Red Brick Brewing Company - Laughing Skull
- ABV: 5.3%
- Int’l Bittering Units (IBUs): 25
- Serving Temperature: 47-52º F
- Suggested Glassware: Pint Glass or Mug
- Malts: 2-Row, Bonlander, Caramel 40, Chocolate, Midnight Wheat
- Hops: Apollo, Willamette
Originally contract-brewed by the Atlanta Brewing Company for The Vortex, a local restaurant, Laughing Skull was a local favorite in town that disappeared in 2005. But the skull had the last laugh, returning in 2009, albeit in modified form. Instead of a Bohemian pilsner, the beer is now an amber ale, and it picked up a Gold Medal in that category at the 2011 U.S. Open Beer Championship. Expect a great balance of spicy, peppery hops and floral aromatics. Citrus, spice and grains are prominent—this reminds us of the old school, high quality microbrew that led the craft-brewing charge of the ‘90s. Look for some crackery notes, much like toasted saltines. These also come through in the flavor profile, with deeply toasted malts. Complex maltiness is complemented by plentiful citrus and pleasingly spicy, peppery nips from the hops. It finishes only mildly bitter with a long lasting fade of grassy hops and toasted caramel malts. Overall, this is nicely hopped, expertly balanced, just plain good beer. Great with medium cheddar cheese, it’s even better with some mesquite smoked grilled chicken.
Red Brick Brewing Company is the oldest operational craft brewery in the state of Georgia. Like numerous areas of the South, restrictive prohibition-era "hangover" laws stunted the growth of the craft beer scene for some time. But, in 1993, things began to change when former Guinness executive, Greg Kelly, founded Atlanta Brewing Company in a red brick warehouse in Midtown Atlanta. Brewing equipment was sourced from England, including a malt mill (used by the brewery to this day) that was found abandoned in a meadow.
Around 2006, the brewery faced some upheaval as a state road expansion project meant the end of the brewery’s Midtown location and founder Greg Kelly left the business. Bob Budd took over the reins, and the brewery left Midtown not long after, to a location a few miles to the northwest. In 2010, the brewery changed its named to Red Brick Brewing Company. Last year saw the addition of two new forces in the brewhouse: Garett Lockhart, a graduate of Chicago’s famed Siebel Institute, took over as head brewer, accompanied by Steve Anderson as lead brewer. Together they are amping up the revitalization of Red Brick’s beer lineup, keeping the brewery fresh and current in the contemporary craft beer scene, which has come a long was since the brewery’s opening in 1993.
Red Brick maintains an excellent Tasting Room, which is a great place to enjoy fresh beer on tap and, frequently, live music. For more information about the brewery and their scheduled tours which run Wednesday-Sunday, call 404-355-5558 or visit www.redbrickbrewing.com.
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