If Bell’s Two Hearted Ale was an album, it would be Led Zeppelin III.
As time has progressed, Led Zeppelin III has grown in terms of catalogue respect. The same could also be said about Bell’s Brewery and their Two Hearted Ale.
There’s nothing particularly sexy about either, really. But appreciation from fans seems to grow stronger as the years pass. Both are considered solid. Dependable. Approved of and enjoyed by most. You won’t hear too many qualms from people about either.
When you think of Led Zeppelin III, you probably hear the Jimmy Page-driven acoustic of “Friends” or “Bron-Y-Aur Stomp.” Or maybe the Robert Plant wailing on “Immigrant Song.” But there’s also a hint of that I and II bluesy-ness on “Since I’ve been Loving You.”
Similarly, with Two Hearted, there are many facets of the go-to IPA that blend together: the sweet and bitter bite of Centennial hops combined with enough maltiness to bump it up into the double category at 7% ABV. Potentially crushable, depending on your tolerance.
We’re talking about being well-rounded, here. Just like your parents wanted you to be. Not too much attitude, but enough to have an edge. A balance of book smarts and street smarts. Led Zeppelin III isn’t all blues riffs or all acoustic jams. Just like Two Hearted isn’t overly hopped like many of today’s IPAs on the market. Sometimes the middle ground is a beautiful thing.
Both III and Two Hearted are, let’s be honest, often overlooked. If Bell’s is Led Zeppelin, then that means the band's fourth album would be comparable to say, a Black Note. And when a band or brewery produces something that sexy, most consumers and fans get hung up on the “best” each has to offer.
Let’s fall back on dependability. Rediscover Led Zeppelin III. Crack a Two Hearted. You won’t be disappointed. Hell, you might even gain more appreciation for each one of them.