Let me preface this by saying that my tasting notes were marginally compromised when it comes to this beer. Or maybe it’s that my taste buds were compromised – I had this beer after my first Boulevard Nutcracker of the season, and so I suspect that some of my reaction to this beer has a lot to do with the Nutcracker’s after effect than anything actually inherent to this brew.
Name: Blue Moon Winter Abbey Ale
Origin: Coors Brewing Co – Coors owns Blue Moon, for those of you who didn’t know
Style: Belgian Dubbel
IBU: not listed
I drank this: on tap at Old Chicago, OP, KS
This is Blue Moon’s new Winter Seasonal beer, the first I’ve seen that isn’t a variation on some kind of Moon name (i.e., Harvest Moon, Pale Moon, Honey Moon, etc). Style-wise, I’m all for this, because the “Variations on a Theme of White Ale” doesn’t work for me in Winter unless it’s a Double/Imperial White Ale. Otherwise, I find White Ales as a whole far too Summery for cold temperatures.
The Winter Abbey Ale is a auburn-colored beer with no head retention whatsoever and a very faint scent of pale malts. Scent-wise, it reminded me more of a pilsner than anything else, which surprised me.
This is one of those beers where I experienced a pronounced feeling, rather than a pronounced flavor. The beer is SHARP in a way that made my whole tongue go WOAH HELLO THERE NO NEED TO YELL. The feeling itself was so sharp that I really didn’t notice much of a taste at first. (To be fair, I also blame part of my inability to taste anything on the Nutcracker.)
Once my taste buds adjusted to the sharpness of it and were able to kick off the lingering aftereffects of the hops in the Nutcracker, I found the taste. It’s light malts that are sweet and fruity enough to have a touch of something slightly apple-like to them. It’s pleasant, but over very, very quickly.
Then there’s the aftertaste. The aftertaste here was so strangely specific that I almost want to give it an award.
The aftertaste, it is pizza crust. Really. Pizza crust.
I might be persuaded to blame the pizza crust aftertaste on the Nutcracker, but I’m not sure. The pizza crust flavor was still there well after all tinges of Nutcracker-hops-induced taste bud borkages were gone. To be honest, the aftertaste was odd enough that I think you people should all go try one of these, just so you can tell me whether or not the pizza crust thing happened to anyone else. I’m totally curious.