Best of the brew


Wait, I’m supposed to actually remember my favorite beers of 2012? Isn’t brew impervious to being filed away in the ol’ mind trap? Anyway, rewind back to January and Mikkeller’s Invasion IPA—brewed here in Northern California at Drake’s Brewing—pops up again, what with its olive oil and mint notes and dry-hop boom. Norway’s HaandBryggeriet is a decent little brewery that I first got into this year, and its Haandbakk—a pink-brown lambic with a unique tartness—is one I wouldn’t mind getting these hands on again. I drank a lot of Logsdon Farmhouse Ales’ Seizoen this summer, ditto AleSmith Brewing Company’s summer YuleSmith IPA—both quality. The best local beers of the year were any hoppy beer from Knee Deep Brewing Co. in Lincoln. And I definitely wouldn’t turn away a bottle of 3 Fonteinen’s Oude Geuze Golden Blend, which was blended with lambic aged four years; that was the beer of this year—or any.

Beer: 5 Golden Rings
Brewer : The Bruery
Where : Burgers and Brew, 1409 R Street; (916) 442-0900;

Beer: Luciernaga (Belgian ale)
Brewer : Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Where : The Davis Beer Shoppe, 211 G Street in Davis; (530) 756-5212

Beer: EXXpedition Ale (red ale)
Brewer : Drake’s Brewing
Where : Samuel Horne’s Tavern, 719 Sutter Street in Folsom; (916) 293-8207;