Lips Of Faith - Grätzer (3 Floyds Collaboration) - New Belgium Brewing
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4.19/5 rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
We crack a bomber, splitting it into our Great Lakes pint glasses. The coloring is surprisingly dark, showing as cola, with cuffs of chestnut ruby around the edges. The milk chocolate head stands one finger tall, retaining for the remainder of the party. The nose is deep, roasty, and inviting, with wet wheatiness, thickly powdered and burnt oats, molasses, crisp tobacco smokiness, light phenolic clove and vanilla coolness, gentle chocolate cocoa bitterness and sweetness, and soft, but oily black leathers. At first, it nearly tastes like you’re taking a drag from a cigarette, but this quickly abates as the bulk of the flavoring pours in, effectively, and curiously, eliminating a good deal of the smoke. These notes include digestive biscuits, souring wheat, envelope glue, sugar cookie sweetness and breadiness, soft buttery diacetyls, cloven and plastic phenols, burnt flaked wheat, drying wheat flour, nickel, glass, roasted chocolate maltiness, espresso creaminess, peanut dust, dusty and soured ale yeastiness, bittering vanilla extract, and green, under ripe bananas through the back and aftertaste. The body is on the light side, while carbonation is right down the middle. There is impressive slurp, smack, cream, froth, and pop, with the mouth left puckered and partially dried with astringency. The abv is easy, and the beer goes down smoothly.
Overall, believe it or not, this is our first taste of the “Lips of Faith” series. We’ve been under New Belgium’s distribution net for over a year now, so it’s a bit embarrassing, as many a good release has come out between now and way back when. To make matters worse, this is our first grapple with a Grätzer. Yes, yes, we’ve had plenty of smokes and rauchs in the past, but nothing really like this traditional Polish style. The thing that stands out most about this one is how dark it is, on all fronts. It smells like your elderly, pipe-puffing grandfather’s tweed jacket. You know the one, with the sewn on elbow patches. The flavoring departs from this a bit, but you keep that same, aged essence. It is hard to tell what is “New Belgium” about this, and what is “Three Floyds”, but whatever each contributes here, it works. The smoke stands out nicely, and from what we have researched, they stylistically succeed. The best thing, again, is probably its aroma, as that robustness is lost a bit through the taste, but either way, we would certainly buy this to keep us warm all through the winter.
Serving type: bottle
07-29-2014 18:19:29 | More by TheBrewo
3.43/5 rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3
New Belgium and 3 Floyds Lips of Faith Series Gratzer Ale (Huh?), Alc. 4.5% by Vol. What is this gratzer thing? And what does it have to do with zombies on bikes?
It's a dark one, almost black…wait, who am I kidding, totally black, with a creamy tan, long-lasting head. Beautiful. Inviting.
Aroma: soft and creamy, nutty nose. Hints of cocoa and coffee, too. Ever-so slightly sweet. Love it.
Taste: Climbs on board the palate clean and dry, with a swift finish. Medium-bodied. Lacking the flavors teased at in the aroma. Drinks down easily, but lacks essential delights. I'm left searching for flavors and coming up empty. Nothing is left on the palate to enjoy.
Okay, let's read the side of the bottle for some clues to what I may have missed. "It's not dead, but gratzer is a long-buried style from Poland. Together with Three Floyds we have unearthed it's robust smokiness with oak smoked wheat and midnight wheat, Polish lupulin hops for a bitter bite and lacto for a slightly sour finish, this pours out a billowing foamy mouth worth indulging."
What? We call the head a "mouth" now? Whoever's writing this stuff for New Belgium, man, you and me, we got problems, bubo. Those are terrible sentences!
But, am I wrong? Smoky? Barely. Robust? Hardly. The sour is slight, though, I'll give them that, but the bitterness does not bite. Sometimes poetics, when used gratuitously, betray the brew.
Serving type: bottle
07-28-2014 04:49:28 | More by feloniousmonk
Lips Of Faith - Grätzer (3 Floyds Collaboration) from New Belgium Brewing
80 out of 100 based on 301 ratings.