My Bitter Wife
Great Lakes Brewing Company
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
India Pale Ale 7.0% ABV Brown Glass Bottle 650 ml
$5.95 (Canadian) At LCBO
Down to Great Lakes again, Toronto's first Craft Brewery and winner of the 2013 Brewery of the year award. This brewery never fails to impress, and sadly their hard work is not always evident to the average Joe. Great Lakes specializes in experimentation. They play with their beer and do incredible things with it. Often you will only catch some of their beers by chance, at a festival, or a tap takeover. Or they may brew off a limited run of a regular beer with a strange ingredient, like raspberry or rhubarb, or Jagermeister (So not kidding I have tasting notes).
Tonight's beer celebrates a very infamous person in the history of alcohol. As you can see by the picture on the front of the bottle there is an old crone of a woman clutching an axe. This beer is dedicated (facetiously, obviously) to the memory of Carrie Nation. Mrs. Nation was a staunch prohibitionist and was noted for taking an axe to barrels of beer and liquor and threatening government trying to coerce them into signing prohibition into law in the US. Eventually the prohibitionists won and the US signed the 18th amendment to the constitution and the country went "dry" for a number of years. Fortunately for Canada who was still producing alcohol at the time, it allowed us to "ahem" "export" our wares via legitimate businessmen such as Alphonse Gabriel Capone.
Enough with the history... onto the tasting...
Honey coloured, with the slightest hint of green to it. Thick fluffy white head mostly made up of very small bubbles. Aroma is pine tree and fruit with a back ground of roses and Turkish delight. First sip is bursting with ruby red grapefruit. Mouthfeel is creamy and silky with a touch of effervescence. The 7.0% alcohol is barely noticeable in this well balanced beer. Transition from attack to finish is very short and after taste is all green herbal hops. Aeration gives us an orange citrus candy taste.
Impressions: Fail, So-so, Pass, Exceptional
Cost: 6/6 EXCEPTIONAL
Colour: 6/6 EXCEPTIONAL
Beer Style: 6/6 EXCEPTIONAL
Re-Order: 5/6 PASS
Experience: 6/6 EXCEPTIONAL
It was an absolute delight to drink this beer. Great Lakes is certainly setting the standard for what craft beer should taste like. The thing that surprised me the most was, that despite this being a "Hop Bomb," at 88 IBU, the beer was incredibly smooth, well rounded and very drinkable. The only downside is the fact that the 7.0 % alcohol sneaks up on you and knocks you out.... So this is a share with your friend or only have one per night beer. Please... don't ever drink and drive... Craft beer tastes best at home...
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