Sippy Time Beer Review – Grist House Brewing Co.

Grist House Flight

Taken by Kevin DiFrango

A few weeks ago, I went to Pittsburgh to celebrate my (second) bachelor party. We stopped in at four breweries to imbibe beverages. There were more breweries to visit in the city of my birth but we had to narrow it down for time reasons. Roundabout Brewery, Draai Laag Brewing Company, Grist House Brewing and Church Brew Works were the closest together. The later will not get a post because I have reviewed their beers previously.

Grist House was the third stop on. If you go by atmosphere, this place wins in a land slide. It felt like you were at a friend’s house for a gigantic summer party. The building looked like a converted house and they had wood picnic tables in a gravel parking lot. People had their dogs there too. Just lots of fun to be there. As long as it isn’t winter.

Wheatin’ For The Weekend (American Wheat) – They had a few more beers on tap than the five I got to try. I tried to keep it low ABV after the ridiculous numbers at Draai Laag. Wheatin’ fit the bill clocking in at a sessionable 4.3% ABV. It is also quite low in the IBU department at 23. Even though it was low IBU, they used Hallertauer, Horizon and Saaz. You don’t really get too much taste from them though. This beer was perfect for the conditions (both mine and those outside), light and summery.

Double Gun Dubbel (Belgian Dubbel) – I have a hard time passing up Belgian beers. Even when my aim was to keep the ABV down. 7.5% is not what the doctor ordered. At 20 IBU though, it stayed in the same bitter level as Wheatin’ which is normal for a dubbel. I may have had one too many tripels recently though as this didn’t taste very spicey. Or it could be the amount of beers I had tried. I was okay with this one.

Photo by Tim Galownia

Photo by Tim Galownia

Grissly Bear Brown (Brown Ale) – It was time to start raising the bar in the IBU department and it’s curious that it was in a brown ale which tend to be light. 38 IBU isn’t exactly going over board. It did give this brown ale a kick I don’t normally get from browns. They used Ahtanum and Horizon hops which I’m not all that familiar with in their taste profiles. The main taste still was the nice maltiness of a brown ale. At 5.8% ABV, it got me back on track to lower the alcohol consumption. Very tasty and slightly different brown ale.

Camp Slap Red (America Red Ale) – As with any brewery that I visit these days, if they have a red ale on the menu, I’m going to try it. This one is different than the rest because it has a whole lot of hops in it. They also happen to be hops that I think are among the most tasty, Citra and Columbus. I’m guessing that the later is the bittering hops while Citra is added later for some extra flavors. The IBU is 68 so the hops definitely come through the malt. The 2 Row, Crystal and Munich are all similar malts to those used in other red ales. At 6.8% ABV, this beer got me away from my mission but it was worth it.

Wheat Juice (Wheat IPA) – I knew this beverage would not suit my mission. I wasn’t sure I had tried a Wheat IPA though so I wanted to give it a whirl. This one barely had more malt and hops as Camp Slap but had a completely different taste. It is 7.0% ABV and 70 IBU. They do have some other similarities in that they use 2 row malt and Columbus hops. The wheat malt portion gives this beer a much lighter color and flavor. In the hops department, Sorachi Ace is combination of Brewer’s Gold and Saaz which give off a very distinct flavor. They also use Nelson-Sauvin hops which I’m not that familiar with. It was a very summery, light IPA that could be the first summer IPA I’ve tasted that doesn’t involve the word session in it. Thank goodness, give me summery and ABV. – Kevin

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