As we hit the four month mark of social distancing/shut-down I am evaluating what has changed for me, especially because it seems like it will be a long time until life gets back anywhere towards “normal”. I miss restaurants even though they were an occasional treat for me, and my bar visits were even more rare even pre-COVID (consequences of life with a your family). I definitely miss brewery visits, although I plan on upping my game in that area soon (but probably curbside pickup only for me still). One positive change, I’ve focused my beer stock-ups on variety, and I have tried a ton of new beers from new-to-me breweries in the past few months. On my last beer run I grabbed a bunch of beers from Honest Weight Artisan Beer out of Orange, MA. I was familiar with Honest Weight, but I had mostly tried their Belgian and barrel-aged beers that make it more regularly into distribution, so I was excited to see cans of some of their highly regarded hoppy ales available at my favorite bottle shop. One of the beers I grabbed was Branch Bridge, an oat pale ale brewed with Mosaic, Centennial and Chinook hops and available on a rotating basis on draft and in 16 oz cans. This is a really interesting combination of hops, some old school west coast IPA hops mixed in, so I was excited to give the beer a shot.
Honest Weight Branch Bridge pours murky deep orange with a massive off-white head. The aroma features a solid burst of hops, fruity and a little floral. This beer has an interesting mix of hop flavors, notes of grapefruit, lemon, peach, and pine along with a bit of late bitterness. This is balanced by a noticeable malt backbone, hints of crackers and oatmeal. Branch Bridge is medium bodied and easy drinking, sessionable at 5.0% ABV. The finish is crisp with a little lingering hop flavor. This is a unique pale ale, an interesting mix of New England and West Coast substyles, the kind of beer I like to explore. Hoppy Boston score: 4.25/5.
Previous Honest Weight Reviews: