Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Prairie Hop Review

Brewery: Prairie Artisan Ales | Beer: Prairie Hop
Style: Saison | ABV: 8.0% | IBUs: ~50
Serving Method: 750ml bottle poured into tulip glass

Prairie Hop
In a portfolio rich with Saisons, Prairie describe Prairie Hop as their hoppy Saison. This was one of the first Prairie beers that made it down here to Texas, but it's been unavailable for a while. Earlier this year, Prairie got to brewing and have brought it back.

The hop kick comes from Simcoe and Citra hops, with one pound per barrel used for dry-hopping. Strangely enough, this is one of the only beers Prairie fail to list an official IBU count for, so we're estimating about 50 here. Farmhouse yeast is used, unsurprisingly, with wine yeast used for bottle conditioning.

Here's how they describe the beer:
Notes of peach, mango, and tangerine can be found in the flavor and aroma of this beer. The beer finishes dry which helps the hops jump out of the glass flavor wise.
Let's hop to it, shall we?

Appearance: A thoroughly hazy golden-copper body capped by over three fingers of very bubbly off-white head that fades in average time, leaving great lacing.

Aroma: Lots of piney and citrusy hops over a pretty pale malt body with a funky undertone. Maybe a whiff of alcohol once it has warmed.

Taste: Up front, citrusy, tropical-fruity, perfumey, floral, and piney hops with medium bitterness. Subtle funkiness around the edges. Underneath, biscuity malt that grounds everything nicely. The alcohol is masked well. Lingering grassy hops, funk, and pale grain in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and a little creamy with medium carbonation and a dry finish. Perhaps a little slickness from the alcohol.

Drinkability: Drinks faster than the alcohol content suggests, so watch out.

Verdict: Prairie Hop is hop-forward Belgian-style beer with a nice funky undertone and a sophisticated overall profile and a hidden punch. Another solid offering from Prairie; these guys are two-for-two with me so far.

Grade: A (4.3 out of 5 stars)


Note: While this review is being published in 2014, the tasting notes contained within were taken when the beer was fresh in 2013.
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