Once you get past that point in your life where you’re “satisfied” when the keg is full of PBR rather than Natty, Beast, or Keystone, one of the best things you can do is find another microbrewery that’s full of promise. Luckily for us Virginians, craft beer (and wine, if you’re also into that) is becoming all the rage. I’ve been trying to “drink local” for several years now, and honestly while I can proudly say that every single bottle of wine we purchase is from Virginia, that’s been harder with beer. There simply isn’t the distribution from even one part of the state to another, unless you get lucky and find something rare at a good watering hole for their micro of the month. Then again, precisely the reason we do a site like this, and share our findings on twitter, is so we can discover what else is really out there so when we do stumble across a new fermented friend, we know what we’re getting into. Thanks to Hamilton’s festival review I had some notes on Sunken City available when my neighborhood beer shop got some in recently. I’m delighted to announce that he wasn’t on acid that day, as what I had tonight was, ahem, dam good.
Dam Lager, Sunken City Brewing Company – @SunkenCityBeer (Hardy, VA)
Amber Lager, ABV 4.7%, IBU 15
Presentation: Can pour into pint glass.
Appearance: Mild amber/caramel hue. Thick head dissipating at a slow pace.
Taste: Not much on the nose here as the brewery is cautious in their own assessment of a “slight” herbal aroma. However, the taste and finish are a much different story which deliver on that promised creamy, happy ending. Get your minds out of the gutter, even though I am talking about something nutty and slightly sweet. Sunken City got this part right when they bragged of a caramel-malt finish, as the Dam Lager delivered precisely that, but that additional little nuttiness was what made this beer shine. At the same time, the finish was light enough to prevent this amber’s flavor from relegating it to cold weather status.
ABV/IBU: Bud Light may have trademarked drinkability (which is the sole reason I’m giving them that credit here), but the term really applies to this little gem. You’re going to taste beer, but you’re getting plenty of flavor thanks to the lower ABV and IBU. There’s nothing bitter or sour going on here.
Overall: Not all beers are created equal. We know this, and that’s why we’re telling you about the ones which stand out. I may not know where the heck Hardy, VA is, but nonetheless Sunken City is on my radar now. Puns aside, the Dam Lager is a damn fine beer.