Lots of talk in influential places about new Orange County, California brewer THE BRUERY. Take Summer of Beer, for instance. THE BRUERY’s just one of his many haunts in his endless summer of beer-drinking, but Steve’s descriptions of their oddball Belgian-styled ales really got me curious to check them out. A big batch made its way to San Francisco recently, and I decided to give some Bruery products a try. First out of the gate was AUTUMN MAPLE, a fall seasonal with yams (yams!) added to the batch in lieu of the normal pumpkin. Well, yams is pretty much another way of sayin’ “sweet potato”, and I once read an article saying that sweet potatoes were the healthiest single food in the entire known world. So let’s do this!
THE BRUERY AUTUMN MAPLE is 100% completely still upon pouring – I mean no head at all, and let me to wonder whether this fresh bottle had already gone flat. But it didn’t taste flat, so I persevered. Interesting beer. “Uh oh”, you’re saying. No, I actually liked this one. Despite a bonzai 10% ABV, AUTUMN MAPLE is not that overpowering. You don’t really taste the alcohol, and quite honestly, there’s not a whole lot of yam/sweet potato taste in their either – and when you think about it, isn’t that just as well? It’s really a maple syrup play for these guys. That’s the predominant flavor, and it’s not sticky-sweet and syrupy, just sweet-ish and a little bit syrupy. It would probably be best served in a small pour, say something on the order of 8 ounces, and probably with dessert as well. I salute them for reaching for the stars – my heroes over at HOT KNIVES did not quite agree – and am proud to bestow upon this beer a quite respectable 7/10.