Saturday, September 11, 2010

Gimpel Tripel -- Iron Brewer Round 2 Submission

Today is 9-11. I'm sure I'm not the first person to tell you that today. Each year since 2001 I've considered writing down or openly talking about my experiences from that day, and for the most part I've decided I didn't really feel like I wanted to do that. (Here's where I declined last year.) I have spoken and written some things down, but I haven't provided all details or pictures or video that I have.

Guess what? This year is no different, though I did give a few-paragraph summary over on Mike LaMonica's blog yesterday. Mike wrote about where he was that day and encouraged everyone to participate and help keep the memory alive. Take a look, add your story, and if you want to see my Cliff Notes, I think my comment is the third one: look for Rob (September 10 at 950 AM). Don't forget to follow his blog too--good stuff!

OK. Let's switch things up 180 degrees!

Today I'm reviewing Gimpel Tripel brewed by Home Brew Vanessa at the Shvitzing Matilda Brewery in Lake Worth, Florida.  This beer was Vanessa's entry into the recent Iron Brewer competition, Round 2, and she writes about that experience on the Ladies of Craft Beer website. For you other home brewers, here is the recipe that Vanessa used.

For this particular competition, she was required to use lemon zest, honey and Trappist high gravity ale yeast. Oh, and her imagination for the rest. This beer was given to me at Beer Tasting Extravaganza: Abraxas Lounge Edition with the stipulation that I couldn't drink or review the beer until after September 5th. So I waited... and waited... and waited. Cool green label, which had the "don't drink by" date written on it (I guess in case I forgot). And the cap says V/B 8/3.

Quite the citrus and hoppy floral aroma, with lots of lemon. Also a faint sweetness, very inviting. The flavors started out a little more bitter than I expected, making the hops a definite player. Honey flavors are also noticeable, but I feel they are more of a balancing challenge to the initial bitterness than a large part of the flavor profile. Just the right amount to keep the beer balanced while not adding annoying syrupy texture. Yeasty character, flavor and texture. Some fruity apple and pear flavors linger in the background, while there are little jolts of spice too. Where is the 9.3% alcohol? I don't know! Besides a little warmth toward the end, it's disguised completely. Dry finish with some yeasty lemon left behind.

I liked this beer a lot. My only piece of advice would be to win First Place next time! LOL. Yeah, Vanessa took Second with this entry. Nice job!

These pictures aren't spectacular. I had to take them indoors because of all-day torrential rain.


Vanessa said...

Thanks for waiting, Rob :)

I had a lot of fun with the recipe on this beer, and I think it might be my favourite of all my homebrews so far! Glad you liked it too.

Beer Drinker Rob said...

Nice job. Of course I was going to wait. Really nice beer.