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Beers for May: 11 very good sippers from Canada to Ohio and beyond

The Plain Dealer  Cleveland logo The Plain Dealer Cleveland 5/8/2022 Marc Bona, cleveland.com
Trippel © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Trippel

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Our monthly review of beers includes breweries from several states, three countries and some news. This month’s beers cover an alcohol range of 4.4% to 9.5%. All should be available on Northeast Ohio store shelves. Cheers!

Cane & Ebel © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Cane & Ebel

Kloster Andechs

Klosterbrauerei Andechs, Germany, Lager, 4.8%

Brewed by monks at a monastery with roots dating back more than 550 years, this is a clean-tasting lager but really has no discerning flavors. Ever so slight sweet tinge. Lawn-mower beer for Germans - or anyone else. Comes in a 500ml bottle.

Victory Lap

Wolf’s Ridge Brewing, Columbus, Honey India Pale Ale, 7%

The hops are definitely there on every sip in this whiskey-colored ale, but we couldn’t detect honey. Don’t expect residual sweetness.

Full Circle © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Full Circle

Lollihop

Troegs Brewing Co., Hershey, Pennsylvania; Double India Pale Ale, 8.2%

A solid DIPA dry-hopped with Mosaic, Citra and Azacca, it has notes of pear, cucumber and just a hint of grapefruit. Balanced with malt base, hoppy, but bitterness is not over the top. Good body.

Ce n'est pas La Fin Du Monde © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Ce n'est pas La Fin Du Monde

Troegenator

Troegenator © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Troegenator

Troegs Brewing Co., Hershey, Pennsylvania; Double Bock, 8.2%

Dark in color, sweet and spicy with malts at the forefront. Very smooth with a nice warming to it. Another solid offering from the Pennsylvania brewery, and a nice break from IPAs.

Ce n’est pas La Fin Du Monde

Unibroue, Quebec, Canada; Belgian-India Pale Ale, 9.5%

Lollihop © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Lollihop

A pair of classic styles converge in this ale. Definite Belgian flavor hits immediately, and then the hops strike with a nice citrus undertone. Great hybrid you don’t see that often. This one is brewed with Galaxy, Cascade, Willamette and Simcoe hops.

Victory Lap © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Victory Lap

Full Circle

New Holland Brewing Co., Holland, Michigan, Kolsch-style ale, 4.4%

This version of the hybrid ale-lager style is light-bodied with a slight lemon-lime / Sprite-like taste. Love the beer style – especially when the weather warms – as well as the brewery.

Kloster Andechs © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Kloster Andechs

Cane & Ebel

Two Brothers Brewing Co., Warrenville, Illinois; Red Rye India Pale Ale, 7%

Malts hit you first, then hops come along for the ride, and its long finish holds a bit of sweetness. Nice hybrid, incredibly balanced, consistently a great ale.

Trippel

New Belgium Brewing Co., Fort Collins, Colorado; Asheville, North Carolina; Belgian-style ale, 8.5%

Malts hit you right away as banana also wafts across. A bit alcoholic on the finish, though not over the top at 8.5%. Hops pop up just a bit. Well-done beer. It’s nice to see some good ones come out of this 31-year-old brewery.

Whirlwind © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Whirlwind

Cousin Eddie

Ithaca Brewing Co., Ithaca, New York; Hazy Double India Pale Ale, 7.75%

No clear fruit flavors popping through, though a bit of orange comes across. Earthy / pine flavors also hit the palate. Slight pleasing burn on the aftertaste. A much more complex beer, to say the least, than the Meister Brau that Cousin Eddie (Randy Quaid) drank in the 1989 movie, “Christmas Vacation.”

Space Castle

Three Floyd’s Brewing Co., Munster, Indiana; Pilsner, 5.6%

Very clean-tasting, with a hint of orange-creamsickle notes and some tangerine. And we’re seeing more of these sleek, all-black tops and tabs crop up.

Space Castle's sleek dark top and tab. © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Space Castle's sleek dark top and tab.

Whirlwind

Victory Brewing Co., Downington, Pennsylvania; Citrus Wit, 5.2%

Really nice sipper. A hint of orange comes across the palate with a smidgen of banana on the finish.

Think of Blue Moon amped up with more body and flavor. Refreshing beer especially this time of year. Brewed with Tettnang hops. Grapefruit flavor, orange peel and coriander are added in the brew.

Space Castle © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Space Castle

This month’s favorites: We had some good ones across the board. Cane & Ebel, Troegenator and Ce n’est pas La Fin Du Monde.

More beer news

Cousin Eddie © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS Cousin Eddie

Belated cheers: Saturday, May 7, was National Home Brew Day. How did you celebrate?

This month’s beer-review column covers beers from a multitude of states, a few countries, and a bit of news. © Marc Bona/cleveland.com/TNS This month’s beer-review column covers beers from a multitude of states, a few countries, and a bit of news.

Crushworthy Collection variety pack is out: On May 2, Great Lakes Brewing Co.’s Crushworthy Collection variety pack is in retail distribution. It features Crushworthy brewed with orange and lemon; plus new flavors - Grapefruit, Lemon Lime and Watermelon. Each is 105 calories and 4% alcohol.

Coors Banquet gets makeover via ‘Legacy Collection’: If you noticed different-looking Coors cans on store shelves here’s why: Molson Coors released The Legacy Collection - three new can designs in April. The Coors Banquet Legacy Collection features a QR code that unlocks a merchandise collaboration with Huckberry; details are online. Giveaways end Thursday, June 30.

Our reviews: Most of the beers we buy come from Northeast Ohio retail shops and stores. We choose from Lizardville in Copley, plus Heinen’s, Red, Wine & Brew; Acme, Giant Eagle, Mustard Seed Market, Whole Foods and others.

Like beer? Check out GiveThemBeer for gifts for beer lovers. The company offers craft-beer baskets, seasonal selections and more.

2022 monthly beer reviews

For January, we tried 6 beers from breweries in 6 states

Warm yourself with these beers for February: 8 sippers for cold nights

For March, we sipped 7 beers from Ohio to Texas to Colorado and beyond

For April, we try 8 very different beers from New York to Ohio and beyond

I am on cleveland.com’s life and culture team and cover food, beer, wine and sports-related topics. If you want to see my stories, here’s a directory on cleveland.com. Bill Wills of WTAM-1100 and I talk food and drink usually at 8:20 a.m. Thursday morning. Twitter: @mbona30.

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