Friday, October 25, 2013

There Are Still Virginia Beers to Discover

When I sat down at the bar at Capital Ale House Wednesday evening, I asked David the bartender for beer suggestions. I knew he could give a better rundown on what's new and good than I could get looking through the extensive, and quickly outdated, beer menu. He listed off a few new beers, but I decided to order a glass of the Green Flash Green Bullet I had enjoyed last week.

Colleen started out with a big glass of Sixth Seal Stout, from a Virginia brewery I'd never heard of, Apocalypse Ale Works in Forest, Virginia. The dark beer had a light mocha colored head and aromas of dark chocolate and coffee. The flavor was slightly sweet, with dark chocolate, espresso and a hint of citrus bitterness. I stole a sip two three many sips from her glass. It was a nice find and a flavorful beer.

After finishing my Green Bullet IPA, I was torn between two beers for my next selection. Although pumpkin beers aren't my favorites, I was tempted to have Weyerbacher Imperial Pumpkin Ale. CAH was also pouring Get Bent Mountain IPA by Parkway Brewing Company of Salem, Virginia. Parkway is another Virginia brewery I've not experienced. Colleen helped me out by offering to order the Pumpkin Ale for herself. She's a team player! 

Weyerbacher Pumpkin Ale has a decent balance between the actual pumpkin flavor and pumpkin pie spice flavor. The flavor is a little bit on the boozy side as well. I enjoyed the few sips I had from Colleen's glass. It's beer worth seeking out, but not one of which I could enjoy multiples. 

The Get Bent Mountain IPA is an excellent, citrus-rich IPA. The aroma was strong in juicy and pithy citrus. The flavor was more of the same. The citrus notes are a combination of juicy citrus fruit and bitter zest. The slightly sweet malt backbone helps to keep some balance, but this is a classic citrusy IPA lover's beer. The moderate 7.2% ABV is very well hidden.

Of course, it wasn't all about the beer, we had to eat too! Since I was enjoying big, bold beers, I decided to go big and bold with my food selection, with "The German," off the burger menu. This burger is topped with sauerkraut, melted Havarti cheese, and a grilled bratwurst! The sandwich is served on a pretzel bun, with a side order of warm German potato salad and red cabbage. I've noticed a preponderance of pretzel rolls or buns on many menus lately. It seems to be a new fad, but one that I am very happy to see. I like the flavor and texture of the pretzel breads quite a bit. Oh, did I mention, there was a burger and a bratwurst?

Great food and great beer, and a great time spent with my wife. I must say we're both enjoying taking some breaks from our busy lives to enjoy a bit of time together trying out new beers.

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