Tuesday, May 10, 2011

BrewEngland (re)Visits Craft Beer Cellar

Sarah and I decided to take a trip to one of our favorite beer stores - Craft Beer Cellar, located in downtown Belmont, MA. Granted this was only our second trip to the store, it has almost everything you could ever want in the world of craft beer.

For starters, they have a reported 545 Craft Beers, 218 Craft Breweries, and 143 Beer Styles. Now, it would take several visits and a dedication to proving them wrong, which I just don't have the time or energy to do...BUT, I can confirm that they have walls, and walls, and walls of fresh and tasty craft beer!

The first time we went, we took a round about way from Woburn, MA, as we opted to dine at the lovely Sea Dog Brew Pub in Woburn before hand. This time, we opted to get lunch right in Belmont. We stumbled upon a great little pizza joint - Stone Hearth Pizza, located at 57 Leonard Street. We could not have been happier with our choice. We ordered a Farm Fresh Pizza, which had incredibly fresh ingredients like: arugula, potatoes, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, bell peppers, and more! Absolutely delicious! I also had a few pints of Wachusett Brewing Co.'s Green Monsta IPA, which went very well with the pie.

After lunch, we popped into a few different stores on Leonard Street, before heading into Craft Beer Cellar. When we walked in, we were glad to see that the Berkshire Brewing Co was still pouring some of their beers.

We also met Suzanne and Kate, the proprietors of Craft Beer Cellar. They could not have been nicer! You may remember that they made a very generous donation to the Cure Me I'm Irish event, which really helped make the night a special event. At any rate, we needed some beer!

After tasting the BBC usuals - Steel Rail Extra Pale Ale (one of my favs), Traditional Pale Ale, Lost Sailor IPA, Coffehouse Porter (another favorite), we got to try their newest and accidental concoctions - Saint of Circumstance.

The SoC is a one-off beer, as their hops supplier accidentally sent them the wrong hops...or so they think. In fact, they don't even really know. The supplier said that they either sent the wrong variety, or that the hops may have been smoked due to a near by brush fire. Sarah and I both think it was the later, as there is a subtle smokiness to the beer. At any rate, the beer was supposed to be the Lost Sailor IPA, but due to the unidentifiable variety of hops, it turned out to be something completely different.

Their rep actually told is that the Lost Sailor is named after a Grateful Dead song, off of their album "Go to Heaven." Because this was intended to be a Lost Sailor IPA batch, and was something different, they named it after the next track on the album - "Saint of Circumstance." Whether you like the Grateful Dead or not, the name of the beer is pretty cool.

All in all, it was a successful trip. I needed to grab some beer to complete a beer trade with Sarah's cousin Tracy. Tracy lives in San Francisco and last month she sent me a Russian River Brewing Company Pliney the Elder Double IPA, Russian River Damnation Golden Ale, North Coast Brewing Co. Scrimshaw Pilsner, and Alaskan Brewing Co.'s IPA.

So, in return I'm sending her:

Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project Jack D'or
Notch Session Pils
Smuttynose Brewing Co. Old Brown Dog Ale
Mayflower Brewing Co. Porter
Magic Hat Brewing Co. Wacko

Sarah has had the majority of these beers, but I have had all of them several times - with the exception of Notch Session Pils, which I had one or two times at the Lower Depths during their bottle release party back in February.

We also picked up a bottle of the Berkshire Brewing Co's Saint of Circumstance, Cape Ann Brewing Co. Fisherman's Bavarian Wheat, Clown Shoes Brown Angel (I'm really starting to get into this brewing co!), and a few others that are escaping my memory right now...

At any rate, it was a very successful score. On top of the beer we also grabbed some Ipswich Ale Brewery and Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. mustard, which I look forward to trying soon!

If you haven't paid a visit to Craft Beer Cellar, what are you waiting for? Their selection is incredible, and you won't find a nicer staff around! If you go, tell them Adam and Sarah from BrewEngland sent you!

1 comment:

Brian said...

Great place, wish stores like this would make their way closer to NH :)