Whenever I take a trip down the shore with the family, I make a point of stopping by Cape May Brewing Company.

I had just that chance last September, and stumbling upon my notes from that day, I realized I had yet to write up my tasting reviews.

Walking through the self-guided tour, empty growler in hand, ready for filling, I’m immediately overtaken by the smell of fresh beer and hops. I always love visiting Cape May Brewing Company.

The brewery self-guided tour finishes up at the most important section of the brewery, the tasting room.

The tasting room is also attached to an outdoor area, uncovered in the summer, covered and heated in the fall and winter months.

Great for private events, and overflow from the bar.

With that we are on to the main event, the tasting flight (with souvenir glass).

For this visit, I chose Mop Water 5-Spiced Ale, Corrosion, Coastal Evacuation with Brett and (because I knew I loved it already) Cape May IPA Nitro.

I usually don’t mess around with anything dark, let alone spiced. Spiced beers generally scare me, and I can’t stand pumpkin, so Fall and Winter really aren’t  good beer seasons for me.

I decided to start with this one first, it was recommended by the very friendly beertender on staff, and in case I didn’t like it, I could wash out the taste with better beer.

Pouring a dark brown amber color, with a light off-white head that recedes ever so slowly, leaving generous lacing.

The aromas definitely bring out the holiday spirit, with vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg all playing a part, with a thick bready malt throughout.

The flavors are not far from the nose, with the vanilla being the strongest flavor. The spices are always there but never overkill. And there is NO PUMPKIN IN THIS FALL BEER!

Overall an absolutely fantastic Fall/Winter holiday offering from Cape May Brewing Company, and this is coming from someone who dislikes most beers in the holiday beer category. Down with pumpkin!

Rating: 4/5

I came into Corrosion cautiously optimistic. I’ve had sours and enjoyed them, and I know I love a good IPA, but a sour IPA? Turns out, this is a match made in beer heaven.

With a 4.04/5 on Beer Advocate, it seems others are just as captivated by this style-straddling brew.

Pours a wonderfully hazy golden-orange. The thin white head leaves a surprising amount of lacing on the glass. The aroma hits hard with an explosion of fresh grapefruit and orange juice, alongside the citrus hops and sour notes.

The sour notes and tropical hops blend perfectly in your mouth. The sour citrus candy flavor pleasantly backed by the sweet malts, both complimented by the bitter tropical hops. Light-bodied with creamy mouthfeel, even with the level of carbonation.

You may think the sour and bitter flavors would clash, but they work so perfectly together in this excellent, albeit slightly out of the ordinary beer from Cape May Brewing Company.

Rating: 4.2/5

This one pours a hazy golden orange (slightly brighter than the Corrosion sour IPA above). You can immediately smell the funk wafting from this beer.

This is not for those who haven’t ever tried a beer with Brettanomyces before.

As described by the brewery, this is a much funkier take on their Coastal Evacuation beer. I am a fan of Coastal Evacuation, with its floral and fruity hop and toasted caramel malt flavors.

This one is a bit too funky for my usual tastes, but I can definitely see people enjoying this one, though I do still love the underlying IPA flavors. Worth a try if you are a fan of a funkier beer.

Rating: 3.7/5

Like the Cape May IPA (duh), but oh-so-much smoother. I won’t delve too far into this one, as you can go back and read my full-length review of the Cape May IPA from Cape May Brewing Company.

If you’ve read that before, you can also take a look back to my first visit to Cape May Brewing Company and interview with Ryan Krill, one of the three founders of this illustrious Jersey shore brewery.

And yes, that last glass is a take-home glass that you get with purchase of a flight of beers for tasting. They have 3 other glass types as well, I now own the Belgian style pictured above and a beautiful hops glass as well.

I look forward to adding to the set on my next trip down the shore in three weeks!

Andrij Harasewych
Editor at The Craft Beer Diaries. Devoted husband and father. Excessively geeky. Comic books, video games, and craft beer are my vices. Favorite beer style easily the IPA. Growing love for the DIPA, specifically.
Andrij Harasewych

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