Although Amherst, Massachusetts
may be famous for the quality educations it provides through the University
of Massachusetts campus located there, some of us appreciate this quaint
Western Massachusetts town for something far more important: beer. Amherst
is the home of two brewpubs, Amherst Brewing Company and the Maplewood Farms
Restaurant and Brewery. The older of the two, Amherst Brewing is located
downtown within walking distance from the campus, and is a popular location
for students of age to while away an afternoon.
A wide range of beers is brewed here, from bocks to Oktoberfest to imperial
stout. Unlike many brewpubs, Amherst Brewing actually cold ferments their
lagers and cold ages them as well. Guest beers are also offered, usually
Guinness Stout and a beer from a local brewer like Berkshire Brewing (their
coffee porter was on when I visited this past weekend). A full menu is
offered here as well.
As a beer writer, I make it a point to visit breweries and brewpubs across
the country and sample the brews they offer. It’s a job many would envy, but
few can make a full-time career of it (don't feel bad, I don't make a living
of it either). It’s a labor of love that I would do for free if I weren’t
paid for it (but don’t tell my editor I said that). One of the perks that
come along with the position is free beer! Usually I’ll introduce myself as
a beer writer, present my business card, and get chatting about beer with a
brewer or bartender. I don’t do this to garner a free pint, but I’d be crazy
to turn one down!
Cascade I.P.A. pours to a cloudy amber-orange color with a generous head
formation and a spicy hop nose. The palate is rich and fruity with a gently
emerging hop bitterness that makes itself known but doesn’t overpower. This
is a lighter bodied IPA, with an original gravity of 1.055 and an alcohol
content of 5.3% by volume. I’m enjoying it tonight with stuffed peppers and
German spaetzel egg noodles drenched in butter and tossed with green beans,
salt and pepper.
And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For
reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.