Style: North American Fruited Berliner Weisse
Fruit: Kiwi and Apricots
Brewer’s Note: “What’s fresh this week? Hamptonweisse, our 2.9%abv Berlinerweisse ale brewed with Apricot and Kiwi. This brightly acidic, refreshingly effervescent fruit beer is very low alcohol by tradition; with a sourness reminiscent of unsweetened lemonade. We hope you enjoy this beer. In my personal opinion it is the quintessential summer beer. Cheers! -David”
(See Gold Claw review for my thoughts on the Blue Lobster label)
The beer pours a hazy yellow with orange tints and a little bit of muddy water coloring thrown in there. The beer pours with a pretty head of large, soapy white bubbles that leave a quarter of a finger’s width of head on the beer. In body, the beer is totally murky and hazed, with just a hint of rapid carbonation bubbles racing to replenish the head from all over the bottom of the glass. On the nose, the beer smells of vegetal funk with a light lemon kiss on the end of the sniff. Apricot and kiwi both work their way onto the nose lightly along with slight berry scents, and generic fruit. On the tongue, the beer tastes tartly acidic with a nice bready sweetness from the wheat malt that provides a little balance. In flavor, the beer begins as tart lemon, moving into light vegetal apricot flavors with a refreshing fruity twist coming from the kiwi. It’s hard to say that I taste the kiwi at all, but it definitely gives a bright freshness to the beer, and touches the smell more than the flavor. Light cereal wheat flavors also appear in the taste, but build beautifully in the aftertaste. Just before the finish is where the most kiwi flavoring can be found, but this is then pushed aside by a big, bright citric lemon and just a touch of vegetal apricot which make up the finish. The aftertaste rings with citric lemon and chewy wheat flakes. In the mouth, the beer feels on the heavy side of light in body and effervescent on the tongue, with a light prickle from carbonation and a good resounding pucker to the mouth which mellows into a light chalkiness. Carbonation is medium strong with notes of fluffiness and of fierceness, too. Overall, this is a terrific fruited Berliner Weisse that doesn’t lose track of the original style, as others in the burgeoning new category often do. In comparison to Night Shift Brewing’s Everweisse, my favorite fruited Berliner this summer, this beer touches beautifully on the other side of the style spectrum. The fruit is light, raw, and refreshing, providing a lovely flavoring to coincide with the tart lacto and the wheat malt while note being very sweet at all. This beer is hugely refreshing, and is right up there with Everweisse for me. A great beer for summer sipping or for summer knocking back.