Thursday, October 24, 2013

Norwich Inn Light Humour

I stopped at the Norwich Inn Brewery a few weeks ago on my way back from Boston. Unfortunately I haven't been around much to write up a review on a flight of beers I sampled. It is likely that some of these beers are no longer available on tap but I have no knowledge of their portfolio or tap rotations. The first in the flight is Light Humour, a Belgian-style Witbier.

They have a variety of sized glasses and prices ranging from $3/ half up to $6 for any premium beverage. Small samples are available for individual purchase or a flight of 5.

Aroma: Coriander spice, lemon peels, and orange aromas are very forward. Deep inhalations are met with carbonic acid that scrubs the inside of the nose, giving the impression of high carbonation and a very light body. Malts remain in the background. Fermentation is quite fruity and phenolic. Comes across as almost sour/ tart. Hop aroma is minimal.
Appearance: White head, large bubbles, relatively hazy golden yellow color in the small sample glass. A larger glass such as a shaker pint would likely be very hazy due to the density of liquid and nature of the style. Sample glass is about the size of a double shot shaped like a mug with a little handle. Head retention was very poor for all of the servings. Carbonation fizzes out of solution quickly.
Flavor: Sour notes (or at least a puckering sensation) and coriander spice play out first with fruity esters reminding me of lemon zest or even a lemon cleaning solution. Bitterness is clean and hops partaking no particular flavors. Malts give the impression of pilsner/ graininess. Aftertaste is met with a lingering dryness. I also noted a green-apple flavor in the aftertaste which could be a sign of acetaldehyde.
Mouthfeel: Dryness in the aftertaste is mild, with no harsh flavors or astringency coming out. Serving temperature was pleasant and allowed for lots of fruity esters, spices, and phenols to shine. Moderately high carbonation helps lift the pilsner malt graininess while the spices continue to leave an impression. Low alcohol or least well hidden. Moderately light body.
Overall Impression: Coriander spice could be toned back or a colder serving temperature could be used to restrain both spices and phenols. Bartender noted it was somewhere just shy of 5% ABV but I wasn't convinced of his interest in the matter. Service was generally lackluster.

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