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The story here is that of Session Beer.

Session beer is born of workers beer, where refreshment and taste went hand in hand. It slaked the thirst of laborers while they plowed the fields, mined for coal, fired the blast furnace and forged steel. When water was tainted, session beer saved civilization. It’s 4.5% ABV and lower, difficult to brew and a pleasure to drink. But session beer is so much more than a number.

Launched in 2010 by Chris Lohring, Notch Brewing was the first brewing company in the U.S. to focus exclusively on Session Beer. At the time, we simply wanted to brew the beers we loved to drink, and finding them was a challenge. Being a professional brewer since 1993, Chris knew that session beer had been enjoyed in every great beer brewing nation for centuries, yet in the U.S. it was overlooked. So he set out to brew the world’s classic session styles from England, the Czech Republic, Germany and Belgium, as well as explore how session beer could fit with the U.S.’s hoppy beer infatuation. Six years later, you are sitting in a brewery that was built on the back of session beer. It’s proven one thing, that beer consumers like options, and session beer is a great one.   

Brewery & Tap Room 

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Six years of brewing session beer, and we finally built a home. Our new brewery in Salem Massachusetts is open! Here's what you'll find:

Tap Room: Full pours for on-site consumption, quart cans to go, and 16oz cans to go of our Single Series beers (when available). We'll have 6 to 13 beers on tap at all times, highlighting session beers styles from all over. Communal tables, counter service, light snacks, no TVs. It's a place to socialize with friends, or meet new ones. 

Biergarten: Communal tables on the South River basin. Watch the tide come and go from our south facing beer garden. Catch a view our harbor seals, birds of all types and striped bass when they are running (no fishing from the biergarten!). Well behaved dogs are encouraged!

Brewery: We hope that our brewery will provide guests a way to see the unique brewing processes and equipment we will be using - a traditional decoction brew-house, open and closed fermentation, horizontal lagering tanks, German gravity dispense, true British cask-conditioning,and a draft system imported from the Czech Republic – tools, process and equipment that will allow a wide variety of session beer to be produced.

 

EMAIL
info@notchbrewing.com

Location
283 Rear Derby Street
Salem MA 01970

Hours
Mon & Tues Closed
Wed, Thur 5p–11p
Fri, Sat 12p–11p
Sun 12p–10p

BEER SNACKS

NON BEER

  • Spindrift Sodas
  • Sparkling, bottled water

OTHER IMPORTANT STUFF

  • 21+ plus only
  • kids 12 and under OK with parent
  • Dogs welcome in biergarten!
  • Poorly behaved dogs & children will be fed to the seagulls

 

 

Beers at the Tap Room

Session Pils - Czech Pale Lager - 4.0% ABV

Notch Session Pils salutes the session pale lagers of the Czech Republic: crisp, herbal, and hoppy. The Czech culture is a beer culture, and their beer of choice is this low gravity pale lager known as Světlé Výčepní. Enjoy it served fresh through our Czech tap system!
 

Zwickel Bier - Bavarian Pale Lager - 4.4% ABV

An unfiltered German style pale lager that is traditional served at the brewery. Our Zwickel is brewed with all German pils malt, fermented with our beloved Augustiner lager yeast and hopped with Sterling. We employed a single decoction brew and lagered for an extended period of time resulting in a complex yet subtle pale lager.  
 

Fodderstompf - Bavarian Pale Lager - 4.2% ABV

We brewed a classic German Pale Lager (German malt & yeast, decocted & lagered) and then used the newest hop varieties from Germany - Hull Melon and Manarina Bavaria. These hops provide a more subtle take on new hop varieties, yet provide distinct aromas of tangerine, melon, strawberry - not what you would expect in classic German brewing. Old dogs, new tricks. 
 

The Mule - American Corn Lager - 4.2% ABV

Our American Pale Lager is brewed with Massachusetts corn, all American malt, and US lager hop varieties. An original American beer, we revisited this much maligned style. An unfiltered, straw yellow appearance, that starts slightly sweet and finishes bone dry. The hops - Santiam -  are the star, and provide nice flavor and big aromatics.
 

Left of the Dial - IPA - 4.3% ABV

Celebrating modest ABV of British IPAs, yet with the passion fruit aromas of US hop varieties, Left of the Dial uses British malt, hard water and a new wave hop profile. The base malt is Fawcett Golden Promise, along with a touch of Fawcett caramalt and oat malt. And that “IPA is strong” stuff? All myth. Just ask us.
 

Dog & Pony Show - Citra Pale Wheat - 4.3% ABV

An American Pale Wheat Beer brewed with Massachusetts malted wheat, pils malt, oats and 100% Citra hops. Although a wheat beer, it pours only slightly hazy and is packed with fruity hop aroma and a delicate but noticeable hop flavor. A summer crusher we brought back for the Salem Halloween season. 
 

Slake - Saison w/ 100% New England Grains - 3.8% ABV

Belgain farmhands were allowed to drink 5 liters of Saison per day while plowing the fields, and they were certainly drinking something like this table strength thirst quencher we call Slake. We use only Massachusetts grains (wheat, barley) and a peppery but mild saison yeast. A hard water profile and assertive hopping makes sure this beer lands dry and ready for more. Many more. Have fun with it!
 

Vincent - British Dark Mild - 4.2% ABV

A classic British dark mild brewed with crystal malt, a touch of black malt, and hopped with Fuggles. Brewed in the fading tradition of a balanced, flavorful pub draft with a depth of flavor so it can go a  few rounds.
 

Nitro Pale Mild - Brit Pale Mild - 3.2% ABV

A classic British pale mild, brewed with Scottish malt and fermented with a classic London brewery ale yeast in our open fermenter. An all but forgotten style, and the true expression of British Session beer. Sweetish malt flavor, fruity aroma, full bodied yet with modest strength. Served via Nitro for a creamy mouth-feel and maximum enjoyment.
 

Raw Power - IPA - 4.3% ABV

While the name may be a misnomer (it's 4.3% ABV), this IPA can go multiple rounds. While Simcoe hops bring big aromatics, it finishes dry clean and never cloyingly bitter. Light amber in color from British malt, hop aromatics of pine and berries, and full mouth-feel for such a modest alcohol content.  
 

Reel to Reel -Cream Ale- 4.0% ABV

A classic American style beer, the Cream Ale has nothing to do with cream, and everything to do with corn. US brewers over a century ago used corn and six row barley to create a refreshing yet satisfying ale akin to pale lager. We employed a technique rarely taken on by small brewers - a cereal mash of corn, and then combined it with the main six row barley. More than you care to know, but it's worth it! 

Guest Brewer Beers (brewed at Notch)!

Our guest brewer series is simple, we allow our friends to brew any beer they desire in our brewery. Their beer, their recipe, their labor, their name on the board. It's not a collaboration, but an opportunity for our friends to try something new and explore new territory. For Notch it's an opportunity to open up our brewery to friends, and allow for guest beers on tap (we can only serve what we make under our brewing license). It's also an excuse for us to hang out together in an otherwise busy industry.

Clown Shoes - Black Current Saison - 5.45% ABV

Our first guest brew! This was a really easy invite, as Clown Shoes head brewer Dan Lipke is a long time friend and a brewer we look up to. Formerly of the Ipswich Brewery, we give Dan a lot of credit for helping us in the early days of Notch. And Dan did not disappoint us with his guest beer! A classic Saison yeast meets Black Currant puree and Galaxy hops. It's tart, wildly flavorful, and pink!  

Beers out in the world

 

Session Pils - Czech Pale Lager - 4.0% ABV

Notch Session Pils salutes the session pale lagers of the Czech Republic: crisp, herbal, and hoppy. The Czech culture is a beer culture, and their beer of choice is this low gravity pale lager known as Světlé Výčepní. Enjoy it served fresh through our Czech tap system!

 

Left of the Dial - IPA - 4.3% ABV

Celebrating modest ABV of British IPAs, yet with the passion fruit aromas of US hop varieties, Left of the Dial uses British malt, hard water and a new wave hop profile. The base malt is Fawcett Golden Promise, along with a touch of Fawcett caramalt and oat malt. And that “IPA is strong” stuff? All myth. Just ask us.

 

Infinite Jest - Hoppy Pale Wheat - 4.3% ABV

An American Pale Wheat Beer brewed with malted wheat, Pils malt, oats and Equinox hops. Although a wheat beer, it pours only slightly hazy and is packed with fruity hop aroma and a delicate but noticeable hop flavor. Don’t expect the banana, clove, orange or coriander flavors and aromas of Germany or Belgium, but do expect infinite fun.

Notch Skee Ball League Wednesdays!

It's happening, the weekly skee-ball leauge we've been promising. We are starting simple, and will let the league members refine its awesomeness. Here's the starting parameters:

  • Every Wednesday 7 - 9ish PM
  • 9 strings
  • 9 balls per string
  • Max 9 teams
  • Teams of 3, each team member rolls 3 strings.
  • Top team wins Notch Tap Room gift certificate
  • 2nd & 3rd place Notch schwag
  • All beer snacks 50% off for teams while playing
  • First come first entry for the night (all three team members must be in the room)
  • Top three finishing teams secure a spot for the following week

We'll see how this rolls... and then refine as we go.