Why do the rude Dutchmen laugh behind her back? I am quite taken by the label, a charming and not at all disease-ridden 19th century agricultural worker lady bringing in the sheaves. Laugh? They should be all rejoicing as this is a really nice beer - a hybrid of American wheat meeting barleywine. The brewer's notes, one of the blessings of the big beer series from Smuttynose, are on point:
The word for this year's Wheat Wine is smooth. Smoother than butter on a baby. Smoother than Reagan in a scandal. Smoother than Charlie in a camel hair coat in Jimmy LaPanza's Lounge. Well, maybe not that smooth.This is an incredible brew and not only in terms of hiding the 11% booze without recourse to insanely high hopping (70 IBU) or roasty malts (it's rich) or something else. A bright orange amber ale under a fine cream froth and thick rim. Cream and summer garden on the nose. In the mouth there is plenty but not too much hop, weedy and green, mixing with the grassy wheat malt and the fruity barley malt - apple, apricot and peach. All in a big body that is like the kinder but equally beefy sister to the brewer's ever excellent Big A IPA. A fine candied fruit finish that lasts and lasts on the end of your tongue. Certainly a sipper - for four to share or for just one to last through a long Red Sox victory, the loyal New Englander that it is. 1/25th of BAers do not like this one - they are simply wrong.