*Obligatory Disclaimer: I have zero formal training or knowledge of brewing. I’m just a guy who likes to drink beer so I offer general uneducated thoughts on what I drink.*
It’s September 1st so summer is (un)officially over. Why not review a beer that debuted this summer? Harpoon Brewery will make this beer available year-round, but I’m reviewing it as a summer seasonal.
Labeled as a Golden Ale, I needed a refresher on exactly what one is. According to brewiki.com:
Blonde Ale also called Golden Ale is a straw to medium blonde ale that has moderate bitterness and maltiness. The style is closely related to traditional mass market lagers, and was originally intended as a way of transitioning mass market consumers to craft beers.
Blonde Ale’s originated in North America. Craft Beer brewers created blonde ale as a moderate introduction for mass market American consumers used to traditional American mass market beers such as American Pilsner.
Dry, light to medium body with light malty sweetness. Low to medium hop bitterness with minimal aroma. Slight fruit flavor. Light yellow to golden blonde color with no chill haze. Med to high carbonation. All malt, dry, crisp beer approximating a lager in overall character. Enjoying a resurgence at many microbreweries as an alternative to American style lagers.
4.8% ABV 26 IBUs
Pouring a 12oz. can into a glass, the beer is light and bubbly with a substantial white head that dissipated surprisingly slow. Nice lacing remains along the inside of the glass. It’s a very humid day, hence all the condensation on the can and glass.
The nose is bright and subtly hoppy with bread yeast characteristics. Despite the macro-brewed yellowish color, there’s obviously more to this beer (as you’d expect…it’s Harpoon after all).
The taste has bitterness, but no trace of hoppy citrus notes. It’s slightly sweet, but without the sweet-rice taste I get in all the macro “lawn mower” beers. Dare I say the sweetness is giving me some fresh pear? I don’t think there are enough flavor notes to properly complement the bitterness. I’m left with a bit of an unpleasant lingering finish.
With that said, this is still a good light(er) beer that’s easy drinking for the summer. The mouthfeel is right for the season and the carbonation isn’t overbearing. In other words, you won’t feel as bloated as you would after pounding Coors Lights at a Black Sabbath concert. I was able to put down a lot of these in succession (shocker). A 12-pack of Sweet Spot would be perfect to bring to a friend’s backyard BBQ and will pair well with the burgers, dogs, chicken and steak tips coming off the grill. This beer is also a great alternative to other wheat-style summer brews. Yes, I’m talking about you, Sam Adams Summer Ale.
Pregaming before tonight’s Patriots game. #FreeTomBrady