Very few things excite me more than well respected breweries finally hitting the Minnesota market. Hailing from Sonoma County California, Bear Republic has been a West Coast staple for more than 20 years. I don’t know what compelled them to expand to our fine state, but I am counting my lucky stars that they are finally available in all of our stores. With a wall full of awards their beer should speak for itself, but since they are a fresh face in our market, I figured I should shine the spotlight in their direction. I’ll stop gushing about them and get to the reviews so you can carry on with the rest of your day.
And Now, the Brews
|Grand-Am American Pale Ale|
|I’ll admit that I am a sucker for a beer that’s classified as an American Pale Ale. Very few I’ve encountered have left me feeling disappointed. This one is another winner with its brilliant cloudy orange body. A citrus and pine nose is sure to make your mouth water with anticipation. The flavor almost mirrors the nose in intensity and pleasantness. All in all, a well-rounded crowd-pleaser that seems to disappear from the pint glass far too quickly.|
|6pk btl | 6% ABV | 50 IBUs
serving: Pairs well with a couple more while your favorite local baseball team continues to let you down
|Racer Number Five IPA|
|This beer is an iconic and legendary West Coast Style IPA. I’ve been waiting years to give this brew a whirl and it definitely lived up to all the chatter. A hazy amber body and healthy head that quickly dissolves make this beer easy on the eyes. Predictably pleasant tropical fruitiness on the pallet will make this appealing to any tried and true hop head. I had originally planned on having a single Racer while writing up the review for this beer which magically turned into three… the jury is still out on exactly how that happened.|
|6pk btl | 7.5% ABV | 75 IBUs
Serving: Pairs well with a Nascar race and frozen pizzas (yes, plural). I tried it firsthand. Don’t you dare judge me.
Bonus round beer review!
|Wabasha Red Desert IPA|
|Wabasha comes out swinging from some city that calls itself St. Paul. I’m still kind of puzzled how they landed on the name, but I am not the brightest bulb on the tree. One of the first beers they are bottling for retail release is the Red Desert IPA. It is devilishly red in color and benevolently balanced in flavor. A bold and full-bodied ale that has the power to tame any creature of the craft persuasion. It’s hard to imagine a better beer to kick down the doors and announce that these folks have arrived.|
|22 oz. btl | 7.2% ABV
Serving: Pairs well with a BBQ that you’re not hosting.