Sunday, February 9, 2014

Southampton's Russian Imperial Stout Release Party 2014

Each year breweries from around the world create their signature beers for the enjoyment of their loyal customers, who know that they will be getting a beer that they love from the companies they trust. Southampton Publick House is one of those very companies. Every year around the end of January they release their Russian Imperial Stout both on tap and in bottles for all beer lovers to enjoy. The same day they also release some of their very limited brews, some of which have never seen the light of day before. Attending one of their release parties (they usually fall on a Saturday) is the only way to try these beers for yourself and to grab a couple of bottles before they're gone until next year.

The 2014 RIS release party fell on February 8, this past Saturday. Without question Rob, Tom and I made the journey to the Publick house about an hour away so we could revel in some fine beer drinking.

The view of the Publick House on the cold morning of February 8, 2014

We arrived at the Publick House extra early so we could each get one of the beer tickets they were handing out at 9AM, guaranteeing you the maximum number of bottles of each beer. On each ticket you then write in how many beers you would like to purchase, within the limit. They also list the price of each beer and the size of each bottle.

Besides Russian Imperial Stout, which they have every year, this time they had Scotch Ale and Double Ice Bock available for purchase. Southampton Scotch Ale is described as being brewed with traditional Scottish "Golden Promise" malt to deliver the biscuity, slight vanilla character and balanced with imported UK hops. It is 8.4% ABV. The Double Ice Bock is produced when a Bock beer is partially frozen to increase its alcohol content. The process is done twice which why it is called a Double Ice Bock. Its resulting ABV was that of a whopping 18% and the reason why it was only sold in a 7oz bottle and you could only buy one.

After filling out my beer ticket I spent some time talking with the Brewmaster of Southampton, Evan Addario. He asked me where I was from and we talked about the beers he brews. He made me feel welcome and I could tell he loved his job with how friendly he was, especially earlier in the day when he was handing out beer tickets with a big smile on his face as he greeted everyone.

Myself and Brewmaster Evan Addario

We then waited until the Publick House was set to open at 11AM. The time came and we shuffled inside with the rest of the crowd. Evan handed out complimentary Southampton pint glasses to us as we all passed the front counter. The turn out was great and there was a lot of people just as excited to try these delicious beers on tap as we were.

Everyone attending was all smiles as they drank some tasty Southampton beer

As we paid for our beers I got my first taste of Southampton's Scotch Ale in the pint glass provided.

I was met with a very pleasant surprise. The Scotch Ale both smelled and tasted like caramel, sweet delicious caramel. I loved it and couldn't get enough. I even told Evan on 2 or 3 different occasions, as he was passing by, how much I liked it.

Rob also got a Scotch Ale on tap, while Tom went with the Russian Imperial Stout for his first pint.

Good Beers, Good Times

I tried some of Tom's Russian Imperial Stout and while I did like it, I didn't enjoy it as much as the Scotch Ale.

I ended up buying 1 bottle of the Russian Imperial Stout, 2 bottles of the Scotch Ale and 1 bottle of the 7oz Double Ice Bock.

I thought it was funny how much smaller the bottle of Double Ice Bock was compared to the other two offerings. I've never seen beer sold in that small of a bottle before.
On a side note, the Southampton employees who were collecting our orders for us after we showed our receipts were super friendly. They wanted to make sure we got our bottles as quickly as possible with little to no waiting.

 One of the smoothest transactions

After we finished our first pints, we put our purchased bottles in my car and went back inside for some brunch on the restaurant side of the Publick House.

For $15 bucks we got to choose whatever brunch item we wanted as well as an included 12oz draft pour. I ordered the french toast with a side of bacon and a plate of scrambled eggs with toast. Each meal was complete with a garnish which included a piece of strawberry and an orange slice. I chose a 12oz of Scotch Ale to go with my meal.

The best breakfast I've had in a long time

The food was delicious. Everything about it was perfect and I couldn't have asked for a better breakfast. There was nothing left on either of my plates by the time I was through.
Overall my experience at the 2014 Southampton Russian Imperial Stout release party was everything I hoped for plus more. Tom walked away with 3 bottles of Russian Imperial Stout, while I had a spread of everything that Southampton had to offer that day.
Tom and I with some of the beers we purchased

I want to personally thank Evan and the rest of the Southampton crew that made this day possible and so memorable for me and everyone else who attended. I will be back every year you guys have a release party.

Here's a few more shots I took during the day of the event:
  The line outside the Publick House to get a ticket
Tom, myself and Rob waiting on line
The view of the bar

Southampton Publick House is located at 40 Bowden Square in Southampton, NY. They serve brunch and lunch from 12-3PM each Saturday and Sunday and are open 7 days a week for dinner. They have rotating out-of-this-world offerings on tap and I have never left disappointed.

If you liked this blog please check out some of the other ones I've written on my page here including my zany retelling of the Southampton release party I went to two years ago.

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