When you think of New Hampshire brewers, what companies come to mind? Well of course, we have a Bud plant in Merrimack and Sam Adams is everywhere. And there are now over 40 breweries of all sizes around the state. But one of the more popular beers you’ll find on the shelves or in restaurants and bars has a friendly-faced logo on every label.
Of course, I am speaking about Smuttynose Brewing Company at 105 Towle Farm Road, in Hampton, NH. The address is important because they have just finished a major renovation to their new brewing headquarters. They have free tours which is probably the most informative in the entire state. And of course at the end of the tour, you can taste their lovely creations… a lot! It is definitely worth a visit. You can find out more about their offerings on www.facebook.com/Smuttynose or at their website https://smuttynose.com/
Most likely, this will be the first of three Smutty Big Beer Series reviews as their seasonals are just kicking in. Kindest is just released and the next two are out this week so it’s time to review them!
“Kindest Find” is a play on words from their original IPA, Kindest Find. The label is quite interesting as is this awesome brew. Deep red in color, it professes a large malt-forward presence, but quickly tells you about the hop character just behind. They use four malt types and four hops; Magnum, Zeus, Centennial and new arrival, Falconer’s Flight. On first full pour into a pint glass, a medium sized tan head appears and remains. With reminders of grapefruit and rock candy, the sweetness stays against the bittering. But to some, the bittering may win out. Serving temperature has a lot to do with your impression of the hop character; warmer and the hop is right there. Cooler and the sweetness speaks.
At 9.0% ABV and 65 IBU, the imperial part speaks for itself. You will appreciate the overall balance of this 22 oz beer and want to sample it again (and again…). So, this short series will probably be more fun than first realized after tasting this gem.
With the many other offerings from Smuttynose, you will always find it at Case-n-Keg, 5 Mill St, Meredith. Most on BeerAdvocate.com have rated this beer 3.50+ to 4.3 out of a score of 5. Officially, they rate this at 87 out of 100 which is a ‘very good’ notation. Smuttynose has a wild history of making beautiful brews and Kindest Find is now added to that list!
Jim MacMillan is the owner of WonByOne Design of Meredith, NH, and is an avid imbiber of craft brews and a home brewer as well. Send him your recommendations and brew news to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Wicked Brew Review is sponsored by Case-n-Keg of Meredith, NH, where they stock over 3000 different flavors of seasonal and year round beers and have a huge walk-in beer cave! They also sell a variety of hard ciders, meads and your favorite wines. They stock a large supply of premium cigars, homebrewing supplies, grains, beer and wine kits as well as everything you will need to create your own beer or wine. Visit them at 5 Mill Street in Meredith, www.Case-n-Keg.com or their Facebook page.