Pictured are a few beers that would be a dream to have available here in Ontario. These were picked up on a recent trip to New York State.
Our first stop was in Binghamton to pick up a motorcycle (which is really our excuse for shopping for beer). While there, Terry and I discovered "Sam the Beer Man", a beer lover's paradise with hundreds of beers for sale. The owner even had samples for tasting! Are you listening, LCBO??
After an overnight stay in Oneonta, NY, we went on to visit the Cooperstown Brewing Co. and then Ommegang Brewery nearby. Of course, samples were tasted at each!
Once home in Iroquois, I had no one to share them with, so I sat down with these beers over several evenings to taste them solo. :-(
-First came the Ommegeddon, labeled as a "funkhouse ale with Brettanomyces" and 8%. I was wary at first since I am a "hophead" and don't particularly enjoy witt beers. However it turned out to be delicious and went down easily.
-Next was the "un-earthly" IPA from Southern Tier Brewing. The company's website says it is 153 IBU's (!) and appears to have 9 different hops in the brew. It went down so well I didn't even notice that it was 11% alcohol! I wish I had more of this one!
-Then came the Hop Devil IPA from Victory Brewing in Downington, PA. I've had this beer many times in the past and always enjoy it. It is highly hopped and 6.7% alcohol.
-Lastly, I sampled the Loose Cannon Hop3 Ale from Clipper City Brewing in Baltimore, MD. It also is an American IPA and the label states: "Hops, hops and more hops - over 3 lbs per barrel at 3 different times in the process". Believe me, when you snap the crown, you had better be a hophead because the aroma is like letting the genie out of the bottle. Fantastic!
-I've saved the Ruination IPA for last, since I am drinking it now as I write this! This is another IPA I have enjoyed in the past . It is labeled as 100+ IBU's and 7.2% alcohol. It's from Stone Brewing in Escondido, CA. Their story is that it is called Ruination because of it's ruinous effect on your palate. All other food and drink becomes bland after the first sip! I would agree.
I guess you can tell from this that I am a hophead and love the little flower's effect on a brew!
My dream would be to have these beers available at the LCBO or better yet, to have a "Sam the Beer Man" around the corner!
There is also "Beers of the World" in Rochester, NY and the "Finger Lakes Beverage Center" in Ithaca, NY, but those are other stories. :-)
I've listed the breweries' websites below.