Hogshead is the brewery I didn’t know I was missing.

During an impromptu survey of new breweries on Saturday, Mama Monroe and I found out that Hogshead brewery was open. Two weeks in, the tap list was short. That notwithstanding, this is my type of brewery. There was not a Kaffir lime leaf in sight. No lavender, ginger lemongrass or fartberries either. Just really solid English-style beers. The most exotic ingredient that we discussed was Hersbrucker hops and their qualities for dry-hopping.

I  will happily admit that I like well constructed, simple beers, but I get the current beer culture. We should be trying to tease new flavors out of beer. Innovation is awesome. But come on, I will bet that quite a few of you long term craft beer drinkers out there have sluggable session beers in the fridge that you turn to at the end of the day. It looks like Hogshead is going to be there to provide rad session beers to fuel loud talking.

Run for the hills! Then pour some sugar on me!

On Saturday, there were two beers on. They were presented both in standard carbonation and pulled off of casks with a hand pump. Chin Wag was a fantastic red ESB that was full of malt flavor with just the right amount of hop bite. It showed very well both ways, but the CO2 sparkle brought the hops out a bit more. The other beer, Lake Lightning, is a light “summer ale” that has the lovely sweetness of Marris Otter malt and a nice spicy hopping. They were out of the Gilpin Black Gold which their website suggests has some coffee and nut in it. I hope that is coming from the malt!

Mike behind the bar is a nice cat and seemed pretty happy to be there. Stephen, their head brewer, is a dreadlocked UK transplant and seems like a hell of a guy. He shares my love of Fuggles hops and the sweet Marris Otter malt that goes into most of my brews. I tend to agree that Challenger and Fuggles should be classified as noble hops too. If he keeps pumping out the cask-conditioned beers like the ones I tried the other day he will make those old hop classifiers change their minds.

Anyway, I am sure that in time, there will be beers over there that are aged with the most rare microorganism that the world can find, spiked with leaves of the orchids that grow next to an underground river deep in a mountain in the center of the Sahara. It will probably be pretty good too. Until then, if you want an ESB and someone genuinely calling someone else a wanker, head over to Hogshead and drink up.

About Chris Washenberger

What is my favorite drink? Huh... That is a tough one. What do you have? That is probably it.

  • http://twitter.com/bionicjenn Jennifer H

    No fartberries? Damn the man.

  • http://twitter.com/capulinflicker Johnathan Valdez

    Word on the street is that Denver Beer Co. is now on the hunt for the exotic “fartberry” mentioned in this write up and will include it in their next brew along with thyme and sunshine dust.

    • http://twitter.com/DenverHBC Chris Washenberger

      If they find them, let me know. I think they are found in a cabbage patch two days after the stork drops a baby off.

  • http://devin.reams.me/ Devin Reams

    The Gilpin Black Gold was a treat (we got the last pour a week ago, actually) and it’s especially fun to watch it come from the cask pump. A nice ‘old school’ English touch.
    On top of that, I think Hogshead is a great addition to the West Highlands neighborhood. The decor (nice wood) was especially nice.

    • http://twitter.com/DenverHBC Chris Washenberger

      I really like the attitude over there. All joking aside, the beer is good and I think the street benefits from it. I will definitely be happy houring there.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Lauren-Hendrick/16831281 Lauren Hendrick

    Chris, any idea what the hours are? Having a hard time figuring that out. 

    • http://twitter.com/DenverHBC Chris Washenberger

      The way it was told to me for right now, the hours are fairly limited. Saturdays only as of the last two weeks. Possibly Friday nights.

  • Olliesbarbers

    I drive passed this place fairly regularly. I have been meaning to stop in. Thanks for the tip!