I’d heard about Good Nature Brewing before they’d even opened in the small town of Hamilton, in New York’s Central Leatherstocking Region. They are a tiny 7 BBL operation run by two young newlyweds. Their ingredients are locally-sourced and they are now beginning to become available in restaurants and taverns in Central New York. I picked up a few bottles and growlers to review during a recent trip up there, and this time, it’s their Wet Hop IPA, CNY Harvest Ale.
It pours a beautiful reddish caramel color with a foamy head that laces very nicely on the tulip glass. It features a slightly pungent and minerally bouquet, and I thought I even picked out some notes of cheese almost like a cheddar as well, but nothing overpowering at first (I really had to stick my nose down in there an concentrate to identify the different profiles), but it became stronger as it warmed. I was intrigued.
Lots of tiny bubbles coated my tongue on the first sip and the mouthfeel is on the thinner side of medium. It starts out a little oily (but offset by those tiny prickly bubbles) with some dryness and bite at the back end. Not alcohol bite, mind you, but a dry hoppy bite. The wet hop IPA’s are not as floral, citrusy or aggressively-hopped as their regular palate-thrashing cousins, but are a nice change of pace.
Everything I’ve tried of theirs all have a very distinctive personality. Drier, and with a minerally quality which I haven’t found in many other beers (Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale would be the closest one I can think of). Might be that the local water is quite hard, or a brewing method or ingredient they use. This takes us into the realms of brewing techniques I’m not qualified to speak on.
What I can say is that I really love what this husband and wife team are doing and I wish them much success as they continue to grow and refine their craft.
Vitals: Poured from a 1L growler into a tulip glass and sampled between 48 and 55F. 6.5% ABV
Taste: B+ Excellent, well-balanced beer with a unique character to it. This wouldn’t be my top style of choice, but I’m glad I branched out to try it.
Drinkability: A All day long with this one. Smooth as silk.
Packaging: Well, it’s a growler, so not much to say. I like the logo well enough, but no label art to review here.
Value: B+ $8.00 for a little over two glasses of hand-crafted beer seems pretty good in my book. Not including the cost of gas and lodging to acquire it of course.