A Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale
It’s confession time. I’ve been unfaithful. For the longest time, I was fast and enduring to the sweet, sweet malt, and eschewed the bitter hop. But this little blonde enticed me with her sluttiness, and having tasted her delights, I was drunk with pleasure. I admit to some sybaritic desire, because after the first sipped kisses, I wanted to possess her.
It began in the restaurant, before the bar was open. Daily, I’d see the display of fine wines, and jealous of them, plucked this spunky gal from the nearest store, a single bottle to grace the shelves. Passing her daily, I lusted for that golden delight, and finally she drew me in to her web.
Ooops. Slipped into old male thinking there for a wild moment. Enough of the fantasy, now for the real deal. This is a beautiful beer, seriously. It would have to be to draw me away from my usual malty lusts – it’s a pale amber with a excellent crowning head that holds well, laces the glass with pretty silk stockingtops of lace (here we go again); a true delight to the eye.
The nose is gently hoppy and quite fruity, with clear notes of tangerine and backed with a bready wheatiness. The little hop bitterness balances a sweet savour of herb bread, and the light, slightly spicy citrus carries through to a dry finish that is clean and fresh after the maltiness. Each draft, sip or quaff, reveals more.
It’s a great food beer, good with sturdy salads and light to moderately flavoured dishes. I’d pick it as a good introduction to food pairing with lightly spiced meats and cheeses. There’s little to fault, it’s a superbly balanced pale wheat brew that continually surprises. As I find with so many brews, the character changes as the beer warms. In this case, it seriously glows, becomes more floral and aromatic. Care is needed though, because at some point it loses that essential freshness. After all, it’s a hoppy Lagunitas ale, and deserves to be on the chillier end, around 50 at the top end.
Will I have it again? Without hesitation. A delightful warm-weather beer that I’m certain will appeal to a wide variety of palates.