Blogs will save us.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Full Sail LTD Bottling 02

A brief review of the newest Full Sail LTD, which is on shelves now. LTD, the overly cute series ("Livin' the Dream," dude) Full Sail debuted in January, is the brewery's bid to break into the nontraditional lager market. The first version was respectable and caused me some hope. So now to bottling #02, which Full Sail describes, unhelpfully, as
A light-bodied nonetheless hella good limited edition lager courtesy of the mad skills of the Full Sail crew. Crisp. Golden. Ultra drinkable. Totally LTD.
Diction theirs. Emphasis mine (reasons below).

Tasting Notes
It pours out like an unassuming lager--a little deeper golden than the average pilsner, topped by a fizzy, weak head. My dad would recognize it as "beer." But all is not Busch Lite about it, as you discover with a first sniff. Like the 01 bottling, this one is robust at 6.4% (strangely, the exact same alcohol content--a theme?), and I can detect in it malt-liquory nose. The palate, too, has a malt liquor quality--it's slick and alcoholic on the tongue, but has a slightly harsh alcohol kick. It's also very sweet, featuring quite mild, floral hopping that isn't adequate to the task of adding balance.

But perhaps the inspiration isn't the golden-hued forty (we called 'em "torpedoes" in the eighties), but a more regal beer. In Germany, helles (pr. "hell-ehs") means "clear" or "light." It is a style its own--a bland, mild lager not too distant from Bud. But it can also be used to modify other styles, as in helles bock. When I picked up the label and saw "hella" in the description, that's what I immediately thought of. If it's a wink to the beer geeks among us, a nice touch.

But, helles bock or no, I'm not a fan. To me, it's a little cloying and heavy. I'd like some more complexity of malt if this were going to be a bock (it tastes likes it has cereal malts--corn or rice) or some hops to offset the malt. It mainly reminds me of malt liquor, a style to which I am perhaps prejudiced. This beer doesn't thrill. Most IPA-lovin' denizens of Beervana are going to be disappointed. Further evidence, perhaps, that the LTD line was not made for them.

Not stats available yet; I'll update if they become available.

3 comments:

Dr Wort said...

Just a little clarification for me, Jeff.... Is it a bad Mai-Bock (Helles Bock) too sweet (?) or do you just not like Mai-Bocks???


;-}

Jeff Alworth said...

I don't think they were aiming at a bock. It's not a bock. My speculation about "hella" should, as with all my speculations, probably be ignored.

DR WORT said...

You were on the right track... I read an article about Full Sail and talking about the LTD series. The second release is supposed to be a Helles Bock.... So, it sounds like Full Sail didn't get it quite right.... ;-}

Post a Comment

NOTE: Blogspot has been eating some comments, and there doesn't seem to be anything I can do about it. IF your comment doesn't appear, it's not you, it's not me, it's the genuiuses at Google. Sorry--