It has been a long time since I’ve done a proper beer review, and I think a Maine brew is the perfect way to get back in the swing of things. Bottled on 2/11/14 and enjoyed only 16 days later. I’d never heard of this beer before, and hadn’t read anything about it until the blurb I pulled from Maine’s website (see below). Apparently, a tiny beautiful something uses a new hop variety called El Dorado.
a tiny beautiful something showcases a new hop variety, El Dorado. We started playing around with this hop last year. We brewed a pilot batch with this hop exclusively and one with it blended with some of our other favorite Northwest varieties. In the end, we decided that the El Dorado had such a unique and interesting character on its own, so we decided to brew it as a “single hop” pale ale. The aroma and flavor offer intense candied orange and citrus zest. A touch of flaked oats provide a rounded, silky mouthfeel. And like our other hoppy offerings, tiny was brewed to finish dry and clean.
Color – Yellow-Orange
ABV – 5.5%
O.G. – 1.049
Malt – American 2-Row, CaraPils, Caramel 40L & Flaked Oats 10L
Hops – Warrior, El Dorado
Appearance: a tiny beautiful something pours a hazy yellow-orange with a white head of tiny bubbles. Aesthetically it lives up to the name, I suppose. Not every beer is brilliantly clear. It is a very pleasing color.
Smell: New hop varieties mean new smells. Though the aroma isn’t particular pungent, there is a distinct tropical fruitiness to it. These aren’t the usual suspects though; I get blueberry and maybe even watermelon? Hints of mango and pineapple, too, perhaps. It is hard to tell because the aroma is fairly subtle. Maybe some light herbal notes as well. I’m burying my nose in the glass, but the smell is faint.
Taste: Now that is an interesting flavor. Blueberries is the first thing that comes to mind, but there’s also a hint of bubblegum, some stone fruits, and mango. There’s a peppery finish and a very light bitterness. It is certainly unique and unlike any pale ale I’ve had before.
Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is perfect for this beer. The body is light, but the oats lend a smooth, creaminess to it. The carbonation is prickly and effervescent leading you right into the next sip. There’s no lingering bitterness, and a tiny beautiful something finishes up dry and crisp.
Final Verdict: 4 out of 5. Buy it.
I say “buy it” both on the strength of its uniqueness, but also because it is a pleasant, quaffable beer. I don’t think I can rate the beer higher, because for me personally I don’t know if it is one I would buy again. This is an incredibly interesting beer, well-balanced, highly drinkable and it tastes completely different from any other beer I’ve had which is truly an accomplishment… but it’s not a beer I’m crazy about. Maybe it’s because I’m not a huge fan of blueberries, and blueberry is a strong flavor I’m getting (at least I think that’s blueberry, it’s been a while since I’ve had one). Maine definitely has their grain bill dialed in; the ingredients are very similar to their other Pale Ales and IPAs, all excellent.
I would definitely drink this beer again, I just don’t think I’d go out of my way to get it. However, if these flavors are what you’re looking for I think you’d absolutely love this beer.