Saturday, October 24, 2015

Anchor BigLeaf Maple Autumn Red

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20Chad9976 (1483) - Albany, New York, USA - OCT 24, 2015
Anchor BigLeaf Maple Autumn Red is a beer I should love. It’s got a lot of hops, plenty of malt, a palette that’s pretty well-balanced; and it looks beautiful. Yet, I find myself rating it as merely “good” as a whole because its taste is just that: good, not great. Not that there’s anything wrong with it, just that it doesn’t wow me. 

I poured a 12oz bottle into a flared snifter. It was bottled on 7/1/15 and cost $2.95 ($0.25 per ounce).

Appearance: Absolutely gorgeous magenta red color. Fairly dark hue but the body is pretty clear. Pours to a large, off-white, frothy head which laces and retains extremely well.

Smell: A dark malty sweetness with some confectionery notes combined with dank and piney hops. An interesting combination to be sure, though it does seem a tad mild.

Taste: I actually hate it when breweries include the word “maple” in a beer’s name and/or mention that it’s brewed with maple syrup because it leads you to believe it will taste as such. Maple syrup is merely an adjunct since the yeast eat up nearly all the sugar and what’s leftover contributes to the body. So, no; there isn’t much – if any – maple taste here. What I do get is notes of caramel, toffee and maybe treacle. Sweet to be sure, though not to the point of being cloying. The hops complement the palette with an East Coast-style flair. Instead of citrus and tropical fruit it’s of the pine and resin variety. There’s a subtle grassy/spicy sensation that emerges on the finish and lingers after each sip. For such a relatively light brew, there’s noticeable alcohol taste as well. Overall, this is a fine-tasting beer, and if that’s what you expect in an Anchor product you won’t be disappointed here.

Drinkability: At 6% ABV, Anchor BigLeaf Maple Autumn Red is neither a light nor heavy brew. However, it’s not something you’d expect to have alcohol presence in the taste and delivery. I do notice a bit of a warming sensation here, which seems to be in line with the flavors so it’s no entirely distracting. Still, I could do without it. Otherwise the body is pretty big for the potency; the mouthfeel is soft and chewy. I found myself drinking it in rather small sips. I’ll bet this would work well with the right food pairing – but what that is, I’m not sure.

RATING: 7/10

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