961 Lebanese Pale Ale

Beer from Lebanon, eh? I’ve never had beer from Lebanon. I wasn’t even aware that beer was brewed in Lebanon. Well, actually that’s not true. I assume that beer is pretty much brewed everywhere. But, I’ve never seen a beer from Lebanon in the stores ever. So, I was definitely excited to try this one. I have another one in the fridge from the same brewery, but it’s a different style. Okay, time to crack the bad boy open.

ABV: 6.32%

Style: Herbed/Spiced Beer

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “The Brewmaster’s Select for 961 Beer is a modern interpretation of beer with a distinctive Lebanese background. 961 Beer is releasing its first edition of the Brewmaster’s Select to the public – The Lebanese Pale Ale (LPA). This specialty brew is an interpretation of the classic English India Pale Ale combined with Lebanese ingredients that symbolise Middle Eastern intricacies. 10’000 years in the making, the LPA marks the return home for beer. From the land where beer and human civilisation were born, comes a new brew that is a marriage between Western brewing tradition, Eastern complexities, and a sublime expression of the Lebanese Renaissance. It was inspired straight from the Lebanese spice markets. For decades there has been little choice in the diversity of Lebanese beers. This beer provides an alternative for the Lebanese population, with ingredients such as za’atar, sumac, mint, sage, anise, and chamomile. The use of such herbs and spices makes this distinctive craft brew truly Lebanese.”

Random: I could listen to Sara Bareilles’s first album on repeat all day long. It’s one of the few albums that I like every single song on and haven’t gotten sick of yet.

This beer poured with a finger of white head that dissipated insanely quickly. It left no lacing on the pint glass. The body was a clear, dark amber color with absolutely no carbonation visible in the body. The nose was very…odd. It had a lot of herbal characteristics with notes of lavender and chamomile and mint. After reading the label, it made sense as this is a “spiced” pale ale. Although they warned me, the nose was off-putting. The taste was even worse. It had lots of chamomile and lavender. Also some thyme and maybe even sage came through. It felt like sticking my face into a bag of potpourri, which I’m not all that fond of. If there were any other flavors, or any other hops, I couldn’t find them. This had way too many different spices going on for me. The body was medium thickness with moderate carbonation. The finish was long with lots of lavender. If you like drinking potpourri, this is definitely a beer for you. For me, the spices were just there to be in your face and didn’t wow me.

Untappd Rating: 2.0/5.0