Monday, January 23, 2012

The Lost Abbey | Devotion Ale

Ah... the famed Lost Abbey. To pick up with a bit more of the history lesson started in the review of "Port Wipeout IPA"....... The Lost Abbey is a brand of Port Brewing Company, and they are both brewed in the same brewery. As previously mentioned, that brewery, started in 2006, is in fact the old brewery of Stone Brewing Co. They (Stone) needed to expand and sold their brewery to Port. Though Port and The Lost Abbey share a brewery, the brands are geared at very different markets. Port Brewing is aimed at the American West Coast style of beers, generally very bold and hop forward. Or in the case of their darker beers, just well-made versions of American favorites. Lost Abbey on the other hand, focuses on complex Belgian style beers, many of which are barrel aged, and some are inoculated with a wild yeast strain called Brettanomyces. But, if you're a beer geek like we are, chances are you'll be interested in both brands! Anyway, lets pop the cork on this bottle.

Devotion Ale, the Belgian Pale/Golden Ale from The Lost Abbey. Poured into a Chimay chalice glass, this ale has a very hazy amber color with a big foamy white head. The head recedes pretty quickly with bits of sticky lacing left on the glass. The aroma is very soft and unobtrusive; hints of sweet doughy malt, yeast (very slightly funky), spice, citrusy hop (lemon, orange), and apple. Instead of one ingredient jumping out and punching you in the face, everything is working together in unison.

The taste starts very crisp and lively with notes of grassy noble hops, grannysmith apple, and lemon. Extreme effervescence upfront quickly turns creamy smooth, opening up sweeter bready malt flavors, spice, and oranges. Towards the finish, this ale gets drier and has a bit of a yeasty band-aid funk / tartness to it mixing with more lemon. This might sound a little off-putting to some, but it really makes it quite mouth-watering and refreshing!

The crisp, light, highly carbonated mouthfeel of this brew makes it pretty easy to drink, and there is no hint of alcohol present. At 6.25% ABV, this isn't necessarily a "strong beer," but for how drinkable it is, it can sneak up on you. Although it's quite different from most pale ales we carry in the store, Lost Abbey's Devotion is worth checking out. While not the bold piney west coast IPA type, this beer still showcases noble hop and yeast flavors in perfect harmony. If you liked Brooklyn Local 1, you will definitely like this one. Enjoy Devotion on its own or paired with light fare like cheese, crackers, breads  etc. Personal 8.5/10 for a belgian style pale ale 9/10.

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