“Wry Pale Ale” from Laurelwood Brewing Co. (Portland)

What is pale ale, anyway? Most breweries take the less-is-more route, churning out “safe,” watery varieties typically with a single distinguishable flavor: wheat. Wheat and water: this is what they think of people – that these two generic ingredients are enough to captivate. Laurelwood, I want to kiss you because you live by a different credo. Ingeniously, you’ve produced a beer deceptively lager-like—golden and bubbly with a lively white head—but it’s pale ale through and through. The wry is very subtle, imparting just a whiff of nuttiness to one of the most refreshing beers I’ve ever had. Bitterness is present, but, like the wry, it hovers below the surface like toxins on a poison dart frog. I must confess, after the first few tastes, I tipped this monkey back and drained it. Hands down the best pale ale I’ve tasted.

Grade: 10/10

Learn more at: http://www.laurelwoodbrewpub.com/

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