Style: Fruited pLambic brewed with Sicilian Oranges
From: Newmarket, NH
Brewery’s Note: “Auranja is our interpretation of a turbid mashed, mixed culture pLambic aged on Sicilian oranges.”
The cap pops with a mid-level hiss, but leaving the bottle alone for a moment leads to a mushroom cap of suds frothing from the bottle. She be gushing. The beer pours a chalky and lemony yellow, rich in color, cloudy, nearly opaque, and with a larger froth of white bubbles that dwindle to a thick scrim. If you pour more aggressively, you are left with orange bits mudding the soda-pop crackling head. Lacing is slick and sloughing, not lasting on the glass save for one slick and drizzling strand. The body carries tiny floating particulates and strands of presumably orange, but it looks nice and elegant in the glass. On the nose, the beer is a big hit of citrus juice. Orange juice blends with slight creamy wheat, a touch of lemonade, and a slight splash of spicy plastic, which I consistently find in Deciduous’ wilds, though this is much better integrated into the scent than in others. (I’ve been thinking a lot about this scent lately, as I do find it in beers relatively frequently, and I’ve begun to find it ties back to the soapy/plasticky scent that I and some 20% of the population get from cilantro. Perhaps this is a similar compound?) Still, the orange is the star of this nose, and it is there from pulp, to pith, to sweet juice, buddying up beside soft funk to give a really nice OJ American Wild scent. This smells like wild citrus juice. On the tongue, the beer tastes fruit sweet, slowly molding into rich citric acidity that nips, plucks, and puckers the tongue and mouth while tangoing with the OJ-sweetness of this beer. Pith bitters are subtle, but present, blending in with the acidity to help nip at the tongue, while funk and malt bring complementary sweetness into play, giving wheat bread towards the finish along with a splash of brackish water, a little bit of lime juice, some candied oranges, and just a faint hint of plastic/cilantro. The taste is citric, bright, fresh, fruity, and just phenomenal. Up there with Sepal as one of the best from Deciduous’ growing bottle list. In the mouth, the beer feels on the light side of medium, with a fuller carb and acidity that really pop and pucker on the tongue. Effervescent is a word I would use to describe this, but it has a little bit of creamy fullness which keeps it from absolute “effervescence.” It’s bright, crisp, yet with a creamy undertone to it and a lasting gel along the edges of the mouth. When the beer leaves, the mouth is left wet, with saliva pooling out from the cheek pouches while the tongue tingles and puckers from the carb and acidity. Overall, this is a real success from Deciduous. Their bottles have been hit or miss for me thus far, always offering up interest and finesse, but not always winning me over, but this beer hits me right in the crushable wild spot. While I understand referring to it as a pLambic, I see this more as just a nice fruited American Wild, expressing equal parts juice and beer in wonderful harmony. This beer could literally take the place of mimosas in the mornings. It is orangey, tart, and great to knock back. You need to try this.