Thursday, April 6, 2017

Ambler, PA: Forest & Main

How does a newer brewery stand out from the crowd?  Here's the formula at #Forest&Main, brewing since about 2014, Start with a graceful 19th century house, with a long front porch and a front yard with tables for the nice weather.

The building is said to be the 3rd oldest house in Ambler, a Philly suburb now, with history dating back to 1736 or so. The floor is original and the bar is refinished barn board. Two dart boards and no TV screens that I could see It's what sits on the bar that makes this pub a go to spot for fans. of the British real ale tradition.
Yes, fellow American CAMRA sympathizers,  you are looking at three, as in 3 , hand pumps (or to use the Brits' term, beer engines) always behind the bar and in front of five conventional draft taps,  And from those casks, the server draws pints of unmistakably English style ales at somewhere between forty and forty-eight degrees Fahrenheit.

I sipped on a half pint of each of the ales here caked. First, a dark mild, 4% abv, chocolate-y. Malts, lightly hopped, a nice session ale called Memories of a Man. Then another wee dram of Thoughts Like Brambles, labeled a baby IPA at  something under 5 %.  Nice apricot and honeydew flavors. The third cask: a muscular barleywine called Omphalos, 8.5%, with figgy pudding flavors.
The five draft taps appear to be dispensing saisons and other Belgian styles, for the most part.  I gathered, from chat in the taproom, that the two brewers do a lot of one-offs and do not really have flagship or signature beers they make on a regular rotation.
(Visited 03/22/17)

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