Thursday, November 15, 2012

540. Full Sail Brewer’s Share Berliner Weiss

More from the West Coast, which is the Best Coast. It has been a while since we’ve punched that Full Sail ticket, but, well, here we are again, sailing on full steam ahead. And yes, that was my attempt at chiasmus. Don’t worry, it’s perfectly acceptable if you need to look that up. And no, I won’t stop peppering my comments with obscure linguistic devices. After all, it is the mad skills that pay the bills, not the mundane ones. Plus, since this guy officially disappeared, it appears I’m back to writing for my lonesome self. That one tragic tear rolling down your cheek is what keeps me blogging, my dear reader. Well, and the beers I get to drink. See? I can be both literal and smarmy in the same post. And if that ain’t the new journalism, then color me incoherent. Anywho, previous Full Sail beers include Wreck the Halls and Grandsun of Spot IPA, as well as the spectacularly made up Full Sail Super Fantastic Magic Carpet Ride. It’s a carpetbagger’s delight!

Brewer’s Share Berliner Weiss pours a crystal clear and vibrant gold with a light white head and plenty of tiny streaming bubbles along the side of the glass. As well, the beer feature numerous gold highlights as light cuts through the glass. The nose has the dusty dry cardboard of lactobacillus, along with a slight sharp tang mixed with a certain pungency, while behind that, there is a touch of wheat gumminess. Basically, the aroma is the drier, earthier lactobacillus and not the brighter, sharper and tarter that I prefer. Flavors are dry and paper-y with a touch of apple juice in the front, accompanied by cracker, biscuit, and wheat. There is a tang from the lactobacillus—and probably some from the wheat—as the beer moves into the middle, a tang short of tart but almost to lemon. I get a sharp dry bite as the beer turns towards the finish from both the carbonation and the lactobacillus, and there is a touch of the lingering champagne brut character on the middle back of the tongue that also manifests itself in the feeling of a slight mineral residue on the back of the tongue. Additionally, there is a touch of residual vegetal flavor as well as some lingering cracker sourness, along with a touch more of the apple. The body is simultaneously gummy and cracker dry, a mix of the effects of the wheat malt and the carbonation. And after everything passes across the palate, there is a slight candy sweet tang that is the last flavor left behind. While this is not the best of the commercial versions of this beer—a good bottle of 1809 is hard to beat—it is still well made. I do wish it had a more prominent—and by that I mean tarter—lactobacillus presence. There is too much wheat without the reciprocal cleansing tartness, and the earthy cardboard flattens flavors on the palate. But I’m still happy to see a beer like this produced and distributed in the United States. It warms the cockles of my heart.

From the bottle: “Featured Brewer: Chris Haveman. Four times a year we hand the keys to our massively talented brewers and let them throw down. Whoever comes up with the most insanely delicious new brew gets to share it with the entire beer-geekosphere. It’s something we call Brewer’s Share. And what, pray tell, inspired Chris to brew his wheat-o-rific Summer Delight? A secret desire to have his cake and drink it, too, perhaps? ‘I was inspired by my love of summer actually,’ says Chris. ‘When I found out we’d be brewing at the beginning of the season, I immediately thought of the perfect summer style—a Berliner Weiss.”

ABV: 4.0%
IBU: 9


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