My interest in the Oscars has waned over the last few years but if the movies nominated one of the few that caught my eye was Minari, so when I saw that Southland Beer Co. was selling a unique witbier honoring that movie, I picked it up along with another beer from this unique brewery, Dokkaebier.
Not their Kimchi sour though.
Let’s start with the Grand Quimen Pilsner which starts off well but the crispness slides into a more silky mouthfeel. I get a weird tannic but smooth note. I would hazard a guess that I would not like this tea straight. The tea does come through which is what you want but this just doesn’t quite reach the mark for me.
On to the water celery! And Citrus Witbier. This pours a dark amber. Not what I was expecting. The aroma is straight up celery. A little more expected. There is a big malty note sitting under the celery taste but the citrus is missing. And to me, this isn’t a wit really. I would need to get some spice and any citrus (lemon, lime, traditional orange).
Of the two, I would go with the tea pilsner even though the tea was not to my liking, it was in balance with the beer where the celery was not.
While grocery shopping last weekend, I ran across these in the tea aisle…
…not only do the cans look like a hoppy IPA release, they have the hop names prominently listed. But this is sparkling tea and they give you the general tea varietal too. It is the first time that I have seen HopTea. It is a brand from the Boulder, Colorado based Hoplark.
Here is my take on this new hop beverage…
I like strong tea. Even milder flavors like Orange Pekoe or Chamomile, I prefer bold and the Calm One which features Citra hops with Chamomile is brash. Big spicy tea notes hit hard. The hops add a layer underneath that strengthens the flavors and the sparkle of carbonation us bright. To me this is not calm. But it is damn tasty. It says Wee Bit on the label but this comes at you.
The Hoppy One is really powerful tea as well. The Simcoe and Citra hops do battle with the darker tea and it comes out a little spicy and woodsy. It is a triple hit of a big sparkle push followed by a mid section of hop and then the black tea takes over. I think the tannins from the tea are working against the hops here. Overall, it is a bold brew which I appreciate even when it doesn’t fully click.
These two versions make me want to try the full range and I would really want to visit their taproom.
We start our canned beer reviews with the first ever can release from gypsy brewer SoLArc Brewing.
What’s up with Shower Beer….
This is a seriously creamy beer. My first thought was Naughty Sauce from Noble Ale Works but in a bright decorative can festooned with French Press and teapots. But Shower Beer seems a touch less beer and a bit more on the sweetened coffee side. The aroma is really coffee forward and the fancy Nilgiri tea isn’t really popping to the forefront. Something to balance out the sugar would have helped this drink easier. As it is, Shower Beer gets a little too hard to drink even just a 12oz can.
Widmer is charging forward with more of the Rotator series. I have yet to sample O’Ryely IPA and now the Spiced IPA is getting close to release.
I have enjoyed Falconers and X-114 and even the Citra golden ale too. So I anticipate liking these two new ones as well.
From Switzerland comes this smokey brew that utilizes Souchong tea.
“This beer was first brewed on contract by mines asphalt Travers (NE). We wanted to reconstruct the peculiar smell and smoke of asphalt using malts smoked over beech wood and with the Lapsong Tary Suchong, smoked Chinese tea grade. It is available in very limited quantities at the Brasserie. This beer is amber with a tight foam, its bouquet of smoky aroma and a different smell of caramel. On the palate it is creamy and soft on the attack, developing a bitterness and fruity smoke, marked by the astringency of the tea in China.”
I am as puzzled and curious as you are by this Stone label. Wine & tea flavors mixed up with beer? Can it work? My record with beers with wine notes is hit and miss. I have had Rogue’s Chamemellow and it was flat out delicious. It will be interesting. It worked in the collaboration saison earlier this year.