Friday, August 27, 2010

Beer of the Week (Vol. LXVIII)

Another edition of Beer of the Week brought to you by the colorful folks at Glen Lake Wine & Spirits who can help you choose the right drink to seamlessly transition the seasons of life.

Is it really fall already? The back to school sales started on July 5th and classrooms open soon. The Minnesota State Fair--another annual harbinger of autumn--kicked off yesterday. And last week, the appearance of the first beers of fall (mostly Oktoberfests) also delivered an unmistakable signal of the pending seasonal change. It's a been a nice run summer, but it's almost time to hang it up. While we always mourn its passing, we're ready for fall. And the beers it brings.

We kick off the new season of beer with New Belgium's Hoptober Golden Ale:

Five hops and four malts make Hoptober Golden Ale a veritable cornucopia of the earth. Pale and wheat malt are mashed with rye and oats to create a medium-bodied ale with a creamy mouthfeel.

That's one mouth-watering description. Does the beer deliver as advertised?

Standard brown New Belgium bottle and artistic label design. Red and brown colors with heaps of hops framing a mountain scene of characters cavorting around a bonfire.

STYLE: Blond Ale


COLOR (0-2): Light gold and very clear. 1

AROMA (0-2): Hoppy sweet with a little bit of spice. 2

HEAD (0-2): Bright white. Lots of volume and good retention. 2

TASTE (0-5): Mild hops with citrus flavors and mellow sweetness. Quite a bit of carbonation, medium-bodied, and drinkable. 3

AFTERTASTE (0-2): Smooth and subtly sweet. 2

OVERALL (0-6): A nice change of pace for an autumn offering. Hoptober Golden Ale's balance of bitter and sweet make for a well-rounded beer. It's not going to blow you away with flavor, but it's very solid. A vastly superior product to New Belgium's inexplicably popular Fat Tire. 4

TOTAL SCORE (0-19): 14