Yep, it’s officially Spring – a time for thirst-quenching brews and outdoor parties. That also means it’s time for another look at what will be appearing on shelves and taplists around Ohio. Earlier this year, I already gave you the heads-up on new breweries coming to Ohio, including Tallgrass and Hoppy Brewing. I also broke news on some great big releases like Cigar City/Bruery Marron Acidife and Goose Island Big John. Well, I think some of the brews listed in this update are even better, so read on!
To begin, the Winking Lizard has teamed up with Dogfish Head to bring in an exclusive Lizard Anniversary brew for the featured tap for June. Right now, all I know is that the beer is being referred to as Seasonale and that it will be the June glass of the month. Well, I may know more but nothing I can share right now! Look for an announcement regarding another music-influenced album-inspired Dogfish/Sony brew in the next few months – this next offering will totally “Rock the Casbah”. I mentioned last update that Goose Island Summer Glacier would be coming to town, and now I can say with certainty that this new tap-only offering will be showing up in the next few months.
Victory is thrilled to be welcoming the warmer weather with Summer Love, an American Blonde ale that will be seeing broader distribution for the first time this year. Look for a HUGE announcement from Victory in the next few months involving distribution of a certain bourbon barrel-aged beer that Beer Geeks across the country freaked out for last year. Hope you’re intrigued by that piece of news! With the summer season approaching, it’s time to break out the summer music festival gear, including those hoola-hoops. You twirling beer geek hippies are in luck, as Kyle from String Cheese introduces Boulder Hoopla – an American Pale ale dry hopped with a ton of Glacier hops. Look for listening/release parties all across the country – come grab a ‘Barstool’ and drink until your cheeks get ‘Rosie’! Everyone’s new favorite tallboy can brewery, Tallgrass has a hoppy wheat called Halcyon that people are claiming rivals the best in the country (think Gumball Head in a can). Sounds like a great lawnmower beer. Left Hand is bringing that Weak Sauce – specifically, a new Porter called Weak Sauce that should fit warm summer nights better than colder, typical dark beer weather. Finally, Harpoon has a new Rye IPA called Rich & Dan’s Rye that should be on shelves soon as a part of the 100 barrels line.
Without a doubt, one of the biggest announcements in the past year was the Stone ‘Odd Beers for Odd Years’ program. We already have gotten our fill of the Belgo Old Guardian Barleywine, but now a Belgo Imperial Stout with Anise will be appearing in Ohio towards the end of May or early June. Leinenkugel’s Big Eddy Stout was a huge surprise for me last year, and now it will be joined by a Big Eddy IPA – hopefully this other Eddy will be as delicious as the first. Finally, imperial beer lovers should check out the Breckenridge Chocolate Cream Stout called 72 – weighing in at 7.2%, it is a Sweet Stout that still goes down easy in the summer heat.
Locally, we have quite a few great brews to look forward to. Rustbelt’s Young John Select series rolls on with Peacemaker Imperial IPA and J.A.C. Imperial Pilsner. Hoppin’ Frog has gotten a hold of Canadian Whisky barrels for a brewery-only release of Barrel Aged BORIS Royale. Look for more on that in the next month as well as more barrel aged goodness from the fine frogs in Akron. The Brew Kettle debuted ALTMONSTER in a cask last night, and this kicked-up German Altbier will also be pouring at Summer festivals. Indigo Imp has a new Summer ale as well as a Hefeweizen, perhaps to be joined with two more brews for another 4 pack in the next few months. Great Lakes has registered the following brews which can only mean there’s a decent chance of them appearing at festivals or events outside the brewery: Alberta Clipper, Pumpkin, Market Street Wheat, Rackhouse, Grand Cru, York Street Bitter, Rye of the Tiger, Big Black Smoke, and Engine 20.
Finally, some new international offerings will make it to the Buckeye State in 2011. Guinness Black Lager will be released to Ohio, although it really doesn’t look like something people will be flipping out about, especially glass purists as the bottle says the best taste is realized by drinking straight from the 11.2oz vessel. Here’s something to actually be excited about – Dupont Monks Stout and Posca Rustica (Cervoise with Gruit spices) will expand the brewery’s offerings past the current range of Saison and lighter French/Belgian countryside/farmhouse inspired brews.
Get out there and enjoy Spring. The warmer weather really does go best with a few new brews in your glass. Oh, one more thing, be ready for a huge announcement involving a top nationally ranked brewery expanding to Ohio in late 2011 – this will be worth waiting for. Cheers!
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