Saturday, November 3, 2012

Peak Organic Fall Summit Ale

Hops aren’t something you tend to associate with fall seasonal brews, so I was caught a little off guard by Peak Organic Fall Summit Ale. An amber ale brewed (as far as I can tell) exclusively with the Summit hop. It’s a borderline IPA, but the fact it’s not makes it a nice change of pace.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (747) - Albany, New York, USA - NOV 3, 2012
I poured a 12oz twist-off bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Appearance: Dark copper color, extremely clear body, not much carbonation visible. Forms a huge, off-white, fluffy head which never completely dissipates and leaves plenty of lacing on the glass.

Smell: Resiny pine sap first and foremost with a hint of coffee or some earthy character.

Taste: The Summit hop should be the official hop of the East Coast as it imparts all the traditional flavors: piney bitterness, resin and a bit of "cat piss" astringency, plus a hint of coffee on the back end. There isn’t much going on as far as malts, though. The beginning features typical amber malt mild sweetness. This continues through the middle, but it’s the finale that makes the beer what is it: a crescendo of hop bitterness and piney flavor that lights up the tongue. A hint of coffee and bitterness just as it washes away quite cleanly is a great way to end it. I might criticize it for being a bit too simplistic of a palate, but the flavor that’s here is delectable and enjoyable so I can’t knock it for that.

Drinkability: Not intended to be a thirst quencher, Peak Organic Fall Summit Ale drinks as it should. Plenty of carbonation and energy in the mouth, but not spastic. Smooth finish and a fairly clean aftertaste make it easy to drink in bigger gulps but probably only for hopheads. That it’s only 5.7% ABV is impressive since it seems to have the weight or something bigger. I could drink several of these in a row no problem.
 Grade: 8/10