Tag Archives: Blend Bar & Bistro

NJ 350th Birthday Party

NJ 350 Birthday Party at Blend Bar & Bistro

Blend Bar & Bistro recently hosted a party to celebrate New Jersey’s 350th Birthday. It was quite the celebration showcasing New Jersey Brews and some classic Jersey food, think  pork roll. Around 12 to 14 New Jersey Brewers participated and several of the breweries had reps at the event as well. With both indoor and out door seating there was plenty of space for the large crowd which the staff did a great job handling. There were door prizes too but in the 3 1/2 hours this Gal was at the event I never heard ticket numbers being called out so not sure how that worked but the prizes were pretty cool looking. Mostly swag from the Brewers.

The evening started off with a beer from a company I hadn’t had the pleasure of trying before – NJ Beer Company.

LBIPA - Was enjoying it so much forgot to take a pic of it until it was almost gone!
LBIPA

LBIPA – NJ Beer Company 7%
By now most know this Gal is not much for IPAs, although, they are growing on me. I do believe it’s always good to try new things so went for a full pint and was glad to have a pint worth’s of this beer. This beer is perfect for kicking back and enjoying the summer with. It’s has nice crisp citrus tones with hints of floral and just the right amount of hops. It’s a very refreshing and a pleasing drinking beer that would be a great addition to any picnic menu. I look forward to trying more selections from this brewery in the near future especially their stout. (Was enjoying the LBIPA so much forgot to take a pic of it until it was almost gone, whoops.)

 

IMG_1246Next up was a taster round…

Trinity Smoked Scottish – Rinn Duin Brewing Company 4.%
I was really looking forward to trying this beer. It’s been a while since I’ve had a smoked brew. Unfortunately, this one really didn’t hit the mark for me. I don’t want the smokiness to overwhelm the beer or knock my taste buds over but I do want to at least enjoy some smokiness and there really wasn’t much to this beer. This beer is on the light end of medium body with some malty sweetness and just a faint hint of smoke.

Boaks Abbey Brown Ale – Boak Beverage 7%
This Gal was really excited about this ale. I love me a Belgian Strong Dark Ale and this didn’t disappoint. Nice rich brown color with nice roasted malts, dark cherries and just a hint of chocolate that finishes nicely. Well done!

Happy Buck’n Anniversary – Bolero Snort Brewery 7.7%
Between this being a porter and the brewery having a fun name I had to get this beer. I loved how dark this beer pours such a deep rich black color with a nice cocoa taste accompanied by roasted coffee. This is a good medium body porter that can be enjoyed year round.

Morning Bell – Kane Brewing Company 9.2%
Oh mother love this beer is tasty. It’s got the wake me up in the morning coffee punch that I love in porters and stouts. One can smell, as well as taste, the coffee in this little black beauty. Along with the chicory it has a nice amount of dark chocolate bitterness, roasted malts and slight hints of vanilla. Finishes solid and is a very well balanced porter that I look forward to having again and again.

I finished the night with a firkin offering from Pinelands Brewing Company.

Pinelands Saison
Pinelands Saison

Pinelands Farmhouse Ale – Pinelands Brewing Company 6%
What’s better than a Saison? Well, a firkin of Saison. This beer has the true hazy golden color associated with the Saison style. One can immediately smell the yeast, lemons and wheat and this beer offers a good balance of both citrus and spice.

This was only this Gal’s 2nd visit to Blend Bar & Bistro but each time I’ve been impressed. #blendnj350

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Blend Bar & Bistro

Blend Bar & Bistro

5060b8967fa4cf9d9db6771b280a33bf_dnjsBlend Bar & Bistro has been open for over a year and half now and for some reason I just hadn’t been able to make the time to check it out. Even though several people had recommended I do so simply because of the beer line up. However, one of my drinking buddies recently invited me to join him and a few other beer buddies for the North Coast Tap Takeover at Blend and decided it was finally time to see what’s what.

Blend is located in Route 33 in Hamilton, NJ in a small little shopping center/strip ball. Nothing about the outside leads one to believe it’s much of anything but I was pleasantly surprised upon entering the establishment. I personally love the industrial décor, open ceilings, use of recycled materials, long bar and nice sturdy wood tables. This Gal also loves when love businesses support local artist and Blend does just that by showcasing local artist work on the walls.

IMG_1009Blend is exactly what the owners say it is – a bar. This is a full service bar at that; that is becoming known in the area for their craft beer selection. They have 12 taps 8 of which are dedicated to a lineup of rotating craft beers and 4 are still dedicated to, well, swill. They also offer a take home package section with a pretty nice selection. I’ve seen better but then again this isn’t a full service beer store but a bar that happens to offer six packs for sale.

Didn’t try the any of the food menu offerings on this visit but did take a quick look at the menu. It’s a small limited to apps, sandwiches and salads offerings that are both meat and vegetarian friendly. Really just the right size menu for a bar.

Now onto the beer.  Since it was a North Coast Brewing Tap Takeover I decided enjoy one of their offerings first.

IMG_1007Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout – North Coast Brewing 9%
I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying this beer previously but do love when I find it on tap. It’s a beauty with a nice rich black color and a full creamy head with just the right balance of roasted coffee, bitter chocolate, malts a small kick of hops at the end. A nice stout that goes down smoothly.

Next up was the beer behind one of my favorite beer labels:

IMG_1008Brother Thelonious Belgian Strong Dark Ale – North Coast Brewing 9.4%
Right out of the gate one can smell and taste the alcohol in the beer. It pours a nice deep ruby amber color with a small head. It has a slight sweet taste to it that is not over powering but helps to balances the bitterness that is there as well. When I say balance I really mean this beer is a nice balance of sweet/bitter and hops/malts that finishes with a slight caramel taste that fades away delicately.

Rounding out the night I had to go with a beer that caught my eye when I first arrived…

IMG_1010Comma Black Saison – Carton Brewing Company 6%
A black saison is just crazy talk which translates to this Gal having to try it. Holy Pepper! You start with pepper and finish with pepper but in between there is a nice Saison with fruit tones, sweet malt and that nice yeasty body Saisons offer. Personally, I would prefer this beer with food rather than just drinking it on its own but very happy that tried it.

I think Blend Bar & Bistro is continuing to grow and make it’s mark in the craft beer bar world. They continually offer and support new breweries, host craft beer nights, as well as, craft beer festivals. Coming up in June is the New Jersey 350th Birthday NJ Craft Beer Party.
#BlendBar #NJCraftBeer