Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Still Celebrating 2007

I rarely every advocate cellaring or withstanding from drinking an IPA for 12 months after purchase, but that's what I did with my last bottle of 2007 Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale. As the 2008 batch has started to arrive on shelves I decided it's time to clean out the old stock, which was just one last bottle. This beer has been refrigerated constantly since I bought it last November.

The look never changes, it's a beautiful crystal clear orange with a red tint. I love that red tint. My picture doesn't do it full justice. Off white head builds up nicely into a finger's worth of froth and fades down leaving some good lacing. The smell- this doesn't smell like a year old beer. It smells bitter, which is a term I rarely use to describe a beer's aroma, but it also has this resinous pine smell. For a year-old refrigerated beer, it's got a good deal of freshness in it. The taste, pretty close to how I remember. A piny resin hits your tongue and coats it with a formidable bitterness. There's a substantial malt to this, but they keep the body it on the lighter side of medium, or maybe the heavier side of light. Where that malt comes though in the taste is hard to discern, because the pine overwhelms everything so much. There's a toastiness there though, mostly coming through in the finish.

Don't ask me how Sierra Nevada does it, but the fact that this thing holds up for a year almost perfectly, even in the fridge, is amazing to me. I've had other hoppy beers kept in a fridge that long that easily fade away. The 2008 stock should arrive around LA area stores within the next week.

1 comment:

Rational Realist said...

I had my last 2007 Celebration several weeks ago. I found it in the back of my in-laws fridge from a 12-back I had dispersed last Christmas Eve. I was amazed at how good it tasted. I think ten months of consistent refrigeration sure helps. I had my first pint of the 2008 Celebration two weeks ago at San Diego Brewing Company and it was good, too.