Great North Aleworks, Manchester, NH

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We visited Great North Aleworks just before Christmas. Great North Aleworks is a 20 barrel production brewery in Manchester, NH.  They just opened in August of 2015, so they are still pretty new. Founded by Rob and Lisa North, the brewery’s goal is simple – to craft flavorful, food friendly beers, while maintaining a fanatical devotion to quality.

 

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Mark and Ian, on their way in

 

We visited with our friend Ian, who had tasted some of their beer previous to our visit. We had not had any Great North previously, although we had seen their cans at our local beer store. Ian got a sampler tray, 5 samples for $7.50 and we got a sampler tray plus 1 single sample, so we could try all 6 beers.

 

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nice presentation of the sampler. Good size as well!

 

Cranberry Wit – 5.5%
This is made with New England grown cranberries. A light beer in body and style, with a light cranberry taste and a hint of tartness. We would have liked a little more cranberry flavor and a little more tartness, but it was a good light wit beer.

 

IPA – 7%
A very solid IPA, hoppy, tasty, not very bitter, made as a ‘west coast style ipa’. A good, hoppy, well balanced IPA. Mark got a six pack of cans to go, and will be picking this up at the local beer store in the near future.

 

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Robust Vanilla Porter – 6.5%
Chocolatey with some roasted malt flavor, very tasty. It is described as having coffee and chocolate flavors, and it actually does! Megan thought it was delicious, one of the best porters she has had recently, as it had a full flavor. We got a 6 pack of this to go as well.

 

Smokin Rauchbier – 5.5%
Good balance of smokeyness and malt, smokey flavor is not overpowering. This is one of their 3 flagship beers, which is an interesting choice, but they are confident because it’s a good beer.

 

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Amber – 5.7%
A hint of sweetness, a good amber that stands out. Many amber beers we have had kind of just are there. This one was good!

 

Chocolate Stout – Batch A
Roasted, smokey taste, medium body, pretty good Stout, but the Porter overshadows it. This was a test batch, they had several batches the weeks previous and were having guests vote on which batch they liked better. We can’t wait to see what stout they choose as their go-to recipe!

 

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Mark got a pint of the  Smokin Rauchbier. He liked it, and wanted another taste, knowing we were buying the IPA and Vanilla Smoked Porter anyway.

 

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Megan got the Vanilla Smoked Porter, that was her favorite.

 

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Ian got a pint of the Amber, the IPA and the Amber were his favorite.

 

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They do serve food, so they can serve pints. We go the Cheese and Meat platter, which was pretty good. The cheese and sausage on the platter was a great selection, and Megan would recommend ordering one while you sit and enjoy a pint. They also serve pretzels, soup, salsa, jerky.

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The tasting room was pretty big, especially for a new brewery. They have some extra space in there as well. It wasn’t too busy when we were there, but they have plenty of room to expand and grow in this space.

The service was good, they came over to the table to see how we liked the beers, and it was the owner and brewer we were talking to. We talked about the beers we liked. It’s nice to be able to chat with an owner or brewer.

We recommend going for a visit, and bringing friends with you. There is space to hang out and enjoy yourselves!

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Swag for sale

 

We were also happy about the fact that they can their beers. Mark had seen the cans in the store, but wanted to wait until we visited to try. It’s and extra expense for a new brewery, but its a way to get your beer out there, and we have enough growlers we don’t use, we don’t need another one.

 

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Want to visit?
Hours

Thursday and Friday – 3:00 – 7:00
Saturday – 12:00 – 5:00

As always, check their Facebook page for updated hours and info.

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Hobbs Tavern and Brewing Company, West Ossipee, New Hampshire

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While on our way to the North Conway outlets with Taylor and Lance, we passed Hobbs Tavern & Brewing Co. We did not know Hobbs Tavern was there prior to, but after looking it up and seeing that they do make their own beer, so we stopped on the way back.

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Old style carriage outside

 

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It is a large restaurant area with lots of wood and exposed beams.

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Fireplace with couches

Hobbs Tavern & Brewing Co opened in Spring of 2014, after a 14 month renovation of the building.

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beer menu on display

Black Sheep Cream Ale – 5.3%
This beer was ok. It was not as creamy as Megan expected, which she liked. Mark and Lance got most of the taste as an aftertaste, Lance did not like it. Mark didn’t mind it. It was their light beer for non-craft beer drinkers, at least it didn’t taste cheap, it just didn’t have much flavor.

 

Something Went A Rye IPA – 5.2%
Everyone liked this beer. Everyone agreed, it wasn’t super hoppy, probably because it was a rye, and everyone liked the taste.

 

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Taylor and Lance

 

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Stay away from ….

 

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my beers!

 

Leaf Peeper Rauchbeer
This was an interesting beer. It had a secondary, surprising taste that was sort of smokey. It surprised us. Megan did not like the smell, Lance would not have a full beer of it. Mark said the more you drank of it the less surprising and strong the smokeyness was.

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Quick, drink!

 

Pebble Pale Ale
This was light and not as harsh as many pale ales. Megan thought it was creamier than expected, Lance described it as dry. Mark got a subtle, familiar taste. Maybe spruce tips?

 

Born to be Mild
This beer was ok. We were trying to figure out what it actually was. Lance thought it tasted like a Sam Winter Lager, but we couldn’t figure it out.

 

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They have a Chocolate Stout, a blonde, and a heffeweizen. We didn’t get to try these, due to not being available that day, but they all sound good.

 

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the menu

 

 We all ordered dinner- after a long day shopping, we were hungry!

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Lance had the Blackened Fish tacos, which were good and plentiful.

 

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Mark had the Marbin Cristo, which is their take on a Monte Cristo, which we didn’t know about. It was ham and turkey on French Toast with a side of NH Maple Syrup.
It was interesting and very tasty.

 

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 Megan had the Hobbs Burger with onions, which was gone in a matter of minutes.
She had truffle oil fries, which were good.

 

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Taylor had the Hobbs burger plain, which was good as well.

 

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 They had lots of interesting decorations and a certain rustic,
cabin like feel, which was cool.

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It wasn’t too crowded when we were there, however the service was not great. It seemed to take a long time to get our sample trays, only 2. We were checked on once after we were brought our food, and then didn’t see the waitress again until well after we were all done eating and waiting for the check.

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Just hanging out- don’t mind Meg’s hair

 

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On a rustic wagon wheel bench

 

Want to Visit?
Open 7 days a week

 

 

 

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What

 

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are

 

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they

 

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doing?

Northshire Brewery

Northshire Brewery is located in Bennington. Vermont.  We had traveled there for the 6th Annual Vermont Life Wine and Harvest Festival at Mount Snow in Dover, Vermont100_0612It is a small operation, a husband-wife team with a part time sales person. They started in 2010, making beer for local bars and restaurants to serve. They are now available at a few retail establishments as well as a few local Hannaford. They now sell bottles of their beer as well.100_0616 100_0617

We had a quick visit, where we were able to try three of their beers. Their tastings were $5 for the glass and a taste of whatever they currently have on tap.

100_0613Our tasting:

Northshire Hefeweizen: somewhat sweet, flavors of clove and citrus

Battenkill Ale:  A little brown in color but not dark in taste, with subtle hints of coffee.  This beer was their 1st!  5.7% ABV

Sicilian Pale Ale: made with blood oranges. I am not usually a Pale Ale person, but this was very good! Nice flavor! Also great when we had it from the bottle later.

We bought a Sicilian Pale Ale and a Chocolate Stout to bring home. We had to buy the Chocolate Stout- they only had it in bottles so we weren’t able to try it, but we had seen it on their website and a sign in the brewery.

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It was a good tasting, and I hope they continue being successful so we can eventually find them at our local stores!

After our tasting, we went to the Madison Brewing Co for lunch. Look here to see more about our visit to Madison Brewing Co!