Beer of the Week 50: Chainbreaker

Deschutes Brewery’s Chainbreaker White IPA

From the bottle:

What if wheat wasn’t the goal in itself? But a route to something awesomely new?

You pair wheat, hops and Belgian yeast and suddenly ‘bingo, a wheat like nobody  else’s.’ With real depth, coriander and sweet orange peel, it’s citrus-packed and silky smooth going down.

From my notes:

Cloudy straw white color with thick, creamy looking white head that leaves a light lacing on the glass. Citrus, pine, and spices on the nose. Yeast and wheat when it first hits the tongue with hints of citrus, grapefruit specifically, and some spices, coriander I assume. This is quickly followed up by the crisp hop flavor as it goes down. Smooth and dry finish. Surprisingly juxtaposition of a Belgian and an IPA.

The smoothness of a Wheat beer with the intensity of an IPA?!

I’ve already reviewed a number of Deschutes Brewery’s beers, and they’ve become one of my favorite brewers, Chainbreaker cements my opinion further. The fact that it’s a Witbier and an Indian Pale Ale makes for some interesting questions. IPAs are generally paired with robustly flavored foods that can hold their own against the strengths of the beer. Witbiers are usually paired with lighter fare: seafood, salads, citrus dishes. Chainbreaker is both. So what would it go well with? I think both. Chainbreaker won’t overwhelm delicate, subtle foods but it will stand up to spicy, strong and bold flavored dishes. This beer was a real surprise and a real treat.

Rating (out of five):

Beer of the Week 40: Hell or High Watermelon

21 Amendment brewery’s Hell or High Watermelon Wheat Beer

From their site:

Hell or High Watermelon Wheat is our summer seasonal beer available from April through September in six pack cans and on draft. We start by brewing a classic American wheat beer, which undergoes a traditional secondary fermentation using fresh watermelon. A straw-colored, refreshing beer with a kiss of watermelon aroma and flavor.

From my notes:

Opaque peach color, small bubbled head that dissipates quickly. Smells of wheat, maybe spice and fruit. First taste of the beer has a watermelon taste, like Jolly Rancher’s watermelon. light bitter finish. The feel is thin and  little odd.  The taste, overall, seems artificial. Lightly carbonated.

This beer stumped me.

Despite watermelon being one of my favorite fruits I just couldn’t get into this beer. Not an amazing wheat beer and the watermelon flavor was more of a turn off than anything.

Rating (out of five):