Beer of the Month - Hopworks Sasquatch Strong Ale [February 2009]
Way to go Hopworks, three beers of the month in a row. How did you do it this time? You collaborated with Eugene area brewers to honor Glen Falconer, AKA "Sasquatch", using Glen's own recipe from his days at Wild Duck brewery in Eugene. I did not know Glen or even know of Glen before trying this beer, but I feel I can safely say that HUB honored the man well.
Sasquatch has a deep mahogany color and a body that is toasty-sweet. Outrageous quantities of (Willamette, Cascade, Centennial, Chinook and Saaz) hops give an incredibly rich and complex herbal flavor and crisp bitterness that remind you that this is "beer".
Sasquatch is an American Strong Ale. What this means is-- pretty vague actually. It is supposed to apply basically to any beer with an ABV 7.0 or above. Sasquatch falls short by 0.1 meaning that classification cannot be too strict. It seems to be a classification for beers that cannot be classified any other way so they classify them as "American Strong Ales" and wash their hands of the situation. Who are "they"? What am I talking about? Who knows? So lets forget about classification and get right to taste.
Simply put, it tastes fantastic. Sasquatch has a full body and a smooth finish with slightly bitter aftertaste. There is a sweetness behind this deep brown ale, but by no means it the sweetness overbearing. In fact that sweet malty flavor is balanced very delicately with the "outrageous quantities of (Willamette, Cascade, Centennial, Chinook and Saaz) hops". However, using "delicately" just now doesn't feel right when referring to any aspect of this beer. Either "hearty and crisp" or "rich and crisp" or "hearty, rich and crisp" or "hearty, rich, and crisp yet smooth" are all far more suitable for describing Sasquatch.
The icing on the cake is that Hopworks will contribute 10% of the proceeds from the sales of Sasquatch Strong Ale to the Sasquatch Legacy Project, a non-profit which raises money to send deserving brewers to brewing school. Knowing this, how can you avoid this wonderfully balanced, full, crisp, smooth, round, flavorful, lightly sweet, rich, mahogany bodied, strong ale? I guess you could say it is your civic duty to give it a try.
Oh, it goes great with cheese too.
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