Wednesday, September 7, 2011

best brews to warm your bones.

Continuing in my adoration of fall, I recalled another craft that really comes alive this time of year: brewing! Sean and I really love going up to Maine Street Gourmet and splurging on a new bottle of craft beer that we have never tried. Tis the season for Oktoberfest editions and Pumpkin ales, and I know from watching our friend Brian Quay toil over his home brews that this truly is an art form. A lot of breweries release seasonal ales that are only available this time of year and are quite scrumptious. In honor of these, I've rounded up the beverages this crisp air really gets you hankering for. Enjoy!

Dogfish Head Punkin Ale
"A full-bodied brown ale with smooth hints of pumpkin and brown sugar. We brew our Punkin Ale with pumpkin meat, organic brown sugar and spices. This is the perfect beer to warm-up with, as the season cools."

Avery Kaiser Imperial Oktoberfest Lager
"The Kaiser once said, "Give me a woman who loves beer and I will conquer the world." If the Kaiser and his significant other had tipped this bottle, we'd all be "sprechenden Deutsch!" We took all that is good in a traditional Oktoberfest - gorgeous, deep copper sheen, massive malty backbone and spicy, floral, pungent noble hops - then intensified each into this, an Imperial Oktoberfest."

Muskoka Harvest Ale

"The pilgrim of our seasonal beer endeavour. Now in its 2nd year, this Harvest Ale marks the end of the growing season and the gathering of crops from the fields. Brewed using premium local ingredients, it has a rich malt backbone and is dry hopped for a subtle grassy character reminiscent of the harvest."

"This beer begins in spring when oat seeds are sown as soon as the soil can be worked. Meanwhile, select types of barley are planted with hopes that Mother Nature will be kind. Our brewers wait patiently until the legumes are mature and ready for the scythe. Upon delivery to the brewery, these ingredients are mixed together in the mash tun where they steep, creating a rich molasses-like liquid. Spicy hops are boiled with the thick brew, giving balance and complexity. Brewers yeast feasts upon the rich sugars, concluding its transformation into oatmeal stout."


  1. Dear God I love this post. And that was a nice thing you said. thank you for saying that. I have spent the last week and a half searching for a sugar pumpkin with no luck (there are people down the block with a pumpkin patch and I asked if I could buy one off of them. the guy said "well you can just have one." i said "oh wow thanks! do you know what kind they are?" and he said "well, when we planted them this spring we thought they were cucumbers, so no." we proceeded to laugh with one another). I'd like to have the pumpkin ale brewed by next weekend, but we'll see. Also, Avery just tapped their Kaiser last Friday!

    So, I've spent the evening thinking about my favorite bone-warming-brew from back Ohio's way and keep coming round to Bell's Expedition Stout. May I be so bold to make a request?: will you and Sean enjoy a bottle of it on my behalf?

  2. i love this comment on this post.

  3. we will do that! We tried Bell's special double cream stout this weekend and it was as though we were drinking milk from a cow made of pure gold.

  4. Mmm... Dogfish Head Pumpkin Ale is a new favorite!