As we learned last week in the Floridian Beer Evolution Part 1, the regular beer drinker is familiar with Heineken, Corona, Budweiser and Presidente. But what he or she likely doesn't know is that Florida brewers are chipping in on the beverage side and creating fun, whimsical brews full of character and personality. The following Florida beers are particularly great. Brewed a stone's throw away, they run opposite the mainstream, watered-down norm and boast colorful labels, funky names and above all hoppy personalities.
The Faves, Part Two:
Monk in the Trunk Organic Amber Ale
From up the coast, this Jupiter import is an organic, Belgian style ale. Copper-colored with an inviting thick head, this brew is endowed with fruity and slightly spicy characteristics from Belgian yeast. Although it is rich and sweet on the nose, it is actually pretty light in body and washes down easy, leaving a squeaky clean finish. Drink one, drink a few, with or without food, it's a delicious brew at any occasion.
Holy Mackerel Special Golden Ale
Aptly named, "Holy Mackerel" is the first thing beer lovers blurt out when they give this beer its first go. This Fort Lauderdale native uses all imported ingredients and is handcrafted in small batches using German Pilsner malt, Czech hops, Belgian Trappist yeasts and all natural ingredients. Certainly rich in style, this Belgian style ale is similar to a Sierra Nevada, but has an oomph in hops and a higher blast in alcohol; this bad boy has 8.5% alcohol by abv. Hoppy and complex, it is meant to be savored, not chugged.
Holy Mackerel Mack in Black Imperial Black Ale
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Think caramel, barbecue smoke and chocolate. It marries roasted barley and grains with American hops and Belgian yeasts to create a rich brew meant ideally suited for decadent dishes such as BBQ ribs, triple creme cheeses, even Asian-style pork buns. Note: Full body, full flavor, full everything.
**Below is a listing of great places that sell the Florida favorites. Cheers!
8 oz Burger Bar, Barracuda, Burger & Beer Joint, Democratic Republic of Beer, Fratelli Lyon, Lost Weekend, Mandarin Oriental, Metro Bistro, Michael's Genuine, Norman's 180, Sakaya Kitchen, Shake Shack, Smoke't, Sugarcane Rawbar & Grill, Zeke's, Whole Foods & Milam Markets carry a great selection as well.
**Note: Milam's Market in Coconut Grove carries a particularly extensive selection.