Saturday, March 14, 2015

Iowa Beer

 With new breweries popping up all the time, Iowa is quickly becoming a beer powerhouse state.  There are so many great options available it's hard to know where to start.  Toppling Goliath in Decorah has already made a name for themselves in the national beer industry.  Golden Nugget is a prime example of why.

Sure they make other great beers like Pseudo Sue that get more attention, and their barrel aged beers are really what has gained them national attention.  But when I'm looking for a great IPA, Golden Nugget is at the top of my list.  Now that this beer is readily available, I think it gets overlooked, but it's solid from start to finish.  Fresh hop aroma hits you right way, good solid malt backbone to compliment the loads of fresh nugget hops that go into this IPA.  Yet it's still incredibly smooth, and no too bitter.  Seriously in my top 3 best IPA's I've ever had.  Cheers to Clark and the gang at TG!
 I've heard a lot about this brewery online lately, but they don't sell in my neck of the woods.  Luckily, my amazing wife, Tonya, picked up this beauty on her latest business trip to Des Moines.

It's easy to see why this is a gold medal beer from the 2014 Great American beer Festival, especially as it warms to room temperature and breathes a bit.  Wow, there is a lot going on in this beer, from the chocolate to vanilla, great malt flavor, and again, it's extremely smooth and very drinkable.

Great work by the guys at West O Beer, I'm looking forward to trying more of their brews, and even have a Smoked Red Ale waiting in my fridge.  If you're in central or western Iowa, you need to seek their out their brews.
Okay, so Bell's isn't an Iowan brewery, but the are a Midwestern powerhouse.  This Michigan based brewery has been producing amazing beers for a while now, and it's great to see their expansion into Iowa.

Michigan is well known for their cherries, so it only makes since to make some beer with them.  Bell's produces another solid brew with their Cherry Stout, and they do a good job balancing the cherry flavor with their malt.

Bell's is one of those breweries that at any given time, you will find some in my collection, they just make good beer.  Period.

It seems spring has come early in Iowa this year.  The sun is out, the snow is mostly gone, and even the birds are chirping.  Spring is an interesting time of year, because you want to start drinking the lighter beers like IPA's and Wheats, but I know I still have some great Stouts in my collection that I can't let go to waste.  Either way, I know it's time to fire up the grill, and of course enjoy some great craft beer while doing so!

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For other Iowa beer releases and reviews, also check out @iabeerbaron on Twitter.
Also, check out my fellow small town Iowan, Ronnie at
Remember, life is to short to drink bad beer.

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