I went into this looking for a tasty beer that I haven’t had before and appropriate for the season. As I made my way through the isles perusing for the one… This beauty caught my eye, and if you know me you know I had to stop as soon as I saw the word SOUR. Not only that but it was surrounded by “dry-hopped” and “grapes.” Game. Over.
I bring you, Atomic Kangarue, a collaborative creation from two of my favorite breweries, The Bruery and Smog City Brewing. I must admit it was the name that first drew me in but the description sold me on it. The name must come from the two varietals used to make this wonderfully complex beauty. Semillon from what I gathered, first arrived in Australia in the 19th century and Viognier originated in the Rhone region of France but can also be found in regions of North and South America as well as Australia and New Zealand. These, along with the Brettanomyces Trois, work together in unison to make this delicious treat.
It pours a hazy rich golden yellow that reminds me of a ripe mango or a golden SoCal sunset, with a white head that fizzes and grows to about 2 inches before dissipating and clinging on to the glass for dear life. The nose is greeted with slight tartness that is definitely present but not prominent. There are also grape skins, fruity esters similar to white wine, hints of tropical fruit like mango from the Brett Trois, and a wild funky earthiness that comes out more as it warms up. How does it taste you ask? Well, there is initial tartness, a sharp acidity and sourness that hit the tongue right away. It’s followed by notes of mango, stone fruit, and green grape, then some funk and tannins come through in the middle. The sourness is there but not over the top. It has a refreshing funky finish that’s well balanced with lingering tropical fruit notes. So much going on here, my novice palate may not capture it all.
Overall this is a delectable and complex beer. Well balanced despite everything that’s going on and deceptively easy to drink coming in at 9.8%. Be easy on this one and respect it.