Sunday, August 8, 2010

Citra Pale Ale tasting

It's finally time for the first citra pale ale tasting. It's only been a week since bottling but it's been warm so I expected adequate carbonation. I forgot to take pictures of the pour so I'll update this post next time I open a bottle.

Citra Pale Ale
Appearance: A slightly brownish amber, a little darker than I would have liked by about 5 SRM. Quite clear but not exactly crystal. The head poured fairly large but quickly fell to a quarter inch and stayed there for the remainder of the session.

Aroma: Definitely and American hop beer. A blast of citrus is the immediate impression. Not really a defined citrus fruit, just a brightness that hints at some acidity. Pineapple is also quite prevalent as I expected from what I've read about citra. There is a slightly spicy not in the background but it is barely noticeable. I'm also getting some hints of honey in the back of the nose.

Taste: Hoppy not but overly so; distinctly a pale ale and not an IPA. It's a pleasant hop with most of the same citrus and honey notes in the back of the palette. The spice is a little more prevalent however. There's a slight sweetness but it isn't overly malty. The biscuit flavor that was so strong when flat has fallen to the background. It is still quite noticeable after the flavor fades off the front palette but it doesn't dominate.

Mouthfeel: A fairly light to medium bodied beer, perfect for a warm August night  with some burgers and salad. Carbonation is a bit low but that's expected after only a week. I suspect in a couple more it will be pickley and above average which is right where I'd like it.

Drinkability:  Light and refreshing, this beer teases with a pleasant sweetness but isn't overly malty or sugary. Much like a good martini contains just enough vermouth to acknowledge the existence of France, there's enough of the pineapple and honey aroma to trigger a desire for desert without substituting for it.