Your Long Island beat beer reporter abandoned his usual stomping ground and flew out to the Pacific Northwest---the Seattle-Tacoma area to be precise. I visited a number of breweries in that corridor extending from the southern tip of Puget Sound up to the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle where a statue of Lenin casts his protecting gaze across an intersection near Dad Watson's, one in the large family of McMenamins pubs. If you want to hear more about my Washington beer adventures, you can listen to episode 8 of my podcast.
Now that I'm back on Long Island, I've been thirsty for some locally brewed beer. I had enough hops out in Washington so I was in the mood for some malt. But nothing sweet. That's my one complaint about Washington beers in general, just about everything was too sweet for my taste---you know that lingering sugary aftertaste. So I went straight over to John Harvard's over in Lake Grove and had a mug of DJ Swanson's Scottish Ale. Boy, did that hit the spot. The Scottish Ale (not to be confused with Scotch Ale---as the tasting notes warn) is a caramel malt festival all on its own. The maltiness is complex but not oppressive or thick. I get some chocolatey notes along with a rich roastiness. After a mug of Scottish I was ready for another, but I decided that 44 ounces was probably too much of a good things, especially since I did plan on returning home.
In my last Long Island beer update, I mentioned that DJ Swanson, the brewer at John Harvard's, was making a Belgian-style Tripel. Well, it's on now and you can get a 10 ounce glass for under $5. The aroma is candy sugar laced with bubble gum. It's got a good heavy mouthfeel, but doesn't come across as cloying. The alcohol content is evident, but not so hot that the Tripel isn't refreshing. You might recall that Belgian-style IPA that I mentioned back at the beginning of June. Well, the Tripel was made back then and the same strain of yeast fermented both beers.
In my next post I'll tell you about a new taproom that we have here on the Island. It's called Bobbique and it has an incredible selection of beers and a knowledgeable cellarman. More about that in a few days.