless Citra-Hopped IPA coated its hop-oiled peach-pineapple-mango tropicalia with a serious ethanol kick.
Collaborating with nearby Bube’s, dry-bodied Black IPA brought black licorice illusions to chalky dark cocoa and chocolate ascendance, leaving a trail of dried fruited resonance.
Smooth nitro-injected Imperial Stout placed nutty chocolate sweetness next to hop-embittered cherryskin, cola and cocoa illusions. Just as worthy, Adam’s Stout loaded molasses-tarred vanilla fudge richness onto dark chocolate, coconut and cocoa nibs undertones and hop-charred coffee bittering.
Combining the talents of three experimental homebrewers with humble beginnings, Liquid Hero has become an instant staple in this factory town known as White Rose City.