Bard’s Gold

Reviewed by on May 30, 2014 in Gluten-Free Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Bard's Tale Beer Co.

  • Origin: Utica, NY, USA

  • Rated On: May 28, 2014

  • Best Before: Bottled February 26, 2014

  • ABV: 4.7%

  • Ideal Temperature: between cold and cellar temperature

  • Style: American Pale Lager

  • Rating: OKAY

The Review

Bard’s Gold is an all-sorghum grain bill American-style lager, contract brewed in Utica, New York, which likely puts it in F.X. Matt Brewing Company’s stead.  The Bard’s website claims that this tastes ‘rich and refreshing’.  Sigh.

This 12oz bottle pours a clear, medium tinted golden amber colour, with a half finger of loud bubbly, and mostly fizzy dirty white head, which disappears in a near instant, leaving neither lace nor impression on this reporter.

It smells of semi-sweet, vegetal malt, with an alien earthiness that must be the sorghum, there, English, white grape juice, stale applesauce, and a wet cardboard essence right where one might be expecting something, oh, I dunno, hoppy? The taste is more or less just an extension in the same odd graininess – quite sweet, still, and ‘malty’, and well, like brown sugar, overripe mixed grapes, free-radical butter, mild plastic band-aid covers, and bitter tea leaves, is the best I can come up with. The carbonation is average, and a tad prickly, even, at times, the body a somewhat agreeable medium weight, and as smooth as the tugging cloyingness will allow. It finishes with a lingering thin molasses/reduced brown sugar sweetness, buffered somewhat by the unfamiliar earthy, strangely astringent character from the earlier acts.

While displaying more beer-adjacent characteristics than many of the other barley and wheat-free beers I’ve thus far subjected my gluten-loving and -tolerant self to, I can’t get over the weird edge that the sole use of sorghum (I assume) imparts here, in its starring role. A good try, and probably acceptable with a strong dose of cognitive dissonance, but not for me, not for me.

Brady White

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