njshore mobile header

Beer Review: Captain Lawrence Golden Delicious

by Tara Nurin on Sep 3, 2012 in Beer

Captain Lawrence Brewing Co. head brewer Scotty Vaccaro is arguably one of the finest and most well-respected brewers in New York State. Considering New York is the nation’s second-largest grower of apples, it’s appropriate for the University of California Davis fermentation science grad to brew Golden Delicious, an American-style Tripel aged in apple brandy barrels from one of the oldest distilleries in the U.S. (which Vaccaro declines to name). The ale, which won a Great American Beer Festival bronze medal in the “Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer” category in 2008, the first year it was released, appears seasonally. More than any other beer I’ve tasted, Golden Delicious mirrors the season in which it’s sold: evolving gracefully from a summer afternoon chiller to a chilly autumn liqueur as it warms in the glass.

An aggressive pour into a goblet results in a rocky, three-finger head that radiates a gorgeously clean, pure ivory. Though the head doesn’t stick around too long, it does leave behind a heavy lacing on the glass. 

The color is gentle brass, more yellow than red, and the clarity is hazy but not cloudy, somewhere between opaque and translucent in way that recalls opening one’s eyes in a heavily chlorinated pool. Some drinkers might call it “blurry.” 

An initial nose full of alcohol belies the taste of well-balanced sweetness and the light interplay between the apples and the faint Amarillo hops. There’s also a mild sour aroma that doesn’t translate to the flavor. The taste is tart rather than sour, and tingly instead of biting. 

As it warms, the brandy shines through in a way that takes this ale from an upbeat warm-weather bite of green apple to a fireside liqueur that would feel at home on a dessert table. Exactly like the season when it’s meant to be drunk. 

Photo by Tara Nurin

Recent Articles
spacer
Home Bar Project Below Features

Feedback

How are we doing? Tell us what you like or don't like and how we can improve. We would love to hear your thoughts!

*Name:
*E-mail:
*Suggestions:
 
Has 'Curiosity' Killed the Can? Exploring Lululemon's Attempt to Sell Lager Alongside Leggings

Has 'Curiosity' Killed the Can? Exploring Lululemon's Attempt to Sell Lager Alongside Leggings

Care for a lager with those leggings? Lululemon has partnered with Stanley Park Brewing to produce the new Cur...read more ›

by Rob Jagiela Jul 31, 2015
New London Bar Fills Empty Rooms With Clouds of Breathable Alcohol: What Could Go Wrong?

New London Bar Fills Empty Rooms With Clouds of Breathable Alcohol: What Could Go Wrong?

Are you tired of sipping on your cocktail? Try breathing in your cocktail instead at this new London bar....read more ›

by Ryan Hudak Jul 27, 2015
SPONSORED
Go to drinknjshore.com on your phone!
Dogfish Inn Expands Its Beercation Reach With All-INNclusive Experience

Dogfish Inn Expands Its Beercation Reach With All-INNclusive Experience

The All-INNclusive Dogfish Experience is the perfect way to make the most of your beercation. ...read more ›

by Erica Bauwens Jul 27, 2015
Cider Takes Over Atlantic City at the First Annual Cider Social, Aug. 8

Cider Takes Over Atlantic City at the First Annual Cider Social, Aug. 8

Cider fans, rejoice! The first annual Cider Social is coming to Atlantic City this August....read more ›

by Erica Bauwens Jul 23, 2015
What Does the Firestone Walker Acquisition Mean for Craft Beer Fans?

What Does the Firestone Walker Acquisition Mean for Craft Beer Fans?

Firestone Walker made an announcement late last week that they had been "invested in" by Duvel Moortgat. But w...read more ›

by Ryan Hudak Jul 20, 2015
Tickets to the 2015 Great American Beer Festival on Sale July 29

Tickets to the 2015 Great American Beer Festival on Sale July 29

The GABF has sold out in well under and hour for the past six years. Tickets to this year's event go on sale to the general public on Wednesday, July ...read more ›

by The Drink Nation Jul 17, 2015
The New T Street in Atlantic City Could Be Just the Venue the City Needs

The New T Street in Atlantic City Could Be Just the Venue the City Needs

T Street, Atlantic City's latest venue, is actually a bunch of smaller venues rolled into one and none of them...read more ›

by Robin Shreeves Jul 15, 2015
Summer Six Pack: Six Refreshing Beers You Need to Try This Summer

Summer Six Pack: Six Refreshing Beers You Need to Try This Summer

Grab some of these refreshing brews for your next beach trip or cookout....read more ›

by Swabreen Bakr Jul 15, 2015
Music Festival Attendees' Urine is Getting Transformed into Beer in Denmark

Music Festival Attendees' Urine is Getting Transformed into Beer in Denmark

Urine from the Danish Roskilde Festival is being used to fertilize barley which will be turned into beer in a ...read more ›

by Ryan Hudak Jul 14, 2015
SPONSORED
View all Articles

Sign up to get weekly drinking news, bar reviews, events and more sent directly to your inbox!

Close