The Best Craft Beer

The Best Craft Beer: September 2017

September was a busy month. Between traveling for work, family events and my birthday; it was quite difficult to make a lot of time to focus on craft beer. But have not doubt, there will always be a Best Craft Beer list every month.

And it’s a great time of year for beer, summer is ending and fall beer is starting to appear.

Here’s the Best Craft Beer I had last month:


Oktoberfest

I’ve already had a few Oktoberfest beers this year and I am sure that I will have more. I couldn’t pick a winner so I am including three in this month’s Best Craft Beer list.

Oktoberfest

Brewery: Great Lakes Brewing – Cleveland, OH

Style: Marzen

ABV: 6.5%      IBU: 20

Fifth & Vine Oktoberfest

Brewery: Christian Moerlein Brewing – Cincinnati, OH

Style: Marzen

ABV: 5.4%      IBU: N/A

Samuel Adams Oktoberfest

Brewery: Boston Beer Company – Boston, MA

Style: Marzen

ABV: 5.3%      IBU:  16

 


Related Article: Learn More About Oktoberfest


Beer Geek Brunch Weasel

Brewery: Mikkeller – Denmark

Style: Imperial Oatmeal Stout

ABV: 10.9%      IBU: N/A

Mikkeller Brunch WeaselDescription

Imperial oatmeal stout brewed with coffee. Ingredients: Water, malts, hops, yeast and Vietnamese ca phe chon coffee.

Why did it make the list?

Stouts are a go-to style for me when I want a beer that I can nearly guarantee I will enjoy. They are relaxing to drink and are a great way to end the day.

This one has been sitting in my beer fridge for a while now and I am glad I finally decided to drink it.

This beer pours thick and dark. The aroma and flavor are rich with super sweet coffee. This dominates most of the experience in my opinion. It ends a little dry with some booziness from the ABV.

I am not sure what Vietnamese ca phe chon coffee is but it made this beer amazing.


Damascene  Apricot Sour Ale

Brewery: Tin Man Brewing – Evansville, IN

Style: Sour Ale

ABV: 5.2%      IBU: 12

Tin Man Brewing DamasceneDescription

Unique, refreshing, and far from ordinary, Tin Man’s Damascene Apricot Sour is a blend of traditionally soured ale and apricot juice. Pouring a straw-pale color, this beer’s aroma has hints of lactic acid bite dominated by the smell of fresh apricot. The tartness from the sour ale is balanced by the distinct taste and sweetness of apricot, creating a flavor reminiscent of sour candy and fresh fruit. Exceptionally refined and highly drinkable, Damascene Apricot Sour is a delicious example of what craft beer can be.

Why did it make the list?

This is one of those beers that seemed to disappear from my glass way too fast. As soon as it was gone, I wanted more of it. And while I enjoy sour beer, I rarely crave more than one.

There was something different about this one that made me crave more. I really love apricots so that could have been it. Or the way the sour and sweetness seemed to be perfectly balanced.

Regardless of the reason, I’ll be seeking out more sour beers from this brewery to see if it was this specific beer or if it’s just they way they make all of their sour ales.

Read more about this craft beer in this Craft Beer Spotlight.


Related Article: Learn To Like Sour Beer


Brass Monkey Mango Junkie

Brewery: Listermann Brewing – Cincinnati, OH

Style: New England IPA

ABV: 7%      IBU: N/A

Listermann Brewing Brass MonkeyDescription

East Coast IPA Brewed with Galaxy, Nelson Sauvin, Mosaic & Mangoes

Why did it make the list?

Over and over again, I rave about the New England IPA. It remains very trendy and popular but backs up the hype with great flavor.

This is the second release this year for this beer from Listermann Brewing and I think the improved the recipe in every way. During the first release, I waited in hours just to miss out on this one in cans but was able to have it on draft.

This time around, I had to trade to get some of it. This leads me to believe they will be brewing this one again in the future.

As expected, there is a ton of tropical fruit flavor and aroma. In this version, that is pushed even further with the addition of mangoes. The sweetness of the fruit really shines and makes this one of the best fruited New England IPAs I’ve had.


Belgian Mosaic Anomaly

Brewery: Darkness Brewing – Bellvue, KY

Style: Black IPA / Cascadian Dark Ale

ABV: 5.2%      IBU: 20

Darkness AnomalyDescription

A single hopped black ale featuring Mosaic hops and Belgian yeast. The late hop additions and dry hopping create tons of flavor upfront with a clean smooth finish.

Why did it make the list?

I love my small, local breweries and Darkness Brewing definitely fits that description. On my most recent visit there, I got to try this beer and loved it.

It’s part of their Anomaly series which takes a similar base beer (session black IPA) and swaps out different hops. In addition to changing up the hops, they also used Belgian yeast this time.

The result is a truly unique experience. For me, I found it to have a slight sweetness from the Belgian yeast. The hop profile was well balanced with the rest of the beer and it finished clean. Typically, I am not a fan of black IPAs but this one may officially change my mind on this style.

I love series like this and look forward to trying the next Anomaly that Darkness Brewing releases.


Bonus: Best Food I Had At A Brewery

Monnik Beer Co.

Monnik Beer CoNot sure how often I will include this but I felt it necessary to call out a brewery that I got to visit while in Louisville this past month.

Monnik Beer Co. is in the Schnitzelburg neighborhood of Louisville, KY. From the second you walk in, you can tell that there was a lot of intention and quality that go into their food and beer.

Monnik Beer Company FoodI had a flight of their flagship beers and really enjoyed all of them; especially the saison and IPA. But for me the food is what set them apart from other breweries I’ve been to.

I chose the Pork & Black Currant Pie. Think of this as a chicken pot pie type of dish. Served in a ramekin and hot out of the oven, this dish doesn’t look like much at first. But once you break open the crust, you know it’s going to be great.

The pork, black currants, sweet potatoes and ham gravy all play perfectly together. It is savory and sweet. This is a classic comfort dish taken to the next level.


A little bit of everything made my Best Craft Beer list this month which tells me I did a good job trying a little bit of everything.

In my area, Cincinnati, it was unseasonably warm in September but I think October will finally bring us some cooler weather. Time to break out more dark beers as fall is finally here.

What Was Your Best Craft Beer In September?

Comment Below And Let Me Know What Beer I Should Be On The Look Out For


See Last Month’s List Of The Best Craft Beer