Monday, July 7, 2014

Weekly Duluth Beer Roundup for July 7, 2014

These past couple of weeks have been a busy one for myself between work, wedding planning and the 4th of July Weekend. As such I was unable to get out until this last Thursday when I made my way over to Fitger's Brewhouse which is conveniently located just a few blocks from my place of residence.

When I made my way there, I ran into an acquaintance of mine, Ellipsis, from The North Shore Craft Beer Roundtable event along with a couple of her friends. While we were out on the patio, I sampled a to a couple of beers that had just been added to the Brewhouse line up.

Fitger's 1100 Wheat Wine (10% ABV) -  It's a barleywine but brewed with wheat. It's a good thing that I was given this in a 10 oz. snifter because this is a powerful beer. The flavor starts out with some strong toffee sweetness and malted wheat. From that point on, it opens up to a rather strong hoppiness along with some vanilla bourbon booziness and just a bit of heat on the back end of the tongue. Despite the intense flavor, the overall palate is surprisingly mellow. The last time I had this was in the fall of last year so be sure to check it out while it's still on tap.

Fitger's Highland Fling Scottish Ale (5.8% ABV) - A clear brown color upon pouring, the flavor has a nice caramel maltiness to it along with some roasted barley and a light hoppiness. For a Scottish Ale, it's quite lighter than what I am used to in terms of appearance (brown) and overall flavor.

Later that evening, my future brother-in-law and his girlfriend made their way into town to spend the 4th of July here where we feasted on dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings, whose local selection I still find a bit lacking sadly. If they were to feature more local beers on tap (Bent Paddle, 612, etc.) I would be visiting there more often.

The following day we made our way to Canal Park Brewing where I had the Resonation Belgian IPA while my fiance had the Ankle Deep Pilsner and my future brother-in-law's girlfriend had the 40 Acre Saison, to which she found quite enjoyable. I was a bit shocked she enjoyed it since she later told me that it was not only her first craft beer but her first Belgian-style ale ever.

After having lunch, we made our way back to Fitger's specifically to try out their Red, Wheat and Blue beer, which was brewed specifically to commemorate our nation's birthday. It was not on tap the day before yet I wanted to try it out to see how it was since it was one of the reasons why we decided to pay a visit to the Brewhouse for the second day in a row.

Fitger's Red, Wheat and Blue (5.7% ABV) - The first thing that popped into my head was how much it reminded me of New Glarus' Raspberry Tart. Pouring a bright ruby red color, you've got a very strong raspberry flavor with some wheat notes. Not overly complex but extremely vibrant in terms of flavor. If you're a fan of fruit beers, this is a love letter made specifically for you. It makes wish the Brewhouse did fruit beers more often.

While I would've liked to have sampled more beers this past week, time constraints left my hands somewhat tied. Hopefully this week I'll be able to get out more and sample some more local beers. Until next week!


- Nick

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