Wednesday, January 7, 2015

I Like Your Style

It’s no secret that I am a big fan of beers crafted to a defined style. Be it a classic style like a Helles or lesser known styles like an American Strong Pale Ale (no, it’s not an IPA). Within a short drive of either my residence or place of work, I feel lucky to have several breweries producing beers that are stylistically solid.

Although several may happen to be one-off's or special/seasonal releases, the fact that these breweries are making beers to style is worth mentioning. I appreciate and admire the hard-working brewers that created these amazing beverages.

Currently, at the time of this article’s publication, these are my current stand-outs…

Bottle Logic – Anaheim, CA
Heliosphere (Helles Lager)
Availability: Please check with the brewery

Like father, like son. Yup, that's my pops enjoying his beer. Recently made available on draught at the tasting room, this Helles Lager is amazing! Soft, subtle, and elegant. One of the most difficult styles to create because it is so gentle on the senses, Bottle Logic took the challenge and recreated this old-world beauty perfectly.

Bootlegger’s Brewery – Fullerton, CA
Rocco Red (American Amber/Red Ale)
Availability: Year Round

Bootlegger’s make some unique beers and plenty of one-off’s which are all great in their own right, but nothing stands out more than Rocco Red. This American Amber is layered with citrusy and piny hops on top of a sweet and bready malt backbone. If you’ve ever had their popular Knuckle Sandwich IIPA, it’s as if Rocco Red is a baby version of it. Not as aggressive, but quite flavorful. I like to call it a “juicy” beer.

Tustin Brewing Company – Tustin, CA
Galaxy Hopper (American Strong Pale Ale)
Availability: Specialty every few months

Tustin Brewing Company continues to impress me and I find it disheartening to know that many still do not consider them a great beer producer. Galaxy Hopper is a great example of how remarkable the beers are there. This American Strong Pale Ale showcases Galaxy Hops out of Australia. The best of both IPA and APA (American Pale Ale) -IPA aromatics of immature tropical fruits, an earthy white grape trait, and grassiness; Pale drinkability with a stiff, yet not too sweet, maltiness- all in one satisfying pint.

The Bruery – Placentia, CA
Saison Rue (Saison/Farmhouse Ale)
Availability: Year Round

What can be said about The Bruery that has not been mentioned before? They make some of the most unique and eccentric beers you will ever find in this ever-expanding beer world. Yet behind the veil of powerful spirit barrel-aged beers, puckering wild ales and sours, and unusual creations lays one of their original gems. Saison Rue is a near perfect example of the Saison style. Light tart and funkiness, pepper and spice flavors, refreshing bitterness, plenty of explosive carbonation, and dry. I’ve heard many suggest that this Saison might still fall short of being a proper representation of the style. In my opinion, it’s spot on!

Noble Ale Works – Anaheim, CA
English Bitters
Availability: Please check with the brewery

Noble has established itself as creating some the best IPA’s around with the likes of Tongue Tickles DIPA and I love It! IPA (both are award winners, mind you). However, they are the only brewery around me that constantly makes English style ales accurately. At the moment you can find a few English Bitters in their line-up with The River Thames being especially good.

TAPS Fish House & Brewery – Brea, CA
Dortmunder (Exportbier)
Availability: Please check with the brewery

TAPS has always been known for making solid stylistically accurate beers, and the Dortmunder is no exception. Basically a super-charged Helles, this golden bright beer has just enough malt character to draw you in while the pleasant bitterness keeps you coming back for another sip.

I will focus on other breweries that are not so near me at a later time. For now, check these out when you have a chance! Please visit the brewery’s social media outlets and/or websites for availability.


-Gilbert “Charlie” Perez, Certified Cicerone®

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