Cambridge Brewing Company (2020)

Discussion in 'New England' started by AlcahueteJ, Jan 23, 2020.

  1. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,505) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
    Society

  2. rhino88888888

    rhino88888888 Initiate (120) Dec 12, 2013 Massachusetts
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    Definitely a local brewery deserving of a thread! Very sad I won't be able to make it to the Barleywine Fest this year.

    I'll throw in a friendly reminder for those that frequent Harvard Square that Club Passim always has four CBC drafts and The Brattle Theater always offers two or three CBC draft options. (Just last year the Brattle had Cerise Cassee on tap - $10 for 20oz!)
     
  3. jbertsch

    jbertsch Meyvn (1,204) Dec 14, 2008 Massachusetts

    A 20oz pour of a 9% sour??? Nice beer but I have an upset stomach just thinking about that
     
  4. kinopio

    kinopio Aspirant (273) Apr 30, 2009 Massachusetts

    I think there is a new batch of cerise cassee bottles out there. Such a good beer.
     
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  5. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,213) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    CBC is my favorite brewery in MA. Not living down the street from there has made me infinitely sadder.

    I hope y'all go to barleywine fest. It's a unique experience and no other brewery in New England can really provide the experience of being able to try year over year or barrel type versus barrel type.
     
  6. mrmattosgood

    mrmattosgood Initiate (147) Nov 6, 2010 Monaco
    Trader

    I have great memories of CBC. For a while, it was my go-to spot for doing my journalism job, particularly meeting sources and chatting over a beer.
     
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  7. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,505) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
    Society

    I was actually going to Lamplighter and CBC anyways on Saturday and then a light bulb went off, "Wait, I think Barleywine Fest is this Saturday..."

    And unlike the Sour Fest, the crowds are more manageable at this one.
     
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  8. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (547) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    Also supposed to be pouring on Saturday, so likely a diminished crowd.
     
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  9. rhino88888888

    rhino88888888 Initiate (120) Dec 12, 2013 Massachusetts
    Trader

    Another great Barleywine Fest! Crowded at 6pm but not too hard too find a spot at the bar. In addition to 17 vintages of their own barleywine they had a keg of Our Finest Regards (2015). I was short on time so I only got to sample a few and missed the special food menu. I’ve always been a bigger fan of Arqebus than Blundderbus. The 2016 Arquebus aged in a Tokaji barrel has been my fave over the years. So glad I got to sample it again!
     
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  10. jbertsch

    jbertsch Meyvn (1,204) Dec 14, 2008 Massachusetts

    I love this. Wish I was there.
     
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  11. cskollmann

    cskollmann Initiate (68) Apr 30, 2008 Massachusetts

    Stopped in with the family for lunch on Sunday. They still had everything available from the barleywine fest except for Our Finest Regards :slight_frown:

    My wife and I shared two flights between us, sampling three Arquebus and three Blunderbuss vintages. We liked both the Willet and Four Rose finished Blunderbuss quite a bit, but the highlights for me were the Arquebus samples. The 2013, finished in a cabernet barrel was aggressively wine forward and was my least favorite. The 2016 and 2017 were both amazing. As they warmed, more and more dessert wine character came out. I'd say 2016, finished in a Tokaji barrel was favorite by a nose.

    Speaking of Arquebus, that beer encapsulates what I love about CBC. They are are still experimenting and discovering new expressions of what beer can be after all these years. I don't know of anyone else that can pull off a "summer barleywine" that remains so balanced and drinkable at that ABV. Is there anyone else even playing in that space?
     
  12. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (547) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    I feel like I should create a separate thread for this, but I went to CBC for lunch today and the construction in their little square is insane and totally obscures the restaurant. Construction projects like that are wildly disruptive to businesses that rely on foot traffic. Combine that with the loss of Mystic, where CBC had a production deal, and I’m legit concerned about the business.

    So, I’ll put this out there as a challenge: If you live nearby or find yourself nearby, stop in and get a beer and some food. The Kendall Sq garage offers convenient and cheap parking (ask for a chaser card at CBC), so no excuse to not go. Given the current states of the beer market and the Boston restaurant scene where everything old school is getting replaced with something owned by a restaurant group, we can’t afford to lose CBC. Do your duty as beer geeks and make the effort to get there!
     
  13. kinopio

    kinopio Aspirant (273) Apr 30, 2009 Massachusetts

    The construction on that plaza is ridiculous and has been going on forever. If you require easy access enter the brewery from the alley on Cardinal Medeiros ave.

    If CBC went out of business I would switch to French wine and say goodbye to haze drinking, line standing Chads. CBC has been that integral to my craft beer journey.
     
    #13 kinopio, Feb 9, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2020
  14. Rekrule

    Rekrule Defender (646) Nov 11, 2011 Massachusetts

    I live no where near and go there quarterly. I'm not saving the business but it's an old/current fave I still support.
     
  15. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,213) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    I visit CBC whenever I am back in town and sometimes go multiple times. It is my favorite brewery in MA. I could not imagine the MA beer scene without it. Please imbibe there and order some buffalo chicken tenders for me.
     
  16. cskollmann

    cskollmann Initiate (68) Apr 30, 2008 Massachusetts

    Visited today to try the new dark mild (it's outstanding). Seemed like less people than at smoke shop next door, though we were there kind of late for lunch. They still had a couple of arquebus vintages on, get in there and try them.
     
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  17. Stormfield

    Stormfield Initiate (146) Feb 21, 2011 Massachusetts

    Other than the obviously disruptive and unsightly work being done out front, what makes people think CBC is any kind of trouble? I just don’t understand the concern, at least not yet.
     
  18. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (547) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    Losing the Mystic arrangement is likely a hit to the business. And I have no knowledge of their current lease in that space, but that is some expensive real estate that is only going to get more expensive once construction is complete. There’s nothing imminent that I know of, just a heads up that the current conditions are definitely not favorable for CBC. And a reminder to support the old school places that got us here. Skip the line at whatever haze factory just opened in a garage and grab some nachos and a grisette at CBC.
     
  19. oldbean

    oldbean Disciple (364) Jun 30, 2005 Massachusetts

    Do you know how much beer they were actually producing there? It doesn't seem like they'd been using it that much unless they started doing their canned beers there.
     
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  20. Stormfield

    Stormfield Initiate (146) Feb 21, 2011 Massachusetts

    No CBC canned beers were ever produced there. They only used Mystic for bottled wilds/sours.
     
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  21. oldbean

    oldbean Disciple (364) Jun 30, 2005 Massachusetts

    Ok, that's what I thought... so then, am I crazy, or have they not released nearly enough of those in past few years to justify that whole operation?
     
  22. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,505) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
    Society

    Place was packed for their Barleywine Festival. I don't think people had a hard time finding it that day.
     
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  23. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (547) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    An annual event with hardcore beer geeks isn’t the best example.
     
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  24. meefmoff

    meefmoff Devotee (451) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts
    Trader

    I go to the movies at Kendall pretty frequently and always grab a beer or two at CBC while I'm there (most recently 2 weeks ago). It's always pretty crowded in my experience, though that doesn't negate your general recommendation to put in some extra effort to visit.
     
  25. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,505) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
    Society

    True, it's a good point.

    But I think of the sour festival to be the hardcore beer geek event. You can barely get in during that one. I feel as if the Barleywine Festival isn't always packed. I was there last year maybe a half hour or so before it started and it was empty.

    Do line chasers and tickers even care about Barleywines anymore?
     
  26. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (547) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    Sours are very popular, barleywine is not. So, I think of barleywine as being the much geekier fest.
     
  27. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,505) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
    Society

    Oh, I see what you're saying.

    Beer geek = old school craft beer lovers

    I was equating "beer geek" with those who are newer to craft and into pastry stouts and New England IPAs.
     
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  28. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (547) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    Yeah, the kind of craft beer drinker that sees a brewery post about an English dark mild fermented with Fullers ale yeast and hops in his car 5 minutes later with the intent of eating something other than buffalo chicken tenders with his beers, but ends up ordering them anyway because they're awesome and the cheapest thing on the menu. :+1::wink:
     
  29. Stormfield

    Stormfield Initiate (146) Feb 21, 2011 Massachusetts

    Those buff chic tenders are as good as anywhere’s and are actually better than most. I prefer CBC’s over a couple of other places that specialize in wings and tenders.
     
  30. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,213) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    Finally, I feel seen.
     
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  31. jbertsch

    jbertsch Meyvn (1,204) Dec 14, 2008 Massachusetts

    I don’t get to CBC too often because I’m not in that area much. But honestly, although I love their wilds and geekified beers, it’s good ‘ol Charles River Porter that I miss most when I haven’t been a while. I still don't think there's a better straight, classic porter around these parts.
     
  32. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,505) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
    Society

    You forgot that they would probably have it on cask too. And usually they have beers like this on cask and CO2 driven, so you can compare.

    Also, what are Fuller's hops? :wink:

    Apparently I need to have these. Sadly, I never have. Been there more times than I can count, but I hardly eat there. I eat there even less now that Smoke Shop is next door.

    I need to have these buffalo tenders now...I also need to try the buffalo wings at Pub in Somerville. They're apparently some of the best in MA.

    I also need to revisit Charles River Porter apparently. I also think their Amber might still be their best selling beer...if true that's damn impressive.
     
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  33. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,213) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    I think it makes a lot of sense when you dig under the surface. It is one of the few beers they always have and on draft. It's one of the few beers that is available for larger consumption (i.e. people can get pitchers/beer tubes) which is great for groups. Two of the other house beers have been recently re-done (in the last few years, I mean). The porter, though great, is a hard sell for people who may think that Guinness is a dark and heavy beer. Also, the IPA is only available in cans (I don't remember the last time FC has been on draft at the brewery).

    Yeah, Amber Ale in 2020 but there are some structural factors that make that make sense.
     
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  34. jbart

    jbart Initiate (158) Oct 2, 2004 Massachusetts

    The Amber is also delicious. One of the few ambers I actually enjoy. Charles River Porter is fantastic.
     
  35. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,213) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    I think I haven't had the Amber since 2012. I should probably revisit the house beers the next time I'm there.
     
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  36. EnronCFO

    EnronCFO Zealot (547) Mar 29, 2007 Massachusetts

    I think Tall Tale Pale has actually gotten better. It's also a nice reset beer if you're going from sour to dark to barleywine or anywhere in between at CBC. Same with the house lager/zwickel, another beer that is overlooked but damn good.
     
  37. Sheppard

    Sheppard Meyvn (1,213) Mar 16, 2013 Virginia
    Trader

    Not sure they still call it Tall Tale. They re-worked the pale ale a couple of years ago.
     
  38. Stormfield

    Stormfield Initiate (146) Feb 21, 2011 Massachusetts

    They now call it House APA. And someone above mentioned that Flower Child is only served in cans, which is true, but they always have a couple (or three) other IPAs on draft.
     
  39. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Poo-Bah (1,505) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts
    Society

    It's hard for me to pick one of the house beers when I'm there. They do so many styles other breweries don't do (at least not often) that I always pick something else.

    I guess in retrospect it makes sense they sell a lot of the Amber in-house. If it was distributed I don't think it would move at all (see beers like Honker's Ale, which is now brewpub only).
     
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  40. Stormfield

    Stormfield Initiate (146) Feb 21, 2011 Massachusetts