Alabama Brewery Tour – Back Forty Beer Company, Beer Review
Gadsden based Back Forty Beer Company is now the oldest brewery in Alabama and their years of experience show in the many beers produced and enjoyed across 3 states and more.
While bunking up with Lazy Magnolia Brewery in Kiln, Mississippi from 2009 till the end of 2011, their signature Naked Pig Pale Ale and best selling Truck Stop Honey were born.
Upon moving into their permanent home in Gadsden in January 2012, Back Forty brewed it’s first batch of beer in their home state. Almost immediately following the move came the inclusion of Freckle Belly IPA and Kudzu Porter.
I’ll attempt to run down my favorite few brews that this amazing company has to offer.
I was introduced to Naked Pig a few years back when I first developed a demanding taste for hoppy beer. I instantly fell in love! Seriously, I told erveyone about it. Naked Pig has a crisp yet bold flavor and a slight citrus undertone follows in the aftertaste.
I suppose you could call Truckstop their “flagship” beer as sales of this English style brown ale account for half of all sales Back Forty. It also won a Silver Medal at the 2010 Great American Beer Festival. Made with Wildflower honey from Hokes Bluff, AL, this ale is brewed with 4 different types of malt, including a honey and chocolate malt. It’s a smoky golden color and when you first raise your pint glass, you immediately get an earthy hop aroma heavily scented with laces of the honey and chocolate. A full bodied, slight nutty flavor rounds out my experience here.
This seasonal brew, despite its name, is not for the fruity beer lover but instead for the beer lover who might enjoy a slight hint of peach. Unlike a few fruit flavored beers I’ve encountered, Seasonal Peach, brewed with real Chilton County peaches, has the crisp bite of a light wheat with more of a peach aftertaste. Very soothing and clean tasting or refreshing if you will. The taste left on my palet makes me nostalgic for my childhood, growing up and eating peaches. As a matter of fact, every time I open this brew I cannot help but utter quietly under my breath the lyrics to the President’s of the United States song ‘Peaches’, “Millions of peaches, peaches for me”!
Mmmm, now we’re gonna talk flavor! Freckle Belly is a perfectly hoppy India Pale Ale (IPA) that pairs ever so nicely with blackened Mahi Mahi and gouda cheese grits. Trust me, I know!
This flavor explosion is defined by a generous blend of five different hops but in the same breath is not overly “hoppy”. The blend of crystal and special roast malts gives Freckle Belly a sorty of woodsy, almost caramel flavor. Definetly one of the sharpest yet most relaxing IPAs to ever tangle with my tastebuds.
The next time you’re in Gadsden stop by their taproom and grab an ice cold Back Forty!
They have four mainstays which are: Naked Pig, Truckstop Honey, Freckle Belly, plus one that I haven’t had the chacne to spend a whole lot of time with, Kudzu Porter which is a medium bodied porter brewed with a unique blend of roasted malts and fresh hops.
Check out these others as well:
Fence Post – a fine tasting Session Ale
Truck Stop Honey Wildflower – available for a limited time
Michael’s Rice & Cane Ale – available only in the Back Forty taproom
You might also try one of their other seasonal brews: Biere De Garde – Summer Harvest Ale – Fall Scotch Ale – Winter