Since 1996, the American brewing company Samuel Adams has hosted an annual homebrew contest. This year, both of the winners were Bay Area residents, so I found myself at a tasting that celebrated the chosen beers. While I enjoyed Alex Drobshoff's Traditional Bock and Mike McDole's Double IPA, it was Carissa Sweigart's Cranberry Wit that was particularly memorable.
Carissa, a sales rep for Sam Adams, was the winner of the employee section of the competition. She used ingredients from her howetown, Cape Cod, to create a sensationally complex beer.
With hints of orange zest, cinnamon, and cranberry, this beer was different from any brew I've ever tasted. Topped with a creamy head, the Cranberry Wit has a cloudy yellow color and medium body. The autumnal flavors of the wit seem ideal for the colder months.
Have you tried the Cranberry Wit? Or any of the beers that come in Sam Adams Longshot Six-Pack ($9.99)? Which was your favorite?