My Top Five Local Brews
A few years ago, while living in Fort Collins, Colorado, my wife and I found ourselves in the heart of the craft beer revolution. We visited plenty of breweries in the region and saw that the craft beer culture was one that valued quality beer, a love for outdoor life, collaboration and community. After moving back to the Midwest, we began to imagine establishing a brewery and contributing to the blossoming craft beer culture in Goshen. We are now well on our way to recycling and renovating the old NIPSCO building into Goshen Brewing Company, a family-friendly brewpub focusing on farm-to-table craft beer and food. Since moving back, we’ve found that others in the region have the same mindset of collaboration and community—and are also making some great beer.
Here are a few of my favorite local brews:
1. Gumption Double Amber Ale, 8.8% ABV
Iechyd Da Brewing Company
317 N. Main St.
This big beer pours a deep reddish brown that is brilliantly clear and leaves a small, lacy head. The aroma has strong notes of lemon and orange citrus. The carbonation is perfect and has a soft mouthfeel. It has plenty of the same citrus flavors and is backed by the caramel malt to balance it out. Although this beer is loaded with hops, the finish does not include a palate-wrecking
bitterness. Owners Chip and Summer Lewis are as good as it gets in
2. Chucky Imperial India Pale Ale, 8% ABV
Evil Czech Brewing Company
370 N. Main St.
This beer pours a lacy head and has a great orange color. Th ere is stone fruit with soft biscuit and caramel undertones in the aroma. The same flavors develop nicely throughout with a finish that has a hefty amount of bitterness but is balanced really well. Order me another round.
3. Mail Order Bride Russian Imperial stout, 10.2% ABV
Bare Hands Brewery
12804 Sandy Ct.
This beer pours pitch black and tastes of dark chocolate, has hints of roasted coffee and a subtle smokiness on the back end. It packs a hefty amount of alcohol, but you won’t find a harsh alcohol presence like you might find in other big beers. If you show up in the taproom, you’ll be greeted by friendly locals.
4. Emptiness Fruit Beer, 6.6% ABV
5885 Sawyer Rd.
This is the color that I want to see when drinking a beer with fruit additions: a little hazy and a nice golden-orange
hue. My taste buds are already prepped for what is to follow: I smell lemon, stone fruit and a bit of wheat. The taste is citrus, apricot mid-palate and apple, with some wheat and a tart finish. This is one refreshing beer.
5. Boomerango India Pale Ale, 7.7% ABV
Burn ’Em Brewing
718 Freyer Rd.
Michigan City, Indiana
Boomerango pours hazy golden and reeks of tropical fruits and malt in the background with a nice, lacy head. It has a medium body and tastes of mango, pineapple and a bit of caramel. The finish is pleasant with a moderate bitterness. This India pale ale has additions of puréed mango! If you don’t already know of them … you will.