This summer I gave myself permission to get some rest. I realized I needed to take a break from a lot of my self-imposed busy-ness. I’ve taken a break from blogging, experimental cooking, knitting, gardening, etc. I did plant a garden, but due to extreme drought here in northeastern Indiana, it’s barely producing enough for fresh eating, and not much extra. What I have been doing this summer is reading, watching old movies, hanging out with my family, and of course rating beer, and attending beer related events with my beer-god of a brother-in-law.
To give you an idea of how much tasting I’ve done, here are my stats from the past 3 months: 285 beers encompassing 66 of 73 styles. I should qualify that many of these ratings have not been done by drinking a whole 12 ounces of each beer. Many times my brother-in-law and I will visit a brewpub and order a tasting flight, which we share.
This summer I discovered I really like sour beers (lambics, saisons, sour/wild ales). One of my favorites of the summer has been a very tasty American wild ale, Tart Lychee from New Belgium’s Lips of Faith Series.
New Belgium Lips of Faith Tart Lychee
Commercial Description: 56% ale aged in oak, 44% ale brewed with lychee and cinnamon. To sweet and sour! In celebration of one of the greatest combinations ever, lychee fruit brings tropical sweetness to the party hosted by Felix, our golden wood-aged sour beer. Cinnamon sticks were invited to spice things up and so are you! Get in on the tasty revelry that is Tart Lychee.
My take: This wild ale poured a hazy golden color with a moderate creamy head with some nice lacing. Both the aroma and taste of this beer really surprised me. It was an interesting combination of elements I would have never dreamed of putting together, but it totally worked! In the nose I detected creamy lactic, sweet, tart, fruity, and vanilla and cinnamon aromas. The flavor was similar to the aroma, but with more complexity. The flavor was light musty yeast, earthy oaky malt, sweet lychee fruit, tart creamy lactic acid, and a definite cinnamon heat in the finish. The brew had a light tingly body that was very refreshing.
Since I first tried this beer a few weeks ago, this is the one I’ve found myself craving at the end of a hot day… and have we ever had some hot ones! In fact, the weekend I first tried this our temps were in the 102 range. If you’d like to try this beer, it’s distributed widely across the nation with the exception of the northeast and a few states in the deep south. You’ll find it in 22 ounce bomber bottles, price ranging from $10 to $15 a bottle.