Summer 2015 Beers at Concrete Beach Brewery

I’ve been trying to make it fairly well known that I’ve been brewing a beer with my new buddies at Miami’s Concrete Beach Brewery. They’ve been noticeable around South Florida for a little while due to their six-packs of Rica and Stiltsville. The brewery, and head brewer Chris McGrath, have considerable leeway in what they want to brew for the social hall in Wynwood.

I had been there with my wife before they opened, but I had to go back when it was time for brew day for our Mojito Cream Ale. Naturally, Chris had expanded the options a great deal, and I had to try them all.
Life is so hard sometimes…

This isn’t exactly in order, and I have to start off with the most important beer of the day:
C.R.E.A.M. by Concrete Beach Brewing

C.R.E.A.M. by Concrete Beach Brewing

C.R.E.A.M. (Cream Ale, 4.2% ABV) -This is actually the test batch of cream ale that was brewed to get ready for brewing Mojito Cream Ale. It just so happens to be a pretty big hit with guests at the social hall. It stays pretty true to style with a soft, not hoppy and not malty flavor. It’s very approachable and even has a slight residual corn sweetness from the flaked corn used (which is indicative of the style). On its own, it’s an excellent beer. Now to fully unleash it…

But that’s not all I had. I was such enough to sample the almost-released Double IPA (Imperial IPA, 9.8% ABV).
Double IPA by Concrete Beach Brewing

Double IPA by Concrete Beach Brewing

IPA lovers are going to feel right at home with this beer. Lots of big, juicy hop flavor, and Chris made sure to get some of the more citrus-forward hops (like Citra) to accentuate and amplify that. Strong, but well-balanced finish.
Tropic of Passion by Concrete Beach Brewing

Tropic of Passion by Concrete Beach Brewing

Tropic of Passion (Pale Wheat Ale, 4.9% ABV) – On the surface, it’s a pale wheat ale, maybe a bit less malty than Stiltsville. But when you taste it, you get a big, sharp, tart flavor. That comes from the passionfruit used to give the beer a kick. It’s fresh passionfruit, too, so don’t expect the beer to be pink. But the fruit adjunct makes the beer a bit more aggressive and noticeable than a standard wheat ale would be.

Black Lager by Concrete Beach Brewing

Black Lager by Concrete Beach Brewing

Black Lager (Schwarzbier, 4.8% ABV) – Yes, Concrete Beach can lager. If you’re not familiar with that, layering requires special tanks and double the fermentation time of an ale. It’s well worth it, as lagers tend to be much smoother and softer. That’s exactly what you get with Concrete Beach’s Black Lager. Sure, it has strong flavors of heavy malts and coffee (think pumpernickel), but it’s still remarkably light and approachable. It doesn’t feel watery, but very smooth and full of complexities.

Concrete Pale Ale by Concrete Beach Brewing

Concrete Pale Ale by Concrete Beach Brewing

Pale Ale (Pale Ale, 5% ABV) – It’s like an IPA with water wings. There are noticeable hops in the beer, and they definitely bring a bitter and floral edge to the beer. They’re just not brutal, which is nice. It’s a very balanced beer, with just enough hop character to give it an edge, but not so much that you have to prepare.

Helles Lager by Concrete Beach Brewing

Helles Lager by Concrete Beach Brewing

Helles Lager (Helles Lager, 5% ABV) – I enjoy a good Helles (two syllables, please) Lager. They tend to be what a mass-produced beer would be if they actually had some flavor to them. Their Helles is robust and flavorful with a buttery, bready flavor that feels rounded and meaty. There isn’t a ton of malty sweetness to the beer, it’s more mature and mellow than that. But it’s bright and it sure is tasty.

Rye Porter by Concrete Beach Brewing

Rye Porter by Concrete Beach Brewing

Rye Porter (Porter, 5.2% ABV) – This was a beer Chris was very excited about, and for good reason. It’s a dark, foreboding porter, with a lot of rough and roasted malt notes of bread and coffee, but with the added spice from rye. The rye gives the beer an almost floral flavor, big with earthy qualities. It’s not overly alcoholic, but it’s broad and warm.

So that’s most of what Concrete Beach has right now. Just remember that if you’re in South Florida on Tuesday, August 18th, the release party for Mojito Cream Ale will be at Concrete Beach Brewery from 7-10 PM.
I’ll be there; hope to see you there, too.
Drink Florida Craft (especially stuff I helped brew),
Dave
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