Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Flying Fish Farmhouse Summer Ale


Farmhouse Summer Ale

Brewed by:
Flying Fish Brewing Company


Cherry Hill, New Jersey

Saison / Farmhouse Ale
 

4.60% ABV
 



Commercial Description:A tribute to the highly drinkable ""every day"" beers from French-speaking Belgium. Contains Belgian two-row pale malt and 7% wheat. This beer is lightly filtered with an earthy, spicy hop character from imported Styrian Goldings hops and a beautiful rich creamy head from the wheat. Dry quenching finish achieved by use of the traditional sour mash process
(RateBeer.com)

General Pricing:12oz bottle, ~ $8.00-$10.00 6 pack, ~$30.00-$37.00 Case

Background:Another Unknown: I just picked this up to see what it tasted like. I am curious if it is a true Belgian Saison Farmhouse Ale or just another summer ale that they call Farmhouse. So let’s see what the Farmhouse has in store for us.

Review:The beer pours a clear pale straw with golden hues and a white head. There was not much of a head until I started pouring more aggressively.

I picked up a new temperature probe so we know that are starting out at 38 degrees. This is a little colder than normal; I put this in the freezer for a quick chill and left it in a little too long.

There is not much on the nose but I can detect a faint yeastiness. I expect the nose aromas to increase as the beer warms a little.

Well, I decided to let this sit a while and warm just a little. It is now at 46 degrees, which is more better where’s I like it. 

As predicted the hose has changed. There is now a real caramel malt aroma and a slight hoppiness that I did not notice when it was at 38 degrees. There is still a slight yeastiness on the nose.

Hmmm, I’m a little confused on this first sip. Not quite the funkiness of a real Saison Farmhouse but at the same time this is not your typical light summer ale either. Let me try a play by play.

Clean light sweet malts up front then a very refreshing effervescence over the tongue at mid-sip. There is an interesting tingling feeling on the tongue toward the back-end. On the back-end at the top of the swallow there is an interesting tang and a hop bitterness. This is slightly distracting and may make this not so easy to drink for some. The finish is fairly dry and refreshing. The final aftertaste is of a hop bitterness and that interesting tang or tingle also still present.

The beer has warmed to 62 degrees. This is not as refreshing as it was when it was colder. The hop presence is more noticeable now; not overly bitter but more noticeable.

All and all I’m liking this beer, even though it’s not a saison it is still a very enjoyable summer ale.

Since I bought a six pack I’m going for a second one as I work on my final thoughts and take care of some stuff on the grill.

BTW
The lacing on this beer has been pretty impressive.

I drank the second beer while grilling and it was very refreshing. This really isn’t a bad summer ale. It is a little hoppy; not very bitter but there is a definite hoppiness to this brew.

I also had a glass of this beer with dinner which was grilled London broil with baked potatoes, asparagus, eggplant and Portobello mushrooms. Also all cooked on the grill. It was quite accidental but the hop crispness of this beer cut through the smoky grilled flavors and turned out to be a good contrasting paring to this dinner.

This beer warmed well, I did not take the temperature but those last few sips where pretty close to room temperature and still pretty good. This beer did not pick up any unpleasantness as it warmed.

All and all this is a very enjoyable summer ale. It is a little hoppy but not very bitter. It doesn’t have the Belgian Farmhouse Funk but it’s still a easy drinking good Summer Ale.

I have to give this a C since it falls really short for being a Belgian Saison/Farmhouse Ale. But for an overall good summer ale it bay be closer to a B.

I do recommend this beer but not as a good representation of a Belgian Farmhouse Ale style. It is a good refreshing summer ale with a good hop bite to it. That hoppy bite may be a little much for some but it is extremely mild for a Hop Head. All and all this is a very drinkable Summer Ale.

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