Friday, November 15, 2013

580. Modern Times Lomaland

This beer is courtesy Brian Gallow, who sent me a text message asking if I was interested in splitting a couple of four-packs of Modern Times. To which I obviously said yes, although it was a tougher decision than you may have thought. For while I love the Mad Fermentationist (for information like this), I am annoyed and disgusted by the gratuitous use of “cock-staggeringly” in Modern Times’ advertising prose. Which started pretty much right out the gate. Still, they do offer “open source” brewing, which means all their recipes are open and available to the public. But no matter how cool the cool things are, the repulsion keeps creeping back in. I guess I will have to find some way to live with myself. I still feel dirty. 

Lomaland pours a crystal clear straw—look at that clarity in the picture—with a fluffy white head that offers moderate staying power. The nose is a mix of sweet candy Pils and corn; there are earthy hints of phenol pepperiness mixed with a perfume-y juicy Belgian yeast character and just a dash of Noble hop bitterness lingering in the background. Flavors start dry and crackery, although there is a slight sweetness, almost like you left a saltine cracker on your tongue and the acid in your mouth started converting the starches to sugars. The middle is peppery phenols and light hop bitterness; there is also some slight scratchy graininess on the tongue as the beer heads towards the finish via the carbonation, and there is also a bit of the corn grittiness that sits on the back of the tongue in the finish along with the hop bitterness. While flavors are bright, there is some soft roundness in the mouthfeel of the beer itself even with the dryness and attenuation—that’s the flaked wheat and corn talking—specifically in the front, although the sharp, clean carbonation hides the softness. This is a good beer, albeit a bit rough on the palate. I’m guessing, though, that’s the “rustic” referred to on the label—it is a bit outside the “classic” vision of a saison invoked by the likes of Saison Dupont, Fantôme, or even Ommegang Hennepin, but it is certainly in line with the burgeoning American farmhouse saison that is all the rage with the kids these days. Still, approachable and very drinkable, even with the poorly chosen verbiage to describe the brewery as a whole.

From the can: “Lomaland is an earthy, rustic Belgian-style farmhouse ale that’s both complex and quaffable. It smells like hay, pepper, and friendly sunshine. Its dry, cracker-like body and lightly-hoppy finish make it a beautiful compliment to food. We named Lomaland after the brilliantly crazy utopian community that was the first settlement built in Point Loma, the San Diego neighborhood where our Fermentorium is located.”

ABV: 5.5%
IBU: 30
FG: 1.006


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