Beer Reviews – July 2010

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Every year, the first weekend in June is signaled by the migratory patterns of the Utah beer nerd. Seemingly docile creatures,  beer nerds make their way out of hibernation and head north to the magical land of Idaho Falls, where the North American Brewers Awards / Mountain Brewers Beer Festival events are being held. There, brewers from all around the greater western U.S. meet to host one hell of a beer festival. It is also where Utah proves to kick more ass that what we already think we do : this year alone we pulled out 21 medals. Also this year, the beer nerd was met with some of Uinta’s crooked line on tap, a light revealing of Shades of Pale and Epic pouring their line-up of beers that you have probably already missed. The only question now is: where the fuck were you?

Sour Apple Saison

Brewery/Brand: Epic Brewing Company / Exponential Series
Abv: 7.8 %
Serving Style: 22 oz. bomber
Description: Pouring off a loud hiss, this apple-infused farmhouse is a cloudy yellow color with an average white head. The aromatics instantly lead you into some spice, banana, and some malty sweetness blended with apples. The flavor, much like the aroma, is balanced with sour apple and sweet malts, with a dry, yeasty Belgian roundness to it.
Overview: It’s really great to see some random-ass stylings of brew to come out of the craft scene here in Utah, especially ones that taste good. When breweries like Epic are producing off-set styles into the craft industry, especially our evolving Utah scene, it will only allow us to expand our market on a deeper level. Cheers Epic! 

Festival British Mild
Brewery/Brand: Desert Edge Brewery
ABV: 4.0 %
Serving Style: Cask
Description: In the glass, this cask served mild is a mellow brown color with some soft ruby highlights and some off-tan bubbles on the head. The nose is packed with an initial kick of oaky aromatics backed up by toasted and roasted malts, a pinch of coffee and some caramel sweetness. The flavor is filled with oak, followed with some chocolate malt and a dry grainy finish.
Overview: If I hadn’t already promised my firstborn child to Red Rock for a bottle of Parrdebloem, I would have given it to Haas at Desert Edge for more of this beer. Fresh off a medal win at NABA, this was a reserve special with extra oak made for the beer festival. However if you did miss out, the cask conditioned mild ought to be hitting the taps right as this issue hits shelves.

Labyrinth
Brewery/Brand: Uinta Brewing Company / Crooked Line
ABV: 13.7 %
Serving Style: On Tap (Festival Only)
Description: Out of the tap, Labyrinth pours jet black with a thick brown head that leaves behind a lot of lacing. The aroma is decked out with rich molasses, spicy malts, chocolate, licorice, and some boozy bourbon. The flavor opens up into complex earthy spice, roasted malt, sweet chocolates, more of that licorice, all backed up by an oaky bourbon base.
Overview: Whoever decided to put this on tap at the festival is either a saint or a madman, and whoever poured me a glass of this at ten in the morning ought to have a statue erected in honor of his/her bravery. That aside, this is another NABA medal winner that was proudly represented on behalf of Utah. From what the general drunken shouting indicated, it was the drink to be had at the fest—so get your hands on a bottle!