January usually brings a lot of sober promises. Then a beautiful new beer comes along and, well, sober January turns to “Let’s keep it lit” January with a quickness. It’s hard to pass up a great beer in the cold months, and while January is usually a slow time for new beer releases, there are still some stellar beers out there that just dropped.
We’ve compiled a shortlist of some of the best beers being released and hitting markets this January. Some of these are easier to find (with larger distribution); some you’ll have to travel for and do a bit of sleuthing to uncover. Either way, a good beer is always worth the trouble! Happy hunting!
COSMIC ARROW BRETT SAISON — BOW & ARROW BREWING CO.
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Cosmic Arrow- Saison Ale w/Brett & Peaches @bowandarrowbrewing -_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_- A bottle of yum and deliciousness. Even though I can’t ever get enough of stouts, I’m always open to some funk. Thanks goes out to @alex3nder_152 for always supplying me with the fruits of B&A.
Bow & Arrow Brewing Co. down in New Mexico is the first ever Native American female-owned craft brewery in the world. The master brewers are taking iconic Indigenous ingredients from the American Southwest — Navajo tea, wild hops, blue corn, etc. — and infusing them into masterfully crafted beers.
The Cosmic Arrow from the Bow & Arrow team is a funky brett saison that shines brightly. The constantly maturing beer has a clear essence of peach, funk, and dryness. There’s a light sweetness in the background the gives the beer an almost honey-like feel. This is a complex and delicious beer to start off the new year.
BIG CHICO KRIEK — SIERRA NEVADA BREWING CO.
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Big Chico Kriek is our first commercial sour and hoooo is it sour! Containing multiple Brett, sacc and lacto strains, the beer is a blend of three separate brews all produced in our sour room and re-fermented with cherries. This one is brewery-only at both our Chico and Mills River Gift Shops today, Torpedo Room soon. 375 ml bottles, limit 2 per person. Pucker up! 🍒 #sourbeer #sierranevada #beerme
Sierra Nevada just dropped a killer bottle that’s a heartfelt nod to Belgian Lambics. Their barrel-aged white beer is steeped with cherries, giving the beer a clear tartness from the fruit that leans dry, not sweet.
There’s a depth here that brings out a nice sourness that’ll pucker your lips and warm your soul. Although, that warm feeling might be the 7.2 percent ABV going straight to your head.
B-BOMB — FREMONT BREWING
Up in Seattle, Fremont is barreling some serious beers. Last month they dropped this year’s edition of their B-Bomb aged winter ale and it’s another must drink this winter. The beer comes out swinging with a 12 percent ABV (that’s wine territory, so drink accordingly).
There’s a real sense of the bourbon barrels in the beer with a clear vanilla essence followed by dank cocoa notes and leathery dried fruit. This is a big beer that’ll get stuck in your head for a while, or at least until you score another bottle.
BRUT IPA — NEW BELGIUM
If you’re missing all the champagne from NYE, grab a sixer of New Belgium’s Brut IPA to keep that feeling going all month. The crisp beer has a fruity, sparkling wine feel to it. This is the sort of beer that’ll get wine lovers into beer with a quickness.
There’s a clean and dry taste here that leans towards a combination of grapefruit, peaches, and pears. The hops add a nice and mild bitterness to the dry nature of the suds. Overall, this is a delightfully refreshing beer that’ll help you slide into 2019 smoothly.
SUMATRA MOUNTAIN BROWN — FOUNDERS BREWING CO.
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A big, bold beer with depth and coffee notes is an essential part of drinking beer in the winter. Founders Brewing’s Sumatra Mountain Brown hits that mark perfectly and just hit shelves around the country.
This beer is bold. There’s a rush of dark roasted coffee up front, with a dark chocolate bitterness that balances nicely with the malty sweetness at play. The hops come in with an earthy counterpoint that’s very subtle. It’s caramel, coffee, dark chocolate, and beer all rolled into a damn nice bottle.
KING IN THE NORTH — BREWERY OMMEGANG
Ommegang’s King in the North is pitch black and heavy-hitting Russian imperial stout. The aged beer carries a hefty eleven percent ABV with deep notes of chocolate, bourbon, and malty stout. This is a complex and deeply satisfying winter sipper.
COLD SNAP — SAMUEL ADAMS
Okay, some of the beers on this list are going to be very hard to find this month. Cold Snap is our antidote to that. You can grab this beer pretty much from sea to shining sea, which is great for casual beer lovers out there who don’t want to have to go on a trek just to try something new.
This bright Belgian Witbier is the deliciously complex and easy-to-drink. There’s a nice combination of orange peel, pepper, coriander, and sweet plums at play in each bottle. This is the sort of beer that reminds you that spring is, indeed, on its way.
INT’L PICK OF THE MONTH: BONS VOEUX — BRASSERIE DUPONT
Bons Voeux started out as a special one-off brew that Brasseries Dupont’s brewers would give away as a New Year’s gift. The beer was so damn tasty that they had to start making it for everyone. This really is the perfect beer to sip all January long.
The beer is light and mild with a fruity base that leans dry. There are hints of banana, pepper, clove, and lemon. The beer balances a nice dank hoppiness and echoes of malts in the background. Overall, this is the perfect beer to get you through the rest of January.