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!
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.
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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!
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We have a really atypical collaboration on the Windowsill today!
I love a good collaboration brew, so you know I was excited to find out that one of my favorite local breweries, Two Roads Brewing Company, and one of Vermont’s finest breweries, Lawson’s Finest Liquids, had come together to create a very unique Farmhouse IPA—the Typecast. For those of you know know Lawson’s story, it shouldn’t be a surprise that these two made a beer together. They already make a lot of beers together. If you’ve ever had any Lawson’s in a can, know that it was actually brewed at Two Roads. The two have had a solid contract brewing relationship for a while now.
Now onto the brew. A farmhouse IPA? Sounds wild, right? What is it? It starts out as a farmhouse ale (aka saison), and then it’s dry-hopped to perfection. One extra cool thing about this beer is that it uses all local ingredients. It uses Cascade and Wye Challenger hops grown in Connecticut, as well as Centennial hops grown in Vermont. The Typecast also includes Vermont white cedar and CT balsam fir tips in the boil. Overall, this brew wasn’t really for me, but it’s definitely an eclectic style, with some pretty good flavors that you might like. Cheers!
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