Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Old Town Brewing Company - Mushroom Ale

Will this beer make you a...
wait for it...fun guy?
One thing I've learned through my beer adventures is to always keep an open mind--always. If the brewing process is anything, it's transformative. You can literally make beer from dang near anything and chances are good it will, in the very  least, be drinkable. "What the holy heck are you talking about, Wolf?" you ask. "Are you 'shroomin'?" you say. Yes, as a matter of fact, I am!

Tonight, I'm drinking a beer that was brewed with mushrooms. Yup, mushrooms. If you're not from around here, I should probably clue you in about mushrooms and the Pacific Northwest. We have a lot of rain. We have a lot of forests. Mushrooms love damp forests. It's where they live. Lots of Oregonians forage for mushrooms. It's kind of a big deal. Some mushrooms are for eating--like my favorite Chanterelles--and some are for, uh, other things. We have a veritable mushroom bounty every fall in these parts, and there are dozens of delectable mushroom varieties that most folks out in the real world have never heard of before.

Old Town Brewing Company's Mushroom Ale is flavored with Candy Cap mushrooms. I'm not sure when the mushrooms are added. To the boil? In the fermenter? Beats me. A REAL journalist would find out for you, but I'm just a lowly blogger, so I'm not held to any kind of standards--other than my own very low ones. Sorry.

Candy Caps are an interesting little fungus because they taste and smell exactly like...are you ready for this? Maple syrup. Bam! How are they in a beer? Delicious! Pow!

The beer poured into my glass a dark amber color with a creamy, light tan head. The head rose up to almost two fingers thick and dissipated at a moderate rate. A thin cap of lacing was left behind.

Aroma was full-on maple syrup up front. Brown sugar. Sweet caramel malt. Some muted citrus and floral notes.

Taste followed the nose. Maple syrup. Sweet malt. A mild but appreciable hops bitterness was present to balance  things out quite  nicely.

Medium to slightly full mouthfeel with a smooth, creamy finish. Very drinkable and light on the palate  at the end.

Overall, this is a terrific beer. Something new, different and unapologetically  Pacific Northwest. I love this beer. I must go get some more tomorrow! My wife tried a sip and proclaimed this the beer that she will use to make her special holiday gingerbread cake this year. That's quite an honor, Old Town Brewing, and I'll let you know how  it turns out.

I'm giving Mushroom Ale a BeerGuyPDX rating of 4 crushed cans out of 4. Get yourself some of this seasonal beer while you can. I bought my bomber at Hollywood Beverage on Sandy Blvd, here in beautiful Northeast Portland.


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