Tuesday, December 15, 2009

12 Beers of Christmas, Day 2: New Belgium 2 Below

Brewery: New Belgium Brewing Company, Fort Collins, CO
Style: Winter Warmer
ABV: 6.6%
Date Poured: December 2009

New Belgium is new to the Georgia market this year so I felt it was appropriate to include thier winter seasonal as one of the 12. I have been a big fan of New Belgium for a few years now, always making sure to pick some up when I head west (especially the magnificent La Folie).

Orangey copper with a rocky ivory head that leaves thick sheeting lace down the side of the glass. A very odd hop profile in the aroma with a very sweet citrusy hop smell reminiscent of limes...but I don't think that's right. I think it's a combination of very bright citrus and piney hops that is creating a unique a heavenly hop aroma. Some biscuity malt evident in the nose as well.

In the mouth, there's a distinct honey-like quality to the malt with the bright hoppiness delivering a juicy bitterness that pierces the malt and balances the sweetness in the finish. It's crisper in the mouth than you would expect. Bready and biscuity malt but, again, the hops balance that sweetness in the finish and aftertaste.

Is it a winter warmer is the classic sense? No. Is it good.?Yes. Is it a good beer for winter to my tastes? Borderline but definitely unique and worth a try.

New Belgium Brewing Company


Crawdaddy said...

Is New Belgium shipping across the US these days. I was a big fan of Fat Tire, but can never find it. My two dreams are being able to buy that and Alaskan Amber.

Heath said...

They are. We got Fat Tire,1554 and Sunshine Wheat first this summer in Georgia. Now, we're getting more varieties.

I think I saw Fat Tire in Maryland over Thankgiving but I can't be sure...was looking for MD beers at the time.

Crawdaddy said...

Well, that is exciting. I guess I will see if it is as good as I remember it.

When I was up in Baltimore, I had a great number of places to purchase. Now, I live in Southern Maryland and it is pretty disappointing with the selection. Used to be in a ragtag beer of the month club, but now just sort of meander between doppelbocks, belgians, and dogfish head. Just not the selection I am used to.

Heath said...

Southern Maryland. Sorry to hear that. I grew up in La Plata and Waldorf. Where are you?

I was through there in May and Rosewick Wine and Spirits has a pretty good selection. And when I lived there, Colonial Liquors used to have a solid, if not great, craft beer selection.

Crawdaddy said...

Solomons, MD.

A new brewpub showed up which sometimes has some pretty solid offerings. Other than that . . . this is Coors country.