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Carla Companion

Carla Companion is a craft beer lover and investigator of all things beer. She started a craft beer website and blog thebeerbabe.com in 2007, sharing her thoughts as she explored what was new in beer, as well as brewery visits, trips and "beer adventures." Moving to Portland in 2009, she found herself surrounded by the Maine beer community and has been exploring it ever since. In her blog, Carla profiles craft beer (and some mead and cider, too) being brewed in Maine, as well as looks into the people, places and stories behind the beer that makes the community so vibrant. Join Carla on her beer adventures and advice on where to get the best, newest, and most interesting fermented drinks around. Carla can be contacted at askthebeerbabe [at] gmail.com or on twitter at @beerbabe. Subscribe: RSS Feed for The Beer Babe

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The Beer Babe with Carla Companion
Posted: January 13, 2014

Rum, Whiskey, Coffee, Cranberries… Allagash keeps us guessing (and happy)

Allagash Brewing Company is best known nationally for it’s flagship beer – White – that makes up a majority of its sales and allows the brewery to experiment in lesser-known styles. While the rest of the country may know Allagash for its accessible Belgian-style beers, locals know it as the producer of the funky, sour, barrel-aged and just downright interesting. There is usually a bit of a pattern to the releases of beers like Hugh Malone, Victor, Victoria, and the unforgettable Curieux.

After a successful expansion earlier last year, Allagash seems to have hit the ground running with a steady stream of interesting brews – some that have been fermenting for months and others that are fresh out of the brewery. In all honesty,  I’m having a lot of trouble keeping up – and that’s a great thing.

What’s been going on? Well, since the holidays there have been more than a couple interesting beers popping up:

Allagash will release Oly's Cranberry Stout on January 25th.

Allagash will release Oly’s Cranberry Stout on January 25th.

  • Winslow, a tiny draught-only barrel aged beer, was released at Nosh Kitchen Bar last week. Described as a “dark wheat beer” it was aged for eight months in New England Distilling‘s rum barrels. Coming in at 13.5% ABV, this one is a great substitute for a hot alcoholic drink – it warms you from the inside out. 
  • James Bean (which should probably get nominated for “punniest” beer name) is going to be hitting taps soon as well. It starts out as Curieux (the delicious whiskey-barrel aged brew) and then becomes something completely different after cold-brewed coffee is added. 
  • Allagash has been teasing us with pictures of Oly’s Cranberry Stout (yep, you read “cranberry stout” correctly) since before Christmas. Recently they announced that it is being bottled for a brewery-only release scheduled for January 25th. The beer goes on sale at the brewery at 9am – if that’s not enough to get you out of the house they’ll also have free donuts and coffee.
  • A departure from one-offs and barrel-aged brews is the Saision – which will be sold in four packs and become widely available very soon. A great follow-up to White, the Saison is an extremely approachable and classic – slightly dry, slightly fruity and spicy – and I’m sure that many will find that it works well at the dinner table.

That’s not even to mention the recent collaboration with Cantillion (no news on a release date for that yet) or the pictures seen on Facebook of all of the interesting pilot batches they’ve been playing around with lately. All I can hope for is that people keep drinking enough White to keep this unique stuff coming our way.

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