It's #FloridaBeerFriday. Every Friday, we take a look at a beer brewed in the Sunshine State, giving analysis to the burgeoning craft beer movement of Florida.
After a pretty busy week, it's nice to sit down and relax with an old friend. Sometimes that old friend surprises you with a little change. Is that a new haircut? New kicks? Did you finally shave off that pornstache?
That's how it feels when finding a 'variation on a theme' from one of your go-to beers from one of your go-to beer spots. Which is exactly what happened this week upon finding that Funky Buddha Brewery's Red Dawn, their Cold War era red ale, got the saison treatment.
"We took Red Dawn and fermented it with saison yeast," David Finch, Funky Buddha Lounge's Assistant Manager told us. "It's pretty good. And you get a bonus .2% abv boost." He grinned at that last part.
The beer is poured in a 12 ounce glass, and comes out dark ruby, clear, and with little head. The aroma screams "I'm a big estery saison" which thankfully makes a lot of sense.
The flavor is big on toffee from all of the specialty malts, and includes such varied taste characters as almonds, nuts, and even some toasted marshmallow. The finish is drier (hence the extra point two percent of alcohol present. Saison yeast like to eat more.) and is a bit more floral.
It's an interesting take on a familiar face, and is a great experience for beer lovers to see the difference that changing the yeast strain can do.
Saison Red Dawn is available at the Funky Buddha Lounge in Boca Raton, while it lasts.
Follow #FloridaBeerFriday for more reviews of Sunshine State brews.
Get out there and #DrinkLocal.
Doug Fairall is a craft beer blogger who focuses on Florida beers and has been a homebrewer since 2010. For beer things in your Twitter feed, follow him @DougFairall and find the latest beer pics on Instagram.
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