Once more I dip my senses into a glass of fine beer, this beer I actually tried when I was in Connecticut for a wedding. Now at the time I was living in Maine and never heard of this beer before because most of the stores just don't carry it. After a long drive from Maine to Connecticut my dad and I stopped at the pier to look at the ocean, anything other than staring at a bunch of cars for three hours. We then processed to go to a package store, and found a small one tucked up on a hill with a very small parking lot. Inside was row after row of wines, craft beer, different whiskeys,rum, gin you name it they probably have it. We looked around and my dad found Ballantine Ale it had been a long time since he last had it so decision made.
Up to the counter and a few moments later back in the truck and off to the hotel we were staying at. For me this was a new beer so I was skeptical of it,took a looked at it and though “it's in a green bottle so it must be a skunk y beer, or being 4.85AVB it might be on the heavy side.”
Into a glass crystal clear yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high bright white head that died down, leaving some patches of bubbles on the surface, a miniscule collar around the edge of the glass, and bits of lacing running down the sides. Light aromas of grainy malts are present in the nose along with some slight hints of skunk.
The taste mostly follows the smell and I can pick up traces of corn with a light amount of bitterness.
Ballantine Ale Americas largest selling Ale. For those seeking out a heartier beer with pronounced hop flavor and higher alcohol content. Ale in nature, Ballantine touts an elevated alcohol level of 3.80% by weight and 4.85% by volume, all for the purpose of accommodating its hefty bitterness and aromatic hop character. “Dryhopped” with the Cascade hop variety,
Ballantine sports pronounced hop flavor and heavier mouth feel. Fermented at higher temperatures
for that ‘ale’ likeness, Ballantine combines a lager’s best attributes with the smoothness of an ale.
Ballantine Ale is unique. For me it's a treat and a bit of a rarity, yet it is widely regarded as run of
the mill type stuff for many due to its status as a heritage or granddad beer. However, leaving it at
this would be a serious oversight of a great American ale.
Brilliantine’s an affirmation that real hop flavor existed in beer well before the craft boom, and that
heritage beers are not automatically shadows of what they should be. It's clean, refreshing, and has
real flavor. I was truly surprised and if you look under the cap there is a picture puzzle to be solved.