The Beer Savant

September 25, 2013

Great White

Filed under: Ale,American,Witbier — hikingsandiego @ 9:24 pm
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greatwhite
Date: September 2013
Cost: $7.99/6-pack at Sprouts
Brewery: Lost Coast Brewery, Eureka, California
Alcohol content: 4.8%
Served: Cold in a chilled glass

As the end of summer neared, San Diego’s weather decided to get one last hot punch in before giving way to fall. The last several weeks of August/early September were wretchedly hot. Although the local libation providers were already displaying fall brews, I wanted something lighter…more refreshing…to mitigate the brutal heat. Great White seemed to fit the bill.

Great White poured a mild yellow with a slight head and lacing. It carried the scent of summer…a light wheat and citrus. And the scent carried through to its taste…light wheat and citrus, with a hint of herb. These are nice traits, yes, but I would have liked to taste them more; as it was, I found myself straining to taste anything. It’s a refreshing beer—the right lightness and crisp flavor for a hot day—but a beer can be refreshing and flavorful as well. Great White’s cousin, Tangerine Wheat Ale, is a good example of a refreshing beer that’s chockfull of flavor. I don’t think that Great White will find itself in my shopping cart again.

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August 4, 2011

Leinenkugel Sunset Wheat

Filed under: Ale,American,Wheat,Witbier — hikingsandiego @ 9:31 pm
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Leinenkugel Sunset WheatDate: July 21, 2011
Cost: NA
Brewery: Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company, Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin
Alcohol content: 4.8%
Served: Cold by the glass at the Spaghetti Factory in San Diego

It was a day of adventures. We spent the morning and afternoon at Comic-Con, where we took in a lifetime of weirdness in one day. It was grand! I listened to one of my favorite authors, Christopher Moore, speak on a panel. I learned how a steampunk proton pack works. And I watched as the entire cast of “The Big Bang Theory” walked across the sidewalk in front of me and entered their hotel. Whew! All that excitement works up an appetite and a thirst. We decided to take care of both at the Spaghetti Factory.

A day of adventures shouldn’t end with a mundane order such as spaghetti and red wine, so I ordered the crab ravioli and a Leinenkungel’s Sunset Wheat. Let me tell you, my choices were spot on.

Leinenkugel’s Sunset Wheat pours a hazy golden yellow, and indeed, it does look like a summer sunset. I could smell the rich fruity and floral fragrances before the glass touched my lips. And the taste followed through. The beer was served with a slice of orange, and I squeezed it into the glass, enhancing the already citrus taste of the beer. Orange, lemon, wheat, and a little spice made this an interesting and rich beer to savor. The carbonation was just right. I felt refreshed down to the soles of my very tired, sore feet.

May 15, 2011

Shock Top

Filed under: Ale,American,Wheat,Witbier — hikingsandiego @ 9:39 pm
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Shock TopDate: May 13, 2011
Cost: NA
Brewer:  Anheuser-Busch, St. Louis, Missouri
Alcohol content: 5.2%
Served: Cold in chilled glasses, side of unsalted peanuts

I’m usually cautious when presented with a “corporate” beer. Corporate beers are kind of like Chips Ahoy Cookies: technically, they’re a cookie with small lumps of chocolate, and they’ll do in a pinch when your sweet tooth demands satisfaction. But craft beers and microbeers are like a hot Mrs. Fields chocolate chip cookie: a divine experience…a confectionary nirvana.

Shock Top is a product of the King of Corporate Beers, Anheuser-Busch, so  with a touch of trepidation I flipped off the bottle cap and poured my first glass. The beer pours slightly hazy with a soft lemony color. So far so good. The packaging describes it as containing coriander, orange, lemon, and lime peel with wheat. At first sip, I didn’t taste much of these and, well, it tasted pretty much like most corporate beers. Then I cut a wedge of fresh orange, squeezed it in the glass, and poof! The beer came to life! Orange juice is to Shock Top what that ol’ top hat was to Frosty the Snowman: the one element that brings it to life. But I digress.

Orange added, Shock Top has a delightful, citrus taste that is refreshing with a nice, tart aftertaste. It’s clean and not filling, making it another fine beer for a sweltering summer day. Like Corona, it’s an uneventful beer without an added squeeze of citrus. Really, you can look at that as a plus…there are far worse ways to get your vitamin C!

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