Friday, September 4, 2015

Hermit Thrush Brattlebeer

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (1445) - Albany, New York, USA - SEP 4, 2015
I’m not a huge fan of sour beers because the sourness tends to taste identical in different beers from different breweries. It’d be nice to see some variety. Well, my wish was granted in the form of Hermit Thrush Brattlebeer – which is spontaneously fermented with wild yeast and also blended with cider. Those two flavor components match up nicely and make for one of the most interesting beers I’ve had in a while. 

I poured a 16oz can into a flared snifter. There was no freshness date. Thanks to Jon H. for this can!

Appearance: Hazy golden/maize color. No visible carbonation. Pours to a small, white, sudsy head which evaporates quickly and completely.

Smell: Both sour and cider aromas are present immediately. Some citrusy scents, too.

Taste: When I read the description for this beer on the can I figured it was going to be more of a beer cocktail than a traditional beer since it’s blended with cider. However, just one sip in and I knew that it is indeed a beer that just happens to have some cider in it. There’s pretty much only two flavors here: wild yeast and the cider. They match up so perfectly it’s actually quite amazing. A light tartness up front with a taste of fresh apple juice. I get some white grape flavor through the middle, followed by dry, lightly sour finish. I don’t get much in the way of malt or hop characteristics (none that are strong enough to pick out individually, that is). Still, this is pretty tasty, albeit repetitive.

Drinkability: Apparently this beer used to be only 4.2% ABV, but is now 5.2% ABV. I’d be curious to know why it was increased, since a lighter body would be ideal for this brew. It’s pretty refreshing while in the mouth and it finishes clean and dry. The mouthfeel is pretty thin, though. Hermit Thrush Brattlebeer would be perfect as a session brew in the summer… if it were just a little bit lighter.

RATING: 8/10

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