Beer Camp, Part One
For Beer Camp Across America, Sierra Nevada teamed up with breweries from coast to coast and created unique beers at both their original location in Chico, CA and the new facility in Mills River, NC. The beers are varied, featuring solid interpretations of classic styles, simple twists on old favorites, and even some weird ideas out of left park.
The first three beers I cracked open really show the range.
Victory Brewing out of Pennsylvania brought a classic Dusseldorf Alt to the box. The Alt Route is dark and toasty with a healthy bitterness and a slightly sweet body. The only clue to Alt Route’s American origin is the hint of citrus from Northwest grown hops.
Double Latte was brewed with Ninkasi from our fair state of Oregon. It blends the beloved flavor of a coffee stout with the sweet and smooth milk stout. They added both lactose and coffee to the beer to make something both familiar and unique. Double Latte has the roasty flavor of grain mixed with bittersweet coffee and just a hint of milky sweetness.
The last beer I tried was the Yonder Bock brewed in collaboration with Cigar City brewing of Tampa. We don’t get many beers from Cigar City in these parts, but their dragon fruit and blood orange Florida Weisse was all the rage at last week’s Oregon Brewer’s Festival. Yeah, I didn’t go to the festival, but I keep up on the blogs.
Yonder Bock is billed as a tropical Maibock. The brewers used exclusive new world hops like Calypso and Azacca (which I’ve never even heard of) as well as the experimental hop known only as 366. The result is nothing like a maibock from my books. It’s full of exotic tropical scents like mango and passion fruit. The body is big and sweet, but the finish is clean and refreshing. It has a lot in common with an India pale lager, but at over seven and a half percent alcohol, I think it’s more a double. A DIPL, that’s something new.
There are twelve unique beers in the box, so it might take me a while to get to them all — while keeping up with the local scene, but so far my interest has been piqued.
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