One new-ish trend in craft brewing is hyper-local brewing, making beer entirely from locally sourced ingredients. This fits nicely into the craft brewing ethos, namely the idea that fresh ingredients thoughtfully prepared in smaller batches are always going to give superior products over something that is mass produced at the lowest possible cost. This can be challenging, especially since the vast majority of American hops are grown in the Pacific Northwest, so finding local hops sources in other parts of the country isn’t always easy. Jack’s Abby brewing in Framingham, MA focuses on lager beer, they feel that the extra time and expense required for brewing a lager is worth it for a great final product. So it isn’t surprising that Jack’s Abby would be on board with hyper-local brewing, and they showcase this trend with their Wet Hop lager. It also helps that the brewers parents own a farm in CT that grows hops, leading to the Mom and Pop’s Harvest series of beers that highlight local ingredients. Wet Hop lager is a balanced American lager made entirely from locally sourced ingredients, and it’s exactly the kind of beer I am looking to review on Hoppy Boston, a blog focused on New Englan beer.
Jack’s Abby Wet Hop lager pours a dark yellow, slightly hazy with a small white head. The smell is pretty mild, some earthy hops and base malt come through. The taste is well balanced, some bitterness along with a solid malty backbone, a little spiciness from the wheat malts and some grassy hop flavors. The beer is crisp, clean and easy to drink, at 5.2% ABV it’s not quite a session beer, but it is refreshing and goes down easy. This is a great beer to pair with some harvest foods, the malt and hops would complement hearty food like braises and squash dishes. Hoppy Boston score: 4.0/5