Thursday, August 16, 2007

TWO FROM ISLAND BREWING

My experiment in mobile blogging, or “moblogging” as we say here in The Industry, didn’t go quite as well as I’d have liked, as the two posts directly below this one will attest. To wit, the photograph I took and the description I rendered of ISLAND BREWING’s WEISS beer. Neither worked as I’d have liked, and I’d excuse you for thinking that that was probably HBJ’s single worst post ever, because it probably was. So here’s the straight dope on ISLAND BREWING, who reside in Carpenteria, CA, home of “the world’s safest beach”. I read about them in this Los Angeles Times article a few weeks back, and made a mental note to hunt for their wares on my August trip to the Central Coast, a trip that I wrapped up just yesterday. Lo and behold, I stumbled into this incredible liquor store in San Luis Obispo called SANDY’S DELI & LIQUOR, and there it was, along with a bevy of delights from all over the world. Seriously, this store rivals any beer-centered store you care to mention, and has at least 3 dozen different Belgians and a ton of small American microbreweries represented in a multitude of clean, well-stocked coolers. I unloaded two bombers from ISLAND from the shelves, as well as a BERT GRANT’S beer that I’ll drink – and write about – another time.

So first up was the WEISS beer, the one I so incompetently bagged on earlier in the week. Unfortunately, this was a funky, strange-tasting brew – and I don’t mean funky in the deliberate way, I mean just flat-out not good. It’s a “Bavarian-style” wheat beer, or Bavarian weizen, that was exceptionally tart and lemon-infused. Almost wincingly sour, and aromatic of fermented yeasts. However, I believe it’s somewhat unfair for me to give it a low score, given that the Berliner Weissbier/Bavarian Weiss style is meant to be tart, sour and acidic. I’m totally 100% new to this style, and just because I didn’t dig it doesn’t mean you won’t love it. Call me an amateur, but right now it’s not for me. I’ll stick with 5/10 with the caveat that they might be blowing the doors off this style and I wouldn’t have a friggin’ clue.

Pale Ales I know a little bit more about, and ISLAND BREWING’s PARADISE PALE ALE was slightly more to my liking. It’s a subtle beer, one that I am pretty sure is somehow connected to the same batch that the WEISS arrived in. It had hints of that same tart, lemony flavor, matched with a big dose of hops and a effervescent, fizzy carbonation. Definitely different that other recent pale ales I’ve ingested, and I got a different read on it with every sip/gulp. I’m going with 6/10, which is solid enough I guess. It’s apparent that ISLAND BREWING aren’t messing around and are being a lot more experimental than you’d expect a totally tubular beachside brewery to be.

1 comment:

Just Expressing Myself said...

Foudn you via bloglines.
I just started mobile blogging myself - I love it.
Reading your post has me thinking of a lovely cold beer with some nibbles to go along with it.
Look forward to visiting again,
Frances