Tasting: July 24, 2016
Beer # 1,086
A friend asked me why the beer style is called “pale ale” when in fact, it isn’t really all that pale and actually darker than many other styles. My explanation was that pre-19th-century beer came in three styles: dark, darker and darkest. In the late 19th century, the beer universe somewhat shifted to lighter-flavored and lighter-colored beer. It was lighter than their contemporaries and many regions in Europe introduced their own version of this lighter style. England gave us the familiar pale ale and Czechoslovakia introduced pilsners. The regions of Germany also introduced their own answers to lighter beers. There was Dortmunder from northern Germany, Helles in Bavaria and Kolsch from the city of Cologne.
Kolsch is clear while Weiss beer described as a cloudy version of Kolsch. Kolsch is made with traditional hops like Hallertau and is typically low in alcohol by volume, usually between 4% and 5.5%. One other note about Kolsch is that is an ale that is fermented in warm temperatures but cold conditioned.
Bolero Snort Interpretation:
This Kolsch isn’t from Cologne but rather from a New Jersey brewery, Bolero Snort. They note that they bypassed the traditional German hops in favor of Citra and Motueka hops.
It’s a stinking hot day here in New Jersey and I can certainly use a nice crisp summer beer. Pour is light and crystal clear. Aroma is minimal but the chilled flavor hits the spot. Kowabunga Kolsch has your typical German-style sweet crystal malts and some mild skunkiness. Hops are muddled and bitter. Definitely a change of pace beer for me but certainly enjoyable. 88 points.
Footnote to this post: I had written this post in the summer of 2016. I just came across it while reviewing drafts and realized that I forgot to post it. So, no you haven’t entered a time warp.