Earlier this week I posted a recap of my first, and very long overdue, visit to Stone Cow Brewery in Barre. My whole family had a blast and we will definitely be back sometime in the near future. Obviously, a big part of a visit to any brewery, and probably the piece that will most interest the readers of this blog, is the beer. I glossed over that part a bit in the first article with the intention of doing a follow-up piece with full reviews, which is what you are reading right now. I brought home 4 different 4-packs of cans from the brewery including their American IPA Roll in the Hay IPA and their sessionable Farmhouse Saison. Stone Cow rotates through a number of different styles but these seem to be two of Stone Cow’s “flagship” beers. All of Stone Cow’s beers are available on a rotating basis on draft and in growlers and cans to go from the brewery.
Stone Cow Roll in the Hay IPA pours clear light orange with a solid white head. The aroma features plenty of hops, citrusy and floral. This is an American IPA that leans towards the West Coast style. The hops are abundant, notes of lemon, orange, pine, and some dankness along with some bitter bite. A pale malt backbone adds balance along with hints of bread dough and biscuits. Roll in the Hay IPA is medium-bodied and smooth, not overdone at 6% ABV. The finish is crisp with some lingering hop flavor and bite. This is a tasty American IPA, plenty of flavor, drinks easy, a nice change-up from the juicy and sweet NEIPAs that dominate the market. Hoppy Boston score: 4.25/5.
Stone Cow Farmhouse Saison pours clear deep yellow with a full white head. The aroma is highlighted by spicy and funky Belgian style yeast. The yeast also leads the flavor, notes of apricot, barnyard, clove, and pepper. The yeast flavors are complemented by some earthy and citrusy hops along with a solid malt backbone that adds hints of whole grain bread and crackers. Farmhouse Saison is light, easy-drinking and sessionable at 5% ABV. The finish is dry with some lingering yeast flavor. This is a delicious saison, full-flavored but crushable and refreshing, perfect for summer. Hoppy Boston score: 4.5/5.