Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Trinity Brewing TPS Report review

Trinity Brewing TPS ReportAlways follow your instincts! I try to keep decent notes when I attend the Great American Beer Festival (GABF), and when I sampled this brew at the fest I knew I wanted to come back someday for a full serving. So when chance struck to visit Colorado Springs I paid a quick visit to Trinity Brewing Company on Garden of the Gods Road and picked up a bottle of their Trinity Brewing TPS Report.

TPS Report just won a Bronze medal at the 2012 GABF in the American Style Brett Ale category this month and had previously won a GABF Gold medal for this beer in 2009. It's a sour ale, which is one of my favorite types of beer, and while the cost of a 750ml bottle goes for $23.95, I still wanted to get one.

I was worried that driving with a bottle of this in a hot car for two hours might affect the taste, but lucky in this case I believe it didn't affect this beer much, if at all.

TPS Report was made with coriander, 3 different kinds of citrus zest (lemon, lime and tangerine), was aged in French oak barrels with rose petals, and dosed with Brettanomyces and Lactobacillus (the stuff that turns beer sour). I couldn't wait to dive into this bottle.

Appearance: TPS Report poured a pale straw yellow with some noticeable haze. I got a nice bright white 1+ finger head of foam that stuck around just for about 20 seconds before disappearing. Swirling the glass didn't yield much lacing and when left for a minute the head completely disappears.

Aroma: Here is where I got a nice surprise. I could immediately tell that this was a sour ale with Brett. There was a tart, funky, and somewhat citrus aroma in the glass. I could tell that the citrus peels in this beer were making a statement. The beer also had a spicy whiff about it, most likely from the coriander. The overall aroma to me seems fresh, funky, yet very inviting to a sour beer lover. This stuff smelled good!

Taste: Oh yes, this is what I remembered from GABF. This beer is very crisp and refreshing with a mildly sour taste and a hint of citrus and spice. It has such a big flavor for a 4.8% ABV pale colored brew. TPS Report also has that classic Brett/Lacto sour taste that I love in other beers. It was hard to pick up on any of the oak at first, but after it warmed up a bit I could pick out some woody distinction.

Jason Yester at GABFOverall: If you're not a sour fan, I'm sorry for you, but this may be one of those sours you might actually enjoy. It's has just enough sour in it to notice, but not over the top like some can be. I'd love to drink this beer year round. TPS Report is lower in ABV than most beers, it's very refreshing and won't over power. I just loved this beer. Jason Yester, brewmaster of Trinity, does a fantastic job with the beers they make. I've sampled several of their beers at GABF and now wish I lived closer to the Springs so I could get this more often.

What was surprising to me is that on the bottle label Trinity states that this beer is "Cellarable indefinitely". I find that a bit hard to believe, but perhaps the Brett and Lacto in this beer will continue to change this beer for several years to come. Normally, I wouldn't cellar a beer unless it had at least 8% ABV or higher. But who knows, this may be one that can stand the test of time. I'll just have to buy another bottle and test that theory.

Disclosure: I paid full price for this beer ($23.95) directly at the brewery.

Related articles:
- Trinity Brewing ramps up beer after expansion.
- Grimm Brothers Brewhouse Brett Bock review.
- Odell Saboteur review.

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