Keegan Ales: Old Capital {Thirsty Thursday}

Today on Thirsty Thursday I’m featuring a beer from a local Hudson Valley brewery.  Keegan Ales was founded in 2003 in Kingston, New York.  The brewery has one many awards including 2009 Best Brewery in the Hudson Valley, 2009 Best Brewery in New York State as well as 2009 Best Craft-Brewed Beer in New York State. If you’re in the area, you can get a free tour of the brewery.  Tours are given at the top of the hour from 1-6 PM, Friday through Sunday.  Even better, you can have a meal at the restaurant, which serves fare including appetizers, salads and sandwiches.

Disclaimer:  I am not a beer drinker.  I’ll take a hard cider or fruity cocktail over a beer any day.  My husband who enjoys a beer now and then is by no means a craft beer expert.  However, he enjoys trying new beers and volunteering his thoughts in our Thirsty Thursday posts! 

Keegan Ales brews six beers as well as the occasional seasonal and specialty beer. Today, I’m featuring their Old Capital.  Kingston became New York’s first capital in 1777 and is where the first New York State Senate was established.  Old Capital pays homage to Kingston’s historical significance.  It’s a traditional, golden ale with a slight malty, citrus aroma.  I poured the beer into a Food Network Craft Pub glass.  I’m not sure if it’s the glass, or more likely the way that I poured the beer, but as seen in the photo, there was a HUGE foam head on the beer.  After a little research, I discovered that it’s definitely the way that I poured the beer!

I bought this beer at Acme, where they have a build-your-own six-pack for $11.99.  While they have a limited selection of craft beer and ciders, they almost always have a couple of different beers from local breweries available.  Old Capital is available in bottles throughout the tri-state area (New York, New Jersey and Connecticut).

Verdict:  Recommend.  While there’s nothing particularly noteworthy about this ale, it’s pleasant tasting and my husband would drink it again.

Shamrock Farms Cold Brew Coffee & Milk {Thirsty Thursday}

Today’s Thirsty Thursday review is all about coffee!  Cold-brewed coffee to be more exact.  Cold brew coffee is made just as the name implies, it’s brewed cold.  Fans of cold-brew coffee enjoy the decreased acidity and smoother flavor the coffee has over regular, hot-brewed coffee.  For myself the type of brewing doesn’t really matter, I just need the caffeine first thing in the morning!

Shamrock Farms is a family-owned and -operated dairy farm located in Stanfield, Arizona.  Founded in 1922, the farm has a herd of over 10,000 cows and produces a full line of dairy products including milk, sour cream, cottage cheese and more, as well as cold brew coffee.  The cows are never treated with growth hormones and Shamrock Farms uses sustainable practices like 100% recyclable packaging, a manure management system on the farm and a waste-water pre-treatment system at its manufacturing plant.

To make their cold brew coffee, Shamrock Farms brews 100% Colombian beans that they ground and steep in cold water and then add to their milk.  The cold brew coffee line was launched this past fall in Arizona and has been available nationally since early 2017.  I bought this coffee drink at Shoprite but it’s also available at many grocery stores including Albertsons, Safeway, Tops, and Publix.

Review:  My husband and I shared a 12 ounce bottle of cold brew.  We tried the vanilla flavor, but it also comes in original and mocha.  We both found the consistency of the beverage to be surprisingly thick.  I enjoyed the flavor of the coffee more than my husband did.  With 22 grams of sugar, this is definitely on the sweet side and not something that I’d drink every day.  However, the sweetness isn’t overly powering. I find the $2.99 retail price a bit steep for a 12 ounce bottle.  However, Shamrock Farms offers a $1.00 off coupon on their site.

Verdict:  Worth a try.  Not something to drink every day, but good for an occasional treat, especially when you need a caffeine fix on the go.

Great South Bay Brewery: Blood Orange Pale Ale {Thirsty Thursday}

In the past, I’ve done a monthly six-pack review of new-to-us craft beer and ciders.  I’ve decided to switch things up and instead do a weekly “Thirsty Thursday” beverage feature.  These posts will include both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and cocktail reviews for your reading and drinking pleasure!  Unfortunately, you probably won’t see a lot of wine reviews here since neither my husband or I are big drinkers of the stuff.

Our first Thirsty Thursday feature is Great South Bay Brewery’s Blood Orange Pale Ale.  The Great South Bay Brewery is a New York State brewery located off the south shore of Long Island.   Rick Sobotka, founder and brewmaster is a native New Yorker, born and raised in the small town of Apalachin, New York.  A graduate of Binghamton University, Sobotka is a board-certified Anesthesiologist and a fourth-generation brewer.  Founded in 2010, Great South Bay Brewery has a 4,000 square-foot Tasting Room with fourteen beers on tap.

Disclaimer:  I am not a beer drinker.  I’ll take a hard cider or fruity cocktail over a beer any day.  My husband who enjoys a beer now and then is by no means a craft beer expert.  However, he enjoys trying new beers and volunteering his thoughts on our Thirsty Thursday posts! 

Review:  Great South Bay Brewery’s Blood Orange Pale Ale is an American Pale Ale.  Blood oranges are blended with the brewery’s original Pale Ale. It has a nice, golden color, reminiscent of the blood orange that it is named for. However, my husband didn’t think the blood orange flavor was particularly evident while drinking it.  While this beer is intended to be a summer beverage, it is available all year long.  My husband thought that this Blood Orange Pale Ale makes a good winter beer since he found it to be thick, smooth and comforting.

Verdict:  Recommend