Saturday, December 18, 2010

12 Beers of Xmas - On the fourth day of Christmas....

On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me...a Mountain Goat Oak-aged Rapunzel (Belgian Strong Ale)...

Well...this post in my 12 Beers of Christmas series (which actually belongs to yesterday) was going to be about the new Summer small-batch from Mountain Goat, the "Goldilocks" Summer Ale, but it seems this beer is no more...with the few remaining kegs providing some carbonation problems, preventing it from being tapped at the Mountain Goat Brewery bar.

Thankfully, in its place last night at the Goat bar, they tapped one of my favourite beers from 2010 (Number 4 of 5 in my votes for the Local Taphouse Hottest 100) - the Mountain Goat Oaky Rapunzel (Barrel Aged Belgian Strong Ale)!

Since I have already blogged this beer, back when it was first released this year in March, I will not go into full detail about it now...but would love for you to revisit those posts:
After 8 months, Rapunzel is still very drinkable. Despite being a "sipper", this very big beer goes down very easily. However, the wine-like aroma and taste from the Chardonnay barrel-aging has probably over developed a little too much, as it now dominates and possesses a bit of a vinegary character. In a blind tasting, you may think that you are drinking a Semillon Sauv Blanc with a twist of pineapple!

The appearance is still beautiful - cloudy and golden - and the 8.5% alc/vol is amazingly well hidden.

Maybe this 2009 batch is just past its best days.  Nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the two glasses of Oaky Rapunzel that I had...and probably would have drunk more, if I hadn't already consumed a pot and pint of "The Hoeff" Hefeweizen and a pot of the Steam Ale randied through Peaches and well as itching to pop across the road for a "dessert" pot of Holgate Temptress at The Royston Hotel! (Such a delicious night!)

Great crowd at the Mountain Goat Brewery last night. Surprisingly, it was not jammed packed as it can be on Fridays, but everyone seemed quite cheery and festive.

Unfortunately, the night started on a sour note (initially from the non-appearance of Golidlocks, which was soon redeemed in spades by the tapping of Rapunzel), due to a rare moment of really bad bar service. When my wife ordered the first round, one of the bar staff took the money for 2 pots of The Hoeff, pouring one glass (which a froffy explosion, causing it to take a super long time to serve) and then disappearing without serving the second glass, seemingly ignoring said wife as she waited paitiently at the bar for glass 2...??

Thankfully, the beer goodness, quality music choice and general excellentness of Mountain Goat turned the night around quickly.

I also had an excellent chat to Mountain Goat Head Brewer, Jayne Lewis. I made my plea for the Rapunzel to be bottled in Rare Breed longnecks...and Jayne indicated that it may eventually happen. She noted that it won't work with the current formula, as the yeast strain they are using will not bottle condition, but she is very open to seeing Rapunzel bottled at some stage. Awesome!

Finally, if you are looking for something to do next Friday (Christmas Eve), I recommend getting down to the Mountain Goat Brewery, which will be open! There may even be another special Summer Ale on tap.

Alt Christmas Song of the Day: "Fairytale of New York" by The Pogues (with Kirsty MacColl)

...I'm at least happy that that change from Goldilocks to Rapunzel hasn't affected the connection to "Fairytale" of New York!

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