This was my second last minute trip for work in the last two weeks, however, the one last week gave me a chance to go to the Great American Beer Festival. This week we found ourselves in Louisville, Kentucky for work, and just down the street from Bluegrass Brewing Company. So, we just had to stop in for a bite to eat and a beer. I felt like something a little hoppy, so I went with the APA, which I thought stood for American Pale Ale.
When it arrived, I wasn’t sure this was correct, because it wasn’t the color or aroma I was expecting from an American pale ale. However the server assured me this was correct. It was reddish-brown in color and extremely clear. The head was tan and left some very nice lacing. The aroma was fairly malty with a spicy hop smell – and I was told that this “American” pale ale was dry hopped with Saaz hops.
It had a light-medium body and a very smooth and creamy, almost velvety mouthfeel. The flavors were caramelly malty up front, followed by a mellow hop spiciness from the Saaz hops. The finish was a very crisp and pleasant from the nice hop flavors.
It went very well with my mushroom covered bison burger, and would probably go nicely with almost any pub type fare.
Overall, I thought it was a nice, crisp, drinkable beer. Although, I was totally confused by the style – pale ales aren’t normally this dark, and “American’ pale ales aren’t normally hopped with Czech Saaz hops. However, it did have a good flavor and I enjoyed the saaz hop flavor with a bigger malt flavor than they typically accompany. While not really to style, it was still a good beer.