Thursday, January 2nd 2014
River North White
(River North Brewery)
Our first review of 2014! With the impending snow storm headed this way it seems fitting to start the year off with River North Brewery's White. River North is located in Denver, Colorado and their White is the first of their beers to be canned. It was actually one of an astounding 70+ different canned craft beers to come out of Colorado in 2013 - the total from the state is now hovering close to 200! Here's to another great year of beer in 2014! Cheers!
From the River North Brewery site:
“This crisp Belgian-style wit has a subtle spicy, citrus aroma and a delicate, dry finish. Sessionable and refreshing, this represents the evolution of the traditional Belgian-style wheat beer.”
Here we go...
Pour - light straw-colored in appearance with a ghosty white half inch of foam on top. Very clean pour with great carbonation.
Aroma - plenty of coriander and yeasty spiciness coming from my glass. There are some slight hints of citrus and ground white pepper. A very aromatic brew that smells spot on for the style.
Taste - one sip and the palate is inundated with the familiar spices that come together so nicely in this particular style of beer. A nice balance of the uniqueness of coriander with a dash of malty sweetness, faint hints of vanilla and oranges, and a dry, lip smacking finish.
Overall - this style may have become associated with warmer weather but I'd have to say that the spiciness and flavors of a good witbier go just fine with a cold winter evening. River North's White is a crisp, clean tasting wit with plenty of flavor without being sweet like some versions of the style we've come across. This is a great tasting beer that we feel lucky to have had the chance to put in our glass. Cheers to all the folks at River North and all the best in the coming year!
Note - the name River North is a reference to the River North Art District (or RiNo) just north of Downtown Denver. Along with River North Brewery, the area is also home to Black Shirt Brewing Company (which will begin canning soon) and The Infinite Monkey Theorem - one of the very first urban wineries in the country to can their wines.
Posted by Russ
More from this: State (61) | Country (341) | Brewery (1) | Style (7)
Friday, January 6th 2012
(Westbrook Brewing Company)
Westbrook Brewing Company did a great job desiging both the artwork for this can but also the beer itself. We love that they put their own spin on this style by adding ginger root and Sorachi Ace hops. Very cool! We loved their IPA so we can't wait to try this one and see what's next from this South Carolina brewery! Cheers!
From the Westbrook Brewing site:
"This beer, inspired by the flavors of Southeast Asian cuisine, is a twist on the classic Belgian witbier style. Instead of the traditional coriander and orange peel spicing regimen, we add fresh lemongrass, ginger root, and a dash of Sorachi Ace hops. The result is a wonderfully refreshing ale with notes of lemon candy, citrus fruit, and a slight spiciness from the ginger. Best served at 45˚F in a tulip or wine glass."
Here we go...
Pour - hazy yellow to gold in color with a not too thick wispy head on top. Sort of soft and opaque in appearance with a good deal of yeasty cloudiness.
Aroma - spicy and sweet, lots of great aromas coming from the glass. Some nice citrus notes along with some hints of ginger and coriander. Very spicy, warm and inviting.
Taste - that first sip is all we need to know that this is a very well put together witbier. Lots of those traditional flavors are present such as the coriander and the citrus notes but the ginger and the lemongrass really bring this beer to another level. Very spicy and refreshing and we can't really say enough about what the addition of ginger does for a beer like this.
Overall - one of the best witbiers we've ever had. If only we had some of this in 2011, it would have certainly got some acclomation in the "Best of 2011" polling. Absolutely great beer with such well measured spice flavor and a nice crisp finish. Altogether fantastic. Very well done and cheers to everyone at Westbrook Brewing Company.
Note - we can't help but wish that Westbrook Brewing and Uncommon Brewers would get together and do some sort of East Coast/West Coast collaboration. Both have really mastered the art of brewing with spices and have an apprecaition for what they can do for a beer. Perhaps we can persuade them to share some pints and talk it over. Cheers!
Posted by Russ
More from this: State (5) | Country (341) | Brewery (3) | Style (7)
Friday, August 26th 2011
(Avery Brewing Company)
Avery started canning almost a year ago...how time flies. Every time I pass their cans at the beer store I have to ask why some people favor bottles for pure aesthetic reasons. All four of Avery's cans look great and the beers they hold aren't so bad either. I raise my glass to Avery for making the move to cans, to their upcoming canning anniversary and to many more years (and hopefully more beers) in cans. Cheers!
From the Avery site:
"A truly authentic Belgian style wheat or "white" ale, this Rascal is unfiltered (yup, that's yeast on the bottom) and cleverly spiced with coriander and Curacao orange peel producing a refreshingly fruity thirst quencher.”
Here we go...
Pour - cloudy, golden straw color in appearance. Surprisingly opaque - when I pick it up and try and see through it, I can see my fingers blocking the light coming through the glass, but can't see through the beer. Off-white head with tiny bubbles. As this settles it becomes clearer with the head leaving some fine lacing.
Aroma - crisp, with hints of the fruity yeasty smells usually associated with Belgians. The coriander is spicy and definitely stands out. Some sweet citrus aromas as well.
Taste - first thing I notice is the carbonation. It's exceptionally fine, almost foamy across the tongue. Sour citrus flavors along with spicy coriander are upfront with hints of orange coming through towards the end. White Rascal is very thirst quenching and extremely refreshing. Each sip leaves me wanting just one more taste.
Overall - there are a lot of Witbiers available in cans these days and this is definitely one of the best. I like it more than Hoegaarden personally (and yes, even Hoegaarden comes in cans over in Belgium). If you're a fan of this style be sure to try this.
Would I buy more of it? - absolutely. I picked up a few six-packs over the summer as this is a great beer for just having in the fridge or for hanging out on the deck.
Note - three of Avery's four cans are beers that they first put in bottles and continue to do so. Their Joe's Premium American Pilsner, however, was a brand new beer when introduced in cans and it has never been bottled. If you haven't tried it yet be sure to pick some up and give it a shot. It's excellent.
Posted by Russ
More from this: State (61) | Country (341) | Brewery (4) | Style (7)
Thursday, July 7th 2011
Great Crescent Belgian Style Wit
(Great Crescent Brewery)
We finally got our hands on some Great Crescent cans! Thanks to a very generous beer lover that was able to hook us up with a nice variety pack of their beers! Great Crescent is special in the canned beer world as they're not only canning some amazing beers but they're also utilizing a can that was graphically designed for anything they can possibly put in it - just stick a label on it and there you go!
From the Great Crescent site:
"Great Crescent Witbier is refreshingly crisp wheat-based ale with a slightly dry, tart finish. It has moderate sweetness with spicy aroma’s and a hint of coriander and citrus. This beer is very light in color with a dense, white head and some cloudiness from a special yeast strain.
This beer style has been around for over 400 years and originated in Belgium. The style died out about 60 years ago and has gained favor by many beer drinkers over the past 10-15 years.."
Here we go...
Pour - cloudy, pale orangish-yellow in appearance with a half inch or so of stark white head. Suspended bubbles and a glowing opaqueness make this a very nice beer to behold. A bit of a mystery that draws one in...
Aroma - spicy, sweet, pears, green apple, soap, lilac and some cloves. Very aromatic and just about worthy of an incense of perfume. Love the way this beer smells.
Taste - immediately this is soft on the palate with subtle fruit flavors like pears, apples, melon and grapes along with a bit of spiciness from the coriander. This definitely has a subdued clove flavor and a nice, mellow sweetness. Nothing overpowering whatsoever, just a very easy drinking and very refreshing beer.
Overall - considering this is a style without much to hide behind we really enjoyed this and freshness and quality is top notch. Not knowing much about Great Crescent I'd say we're off to a very good start and those other beers in the fridge don't have much time left...
Would I buy more of it? - yes. Excellent beer with lots of great flavors and perfect for a warm summer night - like this one! Cheers!
Availability - May - September
Note - Great Crescent is one of three breweries in the country can their beers in a multi-style can. What this means is that they stick a label on a generic can denoting the style and thus they're able to use the same can for multiple styles - including the country's first, and only, canned bourbon barrel-aged stout. The other breweries are Sun King Brewing Company (IN) and Dolores River Brewery (CO). Cheers!
Posted by Russ
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