The Northeast Peepshow

Brewery and Country of Origin: Sierra Nevada Brewing Company of 1075 East 20th Street, Chico, CA, 95928, USA

Date Reviewed: 9-23-12

When you think of autumn, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Thanksgiving? Football? Oktoberfest? Well, for us, we immediately think of fall foliage. If you're from the south, or very very far north, you'll want to pay attention. In deciduous trees, every year, the normally green leaves of the tree change colors, die, and fall off the tree making a great building material for jumping piles and a good indicator of people who don't care about the appearance of their front lawn. Essentially, what happens is that around this time of year, every year, the amount green color influencing cholorphyll in these kinds of trees gradually decreases, basically giving other pigments in the leaves (which are always present) more effect. These pigments, which are usually masked by green chlorophyll, in the form of carotenoids and anthocyanins (yes, nerdy stuff) can be one of many different colors, giving us the end result of a bunch of tourists boarding slow, loud, wide, smelly, disease infested bus tours that take people up to the northern bits of New England and New York. Interesting, the flavor experience of this particular fall celebrating beer is much like the life of a leaf. This beer starts out sweet, immature, forgiving, and lighter, while it's finish... well, let's just say it's a bit more autumn.
Date Sampled: 9-07-12 At: 223 Summer Street, Somerville, MA, 02143
Beer Style: American Brown Ale
Alcohol by Volume: 5.50%
Serving Type: 12 oz Bottle, 14 oz Sam Adams Glass
Rating: 2.71


The Tumbler pours slightly choppy with a small bit of carbonation action, giving it a slightly below average height, thin, and short lived foam head, a very little amount of lacing, and a lighter aroma. This is a clear beer with a light brownish/red color which matches the style and the season.


The aroma is pretty well balanced, being full of darker roasted malt and a good amount of hops to supplement. The strength of this aroma is weakened by an anemic foam head, and a lower amount of carbonation.


This is a light medium bodied beer with a medium weight and a lower viscosity, making it an easily manageable beer for all seasons. The below average level of carbonation gives this beer a slightly duller character than most, but still within the range of the average brown ale. This beer closes with a dry finish.


Earthy and nutty flavors give this brown ale a slightly alternative flavor, as well as a nice hearty character which will keep your tastebuds busy during the fall months. There are dark and roasted malts mixed in, as well as a bitter aftertaste which lingers for a bit.

Our Take

Though we'll start straight by saying that this was not one of our favorite fall time beers, it is definitely a viable solution for people who like to be in tune with the seasons. Of course, the only real way to enjoy this beer is when the food in the oven is finally done, and at least three kinds of bird, and two pumpkins gave their lives to a delicious fall meal. In our completely biased opinion, if you want a fall and festive beer, you're going to be better off with an Oktoberfest or a Pumpkin ale than a brown. And more importantly, you're going to want it on tap. But if you are indeed at home baking, and you don't live at a pub, then try to focus on something a bit more local (if you live up north, that is). There is something about a brewery that not only pays attention to the seasons, but the local or regional culture and atmosphere as well. Kona (Kona, Hi) brews with coconuts, while Harpoon (Windsor, VT) includes maple syrup on their list of ingredients on a couple of their beers. Now if you live in the south, or way up north where the trees only have needles as leaves, then come up and visit for a while. Just don't think you run the place one you get off the bus.