Flying Dog, Woody Creek White – 4.8%, £2.10
Another seasonal release from Flying Dog, and another fantastic label from Ralph Steadman.
Unlike the Poperinges Hommelbier I reviewed previously, this is an American wit that adheres more closely to the traditions of the style. Not as assertively hopped, nor as alcoholic, as the Poperinges, this is a traditional 4.8 per cent witbier spiced with orange peel and coriander seed.
Pouring lemon sorbet with a rustic dustiness, a rough carbonation throws out a billowing meringue head.
The aroma is dominated by walnuts and creamy porridge, run through with baked bananas, and a subtle orange zestiness.
The flavour is lead by a zingy lemon sharpness that builds rapidly into a verdant meadow-scented bitterness, buffered by cream soda, a touch of vanilla sugar, and creamy oats.
This is brought into balance by an assertive carbonation and a slight acidic tang in the finish.
While characteristic almond and fruit flavours remain present, the banana found in the aroma remains absent, as too are the more traditional clove flavours of a Belgian ale.
The result is a less complex take on the style, however this renders Woody Creek incredibly refreshing; a wonderful bracing beer to be drunk with gusto on warm, muggy days.
Recommended by Michael Bates, Trembling Madness, Stonegate, York
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