The holidays are here, which means spices in our breads, cookies, coffee, and yes, even our beer.
Renton is lucky to have a number of pubs with rotating seasonal taps, which means that I … ehm … beer-lovers have access to seasonally inspired brews right from the tap.
A Facebook post by Jeffrey Lawrence, owner of the Whistle Stop Ale house, piqued my curiosity in one seasonal brew currently on tap: Bison Organic Gingerbread Ale.
Drinking seasonal beer is just like anything holiday-related. It’s got to be enjoyed in season, and not too early. That being said. I started enjoying the first of my winter-specific brews over Thanksgiving weekend.
But I digress.
Gingerbread and beer. Can a beer carry cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger? Yes, and Bison pulls it off well.
While the ‘Ale’ label makes this brew more approachable, it drinks more like a Porter. Darker in color and full in body, Bison balanced carbonation with malts, hops and subtle spice tones to create an enjoyable holiday drink.
Take a sip and savor a crispness that seems far lighter than the beer looks. A slight bitterness takes over — similar to a mild ESB — and then finishes with savory caramel notes.
Drink it on its own, or pair it with something with a little fat to round out its hint of hoppiness. I chose nachos — add guac and hold jalapeños (I didn’t want to loose the holiday flavor with too much spiciness). A bowl of chili or a burger would also work well.
Have you tried this brew? Share your thoughts in the comment section below, or post a tip about another seasonal brew on tap in Renton. It just might make my next beer blog.