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Friday, February 2, 2007

SBP #3: Middle Ages Apricot Ale

I went to the Groundhog Day festivities at the Grey Lodge today, one of my favorite beer events. And I was going to write some notes on a session beer. And I had six beers in the course of the day (two two-hour visits, 9 hours apart). I thought at least two of them would be session beers: Victory Sunrise Weiss, a Bavarian hefe, and Appalachian's Zoigl Star Lager, a Czech lager. Nope. Sunrise is 5.7, Zoigl is 5.9. Damn. Sure seems a bit high, those beers. So...why have more than one? On to something different.

Like Middle Ages Apricot Ale. Yeah, a fruit beer. But I really really like the guys at Middle Ages -- and not just because they brew curst good beer, but because they are solid dudes, real mensches. So I tried one. Good call, Lew. It's 4.4%, and the apricot tastes like ripe apricot, not the half-green, "Pat-the-Bunny"-whiskery-Dad-sandpaper-face-fuzzy apricot nastiness you find in some other apricot beers. The first sip was weird after the Nodding Head Sled Wrecker I'd had earlier -- a big spicy ale -- but the second cleared it, and was simply pleasant. I wandered about the bar, sipping at my fruit-shrub, and just relaxing with it. Not a lot of beer, not heavy, not hopped all to bejayzus, not BIG!!!!!, just pleasant and well-made. Thanks, Marc and Tim: nice job.


Harry Spade said...

The only apricot beer I've had is Magic Hat #9, which I did not like at all. Are there better examples of the style? I'm not wild about "fruit beers" but occasionally I find one I enjoy, like Lancaster Strawberry Wheat.

Lew Bryson said...

I do like some, Harry. I was actually referring to the Pyramid Apricot, which I don't care for. I'm okay with 9, but this was a LOT more to my liking. Weyerbacher's Raz Imperial Stout is a winner, I agree with the Lanco Strawberry, and I love the Dogfish Aprihop. You can almost tell when something's gonna be nasty...the labeling screams "beer for folks what don't like beer!"

Red Rooster said...

I like this one too. Had this on draught in Syracuse, at Dinosaur BBQ. Its a house brew at Dinosaur, and they call it Ape Hanger Ale. The apricot is a nice addition to this one, and a natural with BBQ.

Stonch said...

The Melbourn Bros. in Stamford (actually owned by Sam Smith's) brew an apricot beer I rather enjoyed. Very sessionable at 3.4%abv. Others have said that it doesn't taste like beer - I disagree.