Half Hitch Papa Bear Prairie Ale

Reviewed by on June 1, 2018 in Local Heroes Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Half Hitch Brewing Company

  • Origin: Cochrane, AB, CA

  • Rated On: June 1, 2018

  • Best Before: canned May 15, 2018

  • ABV: 5.0%

  • Ideal Temperature: cold to cool

  • Style: Canadian Cereal Ale

  • Rating: GOOD !

The Review

Made with Alberta barley, wheat, rye, and oats, Papa Bear was the gold medal winner at the recent Alberta Brewing Awards in the new Canadian Cereal Ale category. At least it wasn’t running as a ‘patio beer’.

This 355ml can pours a slightly hazy, medium golden yellow colour, with three flabby fingers of puffy, finely foamy, and somewhat creamy off-white head, which leaves some random splotchy and chunky lace around the glass as it rather slowly abates.

It smells of semi-sweet, bready and doughy pale malt, some wet rye and wheat crackers, a mild earthy yeastiness, faint domestic pome fruity esters, and some very mild leafy, musty, and floral green hop bitters.  The taste is grainy and bready, well, cereal malt, rye whiskey without the kick, lightly buttered Wheat Thins, a subtle bruised apples and pear fruitiness, and more well understated earthy, weedy, and floral hoppiness.  The carbonation is fairly restrained in its lackadaisical frothiness, the body a decent middleweight, and quite smooth, with a nice airy creaminess evolving as things warm up a tad around here.  It finishes off-dry, the various malt still genially blended in their lingering state.

Overall – this is definitely a malt-forward offering, and that’s not a bad thing, as it really shows off what our province’s farming concerns can produce.  And the flavour does come across as something similar to breakfast cereal, just with water instead of milk, and once again, I don’t mean that pejoratively.  Good stuff!

Brady White

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