Tuesday, September 8, 2009

70. Church Brew Works Pipe Organ Pale Ale

“It doesn’t end well.”

Church Brew Works is in Pittsburgh, PA, and operates, as the name would indicate, out of an old church—an old deconsecrated Roman Catholic church, to be specific. They have been brewing since 1996. Pittsburgh is also home to the Pittsburgh Steelers—which you probably knew—and hometown to John McCombe—which you probably didn't. Please sign up for his fan club—he is worthy of idolizing.

Pipe Organ Pale Ale has a bready, hoppy nose with some slight plastic and solvent off-notes. It has an opaque toffee color and a soft creamy head. Starting with a soft bready malt flavor that builds into hop bitterness with some resin flavors, Pipe Organ Pale Ale ends without much of a wrap up—the flavors sort of fade and go their separate ways. The bitterness does come to the forefront, but not in a crisp or fulfilling way. As well, some of the flavors that linger are some of the unpleasant off-notes noted in the nose. As indicated above, it doesn’t end well—while this could be a good drinkable house beer, it is not something you’d search out. However, both the cap and the label are awesome, so this one is going in the Top 10 Best Labels for the year.

From the Church Brew Works website: “Pipe Organ Pale Ale has a light copper color and subtle body. The maltiness is carefully balanced with only the best English hops—East Kent Goldings. Although this beer has a fair amount of hops, the caramel maltiness perfectly balances its profile.” Besides the rundown of their other beers, they list their flagship beers (Celestial Gold, Pipe Organ Pale Ale, and Pious Monk Dunkel) as well as their rotating seasonals. I want to try the ThunderHop IPA


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