Evil Twin Brewing: Imperial Biscotti Chili Hazelnut Break

Evil Twin Brewing: Imperial Biscotti Chili Hazelnut Break

Special Ingredients: Biscotti, Hazelnut, Chili Peppers

ABV: 11.5%

IBU: N/A

Availability: Rotating

Who needs a break? A break from beer? Not me!

The “Break” series is one of Evil Twin Brewing’s ongoing series. From donuts to biscotti to maple bourbon to raspberry, the series has some of the best experimental stouts I’ve ever had. For me, the “Jesus” series still wins out, but I also haven’t had a Break that I’ve disliked. Definitely love what Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø is doing with his recipes!

The Imperial Biscotti Chili Hazelnut Break is a big time stout that packs a ton of punch, with incredible flavors of roasted Italian hazelnut, vanilla and even a hint of chili pepper. Got all that? Can I get a hell yeah? I loved this brew. From the upfront sweetness and creaminess to the nice little heat from the chilies on the finish, it was on point. Also, it was 11.5%, so you know I really did need a break after I had it. Pair it with some Nutella crepes for desert!

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Pine Island Brewing: Oatmeal Crème Stout

Pine Island Brewing Company: Oatmeal Crème Stout

Malts: Black Malt, Flaked Oats, Maris Otter

Special Ingredients: Lactose

ABV: 5.0%

IBU: 35

@untappd says: 3.85/5

Are you pining for a good, light stout? Well here you go!

Pine Island Brewing, located in Pine Island, NY, opened its taps in October of 2015. Former CPA, and avid homebrewer, Mike Kraai is behind the relatively new brewery’s recipes. One very cool thing of note about the tap room… it’s located in a renovated firehouse. It’s definitely on my list of breweries to visit when I head up to the Hudson Valley area.

The Oatmeal Crème Stout is Pine Island’s winter seasonal. It’s creamy and smooth from beginning to end, as an oatmeal stout should be. Very malty too, as it’s brewed with Maris Otter, Black Malt, Flaked Oats and added Lactose. I tend to like my stouts a lot heftier than this one—it’s only 5%—but the Oatmeal Crème had some solid flavor. Very tasty!

Thanks to @bklyndena718 for picking this one up for the Windowsill!

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Southern Tier Brewing Company: Warlock

Southern Tier Brewing Company: Warlock

Special Ingredients: Pumpkin, Pumpkin spice

ABV: 8.6%

IBU: 40

Availability: Limited seasonal

@untappd says: 3.97/5

It’s Halloween times 2! Did you get some good candy tonight?

Why pumpkins and candy on Halloween? We’re going back to those crazy Celts again for this one. It seems they loved carving faces into veggies as part of their harvest celebrations. Also in need for light, they started putting candles inside, too. Spooky and useful! These were eventually named Jack O’Lanterns by the Irish, who had a legend about a farmer named Jack who had made a bargain with the devil. When those immigrants arrived in America and found the land to be full of pumpkins, it was the natural choice for carving.

Now, let’s talk about the Warlock. I’ve had a lot of pumpkin beers in my day—typically ales—but this was my very first pumpkin stout. It was brewed to “enchant your palate,” and as a counterpoint to Southern Tier Brewing Company’s Imperial Pumking. It’s part of the breweries “Blackwater Series,” a more experimental series of brews that includes some of STBC’s most famous beers. The Warlock is huge on roasted malts with really good pumpkin and pumpkin spice notes that i loved. Also, that glass fit the entire 750 ml… so I only had one beer!

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Southern Tier Brewing Company: Rum Barrel Aged Pumking (2017)

Southern Tier Brewing Company: Rum Barrel Aged Pumking

Special Ingredients: Pumpkin

ABV: 9.5%

IBU: 25

Availability: Yearly, but not this version

@untappd says: 4.03/5

Part I of our Halloween Two-fer is on the Windowsill right now!

According to History.com, Halloween evolved from the ancient Celtic holiday of Samhain. It was celebrated from October 31 until November 1 to welcome in the end of the harvest and the beginning of the “darker half” of the year. Starting in the 8th century, November first became All Saints Day, and the night before became also known as All Hallows Eve… eventually Halloween. Somehow along the lines, candy, pumpkins and scary ghouls and goblins got involved too. Makes sense to me!

If you know me and my Windowsill, you know we love us some barrel-aged goodness. Because it’s Halloween, you know we have to come hard with a Pumpkin ale. Thanks to Southern Tier Brewing Company, I’m able to do both with one glorious ale—their Rum Barrel Aged Pumking. Last Halloween, we had the original Pumking. The barrel-aged version knocks that one out of the water. I loved how the booziness blended with the pumpkin. So perfect for the holiday!

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Evil Twin Brewing: Every Day, Once A Day, Give Yourself An IPA

Evil Twin Brewing: Every Day, Once A Day, Give Yourself an IPA

Special Ingredients: Lactose, Vanilla

ABV: 9.0%

IBU: 75

Availability: Rotating

@untappd says: 4.01/5

I don’t know about every day, but there’s an IPA on the Windowsill today!

In case you don’t know, Evil Twin Brewing’s head brewer, Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø, is a huge fan of Twin Peaks. When the beloved series came back on Showtime in 2017, the Danish beer maker put out nine different beers with names inspired by random lines from the show. Nine! Sadly, I’ve never seen any episodes of the series—old or new—but I have had one of those beers. In case you’re wondering, the actual quote is “Every day, once a day, give yourself a present.”

My present to myself was this beer. More accurately, the beer was a present from @itsmebmd1085. It’s definitely one of the better gift beers I’ve ever gotten. It’s a milkshake IPA—meaning it’s brewed with lactose—with a vanilla added during the brewing process. Great mouthfeel, awesome hoppyness and that vanilla kick was a nice little extra dose of sweet. Give yourself one of these ASAP!

While you’re at it, give yourself the gift of checking out my Instagram page for more great craft beer!

SingleCut Beersmiths: Barrel Aged Heavy Boots of Lead

SingleCut Beersmiths: Barrel Aged Heavy Boots of Lead

ABV: 11.0%

IBU: 55

Availability: Rotating

@untappd says: 4.29/5

It’s not the sabbath, but we’ve still got Iron man on the Windowsill today!

For today’s SingleCut Beersmiths rock n’ roll inspiration, I give you the following lyrics, from Black Sabbath’s Iron Man…. “Heavy boots of lead / Fills his victims full of dread. Running as fast as they can / Iron man lives again.” As you can see, that’s what today’s beer is named after, and I think it’s pretty appropriate for this barrel-aged version of the Heavy Boots of Lead, an imperial stout that, if you’re not ready for it, might have you running scared.

Luckily, I was ready for this brew because it won the Instagram story poll this weekend. You wanted me to drink it, so I did. This incredible stout from SingleCut is aged in rye whisky barrels for a year. It also has some added Oregon honey for a touch of sweetness. The result is a chocolaty, smooth, creamy stout with just enough whiskey and honey flavor to put it near the top of my list of favorite stouts. It’s so good that, like the Iron man, must have been created in that great magnetic field, indeed!

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Fifth Hammer Brewing Company: Llama Drama

Fifth Hammer Brewing Company: Llama Drama

Hops: Mosaic, Palisade

ABV: 7.2%

IBU: N/A

Availability: Rotating

@untappd says: 4.05/5

Save the drama for yo’ llama… and my Windowsill!

I love trying out new local breweries. This week, I had the honor of tasting my first brew from Long Island City’s (that’s in Queens) Fifth Hammer Brewing Company. When they opened their taps in October of last year, owners Chris Cuzme and David Scharfstein ended a two-year search for the perfect brewery location. My favorite part of this brewery is its name. There’s an old story about the famous mathematician, Pythagoras (you’ve heard of his theorem, I’m sure). It seems Pythagoras was doing some digging into the mathematical relationship between musical notes. He walked into a blacksmith shop and heard five hammers clanging on metal. The first four were in harmony, but that fifth hammer clashed with the rest. Here’s to the discordant ones!

I’m glad the Llama Drama was my first foray into this brewery. Although it seemed a little too carbonated when i first opened it, once I let it settle in, it was really good. Very nice notes of tropical fruit, honeysuckle and peach on the nose, and lots of hoppy and tropical goodness on the palate. The Llama Drama is dry-hopped with Mosaic and Palisade hops. Super tasty, but surprisingly drama—and llama—free.

Check out this, and all the other drama, on my Instagram right now!

Alewife Brewing Company: Death to Ego

Alewife Brewing Company: Death to Ego on the Windowsill

Hops: Azacca, Centennial, El Dorado

ABV: 6.1%

IBU: 54

Availability: Year-round

@untappd says: 3.9/5

Let’s set our egos aside in favor of good beer on the Windowsill today!

Yesterday, my good pals Mike and Christine introduced me to Alewife Brewing Company—a great brewpub in Long Island City, Queens. I’m really grateful that they did. Not only did Alewife have a Windowsill for me to put a beer on (although it was a tad dark), they also brew their own solid beers, and carry over two dozen craft beers from New York, and all over the country, too. I tried some delicious in-house beers, as well as other craft brew on tap from LIC Beer Project, SingleCut Beersmiths and Clown Shoes Beer. One nice detail you can see in the photos in the Instagram post below… at 8:29 PM, they printed out a new tap list. It replaced the 3:38 PM tap list. These guys are on top of their stuff. Oh, did I mention they also have delicious food? I devoured my burger so quickly, I didn’t even take a picture of it. If you’re in Long Island City, check them out!

It doesn’t matter how many craft beers a brewpub has, I have to judge them on the beer they brew in in their own barrels and tanks. Thankfully, the Death to Ego was tasty! It’s an American IPA, and the official description says it all. CITRUS. FRUIT. LOVE. If you ask me, those are some pretty key ingredients for brewing a good IPA. Thankfully, they also used actual ingredients—namely, Azacca, Centennial and El Dorado hops. Great combo! I wish I’d tried more of Alewife’s in-house brews to see how they stacked up to the Death to Ego, but I was too busy oogling the rest of the craft brew list. Oh well. Next time!

Head over to our Instagram to see more photos of Alewife Brewing Company, now!

SingleCut Beersmiths: Double Dry-Hopped Workers Are Going Home

SingleCut Beersmiths: Double Dry-Hopped Workers Are Going Home

ABV: 8.0%

IBU: 123

Availability: Rotating

@untappd says: 4.26/5

My name ain’t Jonas, but I have a killer beer on the Windowsill for you today!

In case you haven’t figured it out, today’s SingleCut Beersmiths brew is named after a repeated line in “My Name is Jonas,” a hit song by from one of my favorite rock bands, Weezer. The song is off their self titled 1994 debut album (also known as The Blue Album), and was inspired by a situation lead singer Rivers Cuomo’s brother was having with insurance after a car crash. In the song, it seems like more of a construction problem—the song basically describes a construction crew deciding not to work, and going home—but whatever. Great tune! On the original version of this beer, the little man on the label is wearing a construction outfit, complete with a hard hat and orange vest. For the upgraded DDH version, we get the guy in the business suit. You fancy, huh?

Like just about everything else I’ve had from SingleCut, the Workers Are Going Home was pretty amazing. Although I don’t know the exact varieties, the double IPA uses hops from Australian, Pacific Northwest and new-age European hops. The dry-hopping is done with the mysterious Australian and European varieties. Lots of hops. Lots of juice. Solid ABV. The Workers Are Going Home is delicious. If I see it at my local shop again, I might use a dozer to clear a path to it. Go home and drink one for yourself!

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Port Jeff Brewing Company: Party Boat IPA

Port Jeff Brewing Company: Party Boat IPA

Hops: 10 Kinds (undefined)

ABV: 7.7%

IBU: 101

Availability: Year-round

@untappd says: 3.54/5

Taking the ferry over to Long Island for today’s Windowsill brew!

Port Jefferson Brewing Company opened its taps in Port Jefferson, New York in 2011. It’s the old feel good story of home brewer makes good. In this case, that former home brewer is Michael Philbrick. Philbrick’s wife actually bought him his first brewing kit back in 2000, which is really when the seeds for PJBC were first sewn. It took over 10 years, but PJBC is now in its 7th year making beer for the people of Long Island, and beyond, and they even have a nice taproom now!

The Party Boat IPA is a pretty crazy IPA. It’s got a big malty backbone up front, with some good piney, citrusy hop finish. Although I don’t have the specific varieties identified, this beer contains a whopping 10 different kinds of hops. I wouldn’t say it bowled me over, but the Party Boat is a nice little IPA, not too hefty on the ABV, but with some good flavor and aroma.

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