On what turned out to be the last Friday in October when one could go without a jacket, I met a friend for some beers at the newly-opened LynLake brewery. I had been excited to try their beers because they are advertised as having “bold flavors and aromas.” I also wanted to see how a brewery could replace the old historic Lyndale theater. I was pleasantly surprised on both fronts because the beers are distinct and memorable and the space is incredibly unique and provides the perfect backdrop for grabbing a beer with friends.
Let’s start with the beers. In the interest of research, I tried samples of everything that they currently had on tap. The first flight that I got included the Ponyboy Gold, Take 6 IPA, Rubbish Oat Amber Ale, Yea-Yea Pale Ale. Then I moved on to samples of their Take 6 IPA cask with Cascade hops, the Y2K 2014 Hoppy Dark Ale, and the Sideburns Milk Stout. One thing is for sure, they are right about bold favors and aromas. None of these were run-of-the-mill style representations. I also appreciated the unique titles for their beers, as they will go a long way in helping them build and grow their brand. The Ponyboy Gold is a very approachable and drinkable offering. This will probably be a gateway beer for a lot of people. The Take 6 had a very pleasing piney and resinous quality that comes from a very nice hop presence. I liked how the Rubbish Oat Amber Ale had nice touch of roast and caramel to the malty sweetness.
My favorite offering, by far, was the Sideburns Milk Stout. This beer showcases dynamic flavor and mouthfeel. When you sip this beer, it feels like your tongue is spooning with greatness. I love how velvety and smooth the mouthfeel is on this beer. There are so many stouts on the market that neglect this element of the sensory experience, and I am so grateful to the brewer that the Sideburns hit this nail on the head. I ordered another pint of this beer and my companion, who doesn’t usually like stouts, tasted it, and declared it a win because it didn’t taste too much like coffee.
The atmosphere of this place is extremely relaxed and friendly. The beer-tenders are cordial and willing to chat and answer questions about the beers. The brewing equipment is visible from anywhere in the main bar. There are Edison light fixtures hanging from the ceiling casting a warm glow on patrons as they enjoy their craft beers. The presence of the old theatre is still there as one can see the moldings up on the high ceilings and I thought this was very cool. As I sat at the bar, I saw patrons heading up the stairs to the rooftop and I immediately began looking forward to next spring, when I could enjoy a delicious pint out in the sun for happy hour. This neighborhood already has tremendous offerings for food and drink, and LynLake is going to fit in tremendously. So, get out there and try some of their wonderfully unique beers that will make you think and smile. Go there to meet up with a friend or coworker, or simply fly solo and chat up one of the beer-tenders or a complete stranger next to you; either way you will walk away already looking forward to your next visit.