I canâ€™t say much about Green Flash, but Tom Becham has mentioned them here at PGA. I do have a Terrapin storyâ€¦
In the 90s I was gone a lot. From Louisiana to Florida to Maine I was doing dhows for the young and using multitrack tech to create projects with slightly older children. I was in Georgia, west side of Atlanta staying on this huge lake and heard nearby Athens had turned into a new beer capital.
Of course I stayed in my little trailer and worked on my programs andâ€¦
Who am I kidding?
I spent the day wandering the streets of Athens and there were many brewpubs: most are probably gone by now I’m guessing. I had one ;last stop, but miles of Georgia countryside to navigate and I knew, after waiting, if I had anymore I was risking too much. So I missed Terrapin.
Ever since then I have been slammed with brew after brew that told me I missed something that day. Terrapin ventures into new brew seas these brew pirates have captured the part of my heart most affected by taste many times. Their signature turtle has graced many labels like Wake N Bake, and oatmeal chocolate chip-like quaff, or Pineapple Express. And they were ahead of the pack when it came to collaborating with other breweries.
Tangerine Dreamsicle, a collaboration between Terrapin and Green Flash (San Diego) opens up with a slightly off white head, very light gold yellow and a nose that screams typical American grapefruit-like sense. Clarity is good. To complete the nose comments thereâ€™s pale malt and some caramelized malts even further in the background. Big small to moderate bubble head that holds.
Readers please note: this beer almost froze, so Iâ€™m sure that affected the samples.
Maybe â€œtangerineâ€ comes from the color? While it warms I could see how one might think â€œtangerine,â€ but this just seems more a somewhat bitter, less fruity, lower side of American, IPA. As it warms bitter increases, so maybe itâ€™s spot on. There is a possible spicing in the background, like orange peel, tangerine peel and or coriander. But, again, that could just be the hops.
And the â€sicle?â€ I expected to be reminded of the Good Humor truck and a popsicle. Uh, uh. Nope.
Mouthfeel was medium, on the light side of. It was firm and pleasing. The pale with some caramel base is perfect.
A note on packaging: itâ€™s very irritating when the brewers provide no information on what the buyer is to expect. I would have expected actual tangerine. If itâ€™s in hear they should have chose a different hopping, or almost none and more tangerine.
No score at Rate Beer. Says itâ€™s an IPA. 81% at Beer Advocate. BA adds â€œAmerican IPAâ€ which is more accurate, IMO.
Hereâ€™s what their site (Terrapin) saysâ€¦
Hops: Citra, Amarillo, Azacca (dry hop)
Malts:2-Row Pale, CaraMalt, Gambrinus Honey Malt
Other: Lactose Sugar, Tangerine Peel
Lactose? Kind of lost. Perhaps that was the attempt to provide â€œsickle.â€
Iâ€™m going to have to do this. I hate to because itâ€™s a great beer, but 3.8 is the best I can do. I sit at a judging table too often where Iâ€™m not provided with what I need to know, and brewers claim all kinds of things that simply arenâ€™t in there according to every judge who tires it. Kind of like the â€œpale aleâ€ I poured once at a table that would give Guinness a run in the darkness srm spectrum. The packaging bothers me that much. Itâ€™s a great brew, just packaged in a misleading way. Please leave that to InBev and Miller/Coors. Youâ€™re both too damn good for that. And this brew is too good too.
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.”
A Beer-y Good Story is a column by Ken Carman: BJCP judge, author of several columns an beer and Inspection, on social, political and religious issues first published in 1972. A Beer-y Good Story goes where beer reviews donâ€™t: history and perception of a brand being reviewed, as well as personal anecdotes.
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
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