Thursday, January 10, 2013

Jolly Pumpkin La Roja and Planning your Drinks

Ah, my love affair with Jolly Pumpkin gets to continue. I cannot fully express how much I trust Jolly Pumpkin to produce beer that I will enjoy. They are, without a doubt, my favorite American brewery. La Roja, their wild version of a red/amber ale, is just another reason why Jolly Pumpkin is the cat's pajamas. 

This is brewed in a similar manner to traditional Flemish Sour Reds. Personally, I think that it is a little more tart and less sweet than standard Flemish Reds. This is perfect for my palate. The blend of the medium amber malts and the sharp brett funk provide a unique mix of flavors. It is certainly worth your time, especially if you like sours. 

Just a note when drinking a beer with such unique tastes. Actually, this is more of a lesson on planning.  With wine, you generally drink dry to sweet, as the dry wine will taste bland and unpleasantly tart when tasted after a sweet wine. Many of these Belgian style beers, particularly sours, should be treated much more like wines, in both care, as well as tasting. The sharper flavors from sours should be treated with respect. I usually don't like to mix sours and non-sours, but sometimes it can't be helped. If you are going to, make sure you cleanse your palate in between drinks. Do a little taste testing yourself to see what different styles do to affect the tastes of others, depending on the order. Sometimes it might do nothing, sometimes it could drastically change the flavor. You never know until you try. 

Glassware: Saison, tulip, goblet

Synonym Beer: Monk's Cafe Flemish Sour Ale

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