While visiting Southern California recently I met up with Ryan, a good friend of mine from college, and we headed to the Yard House in Pasadena, CA. If you are not familiar with the Yard House, it is a chain of bar and grill restaurants in Southern California where they have on the order of 100 different beers on tap. If you go, I suggest surveying the tap handles while you wait for your table. Upon leaving I discovered that there were a few offerings that were not listed on the menu.
One of the beers that I selected was Avery White Rascal from Avery Brewing out of Boulder, CO. Avery is a brewery that has been coming up in some of the beer reviews on other blogs and so I thought I would try some of their brew. White Rascal is a traditional Belgian style witbier brewed with two-row malt, Belgian wheat, Czech Saaz hops, corriander, and Curacao orange peel.
Avery Brewing provides the following description of White Rascal on their website:
A truly authentic Belgian style wheat or “white” ale, this Rascal is unfiltered (yup, that’s yeast on the bottom) and cleverly spiced with coriander and Curacao orange peel producing a refreshingly fruity thirst quencher.
Serving Type. This beer was served on-tap into a pint glass.
Appearance. White Rascal has a nice white frothy head that lingers in the form of a thin layer of foam on the top of your beer until the last drop. It is pale yellow-white in color and cloudy in appearance, both are attributes to be expected from a Belgian witbier.
Smell. The aroma of this beer has the expected Belgian yeast smell but it is slightly subdued and not overwhelming. The aroma has a smooth ripe banana smell and light accompaniment of cloves. It has a hint of citrus and and sweet grains.
Taste. White Rascal has a light grain-like sweetness that can be described as refreshing and not sugary. There is just the lightest hint of bitterness, with only 10 IBUs, and it is enough to balance the light maltiness in the beer. The orange peels come through with a some citrus flavor in the finish.
Mouthfeel. The mouthfeel is that of a light-bodied beer with just the right amount of carbonation. It was just a touch watery tasting and based on the final gravity I’m surprised it is not more watery tasting. The original gravity is listed as 1.050 and the alcohol content is 5.6% so, based on calculations, this makes the final gravity 1.007.
Drinkability. Just like many beers of this style, White Rascal is a very drinkable beer appropriate not only for warm weather but also for a slightly chilly evening. Although I prefer Flying Dog’s Woody Creek White, this beer comes in at a close second and I would drink it again and again.
Rating. My ratings below are on a five point scale with five being the best score.
- Appearance (20%): 4.0
- Smell (20%): 3.5
- Taste (40%): 3.5
- Mouthfeel (10%): 3.5
- Drinkability (10%): 4.0
- Overall: 3.65
- Style: Belgian witbier
- Brewery: Avery Brewing
- Alcohol by volume: 5.6%
- Original Gravity: 1.050 (12.4 Plato)
- Final Gravity: 1.007 (1.8 Plato)
- Hops: Czech Saaz
- Malt: two-row malt, Belgian wheat
- Other ingredients: Curacao orange peel, coriander
- Beer Advocate rating: 3.69 (as of April 5, 2009)
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