Winter Style Beers: Wassail

I poured the Full Sail’s Wassail at refrigerator temp into a my wide mouthed candle holder. (For those playing at home, my candle holder is the same approximate size and shape as a stemless pinot noir glass. One makes due with what one has on hand.) The color is a deep, deep amber. The nose reminds me of gingerbread cookies baking. There are plenty of sharp edges about the tongue with a rich malty finish that stays with you.

Feeling that I wasn’t doing the beer justice at refrigerator temp, I let it sit in the glass during our 40 minute Mana Tombs run. After warming up a touch, it was like having a different beer. The sharp spiky hops mellowed out and the cinnmon and ginger became much more noticeable without being cloying. We tried the orange spritzer trick again with great results. This beer tastes amazing with buttery sweet cookies, resulting in one of those 1+1 = 3 experiences. The look on my wife’s face was priceless! The beer that was far too bitter for her 40 minutes earlier had become delicious at a few degrees warmer and with a cookie. It seemed to clash with the buckeyes, so I would avoid pairing with most salty foods. I’ll have to update the post after giving this a try with dark chocolate.

I recommend this one to anybody with even a passing interest in darker beers. Try not to serve too cold or you could turn off people that don’t enjoy the hoppy flavor. Pair with any buttery cookie that isn’t too sweet. Sugar cookies are a go, but you may want to avoid the frosted variety. Try not to pair with sweets or cookies that have a lot of ingredients as it may clash with this complex brew. (Chocolate may be a go, but not chocolate with nuts, and coconuts.) It tasted just fine in a wide mouthed glass and in a standard pint.

If you’ve got some time to spend on a beer, Full Sail’s Wassail is a good investment.

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