Blue Dawg Brewing, Wild Blue

Grade: D

Uh, Houston we have a problem.

I'm not opposed to fruit beers, in fact I've had quite a few good ones. This one, however, is litterally the color of Welches grape juice. Needless to say, for a beer lover such as myself, this is difficult to overcome. I will, however, put my color prejudice aside and soldier on. Remember, I do this for all of you.

Pours a deep, crystal clear dark red with a pink head that dissipates quickly. The aroma is of fresh blueberries, as is to be expected. However the only interesting thing is that the nose is very floral, herbal, and not sweet and cloying like I thought it might be. Tangy fresh berry and a slight fullness from some of the pilsner malt come through when you swirl the glass. Mouthfeel is light, but doesn't finish very dry at all. The flavor is immediately sweet and a little tangy. The sweetness is lingering, and doesn't leave soon. It tastes syrupy, like artificial blueberry flavoring was added to a beer. There are no hops detected, in fact if there's bittering here, I'm not getting it all. The only counter to the cloying sweetness is the tang from the berry flavor and the acid from carbonation. I won't attribute all of the sweetness to the blueberry however, there is a malt profile somewhere under all this that seems to be adding body, and a particular alcohol note. There are some cidery flavors, a sign of adding sugar to the beer, however it seems like that was intended to boost the alcohol. There is a warming sensation when you drink this that tells me it's bigger than it looks. Upon reading the bottle it warns that it has 8% alcohol by volume, which makes sense. The finish leaves the blueberry syrup flavor on your tongue, and a generally sweet taste in your mouth.

Overall, I can say immediately that this beer is not up my alley at all. In fact, this is a wrong turn down a one way street in a bad part of town. While there are some lager elements here (the fullness of body and the slightly grainy background), the blueberry flavoring and the boosted alcohol take over. At first glance, many would not even call this a beer. Poured into a glass, the blood red hue alone would be enough for many to push it back across the bar. However upon reflection I guess I could say that this was like a lambic style fruit beer that simply hadn't been soured yet.

To the makers of Wild Blue: Take this beer, put it in a bunch of barrels, toss some lacto and brett cultures in there, and call me in a year and a half. Then when the resulting lambic comes out, we'll see how things are. But as it is? I guess this would be a good first date beer for a non-beer drinker. It's sweet, fruity, and alcoholic, which means in a nutshell: it'll get the job done.
PS: I just went to the website, and after a little digging found that they are in fact a subsidiary of Anheuser Busch. Figures.

2 comments:

Konrad said...

Not a fan of this one either - but love the blog! Keep em coming!

Konrad said...

Also, might want to fix the comment section - it asked me to verify the captcha code and i could only get there by tabbing into the field