Generally when I think of canned beer, my mind generally goes to lighter, more refreshing beers. It might be because canned beer is a staple during the summer, on the beach, at the track, or even camping. It also might be because you generally only see lighter beers in cans. There are certainly exceptions to the rule, but you will usually see lagers, pale ales, IPAs, and wheat beers in cans. You will get some canned stouts as well. 21st Amendment has put out a more unique canned beer: Monk's Blood.
Monk's Blood is a Belgian strong dark ale that sits at 8.3% ABV. It is actually a little sweet. It has a dark fruit flavor, almost raisin for a bit. This is followed with a little toffee and caramel flavors coming from the malt. The booze is only slightly noticeable, but in a way that I actually really enjoy. I'm not sure why, but I think that a little bit of booziness can actually enhance the flavor of a darker beer. I think it is because it blends so well with the meatier beers. Lighter beers can't contain it and it overwhelms the palate. It was interesting to see such a malty, complex beer in a can. It was even cooler to see that you don't need to have a bottle to have a solid Belgian-style beer.
I have previously mentioned that I love the artwork on the 21A cans. I actually read all of the can this time and found out something that I didn't know. 21A is brewed and canned in Cold Spring, Minnesota. I had always assumed that all of the production took place in California, where they are based. There is a brewpub in California and I assume that the do indeed make beer there still, but they probably sell all of that beer in the brew pub. I'm sure it is significantly cheaper to produce beer in Cold Spring than it is in San Francisco. Being fiscally smart and producing great beer are great ways to make a brewery survive and thrive. 21A is doing a great job with it.
They are always a great choice, producing interesting, somewhat unique and interesting canned brews. Give them a shot if you feel like it.
Side note: I think I prefer the cans to the tap for much of the 21A beers. I don't know why, just personal preference.
Glassware: Can, tulip, goblet.
Synonym Beer: Dogfish Head Raison d'Etre
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