Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Harpoon Island Creek Oyster Stout (100 Barrel Series #30)

Harpoon Brewery in Boston, MA is one of the larger craft brewers out there and they have been consistently producing great beers since way back in 1986. They started a great program called the "100 Barrel Series". As per the name, this is a series of one off limited batch brews made in 100 barrel batches by a different Harpoon brewer each time. The brewer chooses the style and formulates the beer, making each one unique and interesting.

This particular one is #30 in the series and was brewed by Katie Tame. More info can be found here: 100 Barrel Series Session 30
Brewed with fresh Island Creek oysters, this is quite a unique beer and one of the first I have sampled featuring molluscs. Here's a great write up featuring pictures from the brew day as well:

http://lovebeerlovelife.wordpress.com/2010/01/28/excuse-me-did-you-say-oyster-stout/



Quite excited to try this as I've never had an oyster stout brewed with whole oysters before. Pours into my glass a nice deep black with a cappuccino head on top that lingers around. Aromas of crisp roasted malts featuring some coffee and a slightly burnt/toasted undertone. Grainy with an earthy, mineral tinged accent. Scents of the sea that may just be in my head as well.

First sip brings smooth, roasted grains upfront. Notes of coffee and cocoa intermingle as it flows down with a touch of saltiness and briny minerals. Rather dry on the back end. Smooth overall and the oysters really add an interesting, yet not overwhelming twist.

Mouthfeel is smooth with punchy carbonation. Falling on the lighter side of the spectrum for a stout, making it easier to imbibe. Overall, I found this to be a tasty and unique brew. I appreciate the brewers imagination here and the whole oysters definitely have an impact. Worth checking out!

Overall this brew gets a rating of Great from me. (82/100)

Check out the main page for Harpoon and all they have to offer at www.harpoonbrewery.com