Fairfield County is somewhat of a Mecca when it comes to food, drink, and lifestyle. There’s everything you need, which must be why it attracts everyone from New York City commuters to seaside locals. The craft beer explosion didn’t miss this area of the state at all, in fact, it has blossomed in towns like Fairfield, Black Rock, and Bridgeport. Breweries have been popping up everywhere but most importantly, bars and restaurants have been receptive to carrying fresh local brew.
One of the best places to grab some great food and enjoy a gigantic selection of craft beer is Local Kitchen and Beer Bar. Their menu features everything from pulled pork sliders to six different craft bowls (Street Pho and Mushroom Risotto were standouts). Small plate essentials, big salads that would make Elaine proud, and Lobster waffles. Lobster waffles!
But on top of all this there are 30 taps on any given day, flowing with delicious beer. Most of the time, half of those taps are from Connecticut which validates the Local name. Two beers that we enjoyed were both from New England Brewing Company.
NebCo is one of the most fawned over breweries in Connecticut year after year and for good reason. They have arguably some of the most sought after beers in the state with G-Bot, Fuzzy Baby Ducks, and Imperial Stout Trooper, not to mention a stable of selections available (for free) at their taproom. On this particular afternoon, it was Supernaut and Coriolis that piqued our interest.
Supernaut is a single-hopped IPA featuring the Mosaic variety. The drinkable IPA (5.8% ABV) hits heavily with notes of passionfruit and mango on the nose, while unfolding more complexities on the palate that makes you question how one hop can be so versatile. Most beers sitting under 6% can come off bland or boring but Supernaut packs a punch, even if it’s a small one.
Coriolis is another single-hop creation but instead of being a single IPA, Coriolis is an Imperial. Weighing in at 8.2% ABV, this one is certainly the heavy weight of the two. Solely featuring the complex hop Nelson Sauvin, the aromas range from fruit to white wine. That being said, the palate narrows in on a burst of grapefruit which the Nelson hop can be known for and possess a dry finish that cuts the strength of the beer and masks its alcohol percentage.
It’d be tough to pick a favorite out of the two considering they both work well in their respective ways. Both beers really encapsulate why NebCo is such a well-respected brewery, and that’s their ability to create something intricate from something so simple.
The combination of great beer and food is a beautiful thing, especially when that food is a flaming hot Buffalo Chicken wrap and the beer is an ice-cold one from New England Brewing Company. So, next time you’re in the area and you’re craving some great food and an even better beer to match, Local Kitchen and Beer Bar should be at the top of your list.