New Belgium Accumulation

Reviewed by on November 18, 2014 in Winter Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: New Belgium Brewing

  • Origin: Fort Collins, CO, US

  • Rated On: November 17, 2014

  • Best Before: March 22, 2015

  • ABV: 6.2%

  • Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature

  • Style: Belgian IPA

  • Rating: GOOD !

The Review

New Belgium, they of the Low Countries twist on American brewing styles, has added this Belgian yeast-forward IPA to their winter seasonal offerings, and named it just right – the snow has fallen (at least in the northern climes), and it looks like it’ll be sticking around for a long while yet, joined by a bunch of its friends, of course.  On the bright side, I’ve yet to shovel the same kind of snow as depicted on the label, so let us dive into this one.

This 12oz bottle pours a slightly hazy, pale golden straw colour, with three fingers of puffy, rocky, and silken eggshell white head, which leaves a decent array of Rand McNally lace around the glass as things duly recede.

It smells of musty orange, grapefruit, kiwi, and pineapple fruit rind, earthy yeast, crackery pale malt, and grassy, piney hops. The taste is generally yeasty in bearing – peppery and herbal, with more muddled, and subdued citrus pith bitterness, a sort of stale tropical fruit essence, some laid-back wheaty and grainy pale malt sweetness, and further soft lemongrass and pinecone hop notes.  The bubbles are a bit overwrought in their assertiveness at first, but settle to a manageable din soon enough, the body medium-light in weight, and mostly smooth, the yeast always trying to have its say. It finishes dry, the malt forgoing any further claim, while the complex hops and yup, yeast fully take up the reins.

Overall, a nicely hopped-up IPA, with the phenols and spice of a respectably assertive yeast component.  While maybe not the warming juggernaut one might tend to associate with winter-themed brews, it provides, as New Belgium’s marketing department professes, a ‘direct revolt’ to that tradition.  Or maybe they just wanted to brew another IPA – whatever, it’s good, with a wee, generally undetectable, underlying boozy uptick.  Think of it as a palate cleanser for all your strong dark ales over the next 3 or 4 months – yeah.

Brady White

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