Beer Reviews – March 2012

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When the word “epic” comes to mind, I generally imagine shooting myself in the head. This is because some verbally oblivious dolt is referring to the color of her new nail polish, or some bro-dude is commenting on what the newest episode of whateverthefuck had to sell. With these painful reservations that I struggle with day to day, I am given reprise. Epic Brewing Co. is restoring my faith in this overly abused word. Their quick yet grandiose entry into the Utah brewing industry has been nothing but groundbreaking, proving the demand by our local consumers for a vast variety of styles and availability. This is why SLUG had no problem giving this month up to the Epic powers that be, and pimping the newest brews hitting the SLC.

Elder Brett – Saison Brett Golden Ale
Brewery/Brand: Epic Brewing Co.
ABV: 8.8%
Serving Style: 22 oz Bottle
Description: The first of Epic’s sour beers pours hazy straw-yellow in color with a medium white head. The aroma is nothing short of outstanding. The Elder opens up with a sour apple/lemon tartness and leads into a grassy hay aroma. The flavor is mellow, with citrus fruits, lemons and some Belgian yeast spice coming through in the end for a dry/tart finish.
Overview: The first release of a sour brew from Epic was a hit! This brett-infused saison golden ale is a collaboration brew with Crooked Stave Artisan Brewing (Fort Collins, Co.) and is a tasty, well nurtured, barrel-aged brew, suited for any level of drinker. More important than that, the beauty of a brewery announcing the release of a sour beer is generally a hint that there may be more of these wild-natured brews to be released in the future. With Epic’s reputation of releasing more beers in a year than one can keep track of, this will keep any sour beer junkie wiping off their lip sweat and waiting for the next fix.

Epic Santa Cruz Brown Ale

Brewery/Brand: Epic Brewing Co.
ABV: 6.4%
Serving Style: 22 oz Bottle
Description: Out of the bomber, this India Brown-styled brew pours a hazy dark brown with an off-tan head. The nose instantly opens up with piney American hops, a nutty malt aroma and a little hint of booze. The flavor is well rounded with a decent amount of American hop citrus and roasted malt undertones to balance it out.
Overview: From the Exponential Line of brews, this hybrid comes out of the brewery as an answer to the rising trend in the American craving for dark IPAs. This brew has a well balanced and flavorful amount of American hops and a decent helping of darker and roasted malts not to overwhelm the palate, all done to complement the best of both worlds. I am definitely a fan of this newest release.

Epic Utah Sage Saison
Brewery/Brand: Epic Brewing Co.
ABV: 7.6%
Serving Style: 22 oz Bottle
Description: This herb-infused Belgian pours out of the bottle hazy yellow with an off-white head, and instantly opens up with spice aromas. You first catch smells of rosemary, grassy hops, culinary herbs and a subtle Belgian yeast spice. The flavor is sage heavy, light on hops, and finishes off dry with saison yeast and an herbal lingering on the palate.
Overview: To finish off the list is a seasonal Belgian saison, brewed using fresh herbs. The profile of this is leaning towards an herb-heavy brew with great pairing potential. I am happy to see someone is capitalizing on the use of unusual ingredients like sage.