The Hommel Bier is not the most intriguing beer Perennial Artisan Ales makes. (That honor goes to its Abraxas, an imperial stout brewed with cacao nibs, ancho chiles, cinnamon sticks and vanilla beans.) But for its unimpeachably ideal blend of brewer's art and everyday drinkability, the Belgian-style Hommel simply cannot be beat. Hops from the Pacific Northwest imbue the ale with their signature grassy, citrusy notes, but there's enough spice — and even a slight tartness — to its flavor to balance those hops and make for a refreshing beverage. And at 5.9 percent alcohol by volume, a second glass won't knock you on your beer-drinking ass. Hommel Bier is available year-round at Perennial's tasting room on Michigan Avenue, as well as in 750-milliliter bottles at several local retailers.
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