Thanks Terry Urbanik for the chance to try this wonderful beer.
Pours perfect yellow amber with a fat creamy head of foam that lasts and leaves a bit of lace before receding to a thin ring. Looks perfectly clear at first glance but then reveals some very tiny particles floating in suspension. By the time I am done with the glass they are gone. The beer has some small bubbles floating upwards.
The nose is lovely bright lemon that becomes sweeter and more bountiful as the beer warms. That is met by a bright bit of orange.
Lovely combination on a soft and subtle sugar cookie malt. Light as your grandmother would make. There is a serenity in this malt that is both delicate and crisp. It verges on so many things but stays true to it’s simplicity always . Light spice as the beer comes toward the finish which is delightfully light and dry. West coast style mouthfeel all the way and the only real weight in the mouthfeel is from the alcohol which is not on the palate. Brilliant! Then just as you think it’s almost done a small stickiness comes over the palate and a bit of pine. Nothing too forceful now, just some light lip smacking delight. There is a lovely bitter to end this beer that really does linger a bit and showcase all that delicate flavor but it also brings out the tartness of the lemon.
I love this and think it’s extremely well crafted. It has every measure of an IPA but not in copious amounts. It does not run roughshod over your palate it is subtle and perfectly balanced. The malt in this is superb and I wish I could describe it’s grace better. The lightness and the crispness of it. Reminds me of a lemon drop candy by the end.
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.”
Maria Devan lives in Ithaca, NY and is frequent reviewer of beer and a beer lover deluxe.