One Trick Pony

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by Longhorn08, Sep 7, 2019.

  1. Longhorn08

    Longhorn08 Aspirant (228) Feb 4, 2014 Texas

    I recently picked up a Prairie Bible Belt, hadn’t bought a Prairie beer in a while, not because they are not great, but because they are pricey AND (to the point of the thread) I hadn’t been in the mood for a stout in a while. Prairie makes amazing stouts but that’s about it. I’ve had a few of their other styles and they are lack luster.

    So I consider them a one trick pony, because they only make one style of beer that is really great.

    Another one trick pony that comes to mind here in Texas is Jester King. If you’re in the mood for a fruited or sour wild ale, then you have your answer, but anything other than that, look elsewhere.

    Anyone else know of any other “one trick ponies” who do one thing, and do it VERY well?
  2. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,603) Mar 12, 2009 New York

    Folks can dispute my choice, and I expect they will. But first let's get out of the way I don't feel one trick pony necessarily to be a bad thing.

    Other Half in Brooklyn/Upstate NY, do hoppy pale ales very, very well. Don't know why they would bother to make anything else, but they do. I know folks will argue that stout that was great, or didn't you taste that one release of... etc., etc. My take is Other Half brew amazing hoppy beers in pale ale styles and that is the pony's one trick.
  3. tone77

    tone77 Poo-Bah (5,605) May 20, 2009 Pennsylvania

    The first one that comes to my mind is Brewery Ommegang. Their Belgian style beers are great, all other styles are so-so.
  4. JakerLou

    JakerLou Meyvn (1,078) Jan 6, 2013 New Hampshire

    I'm with you on Prairie. Love their stouts. BA Birthday Bomb is my latest favorite.

    I always think of Clown Shoes as a one trick pony. That trick being really good BA stouts/porters. To be fair I haven't tried any of their non-stout offerings in awhile. Maybe I'll pick up some singles at my local bottle shop and see if they're still a one trick pony.
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  5. dennis3951

    dennis3951 Savant (910) Mar 6, 2008 New Jersey

    I agree with @cavedave being a 1 trick pony is not a bad thing. There is a new brewery close to me Untied. Most of their beers are good enough but their Imperial Stouts are home runs.
    EMH73, JakerLou, SawDog505 and 2 others like this.
  6. islay

    islay Aspirant (284) Jan 6, 2008 Minnesota

    I disagree with that characterization of Jester King. It uses a farmhouse yeast in pretty much all of its beers, but it tackles a remarkably wide array of styles within that self-imposed limitation. Heck, other than Atrial Rubicite, it's probably best known for an imperial stout (Black Metal). It also makes stouts of the non-imperial variety, porters, IPAs, APAs, bitters, mild ales, altbiers, various non-sour and non-saison Belgian ales, wheat ales, kvasses -- and makes them well -- as well as running the gamut of the many traditional sour and farmhouse styles and sour and/or farmhouse style-busters, with and without flavoring adjuncts. It's actually a quite versatile brewery that showcases a wide range of styles and flavors.
    hvy1, emerge077, SammyJaxxxx and 7 others like this.
  7. azorie

    azorie Champion (884) Mar 18, 2006 Florida

    well My favorite beer in the world is definition of a 1 trick pony, (sort of)

    Orval ftw, I know they make a Orval vet but for most of us, its 1 and done.

  8. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,634) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Exactly! I mean look at Rodenbach, Dupont, countless others...If the trick is that good I'll be buying a ticket to the show regardless. :sunglasses:

    Maybe it makes a difference if you're sitting at the brewery and want a change of pace, but that's about it.

    Btw, one time I figured I'd give the Other Half ESB a shot, and I did find it to be a memorable experience. Just not in a good way :wink:.
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  9. beertrip

    beertrip Initiate (60) Feb 6, 2015 New Jersey

    A one trick pony is better than a no trick pony. Seems to be a few of those around as well.
  10. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (3,975) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Well, by your definition of a one-trick pony, they would include folks like Cantillon (Lambics), Duvel Moortgat, etc.
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  11. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (6,783) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Society Trader

    I came here to say this. Well done!
    hvy1, EMH73, azorie and 2 others like this.
  12. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (3,975) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Yep, one beer and done with sales to the public, but what a beer!
  13. alucard6679

    alucard6679 Aspirant (222) Jul 29, 2012 Arizona

    Agree, I've learned to pass on anything they out out that strays from what I know they're good at (and they do make exceptional Belgian style ales)
    officerbill likes this.
  14. ScaryEd

    ScaryEd Poo-Bah (1,901) Feb 19, 2012 New Hampshire

    I disagree. I enjoy my stouts to be above 14% ABV and sweeter than liquified diabetes. You just don't get it.
  15. denver10

    denver10 Poo-Bah (2,529) Nov 17, 2010 New Mexico

    Prairie makes fantastic saisons.

    If they'd date their stuff in a way that I could read at the store and understand, I would have Prairie Standard in my fridge at all times. And their others saisons I have tried have all largely been great.

    I know they also seem to have a ton of rotating kettle sours popping up locally, though not a style I buy packages of to attest to their quality. And they have that Double IPA.

    I really don't think their a one trick pony, though they are a bit focused on select styles.
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  16. denver10

    denver10 Poo-Bah (2,529) Nov 17, 2010 New Mexico

    But they do a variety within that Belgian style range, which to me makes it much different than one trick pony. There's definite differences between a saison, a dubbel, a wit, a stout, etc.

    DISKORD Disciple (337) Feb 28, 2017 South Carolina

    All those breweries who make nothing but IPAs.
  18. donspublic

    donspublic Poo-Bah (1,771) Aug 4, 2014 Texas
    Society Trader

    Most people think that American Solera is a one trick pony with the wild ales. But if you ever get a chance to go by one of their taprooms in Tulsa try one of their NEIPA's, they are some of the best I have ever had.
  19. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Meyvn (1,339) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado

    Left hand. They are known for their milk stout, their Oktoberfest is a sleeper. Everything else is ok.
  20. ScaryEd

    ScaryEd Poo-Bah (1,901) Feb 19, 2012 New Hampshire

  21. alucard6679

    alucard6679 Aspirant (222) Jul 29, 2012 Arizona

    Honestly, I liked them a lot more when they focused on English styles. They had a solid ESB, a good English style porter, etc ...then they pretty much completely redid their core lineup and it's boring. I'd imagine they felt like they had to but in doing so they now have nothing that really separates them anymore

    I do like their Oktoberfest though, one of my favorites from the US
  22. Longhorn08

    Longhorn08 Aspirant (228) Feb 4, 2014 Texas

    Never said it was a bad thing.
  23. Longhorn08

    Longhorn08 Aspirant (228) Feb 4, 2014 Texas

    Maybe you get distro I don’t????! I haven’t seen Black Metal in years, and I live like 2 hours from the brewery.......

    Also I never said they don’t make other styles, although I think you are exaggerating their diversity, they just don’t do a great job on “said” other styles.
    officerbill likes this.
  24. Amendm

    Amendm Zealot (541) Jun 7, 2018 Rhode Island

    I'll see you one Guinness and raise you one Bass.
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  25. denver10

    denver10 Poo-Bah (2,529) Nov 17, 2010 New Mexico

    It was only one time so I am not the most reliable poster here, but the one time I was at Jester King I had a smoked beer, some wild ales, a farmhouse IPA, an altbier, and a Russian Kvass and they were all good to great.
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  26. beertunes

    beertunes Poo-Bah (6,228) Sep 24, 2007 Northern Mariana Islands

    Melvin. Oh, look, another IPA.
  27. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,603) Mar 12, 2009 New York

    You didn't say whether you thought it was good, bad, or neutral. I chose to make my feeling about it known, which is it isn't a bad thing.
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  28. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (1,913) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina

    The one trick pony’s depend on that one trick, if it’s a good one it’s not a bad thing. One trick pony hmmmm, maybe Westbrook Gose, imo it’s a nasty beer, I love the individual components but put them together it’s like drinking warheads.
  29. ScaryEd

    ScaryEd Poo-Bah (1,901) Feb 19, 2012 New Hampshire

    Touche, my good sir.
    Amendm likes this.
  30. Longhorn08

    Longhorn08 Aspirant (228) Feb 4, 2014 Texas

    Fair point. They might have BOSS beers on tap, I’m talking about distro.
  31. jvgoor3786

    jvgoor3786 Poo-Bah (1,676) May 28, 2015 Arkansas
    Society Trader

    Some breweries intend to be this way, right? I'm thinking Cascade, Jolly Pumpkin, Speciation, most Trappist, Veil, etc. Not bad if you do it well and it keeps you in business.
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  32. champ103

    champ103 Poo-Bah (4,518) Sep 3, 2007 Texas

    I use to see Prairie Ale (AKA Saison) all the time which was one of my favorite American versions of the style. I don't see it at all anymore. I actually buy very little of anything from Prairie anymore, as they use to be more about Belgian Saisons and similar styles. I did like the Bomb beers at first, but quickly got tired of them as they are all too busy for me anymore.

    Anyway, the thread title made me think of this ...which is the title track to the Paul Simon movie of the same name. Basically asking what would have happened if only Sound of Silence was a hit :slight_smile:
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  33. champ103

    champ103 Poo-Bah (4,518) Sep 3, 2007 Texas

    I mean Ommegang has been doing many Belgian styles for years, that is basically their identity. Can't blame them for that, and all their beers are legit The Brut IPA specifically is great, that is not part of their Belgian lineup.
    officerbill likes this.
  34. champ103

    champ103 Poo-Bah (4,518) Sep 3, 2007 Texas

    Jester King first made their imperial stout before they were a "farmhouse" brewery, which they now of coarse use that yeast for it as well. While I respect some things they do, others I just don't get. IE green bottles to specifically get a "funk" aka skunk on some things. Their "farmhouse" Commercial Suicide is a joke now. Their collaborations range from a joke to OMG you actually made some thing good for once. Stuff like Atrial and La Vie En Rose are excellent, but I would very much put them in a hit or miss category, though maybe not a on trick pony category.
    Roadkizzle, Roybert and rozzom like this.
  35. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (2,661) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota
    Society Trader

    Ever had a Prairie Okie? It's a kick-ass brown. I picked it up at the same time as Bible Belt and Apple Brandy Noir - and preferred Okie by far. Granted, they do have a LOT of great stouts, and I really like a lot of them.
  36. rypkr

    rypkr Champion (863) Nov 19, 2011 Pennsylvania

    Schlenkerla is a one trick pony. All those bastards are capable of is brewing smoked beers/rauchbiers. The least they could do is barrel age or dry hop one...
  37. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (1,913) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina

    Lagavulin 16 could give me some Highland honey to offset the peat smoke too. All I get is salty seaweed and peat reek.
  38. Doma

    Doma Initiate (33) May 19, 2019 California

    Controversial but easy, Russian River. Based on my long time experiences with them, great IPAs and Belgian styles, but all the rest is quite mediocre, browns, pils, pale ales, stouts and porters, all meh to ok.
  39. tobelerone

    tobelerone Poo-Bah (2,662) Dec 1, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    That’s two tricks though (ipa and Belgian).
    rozzom and champ103 like this.
  40. RaulMondesi

    RaulMondesi Poo-Bah (1,988) Dec 11, 2006 California

    Here I LA I wouldn’t call Monkish a 1 trick pony because I have had an amazing Stout and Belgian Ales by them. That being said, 95% of they Brew are Hazy’s (which are world class). So they are some kind of pony. Not sure about 1 trick though.
    lucius10 likes this.