Lakefront Brewery: Cattail Ale

by: BeerAdvocate on 04-25-2007
What’s a Wisconsin Mild Ale? We have no idea. We Googled it and came up with only four results, all of which mentioned this beer. But apparently, we’re tasting a Wisconsin-style Mild Ale this week: Cattail Ale, beer number 7 in our exploration of Lakefront Brewery’s variety eight-pack from Milwaukee, WI. From what we’ve read, Cattail could be a cross between an American Pale Ale and an English Pale Mild Ale, maybe even a Golden Ale. Cattail Ale is brewed according to the now-defunct Reinheitsgebot (German purity law of 1516), using only water, malt, hops and yeast. It’s hopped with Kent Golding and finished with a California Ale yeast strain.

The Taste
Lakefront Brewery: Cattail AlePours a bright, pale light gold beer with a very fine carbonation that creates a thin white head, dissipating quickly to a ringed lace. Soft herbal and hay aromas in the nose, with a hint of stone fruit. Tight and prickly, with a crisp carbonation bite on the tongue. Lemony hop smack up front and a thinned-out splash of apricot fruitiness amongst a bit of malty sweetness. White-grape-like in acidity and flavor. Some oils attach to the palate and smooth things out. Malt character gets crackery and husky at times. Residual sweetness and rind in the drying finish.

Final Thoughts
Beer geeks will probably argue the style of this beer until the end of days, and it looks like about half of those who reviewed it on are not fond of it. As for us, we’d probably lean toward an English Pale Mild Ale or Golden Ale. But who cares? The important thing is how it tastes: mediocre at best. Yes, it’s meant to be on the lighter side, but it just doesn’t impress us. The aroma is off and unappealing, and the flavors just don’t sync up to create something we’d want to have a session with. Might be good for washing down some grub, but that’s about it. Cattail Ale is 5.16 percent alcohol by volume.

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