Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Care Package to Glasgow
I'm leaving for Glasgow in a few days and I've been in touch with a couple homebrewers and beer bloggers that I'll be sharing some US beers with. I think I've done pretty well here. I wanted to make sure that I'm bringing beer you can't get easily in the UK and stuff that represents the West Coast pretty well. Being from Oregon, I have a bit of Oregon pride so most of the beers are from here. Also, I wanted to make sure that these beers are still a little hard to find, even in Oregon. So if you happened to make a trip to Oregon, you might not be able to find these so easily. Some are seasonals and/or specials, not found in normal beer stores. Also I should add that I'm still on the lookout for a Russian River Pliny the Elder, but it seems most places in town have sold out. Here's a list of what I'm bringing and why, starting left to right:
-Upright Brewing - Gose - Upright blew my socks off when I had their sample tray. They are an extremely experimental brewery using all sorts of strange herbs and flowers. They've made an Oyster Stout and they often age many of their beers in wine barrels. This is the Gose, a beer style that is quite rare, brewed with coriander and salt. Additionally Upright has the best artwork on the bottles that I've ever seen.
-Laurelwood Brewery - Organice Free Range Red - Lots of breweries here are using organic ingredients. Laurelwood was the first in Portland to do this and this hopped up Red Ale really shows that organic beer has the ability to be just as good as any beer. This is one of my all time favorite Oregon beers. Laurelwood is a brewery for hopheads.
-Hopworks Brewery - Secession Black IPA - Another organic brewery. Hopworks is only 2 years old but has taken Portland by storm. They're beers are outstanding and diverse. The secession is a black IPA, also called a Cascadian Dark Ale, and has received lots of attention for various reasons, including the recent request from authorities to remove the Cascadian flag from the bottle. Cascadia is a specific location in the US (and Canada) and many feel that we are so different from the US that we should seccede; this beer celebrates that.
-Dogfish Head - India Brown Ale - As far as I know Dogfish Head isn't available in Scotland so being that they are the most infamous US microbrewery I figured I better bring a bottle. This is my favorite of theirs. I think it is underrated and that their 60, 90, and 120 minute IPA's are a tad overrated.
-Bison Brewing - Imperian Brown Ale - Another organic brewery, this one hailing from Berkeley California. These guys rock, and are super committed to organic beer. I figured we've got a Cascadian Dark Ale, and the India Brown Ale (which could be the same thing), why not go for an oversized normal brown? I haven't even tried this one myself, but I trust Bison with my life.
Bear Republic - Racer 5 - I think this is one of the best breweries on the West Coast so I could not leave them out. Racer 5 is likely their most popular beer, it is a well balanced IPA, but for those craving hops it will definitely not disappoint.
Hair of the Dog - Adam - Adam is an old world ale and Hair of the Dog is one of Portland's favorites among the extreme beer geeks. They are an experimental brewery that makes sure each batch is a little different and always nice and complex. We'll see what they have in store for us this time.
Ninkasi - Spring Reign - This is a seasonal from what is likely Oregon's fastest growing brewery. These guys have released just a few beers, all of which are perfect (well, except for one but I won't get into that). Spring Reign is a favorite among many of my friends and they have been looking forward to this beer for months.
Bridgeport Brewery - Highland Ambush - This is an oak-aged Scotch Ale. I figured we might as well throw in a Scottish ale and see what the Scots think, right? Bridgeport is a solid brewery in Portland, they were one of the first brewery's around to push the hop boundaries in an IPA and they make what I consider to be the classic Northwest IPA. They also make a mean fresh hop IPA. I haven't had the Highland Ambush so this will be new for me too.
Like I said, I still want to find a Russian River Pliny the Elder. I could have bought the Russian River Supplication, which is an aged Sour Ale but I really want to try to find this other one. For anyone who likes hoppy beers, Pliny the Elder will likely become your favorite beer. I just hope I can get my hands on one. They show up every month or two and disappear quite quickly here.