ASIDE FROM BEING ONE of Chicagoland’s most welcoming dens for beer lovers and generally sociable spirits, Bigby’s Pour House in Addison also offers up a unique house beer alongside choice drafts from the world over. It’s called the Bigby’s Rye P.A. and comes courtesy of the Two Brothers Brewery of nearby Warrenville. If the price alone didn’t recommend it—not infrequently half the price of other tap options—the beer itself actually ranks as one of Two Brothers’ better efforts.
Though Rye is in the name, this beer’s first impression is of the classic Sierra Nevada hop profile: Cascade citrus and bursting pine. Amidst further sweet notes of grapefruit the rye does eventually show its prickly warmth and spice, mostly in a back end that’s better balanced between the tropic notes of the hops and darker (maybe even a little roasted) malts. Alcohol (on the higher side at about 7%) is somewhat discernable and faintly slick, though it plays a pleasant counterpoint to the back-end malts. As such, the Rye P.A. is more readily drinkable (and repeatable) than most aggressively-hopped beers, which was likely Bigby’s intent. And once one acclimates to the hop waves up front, between its deeper amber hues and a growing nutty residue on the palate the Rye P.A. invokes a zesty brown ale as much as a West Coast pale.
Served: On tap (Bigby’s Pour House, Addison)