Profiled by Ken Carman
Perfect clarity, golden quaff. Head is slightly off white and fades very fast into sides of the glass. Tiniest of bubbles. Yellow highlights in pure gold.
Mouthfeel is off dry with light carbonation. There’s the slightest harshness that clings to the roof of the mouth, like a bittering hop that popped through.
Aroma is vanilla and a slight sour. I do get slight cocoa nibs, orange peel, no cinnamon in the nose, no pecans. Balance in aroma differs from flavor.
To be honest the flavor is this is somewhat annoying. Unlike aroma orange peel is dominant: so much so, combined with vanilla, I get no malt, almost nothing else. Carbonation is medium and carbonic. It has a hint of a bite. Aftertaste is slight sour with orange peel, as well as in the finish. Very slightly dry, unlike King Cake. I have had King Cake. I have had the BEST King Cake: sour dough, not the coffee cake version. I think this was an attempt at the sour dough version of King Cake. An attempt. Not all that successful.
If I ordered this I’d probably give it to someone else after half a glass then order something I’d like better. It simply doesn’t quite work. The ale is indistinct, not that much of a base for what’s supposed to be King Cake. That would be OK if the King Cake were really King-ish. Missed that mark. A King Cake would be sweeter and the flavors more balanced. Same for aroma, except that balance is different.
The secret here would be in having it finish a little more sweet, balance out the spices, the nuts, and maybe just a hint more of the ale. Otherwise the only “death” here is the concept this is King Cake-ish at all.
Welcome to the PGA beer rating system: one beer “Don’t bother.” Two: Eh, if someone gives it to you, drink. Three: very good, go ahead and seek it out, but be aware there is at least one problem. Four: seek it out. Five: pretty much “perfecto.”