Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Tasting Notes: Skinny Dip

Brewer: New Belgium Brewing Co.
Poured: June 2007
ABV: 4.2%

According to New Belgium, one of my old favorites, Loft, is no longer produced but Skinny Dip was recommended as a similar beer by a New Belgium rep. On the surface, they do seem similar. They are both golden ales, both spiced with kaffir lime and both are fairly low in alcohol making them nice options for summer session brews. The proof, however, is in the pudding.

The skinny dip pours bright gold into my New Belgium pilsner glass and is topped by a billowing creamy white head. It smells of light citrus (from the Cascade hops I suppose).

Surprisingly, the hops aren't the first thing I noticed in the flavor. The pale malt is front and center, lightly sweet with a creamy mouth. The cascade kicks in lightly for balance but this beer is far less crisp than I was expecting and finishes very clean. More sweet in the finish than dry, this is where the similarities to Loft end.

Loft was crisp not creamy, and had a fruity Belgian yeast quality (that made for a wonderful juxtaposition in a summer ale) while this one finishes very clean, no yeast character to speak of.

I don't intend to run down Skinny Dip, it's a very passable summer beer but in my book it doesn't compare to the retired Loft.

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