So, today was pretty relaxing. I went to Pennsyltucky to go see my girlfriend who works there. She had an extended break during work, so she took me on a surprise date to go canoeing. After I dropped her back off at work, I had an idea. I had been to a beer store outside of Philly awhile back and still had the card with the address in my wallet. I plugged in the address and found out it was only 10 minutes away from her job. Needless to say, I knew where I would spend some of my evening. I came home with 2 six-packs and a bomber of beer that I can’t get in New Jersey. Some of the highlights were selections from Russian River, The Lost Abbey, Bell’s and Duck Rabbit. And since I was basically a four year old on Christmas morning, I had to have one of the Russian River brews tonight. Onto the brew…
Style: American Wild Ale
Trivia: According to BeerAdvocate, “Sometimes Belgian influenced, American Wild Ales are beers that are introduced to ‘wild’ yeast or bacteria, such as: Brettanomyces (Brettanomyces Bruxellensis, Brettanomyces Lambicus or Brettanomyces Anomolus), Pediococcus or Lactobacillus. This introduction may occur from oak barrels that have been previously inoculated, pitched into the beer, or gained from various ‘sour mash’ techniques. Regardless of which and how, these little creatures often leave a funky calling card that can be quite strange, interesting, pleasing to many, but also often deemed as undesirable by many.”
Random: I’ve apparently never had an American Wild Ale before. I think it’s only appropriate that my first one is from Russian River.
First of all, yes, I paid $18 for this beer, which I think is outrageous, but I always have to grab up Russian River beers when I see them. This beer poured a cloudy reddish-brown color with lots of active carbonation. The head was one finger and pure white and lingered around for awhile, although it didn’t leave much lacing on the glass. On the nose, there was a definite presence of cherries and funk. Minor notes on the nose included oak and a bit of red wine. Complexity much? On the first sip, the first thing I think is that this beer is crazy tart. It took me a few sips to get used to that. It also didn’t have as much funk as I thought it would. After I got used to that, there was definitely oak and cherries in the taste. The carbonation is definitely active and goes well with the brew, which is much lighter than I thought it would be. This brew almost reminds me of a red wine, which also could be because it was aged in Pinot Noir barrels. The finish lingers with tart cherries. Although this would not be a beer I could have every night, the complexity really makes it an amazing beer. I would have this again in a second.
Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0