Thursday, May 31, 2012

In the Ring with Yakima Wheat

There was an invisible force drawing me towards Schlafly’s Yakima Wheat.  Why?  I couldn’t quite put my finger on it.  This curiosity was overwhelming and I was getting telepathic visions of this brews greatness (you know mind bullets).  I didn’t know what the future had in store for me but subconsciously I knew I was destined to meet this brew in a glass encased ring of taste bud battle.  Would the Yakima Wheat conquer my palate with delicious liquid warfare or would my palate destroy a dull opponent?  Only one way to find out and that is to go at it mano a mano.

The Yakima Wheat pours with a beautiful fluffy white head protruding out of the top of the glass.  The body is a pale straw color with a nice cloudy character.  The nose fights through the towering head to serve up a citrusy lemon character coupled with a subtle wheat spice.  The mouthfeel seemed a bit thick from what I was expecting out of a spring/summer wheat beer.  A wheat spice character was the first in the line of assault followed by a fairly substantial malty sweetness coming on mid palate.  Once again another surprise with the sweetness which I was not expecting from a spring/summer wheat beer.  Even with the uncexpected character the initial balance between the wheat spice and the sweetness is very well done.  The only question left, could this wheat beer deliver on the YAKIMA?  As a brother in arms, a citrusy/earthy hop character comes in and joins the malty sweetness about mid palate.  They remain together through the finish where a nice mellow bitterness rounds out the brew.  Nothing is really overpowering but overall the adjective that comes to mind is, “smooth”.

The Yakima Wheat came at me with several tricks up its sleeve and ultimately defeated my palate with awesomeness.  Being a wheat beer I was expecting a heavy wheat spice with a thin dry body, of which this brew was neither.  I would also assume the Yakima portion of this brew would mean big hop presence and a substantial bitterness on the finish.  This was also not the case and a surprise.  When my expectations are different that what a brew delivers I am usually disappointed.  It turns out that's not the case in this instance and I thoroughly enjoyed this new Schlafly offering.  Everything was in balance and the overall character is just so smooth.  The fight is over, thank you sir may I have another?!?! 


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