Other Half

Other Half, Brooklyn NY

There's few places in New York, that has seen the same level of success as the good folks over at Other Half. After less than three years, they've risen to success as a stand-out in the ever expanding beer scene. With an intense focus on hoppy quenchers and the importance of being a local brewery, they haven't seemed to slow down, since their doors opened to the public.

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My visit this February marks my second time coming through the doors in Brooklyn. Contrary to last visit, there's a beer release on this particular day - a collaboration with Russian Zagovor Brewery.

It's a long time coming as the Imperial Stout has been sitting on French Oak Red Wine Barrels. Those same barrels has then been stuffed with birch staves soaked in Armenian Brandy. If that's not enough, some of the beer have gotten raspberries and cocoa nibs added, hence a double release. I grabbed one of each to take home.

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More on Space Soyez Sauce (as it's called) later...

The warehouse and the bar is as packed as ever, with very few places to stand and even fewer to sit. I fight for a place just next to the bar, perfect view for the taplist and not getting in the way of the line, that seems to stretch out the door. Today there's even a door man, who suggest I get a Motueke + Galaxy.

I obliged!

I obliged!

It may or may not have been a good idea. Starting with an Imperial IPA could seem counterintuitive, as I would like to try more than one beer. None the less, it lives up to the name with tons of fruit, as I've come to expect from Other Half. Slight note of citrus evens it out a bit, and only the bitterness seems to be slightly missing.

The missing bitterness seems to have fled to 3rd Anniversary, I had the day before. 

But as my day has already included two other breweries (Interboro + Finback) and I'm not yet done for the day, I find my last beer on the board, Small Green Everything. Not straying far from the usual, with massive amounts of fruit and citrus. Would've been even better as a starter, but none the less it convinces me I need to bring home some more beers from Other Half.

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Before heading home I get a hold of a can of Hop Showers, in a surprise trading for one of my Finback cans, and a bottle of Cane Life, a collaboration with J. Wakefield. They all fit nicely in my suitcase.

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2016: Best Foreign Brewery

For the second year now, the danish beer bloggers are doing a "best of..." series. Started by Stovt last year, it's being done all over again, with some minor changes in the titles, but still with a view at the difference in beer bloggers views and experiences.

Personally, 2016 has been a very different year, than every previous one I've had as a beer writer. Mostly because most of my time has been spent running a bar, but also because I've come to know a lot more breweries around the world during my run as mayor president manager. That also makes it a lot harder to choose a candidate for this year.

I've considered a bunch of breweries, including the one I deemed the winner last year (Omnipollo, for those who didn't know).

Cloudwater come to mind, because they've made some incredible hoppy beers over the last year. They've now made it to version 10 and from the rumors they haven't slowed down a single bit

In keeping in line with last year, I also feel like it was appropriate to keep a Swedish brewery on the list. After all, Omnipollo was the winner of best non-danish brewery last year. Stigberget has been making some of the best IPA's I've ever had on danish soil. Westcoast IPA, Business as Usual (with All In and O/O), but more so Amazing Haze and the now world famous GBG Beer Week - all beers worthy of putting them permanently on my beer map.

A third contender for the title comes from my trip to New York. Other half have been slaying the beer scene, including my own pallet. The IPA's I've had on my trip was nothing but amazing and has earned them a spot on my list.

Before hitting the final spot, and winner of my list, I do need to turn my head to the other side of America, to a brewery that blew my mind on all scales. But a beer that really struck the high notes was Double Stack - an American Stout brewed with coffee and maple syrup. I'm obviously talking about Great Notion, the new west coast experts in IPA's, Stouts and Funk!

... and the winner is! 

... and the winner is! 

But one brewery that has crossed my path several times during 2016 and has kept surprising me, must be Brew by Numbers. It's not because they have the same weird relationship with numbers as I do, but because their beers have kept the same high level all through the year - many times even exceeding my expectations. The duo of double IPA's 55|01 and 55|02 was especially high hitters for me, but also their more subtle styles such as Oatmeal Stout (08|06), Red IPA (35|01) and White IPA (25|05) has peaked my tastebuds.