Beer review: Does the bar-of-the-moment Seventh Son’s beer live up to the hype?

  • Photo by Tim Johnson
By Columbus Alive
From the May 2, 2013 edition

I’ve spilled a good amount of ink over the last few months about Seventh Son Brewing Co. being one of the city’s best new bars, but now comes the true test. Does the brewery produce the beer to match its stellar setting? Here are some quick notes about each of the four beers currently on tap.

Humulus Nimbus Super Pale Ale

This is Seventh Son’s lightest, crispest offering, although not its most sessionable beer (more on that brew, the Spring Sheep, below). The stronger-than-expected hop profile results in a bitter initial offering that’s followed by a hint of fruit. The very light gold Humulus Nimbus finishes very clean and dry, making for a refreshing brew.

Seventh Son American Strong Ale

This is the brewery’s signature beer, the one people have been salivating over — and for good reason. The dark amber ale has a bold hop flavor, but is balanced by malt and just-right sweetness that makes for a very complex, well-rounded beer. After sampling a flight, this was the beer I had to have a full pint of immediately.

Spring Sheep Stout

This is the session-version of the Black Sheep Stout, which will be released at a more appropriate season (i.e. fall). The Spring Sheep is extremely drinkable; very light and minimally (chocolate) bitter for a stout. I defer to fellow Alive staffer and beer connoisseur Brad Keefe for the best description — “A stout without all the stoutness.” I like the concept of a session stout, and this is a solid example, but I’m more excited for the traditional version.

Stone Fort Oat Brown Ale

I like to call this “The Sleeper” because I wasn’t expecting something this excellent. Shame on me. The Stone Fort is hearty, roasty and creamy all at once. The touch of brown sugar at the finish is very pleasant. While I decided to make my first full pint a Seventh Son American Strong Ale, I also had to treat myself to pint of the Stone Fort.