Our weekly brew review (for those who cherish the love of beer) continues as we may have finally turned the corner on this winter season… but we w still might review beers that are winter favorites. Craft brewing is certainly alive and well in and around NH.
Opening in January of 2014, Stoneface Brewing, located in Newington, NH, has captured the attention of IPA lovers with their refreshingly hoppy beer. Pouring for the first time at the 2014 Portsmouth Beer Week, they were noticed! Starting out as a 3 barrel brew system, they quickly found the need to expand and are just finishing their addition of a 15 and 30 barrel systems with a 60 barrel bright tank for finishing. They also brew APA (American Pale Ale), Porter, Red Rye IPA and Hopuliza Double IPA. Visit them on Facebook/stoneface/ and at www.stonefacebrewing.com
Stoneface BLIP has two interesting name references. According to the company, Blip is something you see on your radar screen indicating it’s worth looking into, while the other is about one of the brewers at Stoneface nicknaming it a “Beautiful Little India Pale.”
Mildly hazy, beautifully golden sunshine, BLIP’s 16.9 oz bottle offering is a hop lovers treat and is considered to be an American IPA (India Pale Ale) coming in at 5.8% ABV and around 49 IBUs (International Bittering Units). It is delivered in 16.9 oz bottles which is just slightly larger than a pint glass. It’s big brother, Stoneface IPA is a 7.2% and around 60 IBUs.
The base malt is 2 row grain with Magnum, Mosaic and Columbus hops in the boil.
This beer is dry hopped, meaning that more hops are added to the wort (finish beer) after it is cooled. Dry hopped with more Mosaic, Columbus and Simcoe for true citrus aroma and taste. This addition is what adds some bittering notes but also much more floral ones as well.
This beer should be poured into an open top pint glass to allow you to get both taste and smell at your first sip. Citrus zest, grapefruit and honey are the initial flavors, while the hop character and complexity stay throughout the experience. With a crisp, though malty mouthfeel, this golden brew and pillowy head will bring a smile to your face.
In production year-round, this is one of their flagship beers and is available at Case-n-Keg, in Meredith and Laconia. BeerAdvocate.com officially rated this beer, giving it a 86 out of 100 (very good) and reviewed by others at 4+ out of 5. They have struck gold with this one again!
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 email@example.com