Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Beer pick of the week: Albino Python Lager

Posted By on Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 2:33 PM

coney-island-albino-python.jpg

Albino Python Lager

Shmaltz Brewing Company

Saratoga Springs, NY

6.0% ABV

Appropriate for the freak show theme, this beer is modeled after a Belgian witbier, but brewed with lager yeast rather than the traditional Belgian ale yeast. The characteristic coriander and orange peel are added, along with some more unusual spices like ginger and fennel. The result is a sweet, mildly spicy brew, with a slick mouthfeel and a clean, refreshing finish. The unfiltered yeast in the bottle contributes to its cloudy, pale-yellow color and almost blue-gray tint. The lively carbonation yields a perfectly big frothy head when poured into a weizen glass. There’s a hint of honey in the pale malt sweetness, along with a bit of citrus twang. The spices meld nicely, with nothing overwhelming the palate. Still, I wouldn’t mind seeing the spices cranked up a notch. The fennel, ginger, and a lemongrass character suggest a pairing with Asian food. The body is pleasantly light but not watery. Overall, a satisfying experiment and definitely ahead of most American pale wheat ales.

(photo courtesy Shmaltz Brewing Co.)

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