ClarkVV (3860) - Allston, Massachusetts, USA - NOV 7, 2005
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: NOV 19, 2005 On draught at NEBF, 10/29/05. A lucid/shiny and quite hazy beer with a brassy to polished white gold color and a firm white head that is well-retained. The aroma is fantastically hoppy, 100% saaz and wonderfully expressive. Spicy, yet damp and earthy at the same time due to the fresh yeast and soft, lightly grainy malts. The aroma promises good things, wonderful fresh hoppiness and full maltiness, if somewhat underwhelming on the expected lager yeast bite. It really dosent seem like a very distinct yeast from their house (ale) yeast. But thatís ok, call it a cream ale if you must. The flavor certainly does deliver the promised malt and hops, wonderfully wedded, with sweet dough/honey and green, spicy, sweaty, bordering dried-herbs-like notes. Full body for a lager, with only a light crispness on the end, though itís by no means heavy or unsatisfying, I just wish theyíd use a real lager yeast (and if Iím wrong, then it sure dosent taste like one). But the hops and the malt make up for any shortcomings on that end, with the fresh unpasteurized and unfiltered nature of the beer adding much lovely ambiance to the experience as well. Tightly controlled, small-bubbled carbonation peeks its way through the rich honey and grainy malt. The saaz hops flavor fits so well here itís scary. Just a rich, hoppy lager, er cream ale. . .??