Thursday, June 2, 2011

Brooklyn Brewery's Concoction

WFMU's Beer Hear! with Bob W. and B.R. from 5/30/2011

On Monday May 23, 2011 B.R. and I were fortunate enough to have been invited to the quarterly Brooklyn Brewery Brewmaster's Reserve release party. Every three months when the brewery releases a new special beer, they invite industry insiders to get an early taste, and mingle while partaking in the offerings of some local food purveyors, as well as enjoying whatever else happens to be on tap.
Listen to or download the interview we conducted with Brooklyn Brewery President Steve Hindy here.

The latest Reserve is the The Concoction, a beer inspired by the renowned cocktail bar Milk and Honey. The drink, named The Penicillin, is basically a scotch sour with ginger-infused honey and lemon juice. For obvious reasons, the brewery couldn't name its new beer after an antibiotic drug. So they went with The Tonic instead. Now, Moosehead beer has no actual moose heads as ingredients. Rolling Rock doesn't contain rocks. But the gov't bureaucracy that oversees the naming of beers found "The Tonic" too misleading. Thus a third name -- The Concoction. (It's a better name, anyway!)

So, how does The Concoction match the attributes of its inspirational highball? The aroma of this slightly cloudy, soft bronze-straw colored beer hints at the presence of ginger, along with a bit of citrus and maybe a hint of smoked peat as it warms up. It's a refreshing, effervescent beer, with no one characteristic dominating over the other. Yes, you can definitely taste some ginger. You definitely get the citrus. And if your palate is fine tuned, you even can sense the peat smoked malt smokiness, just slightly, in the finish. 

But all these elements are simply compliments to a substantial base beer that has the feel of a Saison or Wit, though there is no wheat malt in the recipe (English Peat Smoked Malt, English Pale Malt, German Pilsner Malt). The citrus (dried lemon peel, organic lemon juice imported from Sicily), minced ginger, New York State wildflower honey, as well as the light body, effervescence and near 8% a.b.v. all work in supreme harmony, combining to build the perfect sipping beer for our sure-to-be long, hot New York City summer.

It's worth noting that, in addition to the delicious free flowing beer, we enjoyed mouth watering fresh goat cheese and sharp cheddar on tangy sourdough bread, courtesy of Eastern District . Bakery
Ovenly provided mini-cup cakes with ginger frosting, which were made with The Concoction! Also provided were also pieces of incredibly long gourmet sandwiches with what looked like headcheese and pesto, which we were told was very fulfilling. Not being the meat-eating types, we'll take their word for it!

The Concoction is served in a tulip glass, and will be available at higher-end beer bars over the coming spring and summer months. This is a beer that you'll want to experience -- and more than just once!

1 comment:

  1. Good Beer New York just put up The Concoction!