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Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Great Beer Expo at the Meadowlands Expo Center

One of my favorite beer events of the year is the Great Beer Expo at the Meadowlands Expo Center in Secaucus, NJ.  So on Saturday, February 4, we hit up the afternoon session from 12:30-4pm (because what's better than day drinking on a cold Saturday?) This year I got the chance to try some new breweries and focus more on some local NJ breweries that I have only had a few times. I tried to be a bit more deliberate in my approach and tried to take notes (although I abandoned that after about an hour.)  What I came away with was some great times with friends, a list of some new breweries to check out and a Top 10 list of my favorites from the beerfest.  

There were a lot of beers to sample and in order to make it through the entire beerfest, I had to skip some very solid beers that I really enjoy. Although, there are some that I couldn't resist sipping on while chatting with the brewers from those establishments such as Bolero Snort Moosaic, Demented Brewing Co. Double Dementia, Beach Haus Winter Rental, and Defiant Brewing Co. Abominable to name just a few. So this list is definitely not a "Top 10 Beers at the Great Beer Expo" list. Instead, it's a list of my favorite beers that I had for the first time at the #GreatBeerExpo.  

#10  Heavy Seas TropiCannon
Love Heavy Seas beers and this one was another good IPA. Love the tangerine flavors and at 7.2% it will definitely rock the boat.

#9 Owl's Brew Radler The Blondie
Both this and That's My Jam are light and sweet radlers made with tea. I prefer the blonde (of course) and think this would be a great change of pace drink while hanging down the shore.

#8  Rivertowne Brewing Patrick's Poison Imperial Red Ale
This red ale has a good malty flavor with lots of hops that give a nice balance.

#7 Sly Fox 360° India Pale Ale
4 different kinds of hops give this beer a lot of flavor and bitterness.  I can't wait to grab a 4 pack and really be able to get a better taste.

#6 Manayunk Sour Is the New Black
A sour stout is a beer combo that I have never had before. This one was not to tart and not too stout but had an easy sour taste to go with some malty flavors.  It makes this list for its uniqueness and good flavor.

#5 Czig Meister Blacksmith
Smokey flavor is very unique and allows this stout to stand out.

#4 Southern Tier Crème Brûlée and Raspberry White
Both beers are good on their own, but when mixed together they do something magical in your mouth.

#3 Rivertowne Brewing Hala Kahiki Pineapple Ale
Another one from this Pittsburgh area brewer. Light and sweet, but the pineapple flavor is so on-point that it is hard to resist.

#2 Devil's Creek Brewery Caramel Apple Brown Ale
You get a light apple flavor with caramel to make this brown ale spot-on in its name.

#1 Two Ton Brewing Brute Squad (Coffee & Cinnamon Firkin)
I love a good firkin and this offering from Two Ton did not disappoint.  Neither flavor was overpowering but both were noticeable enough to make it a unique take on their Brute Squad hoppy American style barleywine.


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