Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Review - Russian River Redemption

This could be my last post for awhile. I've just been told that I'll soon be headed to Ontario, to help fight the forest fires that have been raging there this summer. I'll be staying in a bush camp a long way from anywhere, so drinking new beer, never mind writing new posts, could prove difficult. I will be back however, and by the time my pull in the East is done, it will be time to head back to Victoria, and to return to my brewing equipment, the new beer group, and yes, this blog. But this is not a blog about my comings and goings as a wildfire fighter, so on to the beer.

The newest beer I sampled was Redemption Blonde Ale from Russian River Brewing. My last post was also concerning these guys, and their famous Damnation, a beer that I was surprised to find somewhat underwhelming. This was certainly not the case with Redemption, a beer I had heard little about, but one I thoroughly enjoyed. Redemption is actually a Belgian single, or a patersbier, so named as the style is mainly brewed at Trappist monasteries for consumption by the monks. It is rarely sold commercially in Belgium, and in North America it is nearly unheard of. Patersbiers can vary significantly in character, perhaps due to them being from the second runnings of other brews made by the monasteries, but as the name suggests, they are beers of somewhat weaker strength, particularly compared to other Trappist beers that tend to be quite high in alcohol.

Redemption is a light to medium gold and has a thick white head that lasts to the bottom of the glass. It is highly carbonated and has an aroma that nicely blends the mild characters of Belgian yeast and noble hop aroma. It has a slightly tart entry and a well-balanced mild bitterness. Its refreshing tartness is great and I found it to be a very enjoyable, simple, drinking beer. There is not always a lot to say about simple beers, either they work or they don't, and Redemption definitely works.
Rating: Very Good

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