Connecticut Brews

Thomas Hooker Brewing CompanyWe spent Columbus Day Weekend in New Haven, Connecticut for Karen and Glenn’s wedding, and I took the opportunity to sample some Connecticut brews (October 8-11, 2009).

Our first stop in Connecticut was the New England Beverage Company in Orange, CT, a huge beverage store that I located using RateBeer.com.  I found a great selection of regional beers that I can’t get in Maryland!  With the family in tow, I couldn’t spend as much time inspecting the inventory as I would have liked.  So after a quick once-over of the beer aisle and cooler, I started dropping 12-pack mix packs into my cart.  I picked up two 12-packs from brewers I had never tried before:

Thomas Hooker Brewing Company (Bloomfield, CT) (pictured)

  • Hop Meadow IPA
  • Blonde Ale
  • Irish Red Ale

Farmington River Brewing Company (Ipswich, MA) (pictured)

  • Hop River IPA
  • Blonde Ale
  • Brown Ale
  • Farmington River Brewing CompanyMahogany Ale

I grabbed a couple of six packs too:

  • UFO Pale Ale, the newest beer in the UFO line from Harpoon Brewing Company (Boston, MA).  I love the UFO Hefeweizen and White so I was curious to try the latest UnFiltered Offering.  According to Harpoon, “Like the rest of our UFO beers we leave it UnFiltered for more natural taste, a soft, full mouthfeel, and a distinctive cloudy appearance.”  I enjoyed this drinkable Pale Ale.
  • Sea Hag IPA, a canned craft beer from New England Brewing Company (Woodbridge, CT).  As I wrote in my post about craft beer from a can, I’m a huge fan of beer in a can.  This IPA was smooth and well-balanced.

I could have spent more time and more money at the beer store, as I only grabbed one single from among the many in the singles section.  I spotted an Imperial IPA from D.L. Gearys Brewing Company (Portland, ME) that I saved for after I got home.

With plenty of beer for the weekend (and enough to take some home too), I concentrated on finding local beers at restaurants.  A nice Chinese place the first night did my search no good.  But I scored the next day at lunch at a New Haven landmark, Modern Apizza.  You haven’t had pizza until you’ve tried New Haven-style pizza.  Odd fact: my favorite pizza joint in Chicago is Piece, where they serve New Haven, not Chicago-style pizza.  It doesn’t hurt that they also brew awesome beer!  But I digress…  At Modern, I washed down the most incredible slices of sausage, pepperoni, and bacon pizza with Long Trail Ale, on draft from Long Trail Brewing Company in Bridgewater Corners, VT.

Wedding Day:  After a beautiful and quick service, we celebrated the union of Karen and Glenn with Sam Adams Octoberfest – the perfect beer for an October wedding.  The smooth, malty, easy drinking Octoberfest was just what was called for on a sunny, crisp day in early fall.

2 responses to “Connecticut Brews

  1. Thanks, Mike; I liked your write-up! I like the NE Brewing Co beers. I’ve wondered about doing a tour there. I knew a salesman for it, Eric, but not sure if he still works for the co.

  2. Pingback: Beers of Connecticut « Boa Beer Blog·

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