Hangar 24 Brewery, middle of the desert, CA
7% abv, sour ba blonde with blueberries
Alright so if you signed up for the Hangar 24 barrel roll club then you received a single 12oz bottle of this single barrel banger with your $300 membership. None were sold to the public SO IT MUST BE SUPER DANK THEN.
If you have been paying attention, puga Royale has been killing the trade boards creeping up like a silent specter, the NECKBEARDS are ever wary of California stouts but it appears to have breached the firmament: but can H24 do the same thing with their wild ale program?
I’m finna twist UR berries bruh.
The beer pours on point with deep hues of violet, fuschia, magenta, and off pink foam that crackles yet subsides. It is an admittedly pretty beer and my nuva ring is pounding inside of my Lululemon pants.
I flexed my traps and waited for the acetic aspect that blueberry beers can generate (see: upland blueberry) but it never comes. There is a tannic blueberry skin like chiraz meets Yankee candle. There’s a lemony acidity present and the blonde ale base has not been wrangled and peeks out with tangerine and Chardonnay oak much in the way every lost Abbey sour blonde exhibits that samey albeit exceptional tart nose.
The taste opens dry with a farmers market berry skin quality that lacks the jamminess of say VSB but never falls into an intense tartness like Cascade Blueberry/Beauregarde. The fruit is more tasty as it warms and the 50 degree intended serving temp has got to be a punchline caveat against attenuation as this beer is far more exceptional as it warms.
The Smuckers preserves never fully emerge, but it doesn’t seem to be aiming to lean heavily on the fruit and instead delivers an oaky tartness like fundip and 0% stainless Riesling. Sure it is sour but, I drank an entire pint with ease, ZFG 0/0 on the ragret index.
If I had to find something in the same vein I would say this is executed akin to Allagash Lil Sal but since, that too, was like 300 bottles, analogues aren’t much help and you’ll need to blaze your own trading trail of you really want to toss your hat in the “exceptional blueberry awa” realm. It could use a touch more Greek yogurt body and I would have liked a more pronounced Brett C character to balance out fruity skins but that’s me being a demanding prick over and above any real flaws in the beer itself. It’s like a more complex version of Brett d or blueberry, I AM TRYING MY BEST HERE. I can find analogues if you haven’t tried shit. Get your voltron up.
This is absolutely worthy of your attention as well done blueberry beers are the exception not the rule with many lactose fisted Brewers these days. If you enjoyed chandelle, consider this the ‘merica Blabaer to that SHASTA foune. The 12oz bottle is as frustrating as Silver Surfer for the NES because you won’t want to share it but the cost of entry almost precipitates it.
If you are skeptic, wait for those airtight single digit BA reviews to pour in, I find those exceptionally helpful in calibrating my palate. A FOOLPROOF PREDICTOR OF VALUE.