The wind chill today was -53 degrees, so we were told to work from home if we could. So after sitting here in front of the window all day, staring out into the frigid park, I decided to… umm celebrate living here in Illinois. This beer was brewed for the state’s bicentennial, and a friend Friend Steve brought this beer to a party and left it. Brewed for state’s bicentennial.
This ale, proudly named 1818, is our tribute to the rich brewing culture and deep agricultural heritage of Illinois. Brewed with barley, staple Illinois crops (corn, wheat and oats), Crystal hops grown by Hollowed Hops, Lewistown, IL and fermented with an exceptional hybrid saison yeast developed by Omega Yeast Labs, Chicago, IL.
Location: Poured into a pint glass at my home in Bloomington, IL.
Numbers: 5.5% ABV, ~160 Calories
Appearance & Aroma: Bright golden color and very clear. Looks like a Bud light in the glass. Lots of carbonation giving it a fluffy bright white head with good retention. It has a light almost lemony aroma with a bit of farmhouse funkiness.
Taste & Feel: The body was pretty light and the mouthfeel was crisp from the carbonation. Up front, the flavors were slightly little bready from the grains with a little bit of light lemony citrus in the background. In the middle, the lemony citrus flavors came forward more, but were still very light. These flavors opened up slightly in the finish, and were joined by some light saison-like spiciness/pepperiness. The spiciness, breadiness and light lemon flavors lasted briefly in the aftertaste.
Food Pairing: This is a pretty light beer with light notes of breadiness, lemon-citrus, and spiciness, and I think it would be delicate enough to pair with a light fish dish or salad. It might also be nice to help disperse some spiciness from spicy foods like Mexican or Thai.
Overall Impression: I will admit that the farmhouse style is not among my favorites, however, the flavors in this beer were very light. It must have been selected as the state beer due to its approachability and drinkability by many types of drinkers. I think this beer would be great on a hot day on the lake, as it was light, bright and crisp with some citrusiness. Overall, it was a good beer, although the flavors were pretty minimal.