Saturday, December 29, 2012

Erie Brewing Railbender Ale

I actually had no idea what style Erie Brewing Railbender Ale fell under until about halfway through the glass when I Googled it. I was surprised to find this is considered a Scottish Ale as it seems more like a strong British-style pale ale since there isn’t much in the way of smoke or peat flavors you tend to find in the Scottish brews.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Chad9976 (779) - Albany, New York, USA - DEC 29, 2012
I received a 12oz bottle as a gift from friends (thanks, Alex & Marissa!). I poured it into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Rusty amber/light orange hue. Slightly cloudy but transparent. Forms a small, off white, soapy head which fizzles away quickly and leaves virtually no lacing.

Smell: Light toffee or caramel or other such hard candy scents.

Taste: Much like the nose the taste to Railbender Ale is akin to hard candy suckers - butterscotch, toffee and caramel - yet it is not nearly as sweet or tasty as those types of candies. The palate is noticeably mild, even watery (not only in texture, but taste). The initial sweetness is nice, which then gives way to more maltiness and tastes often found in amber ales and gold lollipops. There’s a touch of bitterness in the mild before the beer finishes with the same flavors it opens with. There’s nothing particularly impressive about the palate here, but it at least tastes pretty decent and satisfying. Some smoke or wood flavors would help as well as just being a more robust beer in general.

Drinkability: I would definitely recommend Railbender Ale to less experienced drinkers considering how mild the palate is as well as the actual delivery. The mouthfeel is on the thinner side with a flat, wet, watery texture. It’s slightly crisp, but it goes down extremely smooth and it’s even refreshing for a moment or two. It does not take advantage of its 6.8% ABV though, as this drinks and feels like something much lighter. Though the deceptively light body would be another reason newbies might appreciate it more. 
Grade: 6/10

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