Saturday, March 26, 2011
Beer Week Is Ending, But Not Before These Five Beers
Earlier in the week I shared six of the eleven beers that my brother-in-law Bob and tasted through last weekend. I’m back with notes on the last five and another good laugh from Bob.
Location: Chico, CA
Pour: Minimal head, moderate carbonation
Color: Yellow / gold and clear
Aromas: Citrus, grass, lightly malty – overall subtle
Flavors: Little bit of malt and piney hops
Finish: Mild bitterness and acidity, clean finish
Review: I picked this one because the bottle described it as a golden bock. I figured it would have a little more character than the light ales and lagers we also were trying but not be a true on bock that would have been too rich for the audience. Bingo! I would drink this casually, especially during this transitional time in New England between cold and warm weather.
Style: American Adjunct Lager
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Pour: Fizzy white head, compresses quickly
Color: Light gold
Aromas: Grains, corn and hops
Flavors: Grainy with some hop character. Has that mass produced skunky flavor. Some honeyed sweetness and a body a bit bolder than the typical domestic adjunct lagers.
Finish: Lots of carbonation to wash away flavors
Review: Ehhh. Wasn’t really worth the time and money. I can spend the same on a sixer of something that I liked or is new and have better luck. The honey flavor brought back the “honey-brown” joke (see the first post) which was a hoot!
When picked up the Estrella I was offered the anecdote that it was the first beer specifically created to pair with food. It turns out that Damm S.A. (the brewer) does make Inedit, a witbier, and sells it under that premise, it just isn’t the one we tried. I offered that anecdote to Bob and his response was priceless. “People have been drinking beer for thousands of years. Spanish beer wasn’t the first beer people ate with food!” I’d have to agree then that it is a big presumption. I haven’t had the beer in question, and now that I know it exists I just might have to go get some.
Style: American Amber Lager
Location: Hood River, OR
Pour: Light brown head, moderate retention
Color: Copper, clear
Aromas: Sweet malts, nut and floral hops
Flavors: I picked up light brown bread, ginger
Finish: Clean with a bit of sweetness
Review: This came right down the middle for me. It was good and I would drink it, but I don’t thnk I would reach for it. Bob didn’t have much to say.
Style: Red Ale
Location: Belfast, ME
Pour: Off-white head that hangs on
Color: Red / light brown
Aromas: Very light, some grains and malt
Flavors: Sweet malts, grains and definitely disconnected from light aromas. Slightly sweet
Finish: Crisp from the carbonation, nothing lingers
Review: Another good beer that I wouldn’t likely nab again. Just not my thing, nothing at all wrong with it though.
Location: Freising, Germany
Pour: Massive head, tons of lacing and substantial small-bubble carbonation
Color: Light brown/gold, clear
Aromas: Banana, spices (coriander, cloves), grains, sweetness, yeasty
Flavors: Fruity, floral, with mild sweetness
Finish: Clove comes back on the finish
Review: I really dug this beer. This is a filtered hefeweizen and has many characteristics also found in witbiers. I would drink this anytime. I could see using this at a beer dinner because of the near champage like carbonation and breadth of aromas and flavors. We made pancakes with the leftover the next day and they were some of the lightest I had made in recent history.
The Weihenstephaner brewery is the oldest continuously operating brewery in the world. They are also the partner for Sam Adams in the production and release of Infinium we review last year not long after it debuted.
When we were done Bob was excited to have tried so many different beers and was dreaming of picking up some “honey-brown” when he got home. I was also happy to have found several new beers that I would grab for everyday drinking and few others that I would use in specific food pairing situations like the Weihenstephaner Kristallweissbeer.