Old Colony Brewing, Whitman, MA

Old Colony Brewing is a nano brewery in Whitman, MA. We have tried a few of their beers before we actually visited them. Sam and Dustin like going there, as it’s close to them.


We met Megan’s sister Sam and her friend Lindsey there one evening in November. They serve 5 oz pours and full pints. They also have growlers and crowlers to go, and they just started doing limited runs of 16 oz cans as well.



Boom Shak Azacca – IPA – 6.5%
Light and easy drinking, mildly hoppy, tropical notes up front with a slightly bitter finish, just like the description says.


Toll House Stout – 5.5%
A milk stout brewed with chocolate and chocolate malts. Good for a milk stout, more on the bitter chocolate side than a sweet milk chocolate flavor. With the Toll House name and billed as a ‘chocolate chip cookie stout’ we expected something sweeter and for it to somehow be more cookie like somehow.


Little sample trays and cards with beer info


Thanksgiving – 4.5%
A wheat beer made with apples and cranberries. Taste like a wheat style beer with a sweeter than typical cranberry flavor, probably from the addition of the apples, pretty good.


Money Line IPA – 6%
Super citrusy and fruity aroma. This was a tasty new england style ipa, hazy but not opaque, a little bit sweet but a good beer, Mark’s favorite overall.


Mark’s pint of Money Line


Pumpkin – 5.5%
An ale brewed with fresh pumpkin in the mash. Megan thought it had a good balance of flavors, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla all present but not overwhelming.



Mark went back a second time with Dustin in January and liked Money Line IPA again, and thought the Toll House Stout was pretty good.



The Dub – 7.8%
This beer was not great, thin and not very hoppy at all.


Snow Day – 5.9%
Interesting beer, a spiced porter. Better than Mark expected, cinnamon,  nutmeg and vanilla added some nice additional flavors to make this and interesting porter. Sam and Dustin have mentioned this beer a few times to us as well.


They have a short bar and a handful of tables, with plenty of extra standing room when crowded.




Current Hours

Thursday and Friday: 6:00 – 10:00
Saturday and Sunday: 12:00 – 5:00


Barrel House Z, Weymouth, MA

We visited Barrel House Z a little while back, for our 150th visit! We went with all of Megan’s sisters as well two significant others. We have actually been back again since our first visit.


They are located in an industrial park In Weymouth, MA not too far from Megan’s family. They use old barrels for decoration everywhere, outside, leading into the tap room, and all over the walls. They have a decent size patio area, but since our visit was in the winter time, we stayed indoors.


Barrel House Z is a fairly new brewery that focuses on small batch, and mostly barrel aged beers. The brewery is run by the original head brewer of Harpoon. They have a partnership with Harpoon that we’ll get into a little more later.



They have 5 oz, 10 oz, and 16 oz pours of most of their beers. Some of the higher ABV beers are not available for 16 oz pours. A few of the beers they had two options- either barrel aged or ITB, ‘in the buff’ (not barrel aged). Others were just one or the other.  We tried a variety of pours of most of the stuff available, all barrel aged versions when available.


Bamboozled By Hops – IPA     6%
Not much aroma, light in body and not very hoppy with and odd, bitter finish. Grassy and bitter, not great, not barrel aged.



Townie – Irish Ale     8.4%
Aged 1 month in Bully Boy Whiskey Barrels
Smells like whiskey, pretty boozy in flavor but that flavor is complimented well by the base beer. This was a good beer, a pretty perfect blending of flavors, better than Mark expected it to be, and he took some home.


Zelato – coffee stout     8.8%
Aged 10 months in Rum Barrel
Kind of thin for a barrel aged stout. It had a good amount of rum flavor that blended well with the coffee flavor. Mark thought the coffee was strong on the nose but subtle in the flavoring at first, the rum dominated at first but you tasted more coffee as you drank it.



Quaker State – american oatmeal stout     10%
Aged 10 months in Double Oak Bourbon Barrels
This seemed a little thin as well, boozy with a lot of bourbon and oak flavors.


Dustin enjoying his beers


Adeline – stout     8.8%
Aged 1 month in American Whiskey Barrels
A good stout with the right about of barrel aging character, this was everyone’s favorite stout, and Mark’s, he bought some of this as well.



Sunny & 79 – ginned pilsner     6.2%
Aged in Tequila Barrels
The tequila flavor dominates this beer, but in a good way, not overwhelming.



Jess got the Sunny Radler, the Sunny & 79 pilsner mixed with Spindrift sparkling lemon seltzer. Jess just thought it was ok, she’s not much of a beer drinker and didn’t want anything else. Mark thought it was decent for what it was, a Radler.



Macanadas – mac and cheese filled empanadas


Mark was curious about the brewery set up and just had to ask. They have a very small 2 barrel system to brew most of their beer on. They have some 5 barrel fermenters so they can double batch into those. They also have some 20 barrel fermenters that they use. Harpoon will brew up a batch of beer for them and ship it over so Barrel House Z can ferment it. That’s how they achieve some of the volume so they can distribute while still being able to make fun, small batch, one off beers.


Visit #150!



They have a pretty good sized tap room. A couple picnic tables on 1 side, a big long bar in the middle with several more big tables on the other side.




Wednesday – Friday 4:00 – 10:00
Saturday – 12:00 – 10:00
Sunday – 12:00 – 5:00




Big Elm Brewing, Sheffield, MA

We visited Big Elm Brewing in Sheffield, MA, while we were on vacation out in the Berkshires. They have been brewing beer as Big Elm Brewing since 2012. The owners are a husband wife team who have plenty of experience brewing. They actually owned and operated a brewpub in the area, but left the business of running a restaurant to focus on just brewing.
They have a small bar, but a pretty big tasting room, basically 2 adjoining rooms.
Cool lamps above the bar that they made from malt bags.
They sell flights as well as 8 oz pours and 16 oz pours. We
got 2 flights of 4 so we could try most of the beers.
American Lager      5%
Clean, crisp and on point for the style, but a little too boring for us.
Luna      6%
Pretty good for a blonde, apricot notes maybe, it had a little something extra that was nice.
413 Farmhouse Ale      6%
Had a slightly fruity/funky aroma. Megan liked this beer, easy drinking with a pleasant farmhouse funk to it.
Lion’s Ale      5.3%
Darker in color, we were not sure quite what it was, the style was not written on board, it was not hoppy. Megan was not really a fan. We found out from their website it was an amber ale.
Zorro – Golden Sour      6%
Not very sour. Had a golden-mildly tart flavor upfront with a dry finish, but not in a salty gose way.
Thunderlips – New England Pale Ale     6%
Fruity hoppy smell, but that does not come through on the flavor. Kind of bland flavor in the middle with a hoppy bitterness at the end.
Big Elm IPA      7%
Mark- super different hops. Spicy and clove. Unusual flavors for an ipa. Megan said it was creamy, which was different for an IPA
Gerry Dog Stout      6.5%
This was the best beer we thought. Mildly chocolate flavor, really smooth, no bitterness.
 We peeked out back, they have pretty decent sized tanks. They also do all their own canning. They sell their beer to go in cans, on a limited rotation it seems, and also do growler fills.
Thursday, Friday, Saturday: 12:00 – 6:00

Pipe Dream Brewing Company, Londonderry, NH

We visited Pipe Dream Brewing with our friends Ian and Stephanie. Pipe Dream Brewing is in Londonderry, NH and opened in June 2016. They are veteran owned and inspired by the west coast. A lot of their beer labels and imagery relates back to the ocean, the beach, surfing, etc.


They have a decent sized tasting room. We were there in early fall, they had a pretty big outdoor area with tables where we sat.



They sell 4 oz, 12oz, and 16 oz pours of their beer. Flights come in a set of 5.



West to East IPA     6.8%
Hoppy, hazy with a mild bitterness and a sweet finish. This was a good ipa, Mark and Ian both agreed.



Coffee Stout     8.5%
A good coffee stout, dark with hints of coffee, did not have that bitter coffee flavor though. Stephanie thought it was a little sweet. Megan and Ian thought it was a little thin, light in body but still pretty good.


Single Hop Columbus     6.8%
An earthy and bitter ipa. Mark did not like this that much, maybe just not a fan of Columbus hops on their own. We like to see them experimenting though.



Ian tried the Double IPA and liked it.


Peanut Butter Chocolate Stout     11.1%
This was on nitro. Smells like a pb cup. Taste like peanut butter chocolate, sweet and not bitter, a very good beer. This was on nitro, probably added to the beer, the smoothness and mouthfeel of nitro.


Sour Brown
A dark sour beer, obviously. Sour and a little bit sweet from the malts. Pretty good sour brown.



They are technically a brewpub because they serve food. They have a variety of sandwiches, hot and cold, pizzas, nachos and a few other options. We did not eat while there, just stopped in for a quick sample of beers. We had never been here but Ian and Stephanie had visited shortly after they opened. Ian thought the beer had improved over the last year. We liked that they could do a variety of beers well.


Swag room




Wednesday and Thursday: 12:00 – 8:00
Friday and Saturday: 12:00 – 10:00
Sunday: 12:00 – 5:00







Mystic Brewery, Chelsea, MA

We recently visited Mystic Brewery with Megan’s sister Sam and Sam’s boyfriend Dustin. We have only had 1 beer from Mystic before, it as good, and we’ll get into that later.



Mystic is located in Chelsea, MA and have their own parking lot, which is always a plus, especially in a city. According to their website:

Mystic Brewery is a brewery specializing in farmhouse-style
utilizing locally sourced yeast and other ingredients. Drawing on historical methods, our increased focus on fermentation allows us to impart a sense of unique
New England terroir into all of our beer.



They have a pretty big bar and a big tasting room with picnic tables and plenty of standing room. They serve flights of 4 beers, full pours, and have bottles for consumption on premise. Mark got a flight, Sam and Dustin shared a flight, and Megan got a sample and full pour.


Flare – ipa     7%
Supposed to be a ‘juicy, cloudy’ ipa. It had an odd bitterness, not very juicy and not quite enough body to it.


Saison Renaud     6.5%
A fairly basic Saison, peppery flavor from the saison yeast.



Aperture – belgian white    5%
Light, bright, good fairly standard belgian white.


Mosaic Position – dipa    8.4%
Smells super hoppy, pretty smooth, cloudy, not quite as hoppy as it smells but pretty tasty.


Voltage – ipa     7%
The best ipa Mark thought. Cloudy, juicy, not that much body to it, maybe they don’t use as many oats in their neipa’s,  but a good beer.



Wild Field Beer – saison with Brett
Megan liked this beer, good thing because she got a full pour of it! Mark was hoping for a little more sourness from it, it had more of a funky tartness, typical of Brett.



We had a little trouble deciding what to order, with flights, full pours and bottles available. Mark wanted to try the ipa’s, but overall they were just ok. Since they focus farmhouse styles and have some other styles, maybe we should have tried some of their other beers. A lot of the bottles they had available sounded interesting, but we were both driving so we could not indulge too much.




There is a lot of rustic wood and some really big beams
that give the tasting room a cool vibe.



We drank this bottle of Entropy at home, Megan got it as a Christmas gift. Bottled in 2014, it is uncarbonated, on purpose, a”still” ale, aged in French and American oak, and was 14.2% !

This is the most complicated beer Mystic Brewery makes. entropy is fermented in four stages, with four different yeasts. A house Trappist strain “brings out earthiness and dark fruit, amplified and rounded by a French white wine yeast.” A six-month fermentation with Sherry yeast follows, and the beer is completed with an English barleywine yeast.

It had a definite oaky flavor, with a hint of red wine. That’s what we tasted, a very complicated flavor  with scents of vanilla, sherry and almonds.



Monday – Saturday: 11:00 am to 10:00 pm
Sunday: 12:00 to 7:00



Saco River Brewing, Fryeburg, ME

While we were up camping and tubing on the Saco River, we decided to visit Saco River Brewing Company, what a surprise! They opened just over a year ago, in July 2016, in Fryeburg, ME. They are located in a building or two out behind a restaurant with a decent amount of parking.

They do 4 oz pours and full pints. We ordered a 4oz pour of each beer so we could try all 7 beers they had on tap.

D.O.T. Special – Czech Pilsner     5%
Has a strong pilsner/lager taste. Strong additional flavors added by the spicy saaz hops. Not bad for a pilsner, which is neither of our favorite styles. 

Driftwood IPA – American IPA     6.5%
Pours super clear. Does have a malt presence but the hops balance that well and add a good amount of hop flavor to it. Good, not Marks favor style IPA but it’s pretty good and worth a try for IPA drinkers. 

Clearwater Pale Ale     4.8%
Pours pretty hazy. Flavor matches description ‘Easy drinking, silky mouthfeel and citrus hop character’, we agree. Nice overall hop profile (citrus) for a pale ale. 

Flip Flop IPA      6.7%
Marks immediate reaction “oohhh this is good”. Pours super hazy, you can’t see through it, a definite  New England style IPA. No malt character, all hops, on the herbal/grassy but still super tasty.

Sweet Fern Saison     4.5%
Good, easy to drink Saison while still having flavor, spicy and citrus notes. On the lighter side for a saison.

Buck Brown Ale     5.4%
Megan said it had an almost a dull coffee flavor, but in a good way, not an overly bitter coffee taste. 

Mark said pretty light overall, not very roasty, more sweet caramel with citrus. 

Old Colony Porter     6.5%
Sweet and roasty. Light body for the style, but more roasted here than the Buck Brown Ale. 

We sat outside to have our samples, it was a pretty nice day. They have several picnic tables with umbrellas and pop up tents for shade.

They have a fairly small bar area, but another decent sized room off of that with a ping pong table, shown above, and their outdoor space, so they have plenty of seating.

Mark at the bar. There is a whole wall of glass behind the bar so you can see everything happening in the brewery, shown below, not much happening on a Sunday afternoon though.

They have a cool, custom made cement bar with
the river built into it, cool details.

This was a nice visit. They are doing well for only being open a year.  It was better than we expected, as we went in assuming it was a “tourist trap.” However, it seems to be a nice combo of tourists and locals based on the amount of growlers we saw being filled.

Check Facebook for hours, we assume
they change with the seasons.


Neighborhood Beer Company, Exeter, NH

We recently visited Neighborhood Beer Company  which is located close by us in Exeter, NH. We have been planning to visit for awhile. They specialize in German style beers with an American twist.

Our production brewhouse is a 4-vessel, 4-barrel custom-fabricated
system designed specifically to brew complex and innovative
German-style ales and lagers.

When they first opened, they hired a well known German brewer to help design their brewhouse and work with them the first year in traditional german brewing styles.

The tasting room is on the smaller side, but still has plenty of room. In the nice weather, like now, they have an outdoor area sectioned off with picnic tables and corn hole.




They started out as just a tasting room and have grown to a brewpub, serving food as well as wine and beer from other local establishments.  When we visited, the guest beer was from Deciduous Brewing Company and guest cider from North Country Hard Cider. They have also increased their hours recently to make them easier to visit.


They have tasters for $2 each, 3/4 pints and full pints. We started with 2 flights so we could try all the beers.



Hallowed Hammock – blonde ale 4.9%
A good blonde ale, better than the average, light and easy drinking, Megan liked it. Megan typically finds Blonde Ales to be boring, so it had a little something extra to it.


Junkyard Pedigree – copper ale 7.5%
Described as ‘malty and complex’, it is, malty and a touch sweet. Megan tasted caramel notes, Mark said dark fruit. Again, better than we expected.

Boss Flamingo – Bronze ale 7.2%
Complex flavor up front with a smooth, clean finish. A mix of fruity, malty and hoppy flavors as described.


Bastardly Blitz – German style IPA 8.2%
Dark in color, well balanced, so not super hop forward like American style IPA’s. Not Mark’s favorite style.

Old Salt – Helles lager
What Mark expected from a Helles, very light, not a strong flavor to it, on point for the style just not a very interesting style. Megan liked it more, better than other lagers.


Mellow Grove – summer Hefeweizen
Pretty light body, even for a Hefeweizen, a strong clove flavor to it with a light body and feel. Decent summer beer.


Obstinate Goat – strong blonde ale 7.1%
Light body for a strong ale. Decent flavor to it, slightly complex, hard to pin down specific flavors, malty with a mild citrusy finish.


We ordered a pretzel, served with homemade mustard and beer cheese. Yum!



Mark had a 3/4 pint of Boss Flamingo and Megan had the NBC Snakebite, their Mellow Grove summer Hefeweizen mixed with a North Country Hard Cider, which was very good. She also tried it with the Obstinate GOAT, which was a good drink but the flavors if the Mellow Grove and the Original Blend North Country Hard Cider blended even better.


For beers to go, you can get any of their beers in a growler. They also use a mobile canning company and have most of their beers available in 12oz 6 packs. They have a mixed pre-made 6 pack, which changes based on the season. We bought two of the mixed six packs to share with friends. The summer mixed six came with Hallowed Hammock, Mellow Grove and Boss Flamingo.

Tasting Room Hours

Tuesday – 4:00 to 8:00
Wednesday – 4:00 to 8:00
Thursday – 4:00 to 9:00
Friday – 12:00 to 9:00
Saturday – 12:00 to 9:00
Sunday – 12:00 to 6:00