Tuesday, September 1, 2009

A style and a review

In keeping with other styles of ale, I am proposing that the American Black Ale come in a standard, double, imperial, etc style. To that end, my proposal for the standard style is as follows:
  • OG: 1.040-1.055
  • FG: 1.010-1.020
  • IBU: 25-60
  • SRM (Lov): 45-65
  • ABV: 4.5%-6.5%
My "Kiss of Winter Black Ale" pushes this standard a bit, with its OG at 1.074 and estimated ABV of 6.9%. That's not too bad. Feel free to voice in and help shape this style. Why should the Belge have all the fun with a defined black ale?

Tonight I tried New Glarus Hop Hearty. I left the bottle out for 20 minutes before I poured to let it warm up and have the hops more alive. As is sometimes typical of a hoppy beer, the head poured nice and tall. The beer is a nice golden color and the head a bit like cream. On the nose there is noticeable Crystal malt and a hint of hops. For a beer that is labeled an IPA, it is a bit mild here. Swirling only seems to deliver more malt.

On the tongue, the malt sweetness is in the foreground, but there is a Cascade chaser. There's isn't much else there. The body is a bit thin and clean. The finish is a mild mix of hops and malt. There is a lingering aftertaste of hops. Just enough to make you wanting another, but not so much that all one tastes for the next hour is hops. A drink of water removes what is there. A hoppy beer I would label this one not.

The alcohol content is a bit high to call it a session beer, but it is definitely one to enjoy with food and friends. Enjoy this with well flavored food and there will be no worries of the beer overpowering what you are eating.

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