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White Birch Hooksett Ale

August 1, 2011

White Birch is an interesting brewery from out of New Hampshire. They claim to be a nano-brewery, brewing entirely by hand at a barrel or two per day. White Birch prides itself on being a business which supports local businesses, while experimenting in the wider world of beer. I haven’t had many beers of theirs, but I might continue to taste them if solely because of the effort this small brewery is putting in. Still, one late evening when I realized I had already had many of the beers on tap before, I spied their Hooksett Ale (named after White Birch’s hometown) on tap, and having never had it, I decided to give it a go.

The beer poured a hazy golden brown with a white head. Not surprising given its status as a mixture of Belgian and West Coast style beers. The scent was an intriguing mixture of piney hops, grapefruit, and honey, that while not necessarily entirely pleasing to me did strike me as interesting.

The mouthfeel was fairly smooth, though it had a heaviness to it that I have some trouble fully explaining. There was a strong spicy hop foretaste that slowly turned to milder piney hops. The beer then shifts to a taste of delicious fruits and honey, ending on this sweetness with a standard hop after bite. My nose trick did help bring out the fruit and honey more, revealing that the fruit seemed to be apples and cherries, but this was very mild. In the end, the Hooksett Ale is interesting for the novelty of the brewery but nothing I’d go crazy over.

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