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Fallen Apple

Other reviews for this beer:
Jill Jaracz one beerone beerone beerone beerone beer read it ›
Furthermore Beer
Spring Green, WI

Style: Fruit Beer
ABV: 6.2%

Eddie’s Rating:
one beerone beerone beerone beerone beer   (Outstanding within its style.)

A lot of beer geeks (mostly male) poo-poo fruit beers as too wimpy or “girlie,” a drink fit for (mostly female) beer philistines. Of course, this is both naive posturing and stereotyping, which I think is one of the seven deadly sins. Not sure, though, since it’s been a few years since sweet Sister Mary caught me upside the head with that wooden spoon. Why’d they make spoons that big, anyway?

If we can stop talking about religion, for once, from a brewing perspective, fruit beers are almost like a no-win, since they are tough to get right, and even if you succeed, chances are—unless you’re New Glarus’ Dan Carey—it won’t be hailed as anything more than a decent entry. And if you fail … well, just read Nigel’s review of Leinie’s Apple Spice. It’s because of this I can respect and enjoy a well-crafted fruit beer now and then.

So, when I bellied up to the bar at the local pub the other day and asked the same thing I always ask when bellying up to the bar at the local pub—“What locally brewed stuff do you have?”—and the reply was “Well, this beer was made with apples from an orchard just down the road,” I ordered one up. That, and it was virtually the only craft beer on the menu.

The beer, as you’ve probably figured out from this review’s heading, was Fallen Apple from Furthermore Beer, a brewery that’s based in Spring Green, Wisconsin, but whose beers are contract brewed by—shocker—Sand Creek Brewing in Black River Falls. They used apple cider or juice (there is a difference, but Furthermore’s marketing materials use both words seemingly interchangeably) from Kickapoo Orchard in the Gays Mills/Rolling Ground area of southwest Wisconsin to add some flavor, and a bit of an alcoholic kick, to an otherwise standard cream ale.

It starts out as a light amber underneath a medium head, with some decent lacing. The nose is pretty unassuming, with a light malt aroma tinged with a vague apple scent. Good. I was dreading I’d just bought a hard cider with a bit of malt thrown in, but the smell nixes those fears immediately. The sipping starts with tart—not sweet—apple, followed by a low profile of maltiness. The end is extremely dry, which accentuates the semi-sharp, clean palate. Light and refreshing—for an ale—it uses the tartness of the apple juice/cider as a counterweight against a restrained maltiness, with a pretty damn good result: a very drinkable fruit beer.

Which is why I’m giving it four mugs. My main beef with fruit beers, even with ones I normally like, is that drinking more than one is just too much sweetness for one sitting. Furthermore takes an unexpected cant with Fallen Apple, using that tart/dry combo as, basically, their hopping agent (in terms of taste, at least) to create a uniquely balanced fruit beer. That in and of itself makes it one of the better fruities I’ve had. So, fruit-beer loving females out there, grab that Fallen Apple, take it to your main man, and give him an eye-opening sip. Tell him slitherin’ Eddie Glick says it’s all right.

And Sister Mary thought she’d gotten through to me.

Reviewed by Eddie Glick on November 4, 2007.
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