A go-to beer for local pride
A Review of Sweet Josie by LoneRider Brewing Co.
Posted on 6/12/2011 by Chops
                   
Great
Many people think that to be a true enthusiast, you have to be open to all the world's offerings. This is a true statement, but offers only a narrow and lonely path. To be a well rounded enthusiast, you also need a healthy dose of local pride. It's very important to recognize not only the best brews on the planet, but also the best brews in your community. They may or may not compete with their worldly counterparts, but they don't have to. They are a reflection of your environment. Quite literally, they are a reflection of you.

Once of my local reflection breweries is LoneRider out of Raleigh, NC. They have been rolling out tasty brews for a few years now. Their flagship, Shotgun Betty Hefeweizen, turned a lot of heads right out of the gate. But rocketing up my list of favorite local brews is their delicious Sweet Josie Brown.

In the glass, you can see that Sweet Josie nailed that classic deep brown coloration. When held up to the light, it has a shade of red and transforms into a beautiful mahogany. The aroma is where this beer hooks you. It has a thick caramel smell accompanied by crisp hops and brown sugar. Sweet Josie is a very inviting beer whether you've had it before or not. I always look forward it's delectable aroma.

The taste of Sweet Josie is a pretty straight laced brown. Not too sweet, not too bitter, just a few roasted malt and burnt chocolate flavors bouncing off each other. There is also a strong woody undertone, giving the beer an earthy and gritty feel. The mouthfeel can be a bit chalky at times, especially on the finish, but it's not strong enough to burden your palate. The hop profile is nicely balance and non-aggressive, allowing you to chew on the beer for a while.

Overall, Sweet Josie is a very nice brown, I would certainly recommend it to fans of the style. Regionally, this beer is a champion, one of my go-to beers for local pride. On the international circuit, it certainly deserves recognition (won a gold medal at the ABF), but it's not quite world class yet. But that doesn't bother me a bit because I'll be drinking plenty of it until it is.

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Sweet Josie by LoneRider Brewing Co.
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