Reviews, Commentary and Opinions on Midwest Craft Beer and Microbreweries


Beer Reviews

Apricot Wheat

Lost Coast Brewery
Eureka, CA

Style: Fruit Beer

Jill’s Rating:
one beerone beerone beerone beerone beer   (World class.)

Every week we at Beer Dorks have a staff meeting, during which Eddie Glick usually goes on a tirade about how we’re a Midwestern craft beer site. “We focus on the Midwest, dammit!” he usually shouts. Then he takes a couple swigs of beer for some managerial courage. “The Midwest does not include Colorado! The Midwest does not include New York! Now, I don’t mind you reviewing some other beers every once in a while if you’re on vacation, but let’s stick to the Midwest!” Then he retreats into his office and slams the door, leaving us to get back to work.

I’ve personally been on the receiving end of this rant once. Once. I reviewed a bunch of beers from Florida, and although Eddie was grateful for the content, he made sure I understood that I should drink some more stuff from the Midwest. I did understand, and I’ve been decent about following this rule, and whenever I do travel (say, to Colorado, which according to the Beer Dorks map is in the Rocky Mountain Region), I try to get review clearance first.

What Eddie doesn’t see after his weekly tirade is the reaction from his beloved Senior Reviewer Nigel, who typically rolls his eyes, farts and/or burps, and says, “I don’t give a bloody rat’s ass what Eddie thinks! My readers love me, and they don’t care what beer I review! I’m reviewing whatever beer I want to, dammit!” Then he waddles off to his cube and you can hear him clanging around in his beer fridge (yep, we all have beer fridges in our cubicles—it’s one of the perks about working here), looking for the most inappropriate beer to review so that we can go through this scenario all over again next week.

However, I’m going to go out on a limb and submit a non-Midwest brew. Why would I do this, when I know that at next week’s Eddie Glick rant, Nigel will nonchalantly raise his beefy paw and sell me out? I can hear him now: “Edward, you’ve seen the stack of reviews I’ve submitted compared to the rest of the staff. Now, I’ve noticed Jill sipping a lot of West Coast beer lately. She’s the one who should be reprimanded, not us. And you might want to have her tested to make sure she’s not also drinking …” He’ll pause here for dramatic effect. “… BUDWEISER!”

But that’s the price I’m willing to pay to tell you about this beer. Recently Baby-Boy and I were in Pasadena, and we stopped at the Yard House to have a beer to stave off the incredible heat. I opted for Lost Coast’s Apricot Wheat, and I have to say this could very well be the best fruit beer I’ve ever had.

This wheat beer has a lovely dark golden haze, with a hint of apricot color that reminds you you’re not drinking a regular wheat beer. There’s also a nice amount of lacing on the glass to show its legs. On the nose you get a nice whiff of apricot—it’s not too strong, it’s not too weak. You know you’re getting a fruit beer, but that fact isn’t hitting you in the head.

The taste is amazing. The fruit and wheat flavors are perfectly balanced. Lately I’ve been wondering why a lot of the beers I drink seem a touch watery, and as I drink them, I keep hoping that they’ll open up a bit. I thought I was being fussy, but with this beer I’m convinced that I’m thinking correctly. I got none of that watery flavor as the beer passed through my mouth. It was full throughout.

But how’s the fruitiness? I’ve also been picky about my fruit beers. There’s too much fruit, or, more often than not, not enough fruit flavor. Or even worse, the beer is made with fruit juice. I was starting to feel downtrodden, as if the perfect fruit beer was out of reach.

I’m happy to say perfection is accessible, but I’ve only found it in California. A nice, rich apricot flavor flows throughout the mouth, and it never overpowers the other flavors. You still get a solid wheat beer that’s crisp and well-blended. The finish also comes with a light apricot taste to remind you of what you ordered. It’s not watered down, it’s natural, and it’s absolutely delicious.

So if you can get your hands on this one, please enjoy a few for me. I’ll need the relief after next week’s staff meeting shoutdown.

Reviewed by Jill Jaracz on July 21, 2008.
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