Stoudts Brewing Company
The year is 1987. You can buy the top-selling Ford Escort for
$6,800, the world’s population reaches 5 billion, Fox becomes
its own TV channel, and here in Pennsylvania, the first microbrewery
since prohibition opens its doors. While 1987 had a
lot of good times, the biggest event for us was by far Stoudts
Brewing Co. selling its first beer (which happened to be the
Gold Lager, still offered today) and starting a tradition that’s still
going strong today, nearly 30 years later.
Founded by Carol Stoudt, who also happens to be the first
female brewmaster in the US since prohibition, Stoudts has
made amazing beer since the time when craft beer wasn’t a
phrase anyone knew. Stoudts Brewing Co. is located in rural
Lancaster County and currently offers around 20 different beers
throughout the year, brewing approximately 10,000 barrels of
beer each year.
Today, Stoudts Brewing Co. is owned by Ed and Carol Stoudt,
and Brett Kintzer has taken over as the head brewer. Stoudts
is a true family brewery that offers some amazing beers and a
dedication to the craft that’s hard to match.
The cornerstone of any good craft brewery is their year-round
beers. These are the beers that breweries are known for and
support the weird and wild beers made throughout the rest of
the year. For Stoudts, the lineup of year-round beers includes
four different beers, two of which have won multiple Great
American Beer Festival medals.
American Pale Ale
While APA is a style of beer, Stoudts makes their American
Pale Ale unique thanks to generous additions of Warrior and
Cascade hops. American Pale Ale has been the best-selling
Stoudts beer for ten years running, and for good reason. At
5.1% ABV and with a crisp, medium body, American Pale Ale
is everything you’d want in an APA and more. The best thing
about Stoudts APA? It’s even available in cans, so you can take
it anywhere and have your beer protected from light and the
forces of evil*.
American Pale Ale pairs perfectly with grilled beef, marinated
meat, and is exactly the right beer for anything spicy.
*Protection against the forces of evil might be an exaggeration,
but definitely from light, air, and best of all, cans are way better
Scarlett Lady ESB
Named after a red haired mind reader…wait, that’s ESP…ok,
scratch that. Named after the reddish copper color this beer
has, Scarlet Lady is an English-style extra special bitter (ESB)
that’s rich, malty, and full of hop aroma and taste.
Scarlet Lady comes in at 4.8% ABV and pairs well with grilled
or smoked salmon. If white meat is more your thing, then you’ll
love this beer with ham and marinated pork loin, too.
Pils German Style Pilsner
The Germans know their beer, and specifically Pilsners are a
specialty in the land of Oktoberfest. Pils from Stoudts Brewing
is brewed in the style of a traditional German-style Pilsner that
has a delicate dry taste that’s followed up with a firm bitterness.
Like any respectable German-style Pilsner, Pils is a brilliant
straw yellow with a medium body and the ever-noticeable noble
hop aroma. Pils is 5.4% ABV, and is so good that Men’s Journal
voted it #3 for their best beer in America. You don’t have to
take my word for it either, as Pils has won 3 gold, a silver, and a
bronze medal at the Great American Beer Fest. Pils is the other
beer from Stoudts that’s available in the can, making it perfect
for concerts, the beach, and space travel*!
Pils pairs wonderfully with seafood, chicken, and for the more
adventurous eaters, it’s a perfect compliment for calamari.
*Ok, maybe space travel is going a little too far, but some beer
will be the first one in space, so why not Stoudts Pils?
This is where it all started. The first beer brewed and sold by
Stoudts Brewing back in 1987, Gold Lager is a Munich-Style
helles lager that’s been called one of the finest German-style
beers brewed in America. Golden in color, Gold is brewed with
a 2-row base malt along with three different types of specialty
malts. With a healthy dose of noble hops to balance things
out, Gold is smooth, balanced, and exactly what you want in a
Gold Lager comes in at 4.7% ABV and has won a gold, three
silvers, and a bronze medal from the Great American Beer Festival
as well as a World Beer Cup medal.
July 2015 • 13
Gold Lager pairs well with roasted chicken and fish, and can
even pair nicely with sharp cheese and traditional German
The newest member of the year-round lineup, Fourplay is
an American IPA that’s full-bodied and chock full o’ hops.
This beer’s hop character is thanks to Apollo hops that lend
a citrus and resinous character to the beer as well as a super
secret, eyes only clearance, black ops hop variety 06300*.
This experimental hop gives Fourplay orange, chocolate, and
even some coconut character. This is a beer that needs to be
tried to be believed.
*About that black ops thing, I might be exaggerating there
a little bit too, but this is one interesting hop even if it’s not
grown in a CIA safehouse…that we know of!
Year round beers are great, but it’s the specialty beers that
bring out the interesting side of a brewery. Each of the beers
in Stoudts’ Big Beers lineup are at least 7% ABV, topping out
at a huge 10% ABV.
Stoudts Double IPA is, as the name suggests, a big double
India Pale Ale. Coming in at 10% ABV and a whopping 90
IBUs, this beer is strong and full bodied, bringing with it some
pretty intense hop characteristics thanks to multiple kettle
hop additions and a very generous dry hopping.
While this might be a little more than your typical oatmeal
you have for breakfast, Stoudts Fat Dog is an imperial oatmeal
stout that tips the scales at 9% ABV. Fat Dog combines
the smooth character of an oatmeal stout with the hoppiness
and alcohol you’d expect from an imperial stout. Fat Dog is
big, dark, with a roasted malt body and a coffee-like finish.
The Belgians know a thing or two about beer. One of their
greatest inventions is the Belgian Triple. Stoudts version of
this Belgian wonder is strong and full-bodied, coming in at
9% ABV. This specially-brewed beer has a spicy, phenolic
flavor with some fruitiness that makes the overall taste complex
yet extremely enjoyable. Triple has a warm alcohol finish
that balances out the inherent sweetness of the Belgian Tripel
Sticking with what they know best, Stoudts brewed Smooth
Hoperator to be a strong lager that has a delicate malty body
that, while present up front, is quickly overtaken by a strong
hop profile. Each barrel of Smooth Hoperator has 1.5 pounds
of hops added to it, giving Smooth Hoperator both hop aroma
and taste that’s hard to beat.
Along with their year-round offerings and their big beers,
Stoudts also has a full lineup of seasonal beers, too. These
beers are brewed specifically for their own seasons and represent
the style most commonly associated with that time of the
A perfect springtime beer if there ever was one, Karnival
Kolsch is a German style ale that’s brewed using 2-row malt
along with some red wheat malt to give Karnival a great malt
backbone. On top of this sits German hops that give the beer
both aroma and flavor. While this beer comes off like a lager,
it’s all ale.
Karnival Kolsch comes out in February each year and should
be available into the beginning of summer, and is 4.8% ABV.
Hefeweizens (German wheat beers) are one of the most
refreshing beers possible for hot summer days. Stoudts version
of this classic is brewed with half wheat and half malted
barley to give the beer a special body that you can’t find
anywhere else. Like other hefeweizens, Hefe has aromas and
tastes that harken ideas of bananas and cloves.
Hefe is 5% ABV, and is available starting in May and should
stick around throughout the summer months.
What do you get when you make a beer that has a strong
malt body, is amber in color, and has a floral yet not overwhelming
hop aroma? Other than simply an amazing beer,
what you also get is Oktoberfest from Stoudts. Brewed in the
traditional German fashion, This beer, which is 4.5% ABV, has
won 5 medals at GABF, and is available starting in August
through the fall months.
Wrapping up the seasonal offerings from Stoudts, Revel
Red is a deep amber colored beer that has pungent (in a
good way) hop profile that hints at citrus and dankness that is
Revel Red comes in at 6.2% ABV and is available starting in
November and stretches through the winter months.
Stoudts Brewing Company is proudly distributed in the Pittsburgh
area by Vecenie Wholesale.