Beer’d Brewing Company: Dogs Vs. Shinobi

Beer'd Brewing Company: Dogs Vs. Shinobi

Style: New England-style IPA

Special Notes: Collaboration with Pipeworks Brewing Company. Guava added.

Hops: Citra, Simcoe, Mosaic

ABV: 6.4%

IBU: 5

Availability: Limited

@untappd says: 4.08/5

There’s an epic battle on the Windowsill today. Who will win?

If you know anything about me, you know that I love collaboration beers with a passion. Can you imagine my absolute joy when I saw that one of my new favorite breweries, Beer’d Brewing Company, had decided to collaborate with one of my other favorite breweries, Pipeworks Brewing Company? That’s what we have on the Windowsill today… the Dogs Vs. Shinobi, a New England-style IPA with guava puree added that essentially mashes together the two breweries’ most iconic brews—the Dogs & Boats from Beer’d and the Ninja vs. Unicorn from Pipeworks.

I spoke to Beer’d’s Aaren Simoncini about this collaboration. Here’s what he had to say:


How did the partnership with Pipeworks come about?

Mike from Pipeworks has family in CT and had planned a trip back home to visit them. As luck would have it, Sarene Craft Beer Distributors, our Western CT distributor, also carries Pipeworks here in CT and thought it would be a great idea to put us in touch. We started the conversation and it was pretty obvious early on that our brewing styles were similar. We discussed some of our favorite ingredients and techniques and Dogs Vs. Shinobi was born!

How did you incorporate the two brands to make this one beer?

The final product is certainly a mashup of the two brands (there’s an IP issue preventing us from calling it Dogs Vs. Ninja). We talked about the beer we like to drink, and how we wanted those brands in a bit more of a sessionable ABV range.  We also wanted a fruity punch to be included in the final product, and we both immediately gravitated to the Guava, as it plays so well with the Citra, Simcoe and Mosaic.

Beer'd Brewing Company: Dogs Vs. Shinobi
Check out the awesome label, created by Dan Hamilton. (Credit: Martin Stezano/Beers on Windowsills)

Who did the label for this can?

Dan Hamilton created the imagery for the can label. We started working with Dan a few years ago and love the fact that we can pitch him a cool name or concept and set him loose. We wanted to incorporate both brands without loosing our style and this is where we landed!

Anything else cool about this collaboration?

We love collaborations because they get us outside of our wheelhouse.  They’re a great opportunity to learn a new technique or incorporate unfamiliar ingredients in someone else’s workshop.  With all that said, it’s time for us to get outside of our wheelhouse, wink, wink, so keep your eyes out for the next step.


As for the Dogs Vs. Shinobi itself? I think you already know… It was awesome. Great mix of hops, and the guava made everyone so nice and fruity. Great collaboration!

Thanks to Aaren! I can’t wait to visit Beer’d myself in a couple of weeks!

Check this one out on Instagram. Make sure you follow Beers on Windowsills for more great craft beer!

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. Beer’d Brewing Company: Dogs vs. Shinobi . There’s an epic battle on the Windowsill today. Who will win? . If you know anything about me, you know that I love collaboration beers with a passion. Can you imagine my absolute joy when I saw that one of my new favorite breweries, @beerdbrewing, had decided to collaborate with one of my other favorite breweries, @pipeworksbrewing? That’s what we have on the Windowsill today… the Dogs Vs. Shinobi, a New England-style IPA with guava puree added that essentially mashes together the two breweries’ most iconic brews—the Dogs & Boats from Beer’d and the Ninja vs. Unicorn from Pipeworks. . I spoke to Beer’d’s Aaren Simoncini about this collaboration. Here’s what he had to say: . Me: How did the partnership with Pipeworks come about? . Aaren: Mike from Pipeworks has family in CT and had planned a trip back home to visit them. As luck would have it, Sarene Craft Beer Distributors, our Western CT distributor, also carries Pipeworks here in CT and thought it would be a great idea to put us in touch. We started the conversation and it was pretty obvious early on that our brewing styles were similar. We discussed some of our favorite ingredients and techniques and Dogs Vs. Shinobi was born! . Me: How did you incorporate the two brands to make this one beer? . Aaren: The final product is certainly a mashup of the two brands (there's an IP issue preventing us from calling it Dogs Vs. Ninja). We talked about the beer we like to drink, and how we wanted those brands in a bit more of a sessionable ABV range. We also wanted a fruity punch to be included in the final product, and we both immediately gravitated to the Guava, as it plays so well with the Citra, Simcoe and Mosaic. . Me: Anything else cool about this collaboration? . Aaren: We love collaborations because they get us outside of our wheelhouse. They're a great opportunity to learn a new technique or incorporate unfamiliar ingredients in someone else's workshop. With all that said, it's time for us to get outside of our wheelhouse, wink, wink, so keep your eyes out for the next step. . Thanks to Aaren! . ABV: 6.4%, IBU: 5, Limited availability . @untappd says: 4.08/5

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Two Roads Brewing Company: Igor’s Dream

Two Roads Brewing Company: Igor's Dream

Style: Barrel Aged Russian Imperial Stout

Special Notes: Versions aged in Rye Whiskey Barrels, Absinthe Barrels, Armagnac Barrels and Ruby Port Barrels.

ABV: 12.0%

IBU: N/A

Availability: Limited

@untappd says: 4.27/5 (Rye whiskey version)

We have a brand spanking new brew on the Windowsill today!

As I mentioned on the blog yesterday (check out the link in my profile), Stratford, Connecticut’s Two Roads Brewing Company released the Igor’s Dream—and its variants—today. I managed to snag all three 2019 versions (the rye whiskey barrel-aged, the ruby port barrel-aged and the absinthe barrel-aged), as well as the 2017 Armagnac barrel-aged version for my buddy @galleycookinbeersnob. For those of you who missed the blog post, and are curious, the beer is named after Igor Sikorsky, who emigrated to the United States from Russia back in 1919, and founded one of the greatest aviation companies in history.

Two Roads Brewing Company: Igor's Dream
How good are these variants gonna be? (Credit: Martin Stezano/Beers on Windowsills)

My day started out super cold. I arrived at Two Roads at about 8:05 AM, and it was 22 degrees. As advertised, tickets for the bottles went on sale at 9:00 AM sharp. I bought my five tickets, paid and got myself some coffee and a sausage, egg and cheese from the 744 Express Food Truck in the parking lot, and headed to my car. The nice part about the way Two Roads does their releases is that once you have your tickets, you’re all set with your guaranteed beer. I was able to snag the tickets and then go home and do a couple of errands. When I was ready, I went back to pick up the bottles.

When I came back, I was ushered to the big glass doors at the back of the taproom, and down the stairs into the actual brewing area, where tables were set up with all of the bottles of Igor’s Dream. I quickly went table to table, got my bottles—I put them into the free big bottle tote bag that Two Roads handed out to everyone who bought bottles—and went out the back door and back to my car. Easy as pie!

I haven’t tried any of the beers yet, but I couldn’t wait to show them to you guys. I’ll do a full review of the Igor’s Dream if and when I pop them open.

Check out more photos of the versions on my Instagram page!

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. Two Roads Brewing Company: Igor’s Dream . We have a brand spanking new brew on the Windowsill today! . As I mentioned on the blog yesterday (check out the link in my profile), Stratford, Connecticut’s Two Roads Brewing Company released the Igor’s Dream—and its variants—today. I managed to snag all three 2019 versions (the rye whiskey barrel-aged, the ruby port barrel-aged and the absinthe barrel-aged), as well as the 2017 Armagnac barrel-aged version for my buddy @galleycookinbeersnob. For those of you who missed the blog post, and are curious, the beer is named after Igor Sikorsky, who emigrated to the United States from Russia back in 1919, and founded one of the greatest aviation companies in history. . My day started out super cold. I arrived at Two Roads at about 8:05 AM, and it was 22 degrees. As advertised, tickets for the bottles went on sale at 9:00 AM sharp. I bought my five tickets, paid and got myself some coffee and a sausage, egg and cheese from the 744 Express Food Truck in the parking lot, and headed to my car. The nice part about the way Two Roads does their releases is that once you have your tickets, you’re all set with your guaranteed beer. I was able to snag the tickets and then go home and do a couple of errands. When I was ready, I went back to pick up the bottles. . When I came back, I was ushered to the big glass doors at the back of the taproom, and down the stairs into the actual brewing area, where tables were set up with all of the bottles of Igor’s Dream. I quickly went table to table, got my bottles—I put them into the free big bottle tote bag that Two Roads handed out to everyone who bought bottles—and went out the back door and back to my car. Easy as pie! . I haven’t tried any of the beers yet, but I couldn’t wait to show them to you guys. I’ll do a full review if and when I pop them open. . ABV: 12.0%, IBU: N/A, Limited availability . @untappd says: 4.27/5 (for the Rye)

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Two Roads Brewing Company to Release Igor’s Dream 2019 on Saturday, January 26

Two Roads Brewing Company

With new breweries popping up seemingly everywhere, the Connecticut beer scene is doing better than ever. This weekend, however, it’s a classic that’s making the big news. You might want to get yourself to Stratford this Saturday, January 26, because Two Roads Brewing Company is releasing the 2019 version of it’s famous Igor’s Dream, a rye whiskey barrel-aged Russian Imperial Stout.

This will be the seventh release of the Dream, which is named after world famous aviation pioneer Igor Sikorsky. Sikorsky emigrated from Russia to the United States in 1919, at the age of 30, and founded the Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation—one of the most prolific aviation companies in American history. Among the company’s many accomplishments is the design and production of America’s first viable working helicopter, which Sikorsky flew himself in 1939. Why is Two Roads so obsessed with the Russian immigrant? The company’s headquarters are also in Stratford. This beer is just Two Roads’ way of paying homage to a true Connecticut hero.

So what can you expect this Saturday? Head over to Two Roads’ official site to check out their list of things to know for this release, but here’s a quick summary:

How do I buy the Igor’s Dream?:

Ticket sales for bottles will start at 9:00AM (Cash, credit and check accepted), and the doors to the brewery open at 10:00AM.

What versions of Igor’s Dream are coming out this Saturday?

Igor’s Dream aged in Rye Whiskey Barrels (limit 3 per customer, $20 per bottle)

Igor’s Dream aged in Absinthe Barrels (limit 1 per person, $25 per bottle)

Igor’s Dream aged in Ruby Port Casks (limit 1 per person, $25 per bottle)

You can also pick up several different vintage versions for previous years. See their info page for full list.

That’s so early, though. Will there be coffee?

Yes. 744 Express Food Truck will be there for you.

Anything else cool?

Yep. Starting at noon, the Sikorsky Historical Archives and CT Air & Space Museum will be displaying some cool stuff and signing bottles. Master Brewer Phil Markowski will also be signing bottles. Also, 10% of all pint sales will be donated to the Sikorsky Historical Archives, and there’s going to be a raffle for an Igor’s Dream Swag Bag that benefits the CT Air & Space Museum!

Head over to Two Roads’ Instagram for more info, too!

Two Roads logo courtesy of Two Roads Brewing Company

Two Roads Brewing Company: Two Evil: Saigon Scooter Selfie

Two Roads Brewing Company: Two Evil: Saigon Scooter Selfie

Style: Vietnamese-style Coffee Stout

Special Notes: Brewed with coffee, brown sugar and cream extract—in the style of Ca Phe Sua Da (Vietnamese iced coffee). Collaboration with Evil Twin Brewing and Heart of Darkness Brewery Saigon.

ABV: 9.5%

IBU: N/A

Availability: Limited

@untappd says: 4.05/5

Taking the Windowsill to Saigon today!

Have you ever heard of Ca Phe Sua Da? I hadn’t either. As it turns out, it’s a style of coffee that originated in Vietnam. According to Steamy Kitchen, “Vietnamese Iced Coffee is an intensely brewed coffee concentrate that drips down into a tall glass of ice and a big spoonful of sweetened condensed milk.” The result is a rich, creamy, smooth, sweet and intense coffee flavor that can be a bit shocking to those of us used to “regular” coffee.

Two Roads Brewing Company: Two Evil: Saigon Scooter Selfie
Sometimes a happy accident can lead to great inspiration. Like this label! (Credit: Martin Stezano/Beers on Windowsills)

Sounds good, right? Well, that’s what the Saigon Scooter Selfie is; a Vietnamese style coffee stout. It’s brewed with coffee, as well as brown sugar and cream extract. The beer is the latest—along with the Geyser Gose and the Pachamama Porter—in the Two Evil series of collaborations between Two Roads Brewing Company and Evil Twin Brewing. For this Vietnamese-inspired stout, brewers Phil Markowski (Two Roads) and Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø (Evil Twin) actually traveled to Saigon—they’ve traveled somewhere to brew all of the Two Evil beers—to work with Duane Morton, head brewer at Heart of Darkness Brewery.

The label is inspired by a real photo taken by co-founder of Two Roads Clem Pellani. Pellani was actually trying to take a video, but ended up taking selfie instead… on a scooter… in Saigon.

Much like the Vietnamese-style coffee, the end product of this collaboration was rich, creamy, decadent stout. The label describes it like a coffee milkshake, and that’s really what it is. I haven’t had another stout quite like it, and I really wish I had another. It also makes me desperately want to try the real Ca Phe Sua Da… so I think that’s what I’ll be doing next!

Head over to Instagram to check this one out, now!

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. Two Roads Brewing Company: Two Evil: Saigon Scooter Selfie . Taking the Windowsill to Saigon today! . Have you ever heard of Ca Phe Sua Da? I hadn’t either. As it turns out, it’s a style of coffee that originated in Vietnam. According to @steamykitchen, “Vietnamese Iced Coffee is an intensely brewed coffee concentrate that drips down into a tall glass of ice and a big spoonful of sweetened condensed milk.” The result is a rich, creamy, smooth, sweet and intense coffee flavor that can be a bit shocking to those of us used to “regular” coffee. . Sounds good, right? Well, that’s what the Saigon Scooter Selfie is; a Vietnamese style coffee stout. It’s brewed with coffee, as well as brown sugar and cream extract. The beer is the latest—along with the Geyser Gose and the Pachamama—in the Two Evil series of collaborations between @tworoadsbrewing and @eviltwinbrewing. For this Vietnamese-inspired stout, brewers Phil Markowski (Two Roads) and Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø (Evil Twin) actually traveled to Saigon—they’ve travel somewhere to brew all of the Two Evil beers—to work with Duane Morton, head brewer at @heartofdarknessbrewery. The label is inspired by a real photo taken by co-founder of Two Roads Clem Pellani. Pellani was actually trying to take a video, but ended up taking selfie instead… on a scooter… in Saigon. . Much like the Vietnamese-style coffee, the end product of this collaboration was rich, creamy, decadent stout. The label describes it like a coffee milkshake, and that’s really what it is. I haven’t had another stout quite like it, and I really wish I had another. It also makes me desperately want to try the real Ca Phe Sua Da… so I think that’s what I’ll be doing next! . ABV: 9.5%, IBU: N/A, Limited availability . @untappd says: 4.05/5

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BAD SONS Beer Company: Big Whoop

BAD SONS Beer Co.: Big Whoop

Style: New England-style Double IPA

ABV: 9.0%

IBU: N/A

Availability: Rotating

@untappd says: 3.89/5

Beers on Windowsills Returns to BAD SONS!

We’ll keep it brief for you Friday Instagrammers, but I wanted to give a quick shout out to BAD SONS Beer Co. with this photo that somehow got lost in my archives. Their top notch taproom is located in Derby, CT, and has only been around since the summer of 2017. Despite its short time in business, the brewery has always impressed me with the quality of the brews it puts out. If you’re looking for solid beer in CT, you can’t go wrong with BAD SONS!

Unfortunately, I don’t have too much information about the Big Whoop. It’s a pretty hefty double IPA that, at 9.0% ABV, packs quite a punch. That being said, it’s still very juicy and smooth, which makes it a little dangerous. I didn’t know it was so potent until I stood up after I drank it!

Big Whoop

BIG WHOOP comin' in hot to the taproom this Friday 3/16! Limited Can Release starting at noon. Can I get a Whoop Whoop!?! #DIPA #newbeer #canrelease #ctcraftbeer

Posted by BAD SONS Beer Co. on Thursday, March 15, 2018

I’ll actually be in the taproom with my good buddy, Brian and our wives this Saturday… Maybe I’ll see you there? Maybe I’ll have a Big Whoop?

Check us out on Instagram for great craft beer from Connecticut, and all over the country!

Two Roads Brewing Company: 20 Ton Ale (2018)

Two Roads Brewing Company: 20 Ton Ale

Style: Blonde Barleywine

ABV: 13.0%

IBU: N/A

Availability: Rotating

@untappd says: 4.2/5

Can my Windowsills withstand 20 tons worth of barleywine?

A couple of weeks ago, my wife and I decided to use our cheat day (as it relates to diet, not… whatever you’re thinking) to get some pizza and drink some craft beer. I’d heard that PizzaCo, in Stratford, CT, had really great pies and a solid selection of crafty goodness, so we decided we’d go there to kill two birds with one stone.

When we got there, the pizza looked awesome, and the beer menu was on point. There was, however, one problem: it turned out they were directly across the street from one of my favorite breweries—Two Roads Brewing Company. As they say, “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” Our plans changed immediately. We decided to take our pies to go and saddled up to the Two Roads tasting room bar to eat it. Best of both worlds!

Two Roads Brewing Company: 20 Ton Ale
In case you wanted more of the backstory, it’s all on the back! (Credit: Martin Stezano/Beers on windowsills)

The 20 Ton Ale is one of the beers off Two Roads’ “Beers from the Vault” menu (and part of their Road Less Traveled series), but they also had bottles in the retail shop, which is where I picked this one up. Things got a little out of hand on Thanksgiving, and my friend Mike and I uncorked it and fired it up. It’s a blonde barleywine, which means you know it has some heft to it (12% ABV). It’s hopped aggressively with Northwest hops and made with heirloom malts. Overall, it was pretty tasty. Oh, and it’s named after the 20 ton crane that adorns the middle of Two Roads’ century-old building.

Love good Connecticut craft beer? Check out my Instagram page now.

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. Two Roads Brewing Company: 20 Ton Ale (2018) . Can my Windowsills withstand 20 tons worth of barleywine? . A couple of weeks ago, my wife and I decided to use our cheat day (as it relates to diet, not… whatever you’re thinking) to get some pizza and drink some craft beer. I’d heard that @pizzacostratfordct had really great pies and a solid selection of crafty goodness, so we decided we’d go there to kill two birds with one stone. . When we got there, the pizza looked awesome, and the beer menu was on point. There was, however, one problem: it turned out they were directly across the street from one of my favorite breweries—@tworoadsbrewing. As they say, “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” Our plans changed immediately. We decided to take our pies to go and saddled up to the Two Roads tasting room bar to eat it. Best of both worlds! . The 20 Ton Ale is one of the beers off Two Roads’ “Beers from the Vault” menu (and part of their Road Less Traveled series), but they also had bottles in the retail shop, which is where I picked this one up. Things got a little out of hand on Thanksgiving, and @dasmiguel and I uncorked it and fired it up. It’s a blonde barleywine, which means you know it has some heft to it (12% ABV). It’s hopped aggressively with Northwest hops and made with heirloom malts. Overall, it was pretty tasty. Oh, and it’s named after the 20 ton crane that adorns the middle of Two Roads’ century-old building. . ABV: 12.0%, IBU: N/A, Limited availability . @untappd says: 3.67/5

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Two Roads Brewing Company: Roadsmary’s Other Baby (2017)

Two Roads Brewing Company: Roadsmary's Other Baby

Style: Rum barrel-aged pumpkin ale

Special Notes: Aged in Caribbean rum barrels

ABV: 9.3%

IBU: N/A

Availability: Very limited fall release

@untappd says: 3.91/5

Is it too late for pumpkin beer? Not on my Windowsill!

In October of 2017, I posted one of my favorite local beers, The Roadsmary’s Baby from Two Roads Brewing Company. It’s a pumpkin ale aged in Caribbean rum barrels, and I dug it because it showed off Two Roads’ barrel aging program’s vast potential. It’s appropriate that I waited a year before trying, and posting, today’s brew—the Roadsmary’s Other Baby—because the only difference between this, and the original, is time.

Barrel aging deepens the flavor of any beer ale and makes it just a little more complex. What Two Roads did with this alternate universe version of the original Baby is age it even longer in those Caribbean rum casks. That extra aging made the flavors even deeper, and ingrained the beer with even more oak and rum character. The notes of pumpkin and vanilla also became more enriched, making Roadsmary’s Other Baby a really delicious and robust pumpkin beer… Even though I had this too late to post it for Halloween.

Head over to Instagram to check it out now!

Two Roads Brewing Company: Bière De CT

Two Roads Brewing Company: Bière De CT

Yeast: Uniquely sourced from the brewery hop yard

Special Ingredients: Honey from estate beehives

ABV: 7.6%

IBU: N/A

Availability: Limited

@untappd says: 3.85/5

Nothing like some locally sourced ingredients on the Windowsill!

Some breweries brag about using locally sourced ingredients. Two Roads Brewing Company took it a step further with today’s brew. The Bière De CT isn’t brewed with honey from just any local farm. It’s brewed with honey from the brewery’s very own estate beehives. The yeast is also sourced at Two Roads’ own hop yard! It’s part of their “Beers from the Vault” menu, so ask for it at the bar when you visit the brewery, which I did over the weekend.

Now for the actual review. The Bière De CT is, as you may have guessed, an ale brewed with honey! It came in one of those fancy bottles with the cork—the bartender offered to let me keep it, but I bought another bottle to go at the shop, so I didn’t—and the honey aroma powered its way into my nose. The flavor followed suit, and the extensive carbonation made it a pretty amazing experience. My wife and I both really loved it, and I can’t wait to drink that take home bottle, too!

Check out more great craft beer on our Instagram page!

Aspetuck Brew Lab: Symbiosis Saison

Aspetuck Brew Lab: Symbiosis Saison

Hops: Mandarina Bavaria, Lemon Drop

ABV: 6.7%

IBU: 27

Availability: Rotating

@untappd says: 3.6/5

Going back to the lab on the Windowsill today. Get your white scientist coat!

Why is the now three-year-old brewery named Aspetuck Brew Lab? The word means “river originating at the high place” in the language of the Algonquin people—a group of Native Americans from New England, Canada and some of the plains states. The water that the brew lab uses for its beers comes from the Aspetuck watershed and Aspetuck River in the hills of Redding and Easton, Connecticut. It’s one of the cleanest rivers in the Nutmeg State, which makes for some pretty tasty beer.

The Symbiosis saison is a fruity, bright farmhouse ale brewed with oats, wheat and rye, fermented with Belgian yeast and then dry-hopped with Mandarina Bavaria and Lemon Drop hops. That melding of the two styles (the farmhouse ale and the hoppyness) created a pretty nice beer. Didn’t blow me out of the water, but it was pretty good. The Symbiosis is worthy of the 3.6 rating from untappd.

Love some good CT beer? Check out my Instagram page for more!

Fat Orange Cat Brew Co.: FOC Less Monster

Fat Orange Cat Brew Co.: FOC Less Monster

Hops: Citra, Ahtanum

ABV: 8.0%

IBU: 48

Availability: Rotating

@untappd says: 3.91/5

Let’s see what’s on the Windowsill, right meow!

Fat Orange Cat Brew Co. is a small, seasonal farm brewery located in East Hampton, CT. Seasonal, you ask? Yep, it’s only open 9 months of the year, closing during January, February and March. I love the name of this place! It’s inspired by “Brewmaster Billy,” a former portly pet of owners Sheila Mullen and Mike Klucznik, who are married. Check out their website for more info about the brewery, including a photo of the brewery’s namesake.

The FOC Less Monster is the first beer I’ve ever had from FOC—a delicious New England style IPA brewed with Citra and Ahtanum hops. At 8%, it packs a solid punch, but it wasn’t very bitter at all. Really tasty and refreshing beer, and I love the can art!

Check out more awesome brews on my Instagram, now!