Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Review: Pipeworks Brewing Cash 4 Golden Ale

Locale:  Chicago, IL
Craft Circa:  2012
Style:  Belgian Style Ale
ABV:  10%
Notables:  Batch 19

OK, back to earth Pipeworks.  We’ve been thoroughly impressed with each brew thus far, and although this beer represents another unique collaboration, this bullet misfired.  OK, maybe it grazed us…

Label:  Nice.  Clever and something so cheesy, it’s retro cool.  It’s a trendy name given the state of the economy in recent years and the relentless bombardment of jewelry stores, pawn shops, and etc. advertising “cash for your gold.”  Ironically, microbreweries have been the exception in this downturn.  With this beer, you get the sense you just got a steal from “beer hour” on the home shopping network.  It’s an artisan from Pipeworks, so good chance it is a steal. 

A batch number is hand written on the label, which you can research and discover when that batch was bottled according to their website.  As usual, nice touch. 

Overall:   The aroma was powerful, and simply marvelous.  I cannot express this enough.  The smell was enchanting, almost as if a Belgian Ferry whisked me away to a land of craft beer lollipops, and hop drops.   The head was a fluffy white, probably as fluffy as the clouds in my imaginary beer land.  These beers get a wonderful score for appearance and smell alone.  The presentation was done so beautifully, I was eager to drink up. 

SWEET!  Not in a figurative way, but in a literal sense.  It’s almost as if this beer is loaded with saccharine, and does not let up.  It tastes as though one of the brewers dumped packets of fun dip in the vat before fermentation.  It is reasonably flavorful but the sweetness is relentless.  Any “golden” aspects are hard to come by. 

This is a bottle you may want to consider sharing with someone.  A fifth of this stuff is quite hard to consume yourself due to the sweet persistence, and maybe that was Pipeworks’ intentions. 

It’s very smooth, but almost too smooth for the amount of sweet this brew encompasses.  This brew would have been a little better with either more bittering hops, or something with bite to balance out the ale a little more.  The beer goes down extremely well, especially for a beer that clocks in at 10%.  Its sugary stamina comes from whatever mix Pipeworks used for their strain of Belgian yeast in that it simply overpowered the beer, and did not allow the malt and hop flavors to contribute to the mix. 

Maybe tone down the sweetness a bit Pipeworks, you are in Chicago, and there is only one ‘Sweetness’ in these parts.

…In my opinion, the greatest nickname in all of sports. 

Acquisition:  A Fifth - $12


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