On the docket: 22 oz. bottle of Jester King’s Snörkel, Farmhouse style ale brewed with Oyster mushrooms and smoked sea salt. Bottle date: 6/17/2015.
Poured into: Brand new Snörkel snifter, courtesy of my generous BA friend, Ozzylizard
S: A golden-delicious apple gold body that supports a quickly dissipating thick, stark white head. Tiny bubbles journey to the top like they mean business. There’s a fair amount of haze in this one,
A: Lemony citrus greet the senses, mixed with a gentle spice and a bit of barnyard funk, as most would term it. No discernable hop aroma wafting off the head.
T: Wow. Lots of flavors working together in this beer. An initial lemon zest gives way to tart, almost mouth-puckering acidity. Tangy wheat and sour yeast. It certainly took me by surprise. There’s a bit of pale-malt doughy sweetness in there, but briefly. The conclusion of my first sip yielded earthy, woody, umami richness. It ends quite dry, and the mushroom presence lingers a few seconds after the liquid is on its way down. One should also take note of the sea-salt, and a very maritime, mineral like flavor, plus a bit of smoke not unlike peaty scotch. This would be an excellent addition to a plate of raw shellfish, especially the briny, salty varieties of oysters and mussels. It’s sort of like getting the whole “raw bar” experience in one beer- perhaps minus the cocktail sauce.
F: Light, well attenuated, and showcasing excellent effervescence for not being something like a Belgian tripel (my general benchmark for bubbles in beer). Long finish, as evidenced in the paragraph above.
O: Unusual but flavorful example of the farmhouse style. The components play well with each other, especially the funk and salt and umami. One of the best I’ve had, in part appealing to my love of mushrooms.
S: 3.75 A: 4 T: 4.5 F: 4 O: 4
Suggested food pairing: Raw shellfish, salads with lemon based dressing, stir-fry with mushrooms, hummus and pita chips