I had to drive up to Chicago for work today for a monthly meeting, and was hoping to make it back into town for “Belgian Beer School” at our local HyVee grocery store. I made it about halfway through, but thanks to my friends Kiel, Fred & Heather for saving me a seat and a few sips of each beer to get caught up! Also, thanks to Adam Schulte of Artisanal Imports for an excellent presentation and samples of great beers. When I got home, I was feeling pretty good, so I thought I’d crack this one open. This was a gift from my friend Sean who brought it over to our Halloween party. Cheers and thanks to all my beer-loving friends!
Location: Poured into a TEKU glass at my home in Bloomington, IL
Numbers: 6.7% ABV, 39 IBUs, 1.060 OG, 202 Calories
Appearance & Aroma: It has a bright copper color, like a shiny new penny, and it’s clear with some flaky sediment floating in it. There’s lots of carbonation, but there’s just a thin soapy layer of bubbles across the top. The aromis is mostly caramel malty with some earthy hoppiness.
Taste & Feel: The body is solidly medium and the mouthfeel is somewhat crisp from the carbonation and hoppiness. Up front, it’s a lightly caramel and grainy maltiness with some light earthy bitterness. The sweet maltiness grows in the middle, but the bitterness doesn’t. However, the bitterness grows in the finish, surpassing the malt sweetness a little. The aftertaste is caramel maltiness and earthy bitterness which lasts for a minute or so.
Food Pairing: The caramel maltiness and earthy bitterness would be perfect to pair with a burger or a steak. It would also go good with other savory meals like BBQ.
Overall Impression: It is a good beer with a great balance between malty sweetness and hop bitterness. It seems like it’s more bitter than the 39 IBUs it claims, but it’s got just the right amount of bitterness for an amber ale. Overall, it’s a very solid beer that craft beer lovers will appreciate.