Re-posted from my blog: Malted Musings.
At the beginning of the month Middletown's own Stubborn Beauty Brewing Company opened its doors, becoming the first full-fledged craft beer brewery in Middlesex County (that I know of at least). During their grand opening the place was packed, and they had five different brews on. Of the five I managed to score four before the kegs started running dry.
The four beers I got my hands on were the Nummy Nummy IPA, Kommandant Lassard, Don't Call Me Porter Justice, and the Speaking in Tongues. The one I started my flight with was the Nummy Nummy, which was good, as it was the first to tap out!
The Nummy Nummy pours out a murky, golden amber with a bright carbonated head and has a high, hoppy, and slightly sweet nose to it. At first taste this beer is dry, but it builds quickly up to a sharp, hoppy tone with a hint of malty sweetness. From here the beer hits its apex with a super-dry hoppiness at its height. The dryness is quickly tempered with a slight sweetness that dissipates rapidly, leaving a dry, bitter note on the palate. This is a medium beer that's almost super-bitter in its hoppiness, but it fades quickly to a more manageable level that dissapates with a nice hint of floral sweetness at the end. A solid IPA with a few sweet surprises.
Next up was the Don't Call Me Porter Justice. The name derives from the fact that Shane and Andrew feel like they haven't nailed down the recipe they have in their heads, so they keep releasing one-offs of their eventual flagship: Porter Justice. This porter pours out a murky caramel brown color, with a slightly muddled head. It smells of sweet caramel with a tinge of slight hopping. The taste is neutral at first, but it quickly builds to a rich coffee tone. It then maxes out with a very rich mocha malting which then falls back fast, leaving a warm and slightly sour malting on the tongue. This is a solid medium beer. It's filled with rich mocha overtones and a slightly sour aftertaste. It's robust, but not overbearing due to that warm coffee/chocolate sweetness.
Next was the Stubborn Beauty Dunkel: Kommandant Lassard. This pours out a murky brown color, almost like a root beer. It smells very sweet, with a hint of coffee. At first sip the beer is light with even carbonation, this moves to a very bright (almost Belgian) malting note. This bright burst of sweetness increases until finally cutting out quickly with a hint of dry hops. At the end of the taste I'm left with a neutral and slightly dry tone on the palate. This is a light to medium beer that is bright and sweet, more than anything, with a great balance of dry hop notes.
Finally was the Speaking in Tongues (as at this point the Saison had been kicked). This beer has a soft, rich head and a super-deep mocha color. It smells very bright and sweetly of hops. At first sip the beer is bright and mild with hopping with an enunciation of mocha. The taste quickly vanishes as the hops build up to a slight peak, which are then cut down by medium malting that brings the taste profile to mild, sweet, high hoppiness. The taste swells, then cuts out, leaving faint hoppiness and a tinge of mocha on the palate. This is a bright, hoppy and sweet Black IPA that is on the lighter side of medium. This beer is low on malting, but the hops are balanced out nonetheless and leave a great dry after taste that holds faint echos of the semi-sweet hoppiness.
At the writing of this Stubborn Beauty is actively creating and reforming recipes, and should have more varieties out soon. They have some great stuff that generally leans towards the larger side, but is always well balanced. Check out their website and Facebook for updates, then head to Eli Cannon's to try some of the beer that Stubborn Beauty made exclusively for the bar! Then follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and G+ for more tasting notes and malted musings.