I guess it has been a pretty good week: I've been able to stop by three different Indiana breweries and enjoy their brews. First up is Half Moon Restaurant and Brewery in Kokomo. This is actually my first visit to Half Moon, so I purchased a $9.99 beer sampler and tried all six of John Templet's regular taps and his three specialty taps.
Currently on tap: Cannon Shot Cream Ale, which is a pleasant, sweet, malty treat; Wildcat Wheat, with a light and slightly sweet flavor; Stoplight City Red, which is easy on hops but not absent of; Elwood's IPA, which packs a strong punch of bitters to the back of the throat while maintaining a nice, easy citrus flavor; Cole Porter, a black beer that has a flavor with a bite (are the malts smoked in their smoker?); seasonal Raz Rye, where the bite of the rye cuts through the sweet tart raspberries; seasonal KokoMonster, which the bartender couldn't tell me what style it was (Old Ale), but I knew at 8% it went down too easy; and the oddly named seasonal MILF-n-honey which is a very sweet wheat.
My favorite of their beers, though, is the regular Hazelnut Brown Ale. It has a beautiful nutty aroma, is cloudy brown, and has a strong hazelnut flavor and an almost coffee-like flavor. Which would make this beer perfect for the morning!
I also stopped by The Ram Restaurant and Brewery in downtown Indianapolis. While there, I had Andrew Castner's Pie'd Piper Pumpkin Ale. I have a love/hate relationship with pumpkin beers. If it tastes like pumpkin pie, I love it. If it tastes like just pumpkin, I hate it.
Hey Andrew: I love it!
I haven't had my fix of Schlafly's Pumpkin Ale yet (just got hooked up by my beer pimp), but it is the standard that I measure all other pumpkin beers. And this one is pretty close. It has a nice amount of spice, pumpkin flavor, and breadiness to give you the feel of pumpkin pie without going over the top and tasty like a $6 Starbucks seasonal coffee. Put simply: near perfect. So good, I had a second glass instead of trying one of the other seasonals.
I finish by mentioning that I had a sneak sip of Sun King's Big H Hefeweizen. I'm not a big fan of wheats and hefe's. I got a lot of bananas but little clove. I'm not big on bananas and I'm not big on hefeweizens, so it should be no surprise that I'm not big on this beer.
But I was trying this beer with Mike, who is a hefeweizen fan, and he said it was "spot on". So if you like hefe's, give this one a shot (I could have left this for Mike to say, but I'm guessing he doesn't have a beer diary coming up soon).