Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Kriek Tuesday 1
It’s finally here! I suppose I got a bit off my game for a week and didn’t get this ball rolling like I should have. But it’s here now, and we’re going to celebrate!
First Kriek to the table: Samuel Adams Barrel Room Collection, American Kriek.
American Kriek pours fairly effervescent and with a nice pink creamy head that, as expected, turned rocky and fell in a matter of moments.
Color is that of a strong iced tea. Missing the pink color that I associate with some Kriek beers.
Aroma from the bottle and glass while I was shooting the photographs was amazing! Grains and maraschino cherry dominated with a stale sour sort of note that reminded me of a bar.
In the glass, the grain aroma has disappeared, as has most of the cherry aroma. That’s too bad! But what is left is not unpleasant. Mild dried fruit and a crisp tartness give way to, well, actually noting. That’s it.
Initial taste reveals more of the dried fruit. Almost like a mixed berry fruit strip from Safeway. Very light mouthfeel and very little tartness.
The finish is introduced with a muddy “Dish Water” flavor that ends in the most cherry you’ll find in this beer... And it isn’t much. I would call the flavor more Pomegranate and white grape than cherry... Sweet OR tart!
As I continue to drink, the sour character all but completely disappears as my mouth adjusts, and I’m basically left with a very light bodied indiscernible fruit beer that’s really light on fruit. The good news, is that as the beer warms, a wheat like flavor starts to appear and add some complexity.
By the time I hit the bottom of the first pour, the beer has let go of every shred of carbonation, and I’m
basically left with a mildly grainy version of a juice wine I once made from Welches.
It helped... A little. The salt helped to bring out a little of the tartness, but I’m left wanting more.
I want this beer to have a serious lactic sour, or a big Brett character, and it’s not there! I want it to have a nice solid vanilla from the oak aging, and that’s not there either. I want this beer to have enough cherry that I know it’s a Kriek.
If I got this beer blind, I doubt I’d identify it as a Kriek. A tart Wheat beer with some sort of fruit... But not a Kriek!
I wouldn’t recommend this beer to any lovers of the style, but I won’t say you shouldn’t buy it either.
For me it’s just OK... But barely!
If you’re just looking for something different and you’ve not had a Kriek before, this may be a fair introduction. There certainly isn’t much there to offend anyone's palate, and it’s pretty well available in big liquor stores. But I seriously doubt you’ll be finding one in my shopping cart any time soon.