Feb 4, 2014

Lickinghole Creek Gentleman Farmer Estate Hop Ale

Lickinghole Creek Craft Brewery is a relative newcomer to the Virginia beer scene, tucked away out in Goochland on 220+ acres of farmland. The company grows a few varieties of hops as well as barley and is currently looking to expand the amount of land dedicated to both in the coming year. Their Gentleman Farmer Estate Hope Ale uses their own crops in an attempt to capture the taste of Virginia.

A blend of Cascade, Columbus, Nugget and Chinook hop varieties give the 7.5% ABV brew — which has also been double dry hopped — a clean character. This isn’t a West Coast style of beer where there is a ton of tropical citrus and pine. Gentleman Farmer Estate Hop Ale, in fact, leans more toward the malt than the home-grown hop influence. It’s an easy drinking and balanced experience and one that’s wrapped up in an attractive, eye-catching package.


The beer pours a dark amber in color with a short-llived cap of beige foam.

Lickinghole Creek Gentleman Farmer Estate Hop Ale photo


Floral, herbal hops with a tingle of pepper mingle nicely with caramel and bready malt. The aroma is rather subdued for the most part.


Toasted malt, bread and caramel arrive first with a welcome, yet soft, amount of citrus, pine and herbal hop character that fades in smoothly. A moderate bitterness grows from gently before ending up as a lingering tingle that lasts a good long while in the clean finish. The beer has got a wonderfully earthy and natural presence that presents itself rather shyly.

Lickinghole Creek Gentleman Farmer Estate Hop Ale photo


The name of this beer may be a bit misleading as it’s not an overly hop-forward product. Gentleman Farmer Estate Hop Ale is a fairly well balanced amber ale with a solid amount of malt and a welcome earthy character. I’ve since had a couple of other products from the company (reviews coming in the next few weeks), but this tasty, smooth drinking brew served as a wonderful introduction to the company. If this and the others that I’ve enjoyed are an indication, I should be able to expect more tasty treats from the brewery in the future.

Rating: 3.75/5

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