Skip to main content

Beer Review #295 HiCü

The nice folks over at Magic Hat Brewing Company recently sent me a few samples of their summer beers for this year. There are two new beers to this year’s summer sampler and one returning beer, Elder Betty. Elder Betty now comes in cans, pictured below. You can read my full review of the beer below but I still like this one as a good, light, summer beer. My wife really digs it. Today’s beer, HiCü is a new one to me. The bottle immediately caught my eye because it says the words “cucumber” and “hibiscus.” I knew I was in for an adventure before opening this bottle.

06-10-0706-10-03HiCü pours a nice orange color with a thin off-white head. There may have been some slight haze in this one, but my glass fogged up pretty quickly (thanks stupid warm weather) and I couldn’t get a clean look. The nose is cucumber. It’s crazy to say but this beer reeks of cucumber. I’ve never smelled a beer like it. My wife has face wash that smells pretty close to the nose of this beer. There really isn’t much else in the way of hops or malt, just a concentrated cucumber smell.

On the first taste I got a bit of sweetness upfront followed by an odd bitterness. Perhaps it was the hibiscus, but the bitterness was not only hop based. It has a strange twang to it that I’m not totally sure if I enjoyed or not. The cucumber flavor comes in at the end and cleans up the beer nicely. I really liked the aftertaste on this beer. The cucumber flavor is so different for a beer that it makes you want to keep drinking it to see if you are really tasting it.

This is a really interesting beer. There are only a few beers that I can truly say surprised me with interesting flavors, and this is one of them. I really wish the bitterness was toned down a bit. Doing so would make this beer super drinkable. I felt like I had to fight though the weird bitter flavor to get to the good part of this beer. This one comes in at 4.2% so it’s sessionable. Try this one out if you get a chance and see if you can pinpoint the bitterness for me.

Beer Review #289 Sprung

04-28-03Evolution Craft Brewing Company puts out a lot of really nice beer, and their selection is only growing. I recently had one of their barrel aged beers, which was a little sweet for my tastes. I have several other of their limited/season beers waiting to be reviewed and Srung happen to be up today.

Srung is an “ale brewed with hibiscus, chamomile, and honey.” It comes in at a nice, sessionable 4.9% as well. Sprung pours a light amber color and has an off-white head. There are some floaties in there which I wasn’t expecting but it is thanks to the yeast used to carbonate the beer. The nose is very pleasant, with some really nice bready/toasty notes. There is some slight honey along with some slight malt sweetness to be found as well.

On the first taste I was really surprised at the about of bread flavor to be found. I was expecting some of the additions to take a larger roll upfront, but bread wins out. A bit of honey can be found as well. Midway through the drink, a nice sweetness builds in on the backend of the beer. A slight hop flavor (just a bit of bitterness) cleans out the sweetness and end the beer.

I really liked this one. It is well balanced but still malt forward. It’s hard to find a beer that is malt forward without being overly sweet, but this one does it. The bread/toast flavor is very nice as well and really fills out the beer. Sprung is still on shelves so buy it while you can. (more…)