Beer Review: Bridgeport Brewery #1 Crystal Dry-Hopped Pale Ale

Beer Review: Bridgeport Brewery #1 Crystal Dry-Hopped Pale Ale

VicesFebruary 27, 2014

We like to celebrate. Birthdays, weddings, Wednesdays, anything. So, when we heard that  one of our favorite breweries was turning 30 and made three limited-release beers to mark the occasion we RSVP’d and got our hands on the first of the three.

Bridgeport Brewing Company was born and raised in Portland Oregon and was the state’s first craft brewery. Today we tasted the first in the 30th anniversary trilogy, Crystal Dry-Hopped Pale Ale. It was brewed to showcase crystal hops and pay homage to the hop revolution that differentiated craft beer from other American beers way back when, in the ‘80s. Cheers!

Bridgeport Trilogy #1 Crystal Dry-Hopped Pale Ale
ABV 5.2  IBU 40

Color: Cloudy and golden
Aroma: A sweet malt scent and ridiculously fresh hop aroma make you feel like you’re twirling, Sound-of-Music style, in a hop field.
Mouth-feel: At first it’s heavy as it washes over your tongue. Then the hops and carbonation cut right in and cleanse the palate leaving only a slight tinge of hops that pinch your tongue. In a good way though, not like that time you pierced it with a safety pin freshman year.
Taste: The belle of this ball is the crystal hop, no question about it. The sweet, bready malt starts this beer out light and crisp but then slides to the background so the hops can come through rock your face. The malt is so light that you’re able to taste bright, fruity notes the fresh hops bring to the party. But that’s not all the hops bring, they’re bold, bitter and refreshing. The finish is dry and just begs for a French fry.

Reaction: #1 in this trilogy was a nice surprise. Its light color might fool you for a moment, but you should know better than to judge a beer by its color. Instead of bogging down the bright malt, the hops lift the beer. It’s light but bitter enough that I didn’t feel like a bitch drinking it.  Bridgeport set out to showcase a hop and damn straight they did it with this well-balanced brew. Overall, I’d say it’s a solid pale ale. We’ll be looking forward to May for #2.