Friday, November 13, 2015

Sippin’ on G&J - Mobcraft Beer Co

                On those very rare occasions when I’m not drinking beer, I am partial to gin.  So when I found out about theMobcraft Sippin’ on G&J release I was, to put it lightly, intrigued.  A few years back I tried a gin and tonic beer released by Shorts Brewing at the Great American Beerfest, and other than the rare gin barrel aged beer from Vintage Brewing I haven’t seen a gin beer since.  Fortunately Mobcraft was there with a gin beer for my enjoyment.

                If you are unfamiliar with Mobcraft Beer, they have a unique business model, leaving a majority of their beer releases up to the beer buying public.  Almost every new Mobcraft batch begins as a recipe concept submitted to the Mobcraft Beer website.  This beer, batch 22 was submitted by Taylor Rucks of Madison, WI.  The submitted recipes are then pitted against each other in a competition to find out which beer will receive the most pre-orders through the Mobcraft website.  Because Mobcraft is reliant upon customer feedback for the creation of its next release, there have been quite a few interesting one-off beers in their short history, a trend that is sure to continue.
On to the review.

They Say:

                A beer that brings you back to 1994 where you can be laid back while sipping on gin and juice. Mosaic, Citra, Cascade and Galaxy hops provide the juice while juniper berries bring on the gin.
Scaled down so you can brew your own 5 gallon batch.

·         4oz Crushed Juniper Berries –Secondary

·         Wyeast 1968 London ESB Ale

·         11.5lbs Two Row Malt
·         1.5lbs Munich Malt
·         1.5lbs Crystal 20L

BOIL TIME – 60 minutes

·         1oz Cascade @ 60
·         .25oz Citra @ 30
·         .25oz Mosaic @ 30
·         .5oz Cascade @ 30
·         1oz Citra @ 15
·         1oz Mosaic @ 15
·         1oz Cascade @ 15
·         1oz Galaxy @ 15

GRAVITY - 1.076/1.012

IBU - 82

ABV - 8.5%

I Say:

                Sippin’ on G&J pours a hazy orange-ish copper.  A thick, creamy white head with a rocky cap sits atop the glass holding excellent retention (5+ minutes), and leaves heavy lacing behind in the glass with each sip.  Strong juniper notes lead in the aroma, wonderfully representing gin, with citrusy hops standing in for the juice.  With the diverse hops used for the 15 min addition in the homebrew version of the recipe, you would probably be expecting a complex hop aroma and you would be right.  Orange and ruby red grapefruit hop aromas bound out of the glass and go from being overshadowed by the juniper berries to moving to the forefront as the brew warms.

                As in the aroma, juniper leads in the flavor when the beer is still cold from the fridge.  While it warms, the red grapefruit and orange notes become increasingly prominent.  The juniper and citrus fruit flavors mingle remarkably well, creating a complex flavor that even the Snoop D-O-double-G would love to sip on as he rolled down the street with his mind on his money and his money on his mind.  As the G&J continues to warm to room temperature the citrus hop flavors are dominant although the underlying piney juniper notes remain.  The citrusy hops take on a note of grapefruit peel on the back end, although the lingering aftertaste is almost exclusively a deliciously gin-like juniper berry flavor.  Sippin’ on G&J has a moderately high hop bitterness which aids in the perception of citric tartness and a low level of maltiness combined with juniper berries which enhance the perception of gin.  With a moderately light body and a moderately high carbonation, the mouthfeel is similar to a gin with the mouth cleansing carbonation of a gin and tonic.

                Sippin’ on G&J is not your typical beer but it never claims to be.  With the combination of juniper berries and citrusy hops, this beer goes a long way towards simulating a well-mixed gin and juice.   In replicating a gin and juice this beer hits the mark.  Mobcraft Beer often goes out on a limb to replicate flavors or takes a random winning recipe to brew the next release.  The downside of releasing beers based on recipe concepts is that the beers will sometimes be a weird mashup of flavors that may or may not mesh.  Fortunately with Sippin’ on G&J, Mobcraft Beer has knocked one out of the park.  I can only hope that a couple bottles were sent out to Snoop so that he could try the beer that was inspired by one of his best raps.

                That’s all for tonight, check back soon for another review!

                Happy Drinking, and Remember to Always Drink Wisconsinbly!