Sunday, May 13, 2012

Wavehopper (Big Bay Brewing, Shorewood, WI)

I will admit up front that I am not a fan of kolsch as a style.  Occasionally, I will find an excellent, delicate and flavorful kolsch that I will tolerate and enjoy.  Tonight is not that night.

Wavehopper from Big Bay Brewing looks fine in the glass with a white head that falls with a nice lace over a slightly anemic looking yellow brew.  Pungent nose has some of the classic kolsch characteristics, but overwhelmed by a sour apple and mineral wafting up. Just as watery in the mouth as it looks, the taste has a barely perceptible sweet malt and a sharp chalky flavor and unpleasant sourness.

In spite of my general beer optimism, I cannot find any redeeming characteristics in this brew.  In a phrase, avoid this beer.  Unfortunately, I didn't review Big Bay's Portside when I had it in March at Grumpy's in Minneapolis.  My simple rating of Portside was much higher, which is what made me hopeful for Wavehopper.  While it would take some convincing to get me to try Wavehopper again, my experience with Portside on tap will at least give me reason to try Big Bay again some day.

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