This is the second New Belgium brew that I’ve tried since I have been living in California. I didn’t see this stuff on the East Coast at all, but I have had some of their beers when I was in Colorado in years past. I picked this one up mostly since it was a winter seasonal and ironically it didn’t feel much like Winter to me since it was twenty degrees Fahrenheit when I left Washington, DC a few days ago.
I poured the beer into a red party cup since I don’t have any glassware yet. In retrospect I should have splurged for a pint glass when I was buying a few coffee mugs but I didn’t think of it at the time. Just squint a little and pretend that it is a red-tinted glass or maybe just pretend that I was at a keg party.
I could pick up the hop smell almost immediately after the pour. The beer sported a thick white head that went down to a millimeter or so but didn’t dissipate. I could pick up a little bit of a clover smell actually.
The taste was that of winter spices and the finish was dry. Very dry. And somewhat nutty. A very bright beer. However it had somewhat of a ice beer or ice pilsner taste that reminded me a little too much of some unsavory things that I once drank in college. Mouthfeel was a bit thin and coupled with the very cutting character on top it made for a slightly unpleasant experience for me.
I can see the appeal of this beer for some, but I just don’t think it was for me.