Craft Beer Reviews – June 2008

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Note about organic craft brews: For a beer to qualify as organic brew it must meet the exact requirements as all other foods placed on them by the USDA. This is difficult for most brewers because of the limited selection of grains that have been certified. Coupled with the strict brewing guidelines each brewery needs to meet, set by the lovely DABC, you must be quite skilled as a brewer.

Wildfire Organic Extra Pale Ale
Brewer/Brand: Four + Brewing
Abv: 4.0 r> Price: $8.99 six pack
Size: 12 oz Bottle
Description: The Four + Brewing Company gives SLC Wildfire. This organic extra pale ale pours a lighter golden color with a thick white head. Catch a smell of floral and citrus hops, followed by sweet malt goodness. Wildfire tastes of hop bitterness when it first hits the palette, only to be followed by soft malts and a nice crisp, bready finish.

Overview: Four + Brewing is a branch-off of the Uinta Brewing Company, so for those of you who have been picking up this sixer afraid that it may be another sickly Anheuser-Busch attempt at launching into micro-brew market … fret not. Everything that comes out of this brewery is a quality local product. Wildfire is an easy- drinking beer that goes terrifically with any Asian dish, and works quite well on its own. Do they charge a bottle cap opening fee for beer at Takashi?

Where to Find: This is an easy beer to find. Common at most local grocery stores, Wildfire can also be found on tap at the Uinta Brewing Company and The Bayou.

Squatter’s Organic Amber
Brand/Brewery: Squatter’s, brewed by Utah Brewer‘s Cooperative
Abv: 4.0 r> Price: $8.99/ bottled six-pack
Size: 12 oz Bottle
Description: This amber boasts a beautiful honey hue, with a faint touch of red. It possesses a citrus aromatic, followed by a smart coupling of caramel and malt. Though big on the toasted/caramel malt flavor, the citrus hops are still able to pull through, giving it just the faintest lemon zest, then finishing with an almost nutty finish.

Overview: The first organic brew from Squatters/Utah Brewers Co-op is making big accomplishments in the beer world. By receiving a silver medal in 2007 at the Great American Beer Festival, this organic amber is keeping up Squatter’s reputation for producing amazing brews. Where to Find: Found at most grocery stores and on tap at Squatter’s Pubs.

RedRock: Organic Pale Ale
Brewery: RedRock
Abv: 4.0 r> Price: $4.50/Pint
Size: Pint / Growler / Pitcher
Description: The boys at RedRock are at it again, with this fucking amazing 100�rganic pale ale. It truly is one of a kind. With a deep honey-copper color, this pale ale has a scent of both fruity and earthy hop bitterness, followed by sweet caramel malts, and a bready finish. This brew encompasses a decent amount of bitterness and polishes off with a sweet finish.

Overview: This is Utah’s only 100�rganically made brew, meaning that not only were all the grains used in the creation of this brew organic, but the hops were as well, something very uncommon in the brewing world. Cheers to RedRock. And a special “cheers” goes out to Chris Harlin for scoring SLUG a review growler of this before it flew off the tap at both of their pubs.

Where to Find: This rotating-release beer can only be found on tap at RedRock ‘s pub locations either in SLC or in Park City.

Latter Day Stout
Brewery: Desert Edge Brewery
Abv: 4 r> Price: $ 3.75
Size: Pint / Growler / Pitcher
Description: Head brewer Chris Haas and his brew team from Desert Edge Brewery wish to share their Latter Day Stout with the readers of SLUG. This stout comes off the nitro tap with a pitch-black color and gives a killer head. Put your nose in it and scents of chocolate followed by hints of coffee-roasted malt. This medium bodied stout has a nice dry, chalky finish.

Overview: I would not denote the LDS Stout as being a world-class brew. However, I would call this a damn good session stout. I have no problem throwing back a few of these in one sitting. Cheers to the boys over at the Desert Edge Brewery; their work has constantly gone unnoticed in mainstream Utah beer culture.

Where to Find: This beer can only be found on tap at Desert Edge Brewery, SLC, UT.

Junction City Chocolate Stout
Brewery: Rooster’s Brewing Company
Abv: 4 r> Price: $ 4.00
Size: Pint/ Growler / Pitcher
Description: This dark-brown brew pours with a nice creamy head, enveloping aromatic pleasures like toffee, coffee and chocolate. You’d think that you were getting ready to drink dessert, and tasting it is nothing short of its smell. Although a touch too watery, this brew has an amazing body which brings out that soft, sweet toffee-roast flavor.

Overview: This is my number one recommendation when drinking any of Rooster’s beers. If driving to Layton or Ogden for beer tasting is too much, be sure to swing by The Bayou in Salt Lake to get your beervana on. At The Bayou they serve this amazing brew as a beer float with vanilla bean ice cream—making this a tasty treat to finish off any decent night of drinking.

Where to Find: Only found on tap, this brew can be found at either of the two Rooster’s locations in Ogden and Layton, as well as in SLC at The Bayou and Brewvies.

Madame X Stout
Brewery: Hopper’s Grill & Brewing Company
Abv: 4 r> Price: $ 3.75
Size: Pint / Growler / Pitcher
Description: Madame X is poured with a creamy, nitro-induced head and is brownish black in color. Toasty malts hit the nose, followed by dark chocolate. The taste has a stong malt complex of coco and caramel with a solid coffee base. Definitely a well-bodied brew, and like my women, this one actually finishes.

Overview: This is another brewery going unnoticed by the Utah crowd and a great beer to taste on tap. It has a great balance of all its flavors, making it a great stout. This stout drinks easily with food pairings, but I don’t think I will go out of my way to drink it alone.

Where to Find: This beer can only be found at Hopper’s Grill & Brewing Company.