Tropical Brut

Tropical Brut

Brewery: Blue Owl Brewing
Style:  Experimental Beer (34C)
Package: 12oz Can
Purchased: Tech Ridge HEB, May, 2019
Packaged Date:  n/a
Consumed Date: June 7, 2019

Details From the Brewer

ABV: 7%
IBU: 0
SU: 60

We’ve brewed a sour fruit brut with No Hops! Instead, it’s made with super dry malt alongside funky and tangy fruit. High levels of water minerals give this brut a unique mouthfeel and flavor. This new addition to our seasonals is perfect for those poolside days.

Review

Aroma – 10/12

A tropical explosion hits the nose.  The passionfruit and guava are both noticeable at medium high intensity.  These are bright fruit notes, without some of the stink that can come with overripe fruit.  This is joined by a medium lactic acid, lemony sharpness.  There’s some doughiness to the malt character with a faint grainy smell.  Slight hint of sweetness.

Appearance – 2/3

Pours a light gold liquid with a moderate haze.  Fine white bubbles compose a thin head which fades quickly with low retention.

Flavor – 16/20

Much like the aroma, tropical fruit leads the flavor.  Medium notes of guava, passionfruit lead.  A moderate acidity accompanies and brightens these falvors.  A softer cantaloupe character follows this, and is joined by a medium-high bubblegum flavor in the midtaste.   As the finish approaches, the fruit character wane and are filled in with a doughy, white bread malt note.  The finish is sharp, punctuated by the acidity.  Still, a tropical fruit cocktail dances around the mouth afterwards.  Low sweetness with no hop character.

Mouthfeel – 4/5

A medium high carbonation prickles the sides of the cheeks.  Low-medium bodied throughout the taste.  Almost a salty slickness on the finish that causes a mouthwatering effect, forcing another sip.  Dry but not austere.  Low alcohol warming in the through on the finish, and low-medium acidic bite on the tongue.

Overall Impression – 8/10

This is a fun take on the brut beer trend.  The tropical fruit character is used precisely, and is the star of the show.  The dryness worked will with the perceived sweetness of the fruit.  To my taste, the guava overpowered the passion fruit a bit.  Changing the ratios might help it come out a bit more.  Toning down the acidity a bit should help the finish not be quite as sharp as well.  Given the style, the lack of malt complexity is appropriate.

Rating – 40/50

I wish a lot of the brut IPAs I’ve tried lately would be as good as this.   Without using hops, it really nails what I would think a sour Brut IPA would be.  It reminds me a bit of some of the character I was getting out of the Brut I had from 2nd Shift in St. Louis.  The minerality on the finish is interesting.  I like the mouth-watery sensation it induces, but I almost wish it leaned more salty like a Gose.  Really, with some minor adjustments to the acidity and fruiting ratios, I’m not sure what else you could change.

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