DROP ANCHOR BREWING, CATHLAMET WA
Drop Anchor Brewing is the third brewery we visited on Saturday (15th Nov.) on our returning drive from the coast. We wanted to stop in the Longview area at some of the breweries and discovered this new brewery in Cathlamet (small fishing town 20 miles NW of Longview on the Columbia river) before we left that morning and decided to take the north route back to Longview and check it out. Please note, they have limited hours of operation: Friday and Saturday 4:00pm to 8:00pm with special days for boat clubs and special events.
The location is a boat house next to Cathlamet Marina (including a boat ramp/dock). It’s owned/run by a couple of experienced brewers, Andy Lea (worked at Pyramid) and Steve Sharp (over a decade of home brewing). The small building includes tons of windows and a rough interior with the production in the back half, a small bar to sit at, as well as a few tables inside and outside. The overall feel is that of a small mom/pop operation, but the beer’s speak of decades of experience and skill.
Here’s a review of the beers we sampled:
|Chocolate and coffee malt forward on the nose and a well rounded mouth feel. The dark SRM is dark like the black waters of the Columbia, and the finish is dry and smooth with balanced hop and malts.
|Northwest Pale Ale
|This is their flagship beer. The Broken Hose is a full bodied and well balanced beer. It has a caramel and sweet nose, rich red SRM and rounded appeal. The slight sweet notes let the malts stand out more than the hops.
|Scottish Pale Ale
|I must admit that I love Scottish Ale, so I might be a little biased in this review. Beautifully colored with a smooth and sweet (not really smokey) appeal as most Scottish ales can have. This one has some spice notes (cinnamon/clove) with an old-world edge. Clear, dry, and sharp on the back end.
|AYE AYE IPA
|We had some mixed feelings on this IPA. While it is made with Magnum & Amarillo hops and Crystal malt for a strong hop/bitter front and nose (citrus and pine), the malts do help bring the overbearing hop profile in check. This was a clean and well thought out beer without being pretentious.
|This is one of the more sessionable beers. It is a standard blond lager with low ABV and clean finish. For those that like American style lite beers, this is your go to.
|HARD OVER HEFEWEIZEN
|We were confused by this beer. While it does say it’s a Heffe style, it shows as filtered wheat beer and really doesn’t have a pronounced clove or banana’s to be found…unless you swig it and only then on the back end after-taste.
|DROP DEAD RED
|Definitely a strong red, this full bodied, malt forward beer has a dark red color. The hops do express themselves with a bitter mid and back end NW style.
|They had a couple of seasonal, limited run beers and this was one of them. It had a standard German fest spice and malt on the nose and front/mid mouth feel. The roasted nuts and a vanilla/sweet note did come through to balance the slight hop profiles.