Today we look at one of the beers in distribution from an upstart brewery, Red-Handed by Banging Gavel Brews. This small brewery currently contract brews at Church Street Brewing in Itasca, Illinois, but is looking to open a space for themselves, possibly in the Lockport area. This is bound to happen soon because the beers are great and already in high demand. For a full line up of Banging Gavel Beers, click here. Red-Handed is an Irish Red Ale coming in at 7% abv. This sample was poured from a 12 oz bottle into a 16 oz nonic glass.
Appearance: A deep reddish, brown color with a small white head. The head was creamy and dissipated very quickly, leaving a small white film. Not too much lacing was present.
Aroma: Sweet malts, crackers, slight spicy hops, freshly baked bread
Taste: Smooth malt beginning followed by a nice spiced hop flavor. The beer than finished with more sweetness that balances the spicy hops quite nicely. The mouthfeel is rich and creamy, with a slight hop bitterness. The sweetness from the malt is really well done with this beer. It is not overpowering, and really pairs wonderfully with the bitterness of the hops. A very well rounded Irish Red that would be perfect with a hearty meal.
Overall: 4.5/5 Irish Red’s are one of my favorite styles, and I’ve found a new go-to selection. Red-Handed is thick, creamy, sweet, and malty, everything an Irish Red should be. The few Banging Gavel beers I have sampled have all been great, and I am very excited for the company’s future. I have had the pleasure of meeting Co-Founder Jim Richert (fellow Marist High School and Illinois State University Alum like myself) and Brewmaster Walter Ornelas, two great gentleman who share a passion for their work in craft beer. Keep up the great work guys!