April 18, 1775, 700 British soldiers under the command of Lt. Col. Francis Smith gathered on Boston Common and boarded ships to raid Concord. These soldiers included eight companies of grenadiers, or soldiers who stood on the frontlines and heaved grenades at the enemy, and eight companies of light infantry. During this time, Paul Revere, along with two other riders, William Dawes and Samuel Prescott, began their nighttime rides to rouse the minutemen and warn citizens of an attack. Revere rode to Lexington, where Samuel Adams and John Hancock were staying en route to the Second Continental Congress, and managed to persuade Adams and Hancock to leave the city for their safety as they faced possible arrest. Revere was later captured, but fortunately for the Patriots, this occurred after the news of a British attack had already been conveyed. On the anniversary of Paul Revere’s famous Midnight Ride, Peaks and Pints presents a flight of British and American craft beer battling on our flight crosscut board that we call Craft Beer Crosscut 4.18.18: A Flight of Paul Revere. You get to decide which country wins!
BRITISH BEER: One of the oldest operating breweries in the world, Samuel Smith’s Old Brewery has been brewing with the same derivative yeast strain in the same stone vats for the last 255 years. They even keep a small team of Shire horses — a breed that traditionally pulled brewery wagons — to deliver beer around its hometown of Tadcaster, England. But for all this tradition, Samuel Smith is remarkably modern. All but one of its beers are vegan and the brewery has an entire line of organic ales, including its Cherry Fruit Beer brewed with organic cherry concentrate and organic cherry extract. According to Samuel Smith’s, it’s brewed at the All Saints Brewery in Stamford, England using all manually operated equipment. Barley and wheat are combined to make an ale, fermented and aged for an extended period, then taken to Samuel Smith’s brewery in Tadcaster, England. It is at this stage where they blend in pure fruit juice to create a fruit-forward ale with malt and some bittering hops on the back.
5.6% ABV, 9 IBU
COLONIES BEER: Brewed and blended by Brewery Ommegang‘s sister brewery Liefmans in Belgium, Rosetta combines old (aged on cherries at least three years) and young Flemish brown ale (or oud bruin) with a lively and fruity kriek, or cherry beer. The blend, which was developed by Cooperstown, New York’s Ommegang Brewmaster Phil Leinhart, results in a complex yet refreshing mahogany-brown brew that is an intriguing interplay of tartness and sweetness.
5% ABV, 28 IBU
BRITISH BEER: The chocolate is coming! The chocolate is coming! Samuel Smith’s has always brewed the old-fashioned way and the British operation still pulls water from its original well dug in 1758. Its Organic Chocolate Stout pours dark brown with a thin, khaki head. Breathe in the sweet milk chocolate, roasted malts, chocolate malt balls and a touch of vanilla. It’s velvety and delicious, with creamy chocolate milk, chocolate syrup and cocoa powder dancing on the tongue. Caramel, whipped cream, marshmallows and vanilla try to cut in.
11% ABV, 35 IBU
COLONIES BEER: Cooperstown, N.Y.-based brewery Ommegang released a new Game of Thrones series named the Royal Reserve Collection, which is “a collectible series of four special, limited release beers, each designed and brewed as an homage to one of four epic figures in the battle for the Seven Kingdoms,” according to Ommegang hype. The first beer in the series, Hand of the Queen, is an 11 percent ABV barleywine brewed with “a blend of specialty malts and carefully-selected old-world hops” that is a tribute to the Tyrion Lannister character on the show. Contrary to the violence on the TV series, Ommegang Game of Thrones – Hand of the Queen is not a punch in the face over the top barleywine, but a subtle and complex beer, that begs to be sipped. The nose is toffee, dark fruit, leather and light yeast. Very light chocolate, too, in the flavor with a light sweet caramel, molasses, vanilla bourbon, light brown fruit and faint hints of leather and tobacco.
OK, you chose the last beer of this flight. Will it be British brewery Samuel Smith or Colonial brewery Ommegang? Let one of the Peaks and Pints’ bartenders know your decision.
5% ABV, 32 IBU
BRITISH BEER: Popular in the late 1800s, the last oatmeal stout was brewed before the First World War until Samuel Smith reintroduced this style in 1980. Oatmeal conjures stick-to-your-ribs fullness, but Samuel Smith’s Oatmeal Stout is incredibly easy to drink. It hits the nose with sweet and roasted malt. The taste follows the nose with a big abundance of roasted malt with some sweet tones followed by a nice oatmeal flavor. It’s creamy and full with just a hint of graininess — and it just nails that almost-coffee, almost-chocolate flavor profile.
COLONIES BEER: Brewery Ommegang’s Belgian strong darkale Sirens’ Song is brewed with Pilsner, Midnight Wheat and soft Red Wheat malts, as well as noble hop varieties for balance. In addition to dark Belgian candi syrup, figs and raisins are thrown into the kettle for not only added complexity but also to represent cargo lost to the sea because of the bewitching sirens’ songs. Aromas of roasted malt and dark fruit are pronounced. The flavor begins with sweetness and caramel notes and finishes smooth with lingering hints of caramelized sugar and balanced bitterness.