As you probably know, yesterday was Kane's annual Takeover at Cloverleaf Tavern. The popular NJ craft beer bar had 24 Kane lines with various rare/specialty tappings throughout the day. I had already been lucky enough to try most of these beers at their anniversary. However, I still hadn't tried all of the ANTEAD variants which were being tapped at 2pm.
I arrived around 2:05pm due to the heavy rain. That was a mistake. The line for bar service was through the hallway and filling up the back room. I waited about 50 minutes, got my flight and tried to find some space. While many people stood right by the bar to drink their flights, I went into the back room and shared that single table with a few strangers. (Unfortunately, I'm not as poised as those who can stand AND hold a flight at the same time.)
Before drinking, I was most looking forward to the vanilla, but my favorite ended up being the cocoa. They all poured a very similar, very dark brown color with light brown heads. Carbonation was equally low for all of them.
Coconut - The nose on the coconut was great, it smelled like fresh coconut shavings being toasted right in front of you. The taste had a good amount of coconut, but not overly sweet; dark malts and dark chocolate balanced it out. While coconut beers are becoming a thing now, this is probably my favorite coconut beer I've tried yet.
Vanilla - The nose was lightly of vanilla bean ice cream and chocolate. The taste had a chocolate base that seemed slightly thinner than original ANTEAD with a medicine-like aftertaste, almost like drinking vanilla extract straight. Some people actually might really like this flavor, but I'm very sensitive to medicine-like flavors.
Cocoa - The nose was of roasted malts and dark chocolate. The taste was creamy chocolate with a bitter, dark chocolate finish that lingered in your mouth. The mouth feel seemed a bit fuller than the other variants. Again, my favorite of the ANTEAD variants.
In addition to the ANTEAD flight I also tried the Holy Nights and the Coffee Silent Nights. Once the crowd died down, I got a table and ate a Fat Burger (7 oz. charbroiled burger grilled and topped with taylor ham, Monterey cheese sticks, crispy fried onions and chipotle mayo), which was fantastic. It was exactly what I needed after drinking all those heavy beers on an empty stomach. I met some cool people, had some great beer and guilty pleasure food (aka every day food) then headed out around 5pm before the after-work rush came. It was crazier than expected to get my ANTEAD flight, rather expensive and I wish the pours were bigger than 2.5 oz, but I do understand the effort to make the kegs last.
- One Hoppy Lady