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Below you will find informative descriptions of all the different styles of beer available at our various locations. View a current beer & wine list by visiting our menu page.

Hops and Wheat

Ale Vs. Lager

Contrary to popular belief, the biggest difference between these two broad categories is the strain of yeast and the temperature of fermentation chosen by the brewer. Ales can taste like lagers and vice versa. Color, alcohol content, bitterness and malt character can run the gamut for both. In practice, what matters is not whether a beer is an Ale or a Lager, but whether it is enjoyable to drink.

What’s in a style?

American Brown Ale

Hoppier and slightly more alcoholic than its English cousin, this style was one of the original staples of the American craft beer revolution, and generally features American-grown hops and a clean, crisp, slightly hoppy, slightly roasty flavor profile. (e.g. Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar)

AMERICAN IPA

Hoppy, crisp, and delicious, an American revival of an English style, but with more hop aroma and bitterness, along with a moderately higher alcohol content. (e.g. Flying Dog Snake Dog IPA)

AMERICAN IMPERIAL (DOUBLE) IPA

First brewed in Northern California, this style features huge additions of hops, resulting in complex aromas and flavors of grapefruit, pine and herbs. Imperial in every facet, alcohol ranges from 8-11.5% by volume. (e.g. Harpoon Leviathan Imperial IPA)

AMERICAN PALE ALE

The style that started a revolution. First brewed in the early 1980s in Chico, California, these beers tend to feature noticeable, but not over-the-top, hop bitterness, nearly balancing malt sweetness and moderate alcohol contents. (e.g. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale)

AMERICAN STRONG ALE

Generally a catch-all term for beers that don’t quite fall into more traditional styles. Color, bitterness and mouthfeel varies greatly between examples. High alcohol content tends to be the glue that bonds the style together. (e.g. Flying Dog Double Dog)

BARLEY WINE-STYLE ALE

Created by the renaissance in response to the price of imported French wine, this style always brings a fairly aggressive alcohol content, with flavor and aromatic profiles ranging from quite bitter to nearly balanced to complexly malty. (e.g. Sierra Nevada Bigfoot)

BELGIAN SPECIALTY ALE

An umbrella term for the myriad of traditional and rustic Belgian beers that tend to fall outside or in between traditional styles. Often including the use of wild yeasts and/or old-school methods, these beers are refreshing, layered and extremely complex. (e.g. Orval)

BELGIAN STRONG ALE

Originally brewed exclusively in the Trappist monasteries of Belgium, these beers illustrate the complexities of brewers’ yeast. Aromas of dark fruits, spices and malt, with similar flavors, and moderate to high alcohol content. (e.g. Chimay Rouge (Red))

BELGO-AMERICAN IPA

Featuring the fruity and spicy complexity of Belgian yeast, with a citrus/piney goodness of American hops, this style is brewed on both sides of the Atlantic and often features an assertive alcohol content. (e.g. Flying Dog Raging Bitch)

BOCK/DOPPELBOCK

Richly malty, this beer was originally the pride of Einbeck, Germany. Bready, caramel, toffee-like flavors tend to shine through in the majority of examples, with correspondingly low levels of bitterness. Doppelbock is the big brother of bock, and features even more malt flavor, complexity and alcohol. Doppelbocks also carry names that end in the suffix –ator. (e.g. Ayinger Celebrator)

CIDER

Not your grandma’s cider. This fermented beverage was once America’s most popular alcoholic beverage, and is now enjoying a modern-day renaissance. Flavors can range from quite sweet to aggressively tart, with alcohol content spanning the spectrum between quite low and aggressively high. (e.g. Samuel Smith’s Organic Cider)

ENGLISH BROWN ALE

Another catch-all term for the beers produced for industrial workers in the northern and southern parts of England. Easily drinkable in moderate quantities, without sacrificing flavor or complexity, these beers tend to show caramel malt sweetness, dark fruit notes from their yeast strains and varying level of earthy bitterness. (e.g. Newcastle Brown Ale)

ENGLISH PALE ALE/IPA

Includes English “Ordinary” bitters, “Special” bitters and “Extra Special” bitters. These beers range in their alcohol content, but tend to showcase the beautiful character and complexities of traditional English Pale and caramel malts, along with the characteristically fruity character of English yeast strains. Alcohol content and bitterness tends to be lower than American Pale Ales. (e.g. Boddington’s Pub Ale; Great Lakes Commodore Perry IPA)

GERMAN PALE LAGER/PILSNER

Pale lager is an umbrella term for various styles, including Dortmunder Export and Munich Helles. These beers tend to feature the clean flavors of bready German malt, herbal hops and a crisp, fairly dry finish. German and Czech pilsners marry herbal hop aromas and assertive bitterness with crackery malt character. (e.g. Bridge Brew Works Longpoint Lager; Redhook Pilsner)

GLUTEN-FREE BEER

Generally featuring sorghum instead of traditional malted barley/wheat, these beers extend the pleasure of consumption to our friends with allergies to gluten. These beers also tend to be more indicative of those consumed in global regions where barley is not cultivated, such as various parts of Africa. (e.g. Green’s Gluten Free Amber)

GUEUZE/LAMBICS

Beers falling into these styles represent the oldest and most traditional of existing beer styles. Always including the use of wild yeast and bacteria in their production, these beers show wondrous characters of tartness, farmhouse “funk” and almost wine-like complexity. Thankfully these nearly-lost beers are enjoying an exploding popularity in the U.S. both in terms of their consumption, as well as production by craft brewers. (e.g. Lindeman’s Cuvee Rene Gueuze)

PORTER

Developed in 18th century England as a combination of various beers for the multitude of train car porters in London. This style can include beers that range from coffee-like to caramel, often with a just-short-of-balancing hop bitterness. (e.g. Sierra Nevada Porter)

STOUT

Originally a derivative of Porter, stouts can run the gamut of flavors, from light and dry, to richly malty, to almost espresso-like. Bitterness is often derived more from the choice of roasted malt than from hops. Alcohol content can range from quite low to aggressively high. (e.g. Samuel Smith’s Oatmeal Stout)

WHEAT BEERS

A catch-all term for beers whose ingredients include a significant portion of wheat, and fall into three main categories:

AMERICAN WHEAT BEER

Developed in the American northwest in the early 1980s, this style is crisp, refreshing and enjoyable; showing a slight tartness and light notes of banana and citrus at times. (e.g. Widmer Brothers Hefeweizen)

BELGIAN-STYLE WITBIER

A once nearly-extinct style, revived in Hoegaard, Belgium in the 1970s. These cloudy beers often show aromas of coriander and citrus, followed by flavors of the same. Their dry, lightly citrusy finish refreshes the palate. (e.g. Hoegaarden)

GERMAN HEFEWEIZEN

A style that features the wonders of yeast. Banana and clove aromas and flavors illustrate the impact of the aforesaid to the creation of our favorite beverage. A hazy appearance, light mouthfeel and crisp, refreshing finish often typify the best examples of the style. (e.g. Ayinger Bräu-Weisse)

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