Saturday, August 1, 2009

Rootstock Wine & Beer Bar

Last night we decided to keep things in our area and check out a new spot. Rootstock has been getting a lot of buzz but i had heard very little about it from the perspective of a beer lover. What we intended to be a quick stop turned into a full evening at the bar sampling the menu and fine libations.

The bottle list was carefully selected. They kept a few selections from local craft brewers Three Floyds and Two Brothers, notably "Behemoth Barley Wine" but also "Gorch Fock" and "Dog Days". Domestic offerings from Allagash, Lost Abbey, North Coast, Lagunitas and Great Lakes. You will notice a leaning towards Belgian ales but dig a little deeper and they keep one good example of most styles. The imports list kept English Bitters like "Bombardier" and "Old Speckled Hen", French Canadian Belgian style ales from Unibrou, Lagers from Schlenkerla and Weihenstephan plus several Belgian and French ales. All price points on the bottles but of course it's great to pick out a pricier bottle to share with the table.

They had a two draft tower with Goose Island "Matilda" and Brooklyn "Sorachi Ace Saison". Matilda is great but what really brought me in was the Sorachi Ace Saison. Fresh grassy hop aroma and flavor. Citrus notes with grains of paradise meld well with the somewhat aggressive hopping for a Saison. I could have had this all night and will definitely be back again for another glass.

The partner who was running the bar, John, had an incredibly knowledge of the selections. You will notice the bar is not over ran by a pack of well known bottles. Like the beer selection, the spirits all were hand selected. I was impressed to see they had Templeton Rye. When He found out I was a big fan of brewing with Rye, he shared a sample of Wasmund's Rye Spirit, a small batch from Virginia. You can tell a lot of thought and love went into this bar and they were passionate about showing it off.

You can check them out at . They are located on the South West corner of Augusta and California in the Humboldt Park neighborhood.

On a side note, please vote for "The Best Chicago Beer Venue". #Gents will be reviewing one every Tuesday in August. Voting closes Sunday at 8pm.