Thursday, 16 July 2015

Terrestrial India Brown Ale

It's been a while since I've tried something new from Guelph, Ontario's stalwart Wellington Brewery, but on my way home recently I spotted a 750mL capped swing top bottle of Terrestrial India Brown Ale, and I had to make it my own.

Terrestrial is a 5.9%, oaky amber ale that hazily pours with a lusty cream head.  According to the label, it has a depth of 57 IBUs, which isn't unsubstantial. There is an earthy, nutty aroma that competes with an enjoyable hops vibe. The beer isn't as flavourful as I wanted it to be, but the notes present were quite pleasing. Toasted malt, nutty confectionery, and dank hops all vie for attention, though the hops wait in the wings until close to final curtain.

I find hybrid beers like this incredibly interesting, but also hard to assess. I guess the trick is to play it like the late, great Roger Ebert and rate them contextually, based on what I think they set out to achieve. Terrestrial is, to me, a brown ale with heavy-handed hopping, and I feel like that's what was intended. It's tasty and refined--though this means it's not as pushy or boozy as it could have been. I enjoyed it, and would gladly revisit it in short order. The name, though, gives me pause. Terrestrial? With a UFO on the label? Maybe I'm being too literal, but it doesn't work for me.

Rating: 7.5 out of 10.

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