Pipeworks are a hypey brewery from Chicago. I like them because their bombers are reasonably priced. The beer press loves them for god knows what reason–they’re not making a lot of sour bullshit, they’re not charging a shitload for limited release beers of middling quality, and their artwork doesn’t look like it was chosen by a University of Phoenix business major. What I’m getting at is that they appear to be doing things right, and coming out of the cultural cesspool of Chicago that’s pretty remarkable.

(And if you don’t think Chicago is a cultural cesspool, I beg you to hang around outside Wrigley Field and attempt to engage three strangers in a conversation. Other places suck more than Chicago, obviously, and there are plenty of good people there. But I know of no other city where the monied elite are so bloated, illiterate, and smarmy.)

This tastes good. Super good midwest stouts all share a certain set of characteristics that I am far too illiterate to describe in technical terms. They’re not afraid of using American hops, but they also realize that the best stouts aren’t defined by their hop profile. Cocoa nibs are way noticeable but not the beer’s defining feature. It’s strong and interesting but also very well balanced.

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