Brooklyn Brewery – Brooklyn, NY
Local 2 – 9.0% ABV – 25.4 oz. $11.99
“Ale brewed with honey and citrus peel. 100% bottle re-fermented”
I enjoyed this beer at a Brooklyn Brewery tasting on Friday night, and decided to bring home a bottle thinking that my wife would enjoy it, too.
We popped the cork on the large bottle and immediately thought how it resembled Champagne. The display of the cork was how the sales representative for Brooklyn Brewery presented the bottle. I thought it was cool, and displayed the cork the same way.
We poured this into wine glasses because the beer has many of the same qualities as wine, which will be discussed momentarily.
Local 2 poured a deep red-brown with a lingering, foamy and tan-colored head. The head withdrew slightly and I realized there would be extensive lacing down the glass as we proceeded to enjoy this beer.
The aroma is reminiscent of dried fruits including raisins and plums. There is also a malty aroma bringing to mind caramel apples and caramelized sugar.
As I tasted it, I was surprised how forceful the honey flavor was at the beginning of the sip. The taste developed into the flavors that I noticed in the aroma: raisins, plums and other dried fruits. There is also a citrus tang there, as well. Following the dried fruits, the sugar and caramel flavors made themselves known. The taste concluded with a very interesting fresh grape flavor. The first taste was so complex, that it took quite a few sips to describe all of the flavors that were going on. Of particular note is the high alcohol percentage that brought a heavy booziness to the flavor.
The mouth feel resembles Champagne in the light-bodied, sparkling, highly-carbonated way. Also, this is an extremely dry beer. Again, very similar to a dry Champagne. The booziness noted above gave each sip a very warming quality. A rather enjoyable one, at that.
One negative of this bottle is that it seems a little young. If one were to let it sit upright in a cool basement to age another year, I think the flavors would meld and create a sublime winter-warmer style brew. The second negative was the price. It was one of the higher priced bottles I’ve purchased.
We ended up really enjoying Local 2. My wife and I both felt like we were drinking a fine wine, which was a good way to justify the higher price for the bottle. It was in line with a good quality wine. Dry, and highly carbonated, the fruit and sugar flavors brought great things to a beer that is very much at home on a cold fall night. Grab a bottle, and let it age until late 2011, and I think good things will happen.