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Two Beer’s Brewing Trailhead ISA: Lower ABV and TONS of Flavor

It is something of a quandary I find myself in, having to agree with my brother, but Jim is right about one thing.  It is hard to find beer that is both flavorful and lower in alcohol.  Living rural like I do, I often find myself a good distance from home when the mood strikes to have a beer.  For example Brewforia my favorite watering hole is actually about 30 miles from my house.  You can guess that I am not going to be taking a $100 taxi ride home, so I have to take it easy.

I too, like Jim, have gotten to a point in my life where drinking too much at night can make the next morning a bit of a downer, but yesterday I found a beer that is both flavorful and lower in alcohol.

Two Beers is a newish brewery out of Seattle that cans their brews and have several selections that are sessionable.  The one I had yesterday was a 4.8% ABV India Session Ale.  It was a beautiful beer.  Full of piney, citrusy and flowery flavors and I never even missed the fact that it is a good 2% ABV lower than most comparable beers.  This is a great every day drinker and you can have a couple without ill effect.

It was quite amazing.  It had a medium mouth feel, and the flavors were well integrated with its lower alcohol content.  The nose is quite bright and reminded me of Dale’s Pale Ale.  It was piney for sure, but also had a good mix of citrus and floral as well.  Its flavor was rich and full bodied.  Believe me I wasn’t expecting that.  I was prepared for a thin and watery near beer that was a glorified Macro clone, but not here.  No this brew exceeded my expectations at every turn.  It was flavorful, bright, and best of all it didn’t weigh me down or make me fuzzy.

So there you have it.  It does exist.  A very flavorful and a low alcohol brew that won’t weigh you down or make you wish you had another 2 hours to sleep the next morning.

-Don

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14 Comments on “Two Beer’s Brewing Trailhead ISA: Lower ABV and TONS of Flavor”

  1. January 5, 2012 at 4:37 pm #

    Love the post Don and you managed to get a pic of a bear in there too.

    I suspect that the reason you got more flavor in a lower ABV beer was that they loaded up on the hops but not the malts (aka sugars). Perhaps the type of yeast used might have made a difference too.

    • Don
      January 5, 2012 at 4:41 pm #

      Well Wayne, I’m not sure of all the particulars, but it was a great beer, and one that fits the bill where ABV is concerned. I think it will become a “go to” for me on a regular basis as they distribute here in Idaho and are readily available. Not sure how widely they are available at this point but look for them. You wont be disappointed.

      Yeah Jim took that picture of me last time we had an all night drinking binge. 😉

  2. John
    January 5, 2012 at 4:41 pm #

    4.8??? What’s that I hear? Lite beer calling D-0-N…..D-O-N…. C’mon baaaaack we missed you… Seriously good to hear since it’s all about the flavor anyway. If ya just want to get drunk a bottle of Skol vodka can get you there quicker. On the other hand I was at a bar tuesday and they had Backwoods Bastard, Bitches Brew and oak aged Yeti all on tap plus the best Bourbon/Rye selection I have ever see so so much for the lower alcohol…

    • Don
      January 5, 2012 at 4:44 pm #

      I hear ya. It took everything I had to not order the Chocolate Mountain Thunder. A great Chocolate Stout that is brewed right here in Boise! However at 9% ABV it wasn’t in the cards over lunch, because Stouts for me are like Lays Potato chips…I can’t drink just one!

      • John
        January 5, 2012 at 6:58 pm #

        Lotsa tini-tiny samples pulled me thru the whisky. That and one bitches brew!

  3. johnking82
    January 5, 2012 at 4:44 pm #

    Regarding the name, hikers love to pack can of low ABV beer for their hikes/camping. I heart bears.

    • Don
      January 5, 2012 at 4:45 pm #

      I ❤ bears too. This would be a great beer for such an activity.

  4. January 5, 2012 at 5:12 pm #

    Don, another beer you need to check out if it is available is 21st Amendment Bitter American. It clocks in around 4.4% I believe, and tons of flavor. http://21st-amendment.com/beer/bitter-american. It is their winter seasonal and available from January through March

    • Don
      January 5, 2012 at 5:36 pm #

      Funny you mention it, that was the beer I went to the case to get, but it was sold out. This was actually a plan B and turned out to be a really great one! I have yet to have the Bitter American, but it is in my sights and I will hit it as soon as it is available again. Looks like it won’t be a long wait!

  5. January 5, 2012 at 7:43 pm #

    I’ll have to look for this for the Summer, when it gets above 90 is when I like drinking lower ABV. I’m lucky in that I live in the city and can either walk or take a cab home, but I know where you’re coming from on the long drive, we run into this when we’re on the road and stop in at a brewery on the way; definitely have to monitor the intake.

    Hopefully, someday soon, Del Norte will start distributing up there in Idaho. All of their beers are 5% ABV or less.

    • Don
      January 6, 2012 at 12:27 am #

      I’d love to give them a try. It is a real ignored niche, big flavor low ABV brews

  6. January 6, 2012 at 4:33 pm #

    Do you even have taxis there? Are they driven by bears?

    • Don
      January 6, 2012 at 6:11 pm #

      Yes, and yes. When the bears get tired they switch to oxen.

  7. Brendan Hickey
    January 6, 2012 at 7:35 pm #

    Check out Boxcar (West Chester, PA) – all of their beers are made with an English mild spin – the IPA is the biggest hitter at something like 7.2% ABV, everything else is running about 5%.

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