A second Summer season and a new brewer comes to Bad Martha Farmer’s Brewery. As of July 1st, Jay Bergantim became the brewery’s brewmaster. With this new creator of fine craft beers, comes some old favorites, and some great new beers.
Jay is no stranger to the Island or making beer. He had worked at Offshore Ale Company as the assistant brewer, where he was able to really work on his craft. When the opportunity came to work at another popular brewery on the Island, but as the main beer guy, of course the answer was yes.
When you walk into Bad Martha Farmer’s Brewery in Edgartown, so much looks the same. It’s welcoming. You can get some great Bad Martha souvenirs, some great Island made products, and of course great beer.
I have to say that when I went to meet Jay, I was immediately impressed when I saw the list of beers on tap. Bad Martha in Edgartown is a small place comparatively speaking, but they have variety.
There were nine beers on tap and one on cask for a total of 10 craft beers. All this is lucky for us beer enthusiasts, who like to try their favorites, and have a little taste adventure.
I went to Bad Martha’s on a rainy Tuesday. What better thing to do than go sample beer, and what a great day to go. Jay was in the middle of brewing his first Double IPA for Bad Martha. I just happen to love double IPA’s. They’re like IPA’s big, bold brother who likes a little more from life.
So every couple of minutes, Jay had to double check the beer, it’s a sensitive process. This double IPA will be on tap at the end of the month. Though not named yet, I suggested Great Rock Bite, because my guess is that it will have a seriously good hoppy bite to it.
Also being monitored was the Saison that Jay is introducing to the Bad Martha beer list. A Saison is a more robust pale ale, meant to be consumed during the Summer months. These beers tend to have notable flavors of spice and a sometimes fruity aroma.
What’s intriguing about Jay’s Saison for Bad Martha is that it’s made with rose hips foraged at State Beach and lemon grass. Though still young and needing a bit more time in the fermentation tank, the beer is flavorful, and sure to become a favorite for enjoying these late Summer days.
It will be ready in about two weeks, and I have to admit it was really awesome to sneak a small taste even though early.
Jay is having a lot of fun working with some of the previous brewer’s recipes, modifying them, making them his own, while at the same time creating new ones. Being a brewmaster for a first time is both scary as blank and inspiring for Jay.
He’s loving every minute of and is amazed at what he’s been able to do. Even so, he wants to learn even more and do more at Bad Martha – which is good for us all.
Some of the signature Bad Martha beers like the Island IPA and the Martha’s Vineyard Ale are still on tap, and one of the award winning beers, Tim’s Beach Plum Ale, will be back.
However, we have to wait util the beach plums are ripe before we can enjoy this yummy beer. I loved last year’s and look forward to having it again this Summer. It’s award winning in my book too.
On the menu, you also find such interesting choices as the Blasphemous Black Lager (5.5%) which is actually quite good. It is dark in color but lighter than expected.
One of Jay’s personal favorites, the OBsession IPA (4.3%) a gateway into the IPA world, a lighter, less alcohol, easy-drinking IPA, is also on tap. Get it? OB for Oak Bluffs and session IPA- it’s an OBsession. A clever name, one that his wife Kristy came up with.
The OBsession is really good, even though I typically gravitate to a traditional or double IPA. I also tried the Strawberry Wheat Fields Forever, made with Morning Glory Farm strawberries (on the right). It is a nice summer beer, but I have to say that the OBsession is my fav. However, the Edgartown Common Beer was good too.
When you’re there, my advice is try a flight. Go for it. Sample a couple beers that are out of your comfort zone. Enjoy the thought, local ingredients and love that Jay puts into each batch.
Go for the Wasque Weizenbock (the strong version of a hefeweizen), add a taste of Smokehouse Dunkel or Roscoe’s Brown, along with the black lager, and some other fun ones and expand your beer palate.
Be sure to get your Summer beers on now because the Fall is going to bring many other good seasonal and classic beers to the tap. Think October Fest, the Pumpkin Pie Boch, sounds good right, but we still have a little time before those.
Don’t forget to sample one of Bad Martha’s signature food trays too, the veggie (tons of fresh Morning Glory Farm veggies), the cheese, or the charcuterie. There are other snacks too, but the cheese tray did look pretty good, loaded with local flavor from the Grey Barn and Mermaid Farm and some other tasty cheeses. It’s a nice compliment to a number of Bad Martha beers.
Something new and fun for all you who buy Bad Martha from the package stores. Save your Bad Martha bottle caps for little gifts. From beach balls to a t-shirt to a beach tote, it’s a good deal!
As if the beer or the corn hole in the beer garden, isn’t enough, Bad Martha brings you live music Fridays thru Sundays, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Each night of the weekend features someone different.
If you plan to go, do it this Saturday. Jay and I have a friend playing – the amazing crooner, Garrett James. Sorry G – I know you wanted another pic but I love this sexy one of you!
Bad Martha Farmer’s Brewery is open daily from 12:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. rain or shine. If you haven’t tried the new brew master’s beers, perhaps today is the day. Like one really needs an excuse to sample good craft beer.
Cheers and welcome Jay! What a great addition to Bad Martha you are!