Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales Oro de Calabaza Belgian Strong Ale at 8% ABV | 30 IBU (US$9.99 at Specs Main Houston, 750 ml, packaged on 22-Jun-2016, acquired 8-Mar-2017, reviewed 5-Nov-2017)
Appearance: clear straw with one fat finger of rocky white head diminishing gradually to a persistent cap, moderate soapy lacing. (5/5) Aroma: vinous white wine & oak, apples & pears, yeasty funk, bready malt, white pepper, hints of stone fruit & floral. (8/10) Taste: moderate sweet, moderate tart, mild bitter, mild peppery spice. (8/10) Palate: medium-light body, prickly carbonation, dry crisp tart mildly spicy lightly astringent warming finish. (4/5)
Regardless of whether you call this a Belgian Strong or a Bière de Garde, it’s very nice. The flavours deliver on precisely what the nose promises: a whole bunch of vinous and fruity notes without a lot of concomitant sweetness, while the finish is crisp, dry, and welcoming of the next sip. I’ve called it a warming finish, but truth be told one might as well attribute that to the mild spiciness as to the very well-masked ABV. My only complaint (if it is one) is the fact that the tartness does seem to turn just very slightly astringent in the finish. (16/20)
My 250th from the 2010 Edition of 1001 Beers You Must Taste Before You Die, 240th from the 2013 edition, and 264th combining both editions.
8/10 #1001beers #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com