Style: Bière de Mars
Released March 2013
From: Portland, ME
Brewer’s Note: “Part of the Entrepôt series of warehouse ales. Phobos & Deimos was our limited release spring seasonal beer brewed in the bière de mars style featuring 100% Nelson Sauvin hops. Hazy orange in color with sweet citrus and grape notes and a dry finish.”
Phobos & Deimos (n)— the two moons of Mars
The beer’s label is sleek and white. I love the simple intricacy of the Rising Tide logo, and I really enjoy the font types used on this label. The junk on the sides of the label does intrude a little, but not too badly, and I love the goldish yellow color of the font. This beer is worthy of the shelf or labeling.
The beer’s cork pops with an aggressive burst of pressure, and the beer pours a deep, rusty orange, bordering on amber. The beer’s head is massive and creamy almost-yellow, made of medium sized, slightly soapy bubbles that sit over three finger’s widths above the glass and hardly fade at all. In body, the beer is dark and murky with a decent amount of haze and very little visibility of the other side of the glass. Tiny bubbles can be seen all around, racing to replenish the head at the top of the glass, but no particles can be found in the beer. The beer’s head leaves a thick, bearded lacing along the glass which is quite surprising to see. On the nose, the beer smells uniquely juicy, almost like apple juice and juicy fruit, except for quick expressive bursts of citrus and caramel malt that suggest more to the beer. There is even a light, generic spiciness to it as you stick your nose in the beer. Slight gooseberry notes, like in a sauvignon blanc, can also be detected, heralding the presence of Nelson Sauvin hops.
On the tongue, the beer tastes malty sweet with a superb balancing bitter and a light bite of acid. In flavor the beer is a little bland, which leads me to believe that I’m a little late on the hop-life of this beer, which is too bad. The flavor begins with caramel malts and a touch of stale bread, moving slowly towards gooseberry and a touch of not-displeasing plastic flavoring that fringes on sweet grapefruit pith with a touch of bitter pine. Light apple juice flavors wander in the middle palate, giving the beer an interesting fruitiness. The finish blends pine and caramel malt in a nice blend that reminds me of an old school DIPA’s. The aftertaste is tartly sweet, sort of like what the mouth tastes like after drinking apple juice. In the mouth, the beer feels on the plus side of medium in body with a lightly prickly carbonation that fluffs the tongue and then leaves a light bite. The mouth is left sticky with saliva forming on its edges. Overall, I’m a little confused by this beer. I’m fairly certain that it is a little past its prime, but I by no means hated it. The flavors of the beer were interesting and different, and I would have loved to have seen them bolder and more pronounced, which they no doubt were when the beer was fresh. I’ve loved everything I’ve had from Rising Tide, and I still really liked this, its’ just a little past its prime. Rising Tide, please brew this beer again so I can try it fresh! It’s got nice maltiness and a touch of bitter hops at the end that balance it beautifully, but it seems to be missing something at this point.