In an unprecedented move, Beer Hates Me took a month off from reviewing a beer. Factors such as work, family, and the dreaded flu all contributed to this monumental breakdown of the real importance here --- drinking beer. To make up for it, I plan on two posts this month. This first one is something a little bit different. Instead of reviewing a single beer, I'm reviewing a single brewery. And my choice for said brewery, 5 Seasons Brewing out of Alpharetta, GA.
I started off my evening at 5 Seasons by arriving with my family and grabbing some food. As with all places I eat, I study the menu beforehand like I plan on being quizzed on it. This goes double for the beer menu. Being the insane beer nerd that I am, I take things a step further and actually reach out to the brewmaster to inquire about his portfolio of beers. At 5 Seasons, their brewmaster, Crawford Moran, actually got back to me quickly and enthusiatically. He told me what would be new, what would be different, and asked what I liked. After a little back & forth, I had my drinking game plan for the night all set.
Naturally, when choosing a brewpub to establish yourself in for the night, a certain level of intoxication is expected. From the 4 beers I drank (plus a fifth that I finished for my sister), I was certainly happily inebriated by the time we left. While there, there was no indication on the menu or otherwise of the alcoholic content of the beers offered. Asking servers and bartenders sometimes got an answer but upon double-checking the beers online the next day, those servers only seemed to get it right half the time. Aside from Square Peg, nothing else was high gravity. But the combination of all together made for a potent cocktail of booziness that lulled me to sleep very quickly once we got home.
Again, here is where sampling a plethora of beers doesn't always bode well with analyzing the post-drinking aspect for this blog. Such a diverse range of beers and styles often means a rough morning. The different grains, hops, and yeasts used only cause the body further confusion in the processing and cleansing department. That said, my hangover was rough. It was ugly. And it was long. Although I've experienced worse, this was definitely one that made an impact since my entire body felt it. Muscles, joints, shit...even my hair I think.
5 Seasons Brewing is certainly a unique brewpub. I think that when most people picture brewpubs, they picture IPAs, lagers, a stout and a porter. The basics. Some may venture deeper into those classic styles by amping up the hops, doubling the alcohol, or experimenting with variations on the classic styles. Its not often that a brewpub has a largely European influence in their beer profile. Its even less common that said brewpub has (what I believe to be) a Belgian hybrid house yeast that they use as the base of all their beers. I'd certainly be interested in revisiting 5 Seasons. I'd be even more interested in procuring some of their beer in bottles to go and aging them. While overall, the style and execution of their beers isn't to my preferred tastes, I was very impressed and inspired by the beer they make and their approach to the craft beer service.