Baltimore, Maryland-based Guinness Open Gate Brewery has a new seasonal imperial stout ahead of the holidays – Guinness Mint Chocolate Stout.
The imperial stout is brewed with dried mint leaves, then conditioned on pure cacao (chocolate), then aged in Kentucky bourbon barrels.
“Chocolate and mint are a classic flavor combination, and the way those flavors interact with the bourbon character leads to something really special. It’s the perfect beer to sip on after a solid meal with family and friends over the holidays,” says Open Gate head brewer Sean Brennan.
Guinness Mint Chocolate Stout also compliments recently returning Gingerbread Stout, also brewed in the Baltimore brewery.
Mint Chocolate Stout is available in 11.2-ounce bottles for a limited time.
Founders Frootwood debuted in 2017. For the first time since its release, Frootwood returns to the brewery’s taproom this month- nationally in January 2022.
The beer was a big hit amongst the brewery’s barrel-aged beer fans. Frootwood is a cherry ale, aged in maple syrup bourbon barrels. As you might recall, one of the Founder’s most requested beers is also aged in maple syrup bourbon barrels – Canadian Breakfast Stout (CBS).
A flavor Battle Royale.
From the moment this story hit Beer Street Journal 2017, the readers were worried the beer would have too much cherry. Or even worse, being too sweet or too boozy. The result was actually a “Battle Royale” of flavor. Each sip pulled you three ways. The main contenders are bourbon, cherries, and maple syrup – each fighting for dominance. When you hear someone say a beer is “all over the place,” Frootwood is a great example of just that. We hope the latest release is just the same.
We took a crisp, light-bodied cherry ale and hid it away in oak barrels that held both bourbon and maple syrup. After a lengthy sting, it emerged a changed beer, blanketed in notes of warm vanilla and earthy sweetness. The wood proves itself the star of this beer, adding depth and taming the tart cherry while the maple imposes a velvety texture that lingers for not a moment too long.
Founders Frootwood is a 12-ounce bottle release, as well as draft. Estimated retail $15.99 4/pack.
PIC: Beer Street Journal
Spoetzl Brewery, makers of Shiner Beer has one of the weirdest hard seltzer flavors for you yet – dill pickle flavor.
In August of 2020, Shiner debuted their Straight Shooter lineup of hard seltzers, with your standard fruit flavors like raspberry, peach, and grapefruit. However, if you want to stand out, especially in the seltzer category, you have to do something unique. So pickles it is.
Something we’ve learned over the years, pickles are pretty polarizing. They are in the same category as raisins, peas, or mustard. There is no “pickle” middle ground. So already, a dill pickle flavored hard seltzer is a challenge.
Shiner Juicy Dill Pickle Hard Seltzer is actually made with real pickles, incidentally the brewery’s 6th brewmaster Jimmy Maurice’s family recipe. The brewery says the final flavor is a blend of sweet and sour dill pickle, with notes of dill, coriander, and spice.
Let’s get weirder.
Each can of the special edition seltzer has a QR code that takes the drinker to picklemode.com where they will find a “magical, animated pickle” that will tell you your future. Yes, the Oracle Pickle to help you make life decisons.
Incidentally, November 14th is National Pickle Day. There really is a day for everything these days.
Shiner Juicy Pickle Hard Seltzer is available in 12-ounce, 6-packs for $7.99 for a limited time. It should pair well with a Jameson shot.
Debut: November 2021
Terrapin Wake-n-Bake, aka W-n-B, is making a seasonal return to the Athens, Georgia based brewery’s seasonal lineup.
2021 marks the 17th release of Terrapin Wake-n-Bake, an oatmeal stout brewed with a special blend of coffee from Athens local Jittery Joes Coffee.
Black as night, this coffee stout is thick, rich and full of real coffee flavor. Brewed with a special blend of beans from all over the world developed and roasted specifically for Terrapin by our friends at Jittery Joe’s Coffee right here in Athens, GA.
In 2014, Terrapin invested in a canning line, and started transitioning their entire lineup from bottles to cans. W-n-B was one of the first seasonals to make the change back in 2016. If you like a bold stout with coffee and hints of creamy chocolate, this seasonal favorite does not disappoint.
Terrapin Wake-n-Bake is available in 12 ounce cans and draft across the brewery’s distribution network in November 2021.
Availability: 12oz Cans, Draft.
Can Debut: November, 2016
Latest Return: November 2021.
PIC: Beer Street Journal
It’s always nice to see a venerable beer like Sierra Nevada Celebration IPA still able to stir up some excitement. The brewery posted a picture of Celebration cans ready waiting to be filled, and fans re-professed their love for this seasonal beer all over again. Celebration IPA is an absolute seasonal classic, akin to Bell’s Two Hearted, or Russian River’s Pliny the Elder. Only, you can only get it as the year wind’s down.
Later this month, Celebration Ale will hit shelves once again.
Sierra Nevada has been brewing this fresh-hopped India pale ale since 1981, just one year after opening in 1980. While craft beer’s #1 selling style [IPA] has seen a lot of trends, Celebration Ale has remained steadfast in simply staying as-is. Perhaps that mix of quality and reliability is what makes it so popular – a fact proven by the overwhelming reactions from Celebration fans after the brewery posted the above photo this week.
Celebration Ale follows Oktoberfest in the brewery’s seasonal series of releases. Expect 12-ounce cans to hit stores for the first time this month in 6, 12, and 24 packs.
Availability: 12oz Cans, Draft.
First Release: 1981
Latest Return: October 2021
PIC: Beer Street Journal
Georgia’s Tucker Brewing Company just took home Great American Beer Festival Gold in the Light Lager category. In an American landscape of nearly 10,000 breweries, that’s not an easy feat.
American craft beer is in a bit of a “lager renaissance” of sorts it’s finally normal [again] to see a lager on tap at a brewery. Hell, just a few years ago in Georgia folks were all but drowning in a sea of IPAs and stouts, but now – the Peach State is home to at least three lager-focused breweries. We’d like to extend a personal thank you that no one has tried to make a milk lager. (Yet.)
Tucker Brewing’s Lager, aka Tucker Lager, is barely four years old. The brewery’s appropriately named head brewmaster Tucker Eagleson (purely coincidental) was brewing at Heavy Seas in Baltimore, Maryland when he stumbled across the head brewer job at Tucker Brewing on ProBrewer. His name naturally got his foot in the door.
One of the conditions of getting the job was that Eagleson had to have at least two lager recipes ready for the brewery’s upcoming Tucktoberfest that year. Within weeks of landing in Georgia, he had a märzen and Honeysuckle Helles Lager, that would eventually be Tucker Lager ready to go.
The märzen is seasonal, but Lager immediately became year-round. “The recipes for either beer never really changed after the fest,” Eagleson says. It was just a series of [a thousand] different tweaks and sensory panels to improve the beer,” he adds.
Light Lager may sound like a common beer, but it’s unforgiving if you don’t know what you’re doing. A stout or porter might hide imperfections or off-flavors, but a lager is like changing clothes in the front yard. You see everything.
Here in 2021, Eagleson figured it might be time to enter it in GABF, which still held the competition despite canceling the public festival for the second year in a row. Last Saturday morning, Eagleson woke up to a text from brewery co-founder Ashley Hubbard that out of 137 category entries, Tucker Lager won gold. “It took a second for it to set in,” he says.
It’s actually the first gold medal for a lager in Georgia in more than 30 years. A medal that’s well deserved. The all-German hop and malt lager is about as clean and crisp of a beer as you’ll find anywhere.
Taking home gold for a light lager on your first try is no easy feat I say to him. Eagleson smiles and simply replies. “I’ll drink to that.”
Left Hand Brewing’s Milk Stout is a beer of pure beauty. One of the best milk stouts in the U.S. if you ask us.
Over the last month the Longmont, Colorado-based brewery has been slowly revealing the contents of a 2nd edition of the brewery’s 12-pack dubbed “The Milk Box.” The variety pack is a milk stout lover’s dream.
In November of 2020, the brewery announced the launch of the variety pack, which contained the ridiculously good Peanut Butter Milk Stout, Bittersweet Imperial Coffee Milk Stout, Raspberry, and Chai Milk Stout.
The Left Hand Milk Box is making a second appearance this fall with a new cast of characters.
As of right now, the pack will contain Smore’s Milk Stout, Mint Chocolate Milk Stout, as well as Mole Milk Stout.
What’s the 4th? We are guessing Left Hand Double Milk Stout. An imperial edition of the venerable year-round Milk Stout. This edition is a big 10.5% alcohol by volume. According to the label – “Double Down! Decadent notes of milk chocolate, roasted coffee, brown sugar, and vanilla cream.”
Like we said. It’s just a guess. Either way, Double Milk Stout is something we look forward to drinking. Soon.