It is pretty safe to say that my household consumes more than our fair share of alcohol. This generally makes it a fun place to hang out but it is a house divided. Obviously, I am a huge beer nerd and a lover of all things whiskey but the woman of the house cringes at the mere thought of the beverages I love so much. She is a big supporter of the champagne and spirit industries1 and our two worlds rarely mix.
Thanks to the team at New Belgium our two worlds might come together after all with the release of a beer that is brewed to be used as a mixer in cocktails. Pear Ginger Beer is a new addition to the Lips of Faith Series from new Belgium and it is exactly what the name suggests. A beer brewed with loads of ginger and pear. According to New Belgium the beer can be drank straight as is or used in the creation of countless cocktails. For todays review I will be drinking it straight.2
The beer pours a hazy golden yellow that is quite inviting. A vigorous pour generates a hefty chunky white head that dissipates quickly into a halo of bubbles. My first sniff of the glass brings a big pear note that is much stronger than anticipated. It is reminiscent of actual pear juice and not an artificially sweet pear flavoring. After analyzing it for a minute or so I get notes of wheat and a slight tartness.3
I take my first sip and I get the classic wheat character along with the pear juice and then all of the sudden. Bam. Ginger. As I swallow my first sip I get a huge ginger slap across the face. Generally when I hear of a beer having flavors like pear and ginger I expect subtle hints of the mentioned flavors but this beer is not subtle in its presentation of its two namesake flavors. As I continue my way through the bottle I find the ginger to have a cumulative effect. It seems to grow stronger and linger longer with each sip. As I reach the halfway point in the bottle the lingering prickly spiciness no longer subsides between sips. As the glass warms I start to get a citrusy lemon flavor that pops up throughout the sip and is beaten down by the ginger.