I first stumbled upon Evolution Brewing while doing a beer run in Maryland for a friend’s party. Always wanting to try something new and local I picked up a couple of six packs to see what this new brewery had to offer, and to confess, that initial meeting wasn’t all that. While there certainly wasn’t anything wrong with any of the beer, there wasn’t anything in those bottles that got me exciting like some things do.
Oh, you are sooooo funny. I was talking about beer, fur ball. You know what happens to naughty editors this time of year, don’t you?
That’s right, they get nothing in their Christmas stocking.
The cat? Yeah, I guess you could blame the cat – if we actually owned one, couch licker. Now if you don’t mind…
But it was when I attended a tap take over at Two Stones Pub and sampled a cross section of their other brews, some that are usually only available at the brewery’s tasting room, that I really got an appreciation for what this brewery was doing. Their Lot #6, a draft only DIPA that you can normally find outside the brewery, is very good especially if you’re lucky enough to find it on cask. One of their Menageries, which is a series of beers that they play around with some bourbon barrel aging techniques, was quite tasty. And their Morning Wood, an oatmeal stout with coffee aged in bourbon barrels, I liked a lot more than I should considering I’m not a big fan of either of those flavors. But it was about another beer, their Secret Spot, that I wrote:
From what I gathered this is a tap only winter beer. Pity, because this malty beer with a light floral hop ending was very good! I hope one day it will make its way into bottles, because I’d take it to some Christmas parties for sure.
Well Evolution must have read what I wrote because this year they’ve released Secret Spot in bottles. Will I enjoy it as much now as I apparently did back then? Let’s taste.
THEM: The brewery has not put Secret Spot up on their website yet, so there aren’t to many specifics I can give. I can tell you that the beer has 40IBUs and clocks in at 6.3%ABV.
ME: Secret Spot pours clear amber with a layer of lace across the top. The beer has a nice level of carbonation which keeps the lacing pretty stable throughout the drink. The nose is light with slight hints of caramel and hops. The flavor echos the aroma with caramel, notes of biscuit, and hops, with the later coming across as an herby/spiciness which is light on the tongue. The finish is clean, with a slight bitterness that leaves your mouth watering after each sip. To say the finish builds up as you make your way through the bottle would be an over statement, but it does leave your mouth with a little touch of sweetness to remind you of the experience. As I was getting to the bottom of the glass, I as actually getting an “ice tea” vibe out of this beer, which I though was funny since it’s a “winter ale”.
I found Secret Spot to be a very nice, drinkable beer and found nothing in the bottle to change my initial assessment from when I had it on draft last year. I’ll definitely be bringing it to some Christmas parties this year.
Time for another beer.