I’ve been able to visit a number of new or new-to-me breweries over the last couple months, trimming down the list of places I needed to try for the first time (of course the list of places that I need to visit again seems to get longer and longer). One place that I still haven’t had a chance to try is the new Notch Brewery in Salem. This is mostly due to the fact that I don’t make many trips to that part of Massachusetts (a poor excuse), and that I only get a couple chances to visit breweries each month and I try to focus on beers I can’t find in bottle shops (I know, also a poor excuse). I know that Notch has a bunch of brewery only beers, and I’ll do my best to make the trek soon. I also want one of those kick-ass liter mugs. Even though I haven’t visited the brewery, there are Notch beers in my fridge all the time, I always like to have flavorful session beers on hand. The beer that has quickly become a staple is Infinite Jest, Notch’s hoppy American wheat beer. It is important to remember that this is a beer brewed with wheat but not a coriander/orange peel witbier or a German Hefeweizen with it’s banana and clove flavors. Actually, many hop forward pale ales and IPAs are now brewed with a solid dose of wheat, it helps accentuate the hop flavors and drinkability. Notch Infinite Jest is available year round on draft and in 12 oz. cans.
Notch Infinite Jest pours a hazy gold with a solid white head. The scent is a big burst of fruity new world hops. The flavor is hop forward, notes of orange, mango and lemon along with just a touch of bitterness. This is balanced by a solid malt presence for a session beer, hints of wheat bread and crackers. Infinite Jest is light bodied and super easy to drink, sessionable at 4.3% ABV. The finish is crisp and clean with a little lingering hop flavor. I’ve had Infinite Jest quite a few times now and it has emerged as my favorite beer from the brewery, which is saying a lot because I’ve enjoyed many Notch offerings! Hoppy Boston score: 4.75/5.
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