From the taps of one of my favorite brewpubs, which everyone should go to for two reasons. Reason number one: the beer. Reason number two: the 7-hour roasted pork with green onion risotto, which is high up on the list of “best food I’ve ever had.” Seriously, that stuff is LETHAL (in a good way).
Name: Fountain City Irish Red
Origin: 75th Street Brewery, Kansas City, MO
Style: American Red Ale*
I drank this: on tap at the Brewery
This is a lovely beer with a foamy tan head and pretty amber color with ruby tones when it’s held up to daylight. It’s really pretty to look at. It’s also super-fragrant with, as one would say in the perfume world, a strong throw – I could smell this beer from more than a foot away when I wasn’t really trying to. In my mind, this is reason enough to try this beer.
So this strong smell, what is it? The Fountain City Irish Red smells like a rich brown bread with hints of slightly sweet-citrusy hops for the lightest of topnotes. It’s a fantastic smell; it put me in the mood for a huge slice of Irish Soda Bread with butter slathered over the top. (Food pairing-wise, I think this beer with soda bread would be A+.)(It’s also good with the pommes frites with truffle-mayo dipping sauce that they have at the brewpub.)(Admittedly, to my mind anything would be good with truffle-mayo dipping sauce, but that’s beside the point.)
Flavor-wise, this is a beer in two parts (much in the same way the Great Divide 16th Anniversary was a beer in three parts). Part one is during the first moment of the sip, when the beer is a slighty creamy/foamy collection of really lovely cereal/bread-like malts. Part two is the end of sip/aftertaste, where a batch of fruity hops make an appearance. This isn’t a hoppy beer by any means – the hops have some flavor, but it’s mild, fruity, and without the strong bitterness that a lot of people don’t like. It’s not as bitingly hoppy as I prefer in a red, but it’s hoppier than a brown ale.
All in all, I definitely recommend this beer when 75th Street has it on tap. It’s a great session beer – this is one I could have two or three of without getting tired of it and without falling off my barstool.
* I pretty much couldn’t find this beer anywhere online (my Google-fu failed me! 😦 ), including the brewery website (which only goes into detail on their flagship beers). Beer Advocate has very little info on this beer, mis-listing it as an Amber Ale, which is quite clearly *not* what 75th St had printed on the chalkboards and tap labels. So I’m sticking with it’s an American Red Ale.
** See the above issue of not being able to find much about this beer online. I’ve no clue on the ABV or IBU, other than to say that the ABV is likely in the mid-5% range, and the IBUs are probably mid-to-upper 30s or so. But those are my guesses.