A Visit to City Steam Brewery

I promise, the picture is not as bad as it looks.

What you see here are the remnants of several beer flights (3 oz. pours in each mini beer mug) shared among my coworkers last week for our annual BAT Holiday Party. This year we decided to have the fiesta at City Steam Brewery in downtown Hartford. The historic multi-use facility has been transformed to accommodate the brewery itself, along with a restaurant, bar, pool room, and comedy club.

Most of us decided to start the afternoon with beer flights, your own choosing of five 3-oz. pours of City Steam's selections on tap. I opted for the following five beers (with City Steam's descriptions italicized):
  1. The Naughty Nurse - Our best seller! Brewed for a spicy, slightly bittersweet finish in the traditional English manner.
  2. Black Silk Stout - A very black and roasted Oatmeal Stout.
  3. American Wheat - A cloudy, unfiltered "West Coast style wheat", with less spicy flavor than its Teutonic cousins.
  4. Acapulco Gold - A very serious American Pale Ale. Columbus, Northern Brewer & Amarrillo hops create an intensely bitter mouth feel and warm citrus aroma.
  5. Norwegian Wood - A wonderful dark lager, spiced with cinnamon and cocoa.
The Black Silk Stout (bottom row, middle) leads off my Top 3. It was a very traditional Oatmeal Stout; dark, oily, and tasted of hints of chocolate. I can see why the Naughty Nurse (top row, left) is such a fan favorite. The ale has a great amber color and the spices certainly come through in this one; it is fairly hoppy which gives the ale a slightly bitter taste of the most enjoyable kind! I chose to stick the rest of the afternoon out with the Norwegian Wood (bottom row, right), a dark and "oak"y seasonal lager that I'd be more than happy to drink year-round.

If you find yourself in the Hartford area (and you better let me know if you are!) the City Steam Brewery is definitely worth a visit. The Thomas Hooker Brewery, in nearby Bloomfield, also boasts a fantastic lineup of beers that are regularly stocked in my beer fridge at home.

Thanks to City Steam for hosting our fantastic holiday party!

Happy Holidays!

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