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Spellbound

The Witches Flight is a bewitching option

Anne and I hit a new brewpub in downtown St. Pete this past Saturday. The Ale and the Witch has been open for a little over five weeks now, and is a cool place with live music, ambiance, a great location, and of course beer. Owner Bret Andress is a craft beer aficionado, and it shows in the constantly rotating selection of 32 beers on tap.

I started with a pint of Stone Cali-Belgique (Stone Brewing Co.; Escondido, CA; Belgian India Pale Ale; ABV: 6.9). An outstanding Belgian IPA, it’s golden in color with hardy notes of caramel malt on the front end, complimented by Belgian yeast and citrusy fruit with a piny hops kick on the back end. Cali-Belgique is a smooth and well balanced ale, and at around 7%, it’s less overpowering than other offerings in its beer style.

The Ale and the Witch also offers a Witches Flight sampling of 4 beers, which gave me the opportunity to try several beers for the first time.

Peak Organic IPA; Peak Organic Brewing Co.; Portland, ME; India Pale Ale; ABV: 7.2. A silky smooth IPA. Golden amber in color, with subtle notes of sweet malt and caramel balanced by citrus fruit and piny hops with a crisp clean finish.

The Bruery Tradewinds; The Bruery; Placentia, CA; Tripel; ABV: 8.1. An excellent Belgian style tripel. Tradewinds pours a hazy golden color, with big notes of citrusy fruit and sweet malt complimented by peppery spices and light floral hops at the finish.

Ballast Point Tongue Buckler; Ballast Point Brewing Co.; San Diego, CA; Imperial Red Ale; ABV: 10.0. An absolutely superb imperial red ale. Tongue Buckler has substantial notes of caramel and grapefruit, complimented by toffee and piny hops with a smooth dry finish. Quite flavorful, and the alcohol content is well hidden.

Boulder Killer Penguin; Boulder Beer / Wilderness Pub; Boulder, CO; Barley Wine; ABV: 10.0. An eclectic and enjoyable barley wine. Copper in color, Killer Penguin has hefty notes of sweet malt balanced by caramel, dark fruit such as raisins, and light piny hops on the back end. There’s even a sherry like feel to this ale in the backbone, making the alcohol content somewhat noticeable.

In addition to great beer and live music, The Ale and the Witch features artwork from local artists, in addition to beer inspired cuisine from local restaurants. Stop by next time you’re in St. Pete, and be cast under its spell!

  1. Anne Zavorskas
    March 9th, 2011 at 18:38 | #1

    Great post! Also LOVE your latest beer video! http://www.youtube.com/user/BillysBeerBlog#p/a/u/2/ivPyvSxjlic

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