Sunday, May 2, 2010

Going Alt with Haverill's Gestalt Altbier

I still have LOTS to learn in the areas of German style ales and lagers. There are many. So to start, I picked up an altbier made all the way from...Haverhill, MA, very close to home.

The label is informational (which I love!) - they use German yeast, malts, and hops and brew in the altbier ("old beer") tradition. It ages for 2 months, and has the crispness of a lager, hoppiness of a pale ale, and maltiness of a brown ale. This is pretty right on! The appearance is my least favorite part of this beverage. Its murky in a way thats a bit unappealing to me. It is brown but with some hints of amber. There was a tiny white head that immediately fizzled out. The smell, however, instantly stood out. Apples, grapes, clean grassy hops, sweet malts. I like! The taste is very balanced. Sweet malts, fruit (apples, grapes), nuts, some bitter hops. It's a pleasant taste that is very drinkable. Overall, this is a nice, refreshing, easy-going, balanced beverage. I don't know much about Altbiers, except its an old style of beer from the Dusseldorf region. But I'm happy to get to try this, and open to try more Alts!