WisconsinBeer (695) - St. Paul, Minnesota, USA - AUG 29, 2008
3.1 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
On tap, Happy Gnome. Pale golden color, foamy head dissipates quickly. Aroma is faint to none. Flavor is surprising for such a light style. Sweet caramel maltiness, a bit of roast. Bad news lurks deep within though, with some minor off notes reminiscent of American swill. That being said, it’s still good. Mild floral hop finish. Medium bodied, a bit fizzy on the palate. Overall pretty well done.
Stine (1441) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - AUG 29, 2008
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Tap at the Gnome. Lightly misty golden blonde, and a resilient whitecap. Clean, sweet aroma of honey and almond creme. Pineapple and cotton candy in the hoppier moments, and boiled corn and cauliflower in the fouler american lager moments. Brisk for the most part, though, and healthfully herbal and quite dry.
Flavor is crisp and taut in refreshment, showing pistachios, honey, green tea, white bread and dry grass; not as much cleansing bitterness as might be hoped for from a keller, but there’s certainly enough wooden and cereal-like character to the malt to compensate.
Palate is clean and elegant; full in texture, but sprightly in affectation; finishes crisply with dry green hoppiness and a bit of bubblegum. Extremely quaffable; maybe a better dortmunder than a keller, really, but still a fine offering.
incutrav (577) - Woodbury, Minnesota, USA - AUG 25, 2008
3.1 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
I am not a huge lager guy either,Al. Never thought I would see a Surly that pours the exact color of a Mich Golden. Taste is smooth, light on everthing, hops, malt, aroma. Nothing that makes you go "wow", but i doubt anyone could make this style do that. My wife liked this quite a bit of course. I think if this beer was relased by any brewery but Surly, it would be swept aside as yet another boring, bland, yellow beer. Surly succeeds in what they were trying to brew, a tasty, light, German "Hell"
Pigfoot (2268) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - AUG 25, 2008
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
"Surly Hell is brewed in the style of a German Light Lager or Munich Helles. Pale Yellow in color, this unfiltered lager or "kellerbier" is brewed with Pilsen and Carahell malt, Opal hops and a German yeast strain. Delicate malt flavor finishing with a tart crispness. 15 IBU.
Hazy straw yellow, big, lovely white head...
Beautiful aromatics, floral, herbal,.....a trifle grainy...but altogether pleasing.
to drink: bing: there’s the smooth. Bang: there’s the malt, and Boom:...there’s no Boom...just the smooth and the malt, and some light hops, plus the deliciousness of the yeast.
Disclosure: To those who don’t know already, I’m not a lager lover. Just not enough flavor. I’m partial to unfiltered brews, as well. Like Belgian ales, some German ales, certain Americans...like Surly...wait, Surly made a
German lager...and it’s unfiltered? Sign me up...wait, I’m already drinking it...oh, okay...
I do like kellerbiers, when I find them. Can’t think of one I haven’t liked. Kep that yeast in, please! More flavor, por favor!
And here I am drinking Hell (a name I wish they’d saved for an abbey ale, or something, but I’m not charge, am I?)...and I am enjoying it. If this had zero yeast in it, I probably would report the doldrums by now, but there’s just enough going on in the mouth to keep my tastebuds happy.
Drining this sample from a tall Schneider Edel-Weisse glass. Seemed appropriate.
clean, yet fully flavored. You can hand this to a lager-lover and win them over, I think. Hey, it worked with me!
drewbeerme (3809) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 17, 2008
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
on tap at GTMW ’08. pours hazy golden with white head. grainy aroma, grassy and lemony. flavor is grainy, a bit grassy, very nice clean, slightly spicy hop character, refreshing. a great lawnmower beer. i want cans of this!
pepsican (1395) - @ $13.99, Iowa, USA - AUG 16, 2008
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
GTMW. Murly gold pour with a thin tan head. Lemon and grain aroma. Flavor was lemon, caramel, grain, and a very mild hop presence. Mildly bitter finish, refreshing!
pantanap (3323) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 15, 2008
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
gtmw 08.... golden hazy and ipa like in appearance. thin white head.... fruity aroma with some charred smoked malt....citrus fruits, some sweetness, and smoked malt make up the flavors. good drinkin.
1FastSTi (3220) - Glendale, Wisconsin, USA - AUG 12, 2008
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
GTMW 2008. The beer pours to a hazy yellow body with a very thin white head. The flavor is toasty, grainy, clean yeasts and esters. Aroma is really light with some sourdough bread. Liquid sourdough bread is what this beer reminds me of. Tart but clean palate. Nice hop bittering but light IBUs.
Brigadier (2600) - Northeastern Ohio, Ohio, USA - AUG 11, 2008
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Great Taste of the Midwest 2008
After several big beers from Surly I was ready for something different. I happened to be in the area and decided to give this a try. If it were local this would be a top notch lawnmower beer. Some people may knock it for not being extreme but if you can make a solid light style like this you can do anything.
Aroma / Appearance - Semitransparent and fluid this twirled around the glass like the a ballerina on stage. Smoky orange zest blended with lemony hops and a malty backbone to create a refreshing aura.
Flavor / Palate - Refreshing on the palate this clears the heaviness from the throat immediately. A zesty lemon taste fills the mouth and throat before fading fast. I could drink this all day if it were canned.
islay (771) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - AUG 10, 2008
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Small sample, on tap at Great Taste of the Midwest. Consumed on 8-9-2008. Pours hazy gold with near-white head. Hoppy, yeasty smell. Tastes too "beery" (i.e., like a typical macro pale lager). Pretty standard golden lager flavor, save for a nice, lemony finish. Improves on multiple sips, making me think I’ll like this better when I have a full glass instead of just a few ounces (at least I hope that’s the case). Light to medium body. For now, this is my least favorite beer from one of my favorite breweries, but I certainly plan to give it another chance.