As I sit here with the windows and doors open on this beautiful pre-summer New England day, I find myself sipping slowly on the newest beer in bottles from Jack’s Abby Brewing. Leisure Time Lager is named after the ice brand that the Hendler brothers’ (Jack, Eric and Sam) grandfather developed as part of the Saxony Ice Company. While the ice company is no longer in the family, the idea of a family operated business was passed down and Jack’s Abby was born.
Leisure Time Lager is a Witbier...kinda.
Brewed with locally grown wheat and spiced in a similar manner, Leisure Time takes a few twists that plant it solely in the realm of “other.” Traditional Witbier are not normally lagered (cold-conditioned) for any length of time, rather allowing the ale yeast to develop fruity notes. This aspect is noticeably absent from Leisure Time in a crispness that holds firm through the finish. While the addition of coriander and orange peel is standard, the lemongrass and chamomile are not. The chamomile lends of lavender-like floral quality and the lemongrass enhances the citric quality already imparted by the orange peel and mild hops to refresh the palate with a trifecta of flavor.
This is not the first Jack’s Abby beer that I’ve raved about and it certainly won’t be my last. For a brewery that has only been in operations for about a year, Jack’s Abby has certainly found a place in my repertoire of superbly produced local beers and is almost never out of stock in my refrigerator.