Although I miss being able to pick up Terrapin's latest bottles, the craft beer scene in Indiana is pretty great. There are many I still need to try but here's a roundup of my favorite Indiana beers (so far). Happy Friday! 5. Champagne Velvet- Upland Brewery: Bloomington, IN
Champagne Velvet is a German-inspired lager that was the flagship of the Terre Haute Brewing Company during its heyday, from the turn of the 20th century until the late 1950s. If you were living in Indiana in 1908, it was the beer you and your friends would raise to celebrate the end of the work week, that you’d take with you on a fishing trip, and that you’d serve at holiday get-togethers. Champagne Velvet defined beer in Indiana for over fifty years before the Terre Haute Brewing Company fell victim to the rampant practice of consolidation that characterized the brewing industry in the latter half of the 20th century. CV lost its home and identity, and eventually fell out of production altogether. But that was not the end for Champagne Velvet. Inspired by the brewing notes of the Terre Haute Brewery’s assistant brewer, Walter Braun, dated to 1901, the brewers at Upland have resurrected Champagne Velvet, much as it might have been in its early pre-prohibition years.
4. Backyard Porter- Fountain Square Brewery: Indianapolis, IN
This porter is brewed in the traditional English style. It has a deep brown colour and a creamy tan head, with soft notes of chocolate and slight undertones of roasted coffee. Hop bitterness is nicely balanced with the malt and hop aroma very low, typical of the English style.
3. Big Stone Stout- Bloomington Brewing Company: Bloomington, IN
Stouts are one of my favorite winter beers and this one has a big smokey flavor. Pair with vanilla ice cream and you have a tasty beer float!
2. Teddy Bear Kisses: Upland Brewery- Bloomington, IN
This Russian imperial stout has a bourbon bite with hints of chocolate and sweet bitterness. So so good.
1. Gumballhead- Three Floyds Brewery: Munster, IN
An American Wheat Ale, Gumballhead is named in honor of the underground comic book cat created by Rob Syers. Initially a seasonal summer beer, now brewed year round due to demand. This beer helped redefine American Wheat Beers. Brewed with Amarillo Hops and a generous portion of American red wheat, Gumballhead has a complex hop aroma with notes of grapefruit, lemon zest, marmalade and peach. Gumballhead is by far my favorite beer I've tried in Indiana. I like wheat beers for the most part but this one is exceptional- so much so that I'd drink it year round.