It had now been a week since my epic trip from Canton, Georgia brought me back to my birthplace of New England. A drive of 1075 miles over two days got me to Rhode Island, where I spent three days with my brother before heading north to Andover, Massachusetts. There, I worked for three days, and at the end of the last I drove another 90 miles north to Portland, Maine. Portland was my favorite destination when I lived in Rhode Island, and being this close I could not pass up the chance to visit again.
First stop in Portland: The D. L. Geary Brewing Company, located in an industrial park on Evergreen Drive. Geary’s was one of my first microbrewery loves, and definitely my first from Maine. There’s an interesting story surrounding my first Geary’s Pale Ale back in 1987, and I encourage you to click the link and read it. Still and all, as much as I love Geary’s beer, I’d never been to the brewery. Until now.
Geary’s has a tap room where you can sample beer and buy it to go, too. It was here that I got my first taste of Geary’s IPA in a sampler. I’d never tried this one before, and I enjoyed it along with old favorite Hampshire Ale and two other new beers for me, Geary’s Hudson Red Ale and Geary’s Autumn Ale. I bought a case of my beloved Geary’s Pale Ale in cans to take back to Canton.
Geary’s says this of their Autumn Ale on their website:
This ale has its origins in the traditional English style, with a generous helping of American exuberance. Bright copper in color, it has an assertive hop bitterness balanced with a subtle malt foundation. Dry hopping at two sates of the brewing process provides floral and fruity hop flavors adding to the complexity of the brew.
Ingredients from the website:
Two row English malts (pale and crystal); Mt. Hood, Golding, Fuggle and Cascade hops.
Geary’s IPA has an alcohol content of 6% by volume, and was running $14 a 12-pack at the brewery. Not bad, that.
My glass of Geary's IPA arrived a pale orange amber color with a very light head formation and a nose of light buttery yeastiness and herbal and citrus hops. Taking a sip, the beer has a light caramel maltiness up front accentuated by buttery notes all followed by fruity-citric hops, herbal grassy aroma and a light dry bitter finish.
This beer gets knocked on the beer geek sites for not being hoppy enough, so why do I rate it so highly? Folks, this isn't supposed to be an "East Coast IPA" or "West Coast IPA" or "Session IPA" whatever they're calling India Pale Ale these days. No, this is an honest to goodness India Pale Ale in the English style popular in the 1970s and 1980s. For me, it really hits the nail on the head in that vein, malty, yeasty, and with a pronounced but not overbearing hop character.
I very much enjoyed Geary's IPA, and I'm a fan of everything I've tried from Geary's. I wish I’d brought some of this home, as well. Geary’s sells its beers all around me, in both Carolinas and Florida, so perhaps we’ll see it in Georgia soon? One can only hope.
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.