Thursday, January 10, 2013

LINDEN STREET BREWERY MOVES INTO ALES

Remember LINDEN STREET BREWERY? Yeah, those were the guys that effectively redefined Oakland as "a place in which beer is brewed" a few years ago, putting together a bootstrap brewery and a series of lagers that got lips flapping. I personally didn't cotton to their beers - Urban People's Common Lager, Burning Oak Black Lager, etc. - all that much, though they were perfectly acceptable versions of what they were supposed to be. They're lagers. They were smooth, and had flavor. And tasted like lagers.

A multi-beer, drinks-only visit to San Francisco's St. Vincent Restaurant the other evening served notice to me and my drinking companions that Linden Street Brewery is now in the ale business. Welcome! Both ales of theirs I tried were delicious and something to definitely track if you're someone who likes a bold & flavorful new beer - and I'll bet you are. The first beer was called "Sawed-Off Saison", and it had a "lovely bouquet". That means it smelled nice. It also tasted great - a lush but classic sort of Belgian saison, less dry and yeasty than some I've had but altogether very solid. I awarded it the everyman's better-'n-average score of 7/10.

The second is a collaboration with the Tartine Bakery here in SF, called, that's right, "Biere de Tartine". It's a reddish bier de garde that was put together to celebrate the third anniversary of Linden Street Brewing, and it was a real treat (8/10). It's pictured here. I was too busy shucking and jiving with the people I was hanging out with to take detailed notes, but it was agreed amongst all of us that it was really, really good, and that we should really get on BART soon and go visit the Linden Street gang over in Oaktown. Again, it's nice to see 'em branching out a bit, and they're 2 for 2 on the ale front thus far.

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