On our trip to NH, I had my sights set on visiting only one brewery. Woodstock Inn was meant to be my one concession on what was otherwise going to be a more romantic weekend. Luckily, I know the way to my ladies heart is through food, and when you tell her there’s a brewery on the drive up that also serves a chicken maple bacon pizza, it’s game on! With that being said we found our way to Schilling Beer Co. in Littleton. Also, big thank you to Renee from Brew NH for the suggestion!
To the brew review!
Housed in an old (18th century, if you go by the website) grist (grain used for flour, you’re welcome) mill on the Ammonoosuc River. It’s a very cool place to house a brewery/restaurant. You could see how in another world, this could have been just another dilapidated and forgotten relic of a different time. Instead, Schilling built it up and re-purposed it quite well. As you enter the building, you notice it’s all basically one room; a bar to the left, high and long bar top tables to the front right, kitchen to the back left, and dining seating to the back right. There is an upstairs area, but I was not privy to what kind of space that is. The kitchen was a fairly minimal open air style area, mainly focusing on the large wood fire oven. Much like you’d expect from a building of its era, there were big wood beams and support posts everywhere. As far as atmosphere goes, I dug this place a big way.
On their website, Schilling boasts a list of approximately 50 different European style beers that are in rotation. There were 8 of their own brews on tap, as well as one guest from Resilience Brewing Co. and a cider from Bantam. The diverse selection on tap gave plenty to choose from.
I had three “taster” glasses (which were 5 oz. pours) of three very different beers: Helmut Bavarian Wheat, Mare Nectaris Sour Brown Ale, and Kamarade Baltic Porter. The Helmut was a smooth yet heavier than you’d expect weisse that comes with a sweet banana finish. Mare Nectaris assaults the nose hard, as sours can tend to do. Initial taste is around an average sour level, but ends slightly sweeter with hints of fruit. Kamarade is a nitro porter that is malty with a subtle chocolate flavor; it’s dense, but not overbearingly so.
My favorite was the Kamarade. Porters and stouts are usually my jam and I make no exception here. Shilling has made a tasty porter that I hope makes it’s way to MA in can form.
(Note: I checked the website, there is a limited distribution to MA stores…the search begins)
Their branded growlers were the great steel variety, pricey but high quality. There were no flights, only “taster” 5 oz. pours, which I’m giving half credit for being close enough. As for the food, I’ll let the second opinion below speak for me as well.
As with any brewery, I’ll always hope for a 4 to 8 beer flight possibility.
If what I had is any indication, you can tell they put a lot of effort into their product. The brews there are legit. Also, you owe it to yourself to have the Chicken Maple Bacon pizza if you are remotely close to that area, it’s pretty amazing.
From the lady:
“Loved the New Hampshire-ish cute and cozy atmosphere. Although choosing to drink a cider, I wholeheartedly recommend pizza enthusiasts to pay a visit. I wouldn’t be upset if my last meal on earth were the chicken bacon maple pizza. I shamelessly admit mopping up the extra maple syrup from the pan.”
Schilling Beer Company is located at 18 Mill Street Littleton, NH 03561 and at http://www.schillingbeer.com/