Brewery: Half Acre Beer Company (Chicago, Illinois)
Style: Imperial Red Ale
When I bought a growler of Half Acre’s Thanksgiving beer, Avena Sativa, I made sure to pick up a 22 ounce bomber of their previous limited release: The Chairman, an imperial red ale. Released as a celebration of local Chicago zine Lumpen‘s 20th anniversary, the Chairman is a thick brew with an ABV that will creep up on you if you’re not expecting it. It’s a pretty damn good complement to their English Bitter.
When poured into a glass, the Chairman has a hazy burnt orange appearance. The beer smells very ‘malty’ with hints of toffee. The taste brings out a surprising amount of hops that leave a bitter aftertaste. While this lingering taste may not appeal to some, I love it.
For a 9.5% beer, this goes down real smooth. The alcohol content is noticeable, but it is never overwhelming, unlike others at this level. Imperial red ales are not something I see very often, so I am happy that Half Acre has delivered a satisfying brew in this style. If you’re in the Chicago area, stop by the brewery and pick up a bottle before this bad boy runs out.