Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Clipper City Brewing Company's Red Sky at Night Saison Ale - A Microbrew Review

Clipper City Brewing Company's Red Sky at Night Saison Ale. Here's a craft beer I've never had the opportunity to sip down before let alone do a microbrew beer review about. I just picked up this single 12 ounce bottle from the famed Baltimore-based microbrewery tonight and was anxious to give it a try. Let's get started with the beer review shall we?

Pouring the chilled brown bottle into a 16 ounce pint glass, the "new penny" colored ale sparkled and shimmered with good carbonation and plentiful, playful tiny bubbles cascading eagerly upwards towards the surface. Once there, they formed a meager one finger layer of head that only lasted but a brief minute or so.

This Baltimore-based microbrew's aroma of strong candied fruit and yeasted malt wafted aggressively from the surface and all around the close proximity of my glass. Fruits of banana, plum and even a bit of sweet citrus come to mind along with the unmistakable scents of Belgian yeast. So far, this beer is looking and smelling pretty good.

Partaking of the first few sips of Red Sky at Night Saison Ale, my palate is greeted with a full bodied, sour yet sweet flavor. It's definitely Belgian in nature and thick in texture. The initial sweetness is quickly followed by the soured zesty fruitiness ending in a fairly clean swallow with a citrusy and oily presence left in the middle of the tongue. There's a certain level of spiciness to it as well which makes the ale quite refreshing, maybe almost too much so.

As the glass emptied to its halfway point, I observed an absence of any lacing or "legs" from this beer on the wall of my pint glass while the liquid still remained crisp and clear and full of carbonated energy. A timid ring of foam still lined the top perimeter of the glass at this point. Throughout the remainder of the sampling this Clipper City Brewing Company microbrew stays strong and consistent never wavering in flavor or scent.

Overall, I'd give Clipper City Brewing Company's Red Sky at Night Saison Ale a 7.75 on my microbrew rating scale of 1 to 10. This is a respectably complex and enjoyable craft beer that will please many fans of many wide-ranging microbrew styles yet will also satisfy those experienced and discriminating Saison Ale style afficiandos as well. The 7.5 percent alcohol by volume presents a warming factor in the gut which is not predominantly what you'd seek out in a seasonal beer this time of year being that it's late spring/early summer and all. But Clipper City's Red Sky at Night will definitely stand on its own merit no matter what the calendar says or what the occasion might be. Just don't go overboad with this "Heavy Seas" offering from Clipper City Brewing Company. Keep it "above board" when enjoying this microbrew. Ahoy Matey!! Cheers!!

If you actually experienced any level of enjoyment in reading this microbrew beer review and if you love craft beers in particular, you'll find more craft beer reviews of both new and old microbrews and also fun microbrew and craft beer-related info at Microbrew Review or Microbrew and Craft Beer Reviews. Click through on the links above and please let me know what you liked or didn't like and let me know any beers that you might like to see me review next time. Cheers!

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