Notch 2.8% Tafelbier
Chris Lohring, brewmaster for Notch, is one of the leading voices on American session beer and his new Tafelbier tips the scales at a whopping 2.8%. When it comes to summer daytime drinking (which I know the vast majority of you participate in), this is one mighty refreshing, easy-drinking brew.
Mystic Saison Renaud
Mystic’s founder Bryan Greenhagen calls his style of beer making pre-industrial—he's using brewing techniques that are often overlooked these days for more modern processes. We were happy to hear that their Saison Renaud, a single-hop, single-malt beer featuring Mystic’s house-cultivated Belgian yeast, may be coming to retail shortly.
High & Mighty Pas de Deux
Although they’ll never officially call it session, High & Mighty has been producing high quality, low ABV beer in Massachusetts since 2006. Their fist-high Pas de Deux is an easy drinking saison, bready and tart, and perfectly refreshing for a hot summer day.
Enlightenment Biere de Champagne
The Methode Champenoise, as it is known in the wine industry, is a labor-intensive process. Enlightenment Ales, however, isn’t backing down from the challenge. The brewery’s Enlightenment Brut is a dry and fruity Biere de Champagne packed with zesty carbonation that like its grape-bearing French cousin may just go right to your head. Bottle fermentation, riddling and disgorgement…cool stuff.
Haverhill Brewery Gozer the Gozerian
Haverhill’s Gozer the Gozerian, a German unfiltered wheat beer, was perhaps the most bombastic brew of the event. Packed with a pound of salt for every brewers barrel (31 gallons), this gose was one hell of a briny mouthful. Though, saltwater aside, there was a nice cut of sour and coriander spice that gave this ocean its charm.
Boston's Backlash Brewing
Backlash Brewing’s brass knuckle tap handles are hard to miss. This brewing duo has been knocking out solid Belgian-style craft beer in Boston for the past year. They were featuring a slightly updated re-release of Convergence, a Belgian saison brewed with their own homemade candi sugar.
Jack's Abby Aged Biere de Garde
Who doesn't love a little wild yeast to get a party started? This bier de garde rye lager with Brettanomyces was brewed with 30% locally grown rye malt and amber Belgian candi sugar. After fermenting for three months in barrel, this brew turned into an earthy bombshell, with subtle sour and spice that could make even a non-sour drinker’s palate happy.
Slumerville, Representing the Hometown
Representing the festival hometown of Somerville, MA (A.K.A “Slummerville,” historic stomping grounds of Whitey Bulger’s Winter Hill Gang), Slumbrew’s booth was by far the most colorful at the fest. This brewery—with their Flagraiser IPA and Belgian Trekker Trippel—has been a welcome addition to the Boston craft community since they launched last year.
Night Shift Somer Weisse
Night Shift Brewing was one of the most adventurous Boston-area craft breweries to launch in the past year. Their initial lineup included a wheat ale brewed with sweet orange peel and aged on green tea, a Quad, and a Berliner Weisse-style sour ale brewed with lemongrass and ginger. That last one, Somer Weisse, took the coveted first watch at Summerfest. It's a killer sour from a fresh and exciting brewery.