I was very excited to head to The Independent in Union Square last night for the launch of a new local microbrewery, Slumbrew aka the Somerville Brewing Company. (Somerville, for those not from Boston, is affectionately – or at least semi-affectionately – known as Slummerville.) The bar was jammed, uncomfortably so for a guy my size, so my friend Enza and I headed next door to the Precinct Bar in the hope that The Independent would clear out later. Enjoyed a nice cask-conditioned ale from Washington State (if I recall correctly), had some food and then around 7:30 were able to slide back into The Independent.
It was worth the wait! I tried their Flagraiser IPA and Happy Sol Hefeweizen. (The only disappointment of the evening was that their Porter Square Porter wasn’t available.) Both are beautifully executed versions of these styles. The IPA is on the hoppier side, but not excessively so, well balanced with lovely citrus notes and a nice bite. The hefeweizen (not, admittedly, my favorite style) is fermented with oranges, but I actually didn’t pick up a strong citrus element: cloves and coriander were much more dominant. It’s a lovely orange-gold color with the cloudiness I’d expect in this style.
I’m looking forward to doing a more official tasting soon! They’re on tap in several local bars and available in a number of liquor stores (including The Craft Beer Cellar, my favorite beer store). Make sure you check them out!
I ended the evening very unexpectedly tasting my first ever Sri Lankan beer, Lion Stout. I bought it just to add Sri Lanka to my country beer list (now at 63) but I’ll admit my expectations were low. I don’t exactly think of “Sri Lanka” when I think of beer, but perhaps I should! Lion Stout is an outstanding beer. It pours beautifully with a creamy, sustained, tan head (basically the archetype stout head). The aroma is complex and intense with chocolate and coffee notes. And the taste…wow! Perfect stout, even better than Guinness in my humble opinion.