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Beer Reviews

Infinite Wisdom

Upland Brewing Company
Bloomington, IN
USA
http://www.uplandbeer.com/

Style: Abbey Tripel
ABV: 9.0%

Eddie’s Rating:
one beerone beerone beerone beerone beer   (Recommended)


Comments:
Here I am again, my schnoz hovering over a tulip glass full of another stab at the Belgian strong golden ale style by a Midwest craft brewer. This time it’s Upland Brewing based in Bloomington, Indiana. Although the folks at Upland label this one a tripel—alluding to an inspiration from the abbey beers, like the archetype of the style, Westmalle Tripel—the devils scrawled onto the funky label art might be hinting at a Duvel influence. Let’s see what the smelling and sipping says.

Infinite Wisdom pours a luminous gold underneath a big ol’ pile of white foam. The nose is grassy herbal notes—moreso than the typical Belgian yeast spiciness I was expecting—mixed in with some light pilsner-like malt.

The taste is super fruity for the style, orange-like citrus overtones, and even some banana here and there. More like a Bavarian weiss beer than a Belgian tripel/golden ale, although a big dose of alcohol (9.0 percent ABV) and some nutty maltiness keeps reminding me this ain’t no summer quencher. The carbonation keeps it drinking light and spritzy, though. That is, until the beer starts to warm. Then the malt comes to the fore, and things get a little big and cloying. Toward the end some sips were even a tad harsh, with a bit of the alcohol showing through.

Infinite Wisdom is an interesting take on the style, and while some purists might have problems with the citrusy esters stealing (at least the forefront of) the show, I found the twist to be a pleasant surprise. Although as a whole this entry from Upland doesn’t measure up to the great golden ales—Trappist or otherwise—of Belgium, I could easily see myself buying another bomber (or two) again in the future.

Reviewed by Eddie Glick on June 2, 2010.
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