I picked this beer up when I was on vacation in Florida this past summer. I stopped at a Total Wine and got several beers that I couldn’t get back here in Illinois. A six pack of this was perfect for enjoying on the beach in Florida. I got a chance to do a few reviews during my vacation, including an awesome stop at Pegs, but this final beer from the six pack has been sitting in the beer fridge waiting for my review since then. It says it was canned on 5-31-12 at 12:12… It also says, “Zombies? Bring Dem” Not kidding.
Location: Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass from the can at my home in Bloomington, IL.
Numbers: 6.5% ABV, 65 IBUs, 195 Calories
Appearance & Aroma: It’s fairly clear and golden-amber in color. Even though it’s in the Sam Adams glass with the etched ring at the bottom, the head was thin and the bubbles looked somewhat soapy. Surprisingly, it left a good amount of lacing on the glass. It had a solid resin like hop aroma with a little bit of bready maltiness in the background.
Taste & Feel: The body is light-to-light-medium and the mouthfeel is fairly crisp, but I can’t tell if its crispness comes from the carbonation or hoppiness. There’s a little bit of honey and bready maltiness before the piney and resiny hop flavors kick in during the middle. During the slightly dry finish, these flavors get even more bold, and are joined by a good dose of hop bitterness as well. The aftertaste is all piney and resiny hop flavors and bitterness, which lasts for a minutes or two.
Food Pairing: This is a solid beer with a good amount of piney and resiny hop flavor and bitterness. This is the type of beer I’d have with great pub food, including chicken wings with blue cheese dressing, a thick cheeseburger, or a brick-oven baked pizza (to bring out some more of the breadiness).
Overall Impression: In my opinion, this isn’t a pale ale, but is actually an IPA. At 65 IBUs and 6.5% ABV, there’s not only a good dose of hop bitterness, but there seems to be a good amount of late or dry hopping, hop flavor as well. However, that certainly doesn’t mean I didn’t like it. In fact, I really liked this beer, and as I mentioned above, I found it pretty drinkable and really enjoyed it in the can when on vacation at the beach. I’m a bit of a hophead, and enjoy hop flavors (more than straight bittereness), so I really enjoyed this beer, but craft beer novices might find it a bit too far on the hoppy side for a pale ale. Overall, it’s a good beer, but don’t let the label fool you into thinking it doesn’t have a good hop punch.