A second tasting of one of the new taps that 8th St. Grille has to offer. I don't have to be at work until a lot later in the afternoon due to boiler problems, so why not get some mid-day tasting done at my favorite bar!
Shout out to Lucas Westblade for acknowledging over a year and a half ago that it was absurd I never tried this beer...Lucas, the Michigan Native.
AND ironically, right as I finish this post, Chad, the Big Sky marketing manager walks in with Dennis, 8th St. Grille's and West MI distribution sales rep.
Aroma: Grain comes through most prominently in the scent followed by a faint peppery aroma contributed from the hops. A bit green and floral too, but otherwise very limited in the smell.
Taste: Wheat and biscuit malt are my first sensations, with the wheat and grain husk bitterness falling into the second half of the beer. The front is mild and again, biscuity recollection a flavor of basic 2-row. There is a definitive mid point where the carbonation draws the line. Nothing too fantastic happens in the front, but the second half holds two characteristics: that grain flavor that was noted earlier, and the hops, specifically Mt. Hood with a peppery burst of bitterness to balance. As the beer warms, more of a tannic outdoorsy flavor develops.
Overall Impression: Definitely a difference to the typical heat ale category, where this beer actually a) retains hop character b) is extremely bright and clear and c) limits its yeasty, phenolic and wheat-grain based citrus. Filtering must be a bitch! In the end, one could draw a subtle hint of lemon when acknowledging all flavors holistically.