||Pale Wheat Ale - American
This is a very unique and special beer. The Nonconformist Ambrosia Ale was brewed with herbs other than hops*. Though singular by today’s standards, herbal brewing was the norm for millennia. Brewers of these beers chose herbs based upon their medicinal, preservative or psychotropic properties. In addition, these herbs would provide flavor and balance to the sweetness of the sugar (not always derived from grain) used in the brew.
In 1516, the Reinheitsgebot (beer purity law) was passed in Bavaria which, among other things, limited the ingredients of beer to water, barley and hops (yeast was not understood at the time). Soon after, this style of brewing became predominant in European brewing and has (overbearingly) shaped the way we think of beer today.
Well, I say phooey. I don’t care much about convention (although it’s arguable that brewing exclusively with hops is unconventional in the grand scheme of things) and I find hops to be severely limiting a lot of times. So I present to you: The Nonconformist! Ambrosia Ale!
Brewed with *censored* and *censored*, The Ambrosia pours a hazy light amber color. The nose is citrusy, fruity, minty potpourri, and the flavor is quite similar. The sweetness of the beer is balanced with the floral and citrus tones and a strong citrusy tartness is detectable in the finish. A long lingering aftertaste sticks with you and begs you to take another drink. A slight hint of yeastiness in this unfiltered beer is also present.
*censored* and *censored* were both very popular herbs for brewing and as medicine. *censored* has antibacterial and sedative properties, while *censored* has value as a cough suppressant and also has fairly strong antibiotic properties.
On a side note, this beer is not something you’re going to find anywhere. Although brewers do use herbs as adjuncts on occasion, you’ll not find anyone denying hops to this extent. Hopefully this beer will be popular enough to justify more herbal brews in the future.
Cheers and high-fives,