Beer Matchup: Massachusetts vs. New York
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Which beer is better?
Which beer is better?
If there were a Super Bowl of beer involving teams from Massachusetts and New York, it would be a close contest.
Writer Steve Greenlee (@SteveGreenlee on Twitter) chose some of the best beers, in nine different styles, representing each state.
Take a look at how each style compares, and cast your vote for the beer you think is best.
(All descriptions are from the brewers, edited for space. Check out more beer news at the 99 Bottles blog.)
Samuel Adams Noble Pils
Coney Island Mermaid Pilsner
Similar to a traditional Czech pilsner, Samuel Adams Noble Pils is brewed with a blend of five Noble Hop varieties from each of the world's only remaining Noble Hop growing regions. The spicy, herbal and citrus hop character is well balanced by the Weyermann Bohemian Pilsner malt, adding honeyed malt character and full body without sweetness.
A dry-hopped American rye pilsner. Obey the siren song of the mythological Coney Island Mermaid. Four spicy hops flow into seven golden malts. Perfect as a momentary distraction, or equally enchanting as a parade toward deeper delights.
Samuel Adams Boston Lager
Blue Point Toasted Lager
Samuel Adams Boston Lager is the best example of the fundamental characteristics of a great beer, offering a full, rich flavor that is both balanced and complex. It is brewed using a decoction mash, a time consuming, traditional four vessel brewing process discarded by many contemporary brewers. This process brings forth a rich sweetness from the malt that makes it well worth the effort.
Copper in color this brew is made from six different malts. Toasted Lager displays a balanced flavor of malt and hops which makes it easy drinking. Special lager yeast is used to produce that long lasting, smooth finish.
Notch Session Ale
Saranac Pale Ale
Pale copper color, firm malt body and a dry, hoppy finish. Notch Session Ale is well balanced, but in true American fashion the hop flavor is up front, and finishes dry, which begs for another sip.
Saranac Pale Ale is a classic English pale ale brewed with six specialty malts and aggressively hopped with hand-selected English Kent Goldings & Fuggles hops. Look for a rich fruity hop bouquet.
Ithaca Flower Power
As the British Empire expanded, English brewers added extra hops to keep beer fresh for increasingly long sea voyages. The beer on board the Mayflower shared this trait. Mayflower IPA puts a descendant's twist on this style, with a powerful hop profile balanced by plenty of malt character. We use the freshest hops from the Pacific Northwest to give this beer its distinct, piney flavor and delightful, fruity aroma.
Elegantly traditional and rich in its hop character, this India Pale Ale is thirst-quenching and soul-satisfying. Each sip delivers a bounty of herbal and floral hop character, balanced by the fruity signature of our house yeast.
Southern Tier UnEarthly
Larry was originally brewed for the Publick House's Hop Head Throwdown. 85 IBUs, brewed with five hops (Amarillo, Centennial, Chinook, Simcoe, Magnum).
An uninhibited infusion of hops. Unearthly is a manifestation of the brewers' craft, skillfully balancing art and the forces of nature to produce a divine liquid. Delicately pour a taste into a fluted glass. Smell the enchanting aromas of the hops come forward as your first sip divulges this beer's fervent soul.
Ipswich Oatmeal Stout
Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout
Our award-winning stout is rich and malty with hints of chocolate and coffee. It's what espresso would be if it had the gumption to be beer. Makes a great dessert -- or meal.
Our award-winning rendition of the imperial stout style once made exclusively for Catherine the Great. We use three mashes to brew each batch of this beer, achieving a luscious deep dark chocolate flavor through a blend of specialty roasted malts. We brew it every year for the winter season. It is delicious when newly bottled but also ages beautifully for years.
Harpoon UFO Pumpkin
Imagine a pumpkin vine wound its way in a field of barley, and a brewer harvested it all to make a beer. Add Northwestern hops and a blend of spices, and you've got UFO Pumpkin. The malt combination provides a smooth body and slightly sweet flavor, which balances perfectly with the earthy notes derived from the pure pumpkin.
Our first-ever seasonal can is brewed as a true celebration of this special moment in time. We made a trip out to Yakima Valley to the oldest continually operating hop farms in the country, and met with Patrick Smith, a third generation hop grower. We selected and harvested 800 pounds of fresh "wet hops."
Light in color, effervescent with a billowy, well-retained head, it is very dry and strongly aromatic with light pepper and pear overtones. Heavier in alcohol at 7 percent alcohol by volume, it finishes clean and bright, with a very light bitterness.
This hoppy, farmhouse style ale has a champagne-like effervescence with a crisp but light-on-the-tongue finish. Hennepin, which serves well as an aperitif, has a majestic golden hue.)
Pretty Things Baby Tree
Southampton Abbot 12
Baby tree, a "quadrupel" brewed with a single strain of Belgian yeast, benefits from the addition of 40 pounds of dried California plums in the kettle -- hopefully contributing to the overall dark-fruit character of the beer.
Southampton Abbot 12, our version of a Belgian abbey-style dark ale, is made with imported ingredients and is formulated to allow the beer to age for several years in the bottle.