Friday, February 13, 2009

New Belgium Mighty Arrow Pale Ale review

New Belgium Mighty ArrowUntil just recently, the only way to get one of the New Belgium Brewery's newest pale ale was to buy a 12 bottle Folly Pack or to get it on tap from New Belgium or a local restaurant. But now, Mighty Arrow Pale Ale is available from NBB as a stand alone product available in 6-packs. It's been a while since I had a glass on tap so once it came out solo I grabbed a bottle for review.

Mighty Arrow was named after the CEO's former Aussie/border collie who had the run of the brewery a few years ago. I think Kim found the perfect way to honor the memory of her pet with this brew.

Mighty Arrow poured a nice copper color with a big carbonated action. It gave a solid 2-finger near white head in my NBB tasting glass and left an excellent lacing along the glass. I think this glass was made for this beer. The laser etched bottom created a huge stream of bubbles flowing to the top of the beer.

New Belgium brewed this beer with a honey malt base and designed the aroma around both Cascade and Goldings hops. Last year, they threw in some Amarillo hops for bittering but may have altered the recipe a bit since then.

The aroma was a familiar one to this pale ale drinker. The hops produced a nice piney and citrusy aroma and a hint of sweet malt. What I didn't get from the smell was their signature Belgian yeastiness. Perhaps it is a slight departure for this brew they were after.

The first taste was of the honey malts with a nice blend of bittering hops. It was a very smooth drinker, slightly sweet and with a creamy mouthfeel. I could taste a bit of a Belgian-like yeast in this beer but it was nicely put into the background. The taste was crisp and clean. Very refreshing indeed. This would make an excellent year round beer.

Mighty Arrow weighed in at 6% ABV so it's a bit high for a session brew but I swear I could have had a few of these with no problem. It was mildly hopped and far from an IPA. There wasn't the bitter finish in this brew that other pale ales have. It was highly enjoyable.

Everything about this beer was right on the mark. I think New Belgium has a winner with this brew and it should quickly become one of their flagship brews I believe. I'm giving this brew a big Thumbs Up and a definite buy again recommendation. Way to go NBB!

Related articles:
- New Belgium offers Mighty Arrow as a standalone.
- New Belgium tasting room revisited.
- New Belgium 2 Below Ale review.

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