Tempest: Drop Kick Me Jesus (Scotland: Sour Ale: 5.2% ABV)
Visual: Clear dried banana yellow. Small white head and moderate carbonation.
Nose: Sweat peaches and musty aubergines. White grapes and grape skins. Passion fruit. Lightly sour. Nutty undertones. Pineapple.
Body: Lightly sour. Lemon juice. Sour white grapes. Sour dough. Sour cream. Lime cordial. Pineapple juice. Stodgy white bread. Bitty orange juice. Coconut.
Finish: Crusty white bread and flour. Lemon curd. Lime cordial. Pineapple juice. Orange slices.
Conclusion: Normally slightly cloying beers are quite closed in the flavours, there are exceptions but they usually take some time to open up. This one has all that cloying sour character but is very open and very fruity. Somehow the cloying character draws your mouth together before releasing you for the flavour to seep in. It feels slightly stodgy, like flour covered white bread, and that flour character matches with the tradition dryness of a pale ale to leave your mouth very dry on the way out.
Now, normally that level of dry pale ale characteristics is an issue for me – it makes beer feels somewhat desiccating and that just is not my thing. The sour note of this beer manages to counterbalance that – lots of tart fruit juice notes throughout. However it does seem to lean on the tart notes for contract, the sweeter peach notes in the aroma never really show in the body. It keeps itself attenuated, dry, but with tropical tartness.
It is unusual and pretty drinkable despite the dry notes – and also despite the sour notes it actually feels pretty gentle with low acidity and hop character. Overall it is refreshing, almost like a pina colada touched beer from all those pineapple and coconut moments. Lots of flavour to it, albeit they are all similar styled – it feels like a beer that has come a bit late in the year. It feels like a right proper summer refresher. So , pretty good, not exceptional, but pretty good.
Background: Yes I bought this solely because it is called “Drop Kick Me Jesus” as always my maturity has not risen with my years. I saw this was an Amarillo hopped pale ale and thought it could be a nice, more normal, entry to my beer notes. Turns out it is a sour pale ale. Ah well, I tried for normal, I don’t complain when I get odd. Grabbed from Independent Spirit, This was drunk while listening to Hate In The Box: Under The Ice. Think they are a fairly small band, check them out – I recommand “Electric Dolls” to start with.