Monday, June 7, 2010

342. Avery Seventeen Dry-Hopped Black Lager

More from the land of Colorado, home to Avery and many other excellent breweries. We visited the land of Avery before—this is number six from Avery. Past conquests include (like how I make use of the language of colonialism myself on occasion?) Anniversary Ale Ten (2003), Brabant Barrel-Aged Wild Ale, Ellie’s Brown Ale, 16th Anniversary Ale and duganA IPA. Boo yah.

Described on the front label as a “dry-hopped black lager” and on the website as “a dark study in German hops,” Seventeen pours a deep chocolate brown with a few stray red highlights the sneak through; the head is a creamy mocha with decent staying power and lacing potential. There is not much in the way of a nose—maybe the head blocks it out, or maybe in this instance Seventeen is remaining true to its lager roots—all we get is a bit of creaminess and maybe some low level chocolate aromas. Opening with a touch of sweetness and toasted malt flavors, Seventeen has a slick, creamy front that gives way to roasted and chocolate flavors in the middle. There are low levels of bitterness buried under the flavors of the middle as well, along with a slight touch of hop spiciness. The finish is dry with a bit of chalkiness accompanied by more of the roasty flavors along with some lingering bitterness. Medium to light bodied, Seventeen hides the alcohol flavor and mouthfeel quite nicely—this beer drinks a lot lighter than the 8.69% ABV it carries. The carbonation is medium, and runs across the palate nicely, helping build the creaminess of the front and close out the beer in the final third. A well-made, easy drinking beer; on tap (since we had it last week on tap) the hop character comes out across the profile a bit more aggressively; to be honest, we like it out of the bottle better, as the complexity of the malt profile is cleaner and more nuanced—it does not get covered over by the hop spiciness. As well, the label on this beer is stone cold awesome—we’re giving it Top 10 Best Label contender status.

From the bottle and the Avery website: “After years of commemorating our anniversary with deliciously wild and weird ales, we decided to mix it up a bit and create our first Anniversary Lager. Seventeen is a celebration and study of the aromas and flavors of German hops. And knowing our fetish for those beautiful green cones, you can be confident that the contents of this bottle are well hopped for your olfactory pleasure. Many thanks to all and we hope you enjoy our lupulin dissertation. Peace to all and follow your dreams!”

ABV: 8.69%
OG: 1.077

Hops: Hersbrucker & Tettnang


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