Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Mendocino Blue Heron Pale Ale
I have been sampling a lot of Mendocino thanks to a killer sale at Whole Foods the past month. First up on the docket is this upstate New York brewery's Blue Heron Pale Ale. The label again does not list an alcohol content (must be a ny thing), but it does offer a nice little description of the brew: "Blue Heron Pale Ale, created in 1985, was an immediate hit with hop lovers. A golden ale, Blue Heron has a full body with a refreshing, distinctive, hop character. Blue Heron leaves a fresh, clean, hoppy aftertaste. This ale is made with pale malted barley, whole hops, and our special yeast and water." This six-pack cost me a $6.99 again at a very affordable 1.16 each (same as my last and coincidentally first review).
The glass fills with a thick head white head (just like in cartoons) and a semi-lucid golden ale. Now pale ale's are my personal favorite, so this is where I will probably be at my pickiest. I pick up the faint scent of citrus and hops, but not nearly what I expected. The taste is smooth but not as hoppy as I would like with more of a cereal presence and leaves a mildly bitter and salty aftertaste. The head has diminished rapidly leaving a little "frost" on my glass and the temp change isn't doing much, though I do like my PAs cold. I would label this a low carbonated light medium-body ale.
The Blue Heron is not bad, nor what I expected. Seems to leave some room for improvement, maybe focusing it's taste and pairing it better with the aroma. I'd drink it again and won't stop buying it on sale.