Oakland, California. A city in flames. A city wracked by crime, inept politicians, fleeing sports teams, home foreclosures and the last remaining dregs of the "Occupy" movement. Into this burning breach steps a mighty tribute beer to the city, created by new Northern California upstart brewer CALICRAFT BREWING. Calicraft are safely positioned on the other side of the Caldecott Tunnel from Oakland in leafy-green Walnut Creek, but their beers are designed in name to be tributes to the state, the cities and the towns that surround them. For instance, "Buzzerkeley"! Groan.
Lucky for us, their "deep & soulful brown ale", OAKTOWN BROWN, is a fortifier of spirit for Oakland residents and non-residents alike. It's bold like an IPA, and roasted and strong like a good brown ale. "Three oaks were used in the fermentation" it says on the bottle. Three oaks?? Oaktown Brown has a sweet and musky taste and smell, and a much stronger bite overall that your typical milquetoast brown. It's roasted and chestnutty for real, not like everyone reflexively says when they review a brown ale. If this is Calicraft Brewing's starting point, then consider me on board for the ride. Even for Buzzerkeley. 8/10.