TWB Beer Club Hosts Allagash Brewing Company
The TWB Beer Club hosted Karri Diomede, NYC Rep for Allagash Brewing Company at our latest meetup. Allagash is a world-renowned Belgian-style brewery based in Portland, ME. Karri brought us plenty of Allagash swag and three beers to taste: White, Hoppy Table and Curieux.
We started with the White, which is the brewery’s most popular and widely available style. And since the White is a Belgian-style wheat beer, we were instructed to “rouse the yeast” before opening and pouring, a process that lifts the protein and yeast sediments that settle to bottom (kind of like what happens in ice tea or orange juice) back into the beer. Karri’s technique is simple: hold the bottle upside down and swirl it like a New Year’s Eve noise-maker in slow motion.
Not only will rousing the yeast help give the White its signature color, it also helps give it a “silky, almost pillowy texture.”
Before tasting, we had to learn how to taste, which is very similar to tasting wine. Look. Swirl. Smell. Taste. Reflect.
The second tasting was the Hoppy Table Beer, a style inspired by the Belgian tradition of very low-alcohol, easily drinkable beers. Historically, these beers were brewed and consumed by both adults and children at meals when the purity of drinking water couldn’t be trusted. Allagash’s version has a higher alcohol percentage than the historical versions and uses dry hops to give it a bigger and bolder flavor.
The third and final beer we sampled was Curieux, Allagash’s Tripel that is then aged in bourbon barrels for six-to-eight weeks. This had the highest alcohol content (11%) and coincidentally, was our favorite. The flavor is rich with notes of coconut and vanilla with a bourbon aftertaste.
If you feel inspired to try some Allagash brews, just use this handy locator tool on their website: http://www.allagash.com/locator/. Some of our favorite bars that carry the White are The Ginger Man, The Shakespeare and Grand Central Oyster Bar.
Till next month, when the TWB Beer Club takes on fruit beers!