Monday, July 22, 2013

A Year of Craft Beer, Vol. 142, Flying Fish Farmhouse Summer Ale

Hi everyone!

Yeah, it's been a while, but summer happened.  The highlight so far was seeing Furthur at the Mann Music Center!  But anyway it's been a tough time getting to the blog.  Of course, Untappd is loaded with new beers for me!  I have close to 50 badges now!

Tonight's beer is called a Farmhouse Ale (from France) but is actually classified as an American Blond Ale which is basically lager like, or Kolsch like, or even, like in this case, Farmhouse like.  It can be lightly malty with subdued fruitiness and medium hopped and should be very drinkable just as this one is.
One pic was too dark, one too light, I could not get the true colour of this beer.

The beer poured a clear and light gold in colour with a typical lager like thin white head and faint lacing.

The aromas are of sweet pale malt, biscuity and mildly fruity (pear and some lemon) yeast, some light notes of honey and maybe some grassy hops albeit very light just as the lemon is.

It's a pretty well balance between earthy hoppiness and pale malt sweetness aided by lemon and honey.  It's delicious and very well done.  The finish borders on dry with a mild lingering hop bitterness with faint notes of pepper.  This is a good beer!

The mouthfeel is smooth and the body light, but not watery like I have read.  The carbonation is medium or just over, but not hot in the least.

Overall, I feel this beer meets all the criteria of an American Blond Ale and many of a Farmhouse Ale as well as they seem similar and in that respect I am going to give it high marks.  To add to that, the extreme pleasantness of this beer is also going to get it a great score and I don't see why it has gotten lower scores on Beer Advocate but I am going to give it a solid 4 out of 5.

Hey, if you like that lager that you have been drinking your whole life, this is a perfect beer for you to change it up and live a little!  Life is too short to drink crappy beer!


Monday, July 8, 2013

A Year of Craft Beer, Vol. 142, Flying Fish Extra Pale Ale

Yo!  Tonight I'm drinking yet another American Pale Ale.  Does everyone have one of these in their line-up?  This is a style taken from the India Pale Ale style of Britain and made, more or less, with American ingredients and hops.  Sometimes taken to the extreme, but this one is "Extra Pale" so it should be a bit lighter.  Let's check it out!
This beer pours crystal clear and straw to gold colour with a thin but lasting head in the form of just a ring and very little lacing.

Upon agitation biscuity yeast aromas come out along with some light malt sweetness and some floral hop notes.

The beer tastes very lightly malt sweet mixed evenly with hop bitter throughout the sip which then takes over mildly at the finish along with some peppery notes.

The mouthfeel is smooth, fairly thin, but not watery, and on the dry side with a fair bit of carbonation over moderate.

Overall, I think this is an excellent beer for summer events (cans would be great if offered).  As an American Pale Ale I believe it is too thin, but this is supposed to be extra pale and taylored made as such and when judging that needs to be considered.  Would I buy this again?  Yes!  As an extra pale ale I think this deserves a 4 out of 5!

You guys should try this beer!


Sunday, July 7, 2013

A Year of Craft Beer, Vol. 141, Flying Fish Hopfish IPA

Hey Beerophiles,

I have been away!  It's been a busy week and I have about 20 more beers under my belt on Untappd, but unfortunately I haven't been able to get to the blog.  My bad.  I'm up to 141 posts and I think there are about 170 days gone in the year so far so I am about 30 days off.  At this rate I will get ten full months of posts in before new years.  Not too bad.  I have found out that to do this every single day is just unrealistic for me.  I hope that you understand!

Also I am in the throws of Flying Fish Brewery week on here starting off tonight with an IPA, but it is Oregon beer month and I may focus upon some of the Oregon breweries that have beer available here in PA.

So the story of the traditional English IPA is that in order to get Ale to the colonies in India in the 18th century that they had to hop it heavy to allow it to keep from spoiling on the almost year long voyage.  Hops, as you may know, are a great preservative for beer as they have a high acid content and keep bacteria from growing.  This Flying Fish representation is their version of a traditional IPA.  Let's have a look!
This beer pours an amber/light brown colour and is quite clear with a nice two finger head that lasts as very interesting dinosaur patterns on the glass.

The aroma of sweet amber malts is the most obvious of aromas and then as you agitate the beer aromas of bread and citrus tantalize your nose as well as some mild buttery notes.  Yum!  Fairly English in aroma for sure.

Tastes very English in malts and quite malt forward moving towards a bit of tart grapefruit and other mild fruits while blending with some earthy hop bitterness.  Not overly bitter and ending slightly dry, mildly bitter and peppery.

The mouthfeel is creamy with light to moderate body and fairly playful carbonation.

Overall I like this beer and it has a definite English feel to it, but the yeast and the hops seem to be a bit off.  The yeast seems to impart a biscuity and almost Belgian taste to it and the hops seem to be more on the lines of Pacific Northwest in format.  I don't know what they use.  It's a good beer and very drinkable!  I like it!  It's not incredible or awesome, but very satisfying on a warm evening!  3.5 out of 5!

Thanks for reading and I hope that this encourages someone out there to get into craft beer because really, it's the only kind of beer to drink.