Phillips Benefit Brew – Edmonton & Area Land Trust

Reviewed by on February 4, 2016 in Local Heroes Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Phillips Brewing Company

  • Origin: Victoria, BC, CA

  • Rated On: February 4, 2016

  • Best Before: June 19, 2016

  • ABV: 5.0%

  • Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature

  • Style: American Brown Ale

  • Rating: GOOD !

The Review

Here we have the 2015 iteration of Phillips’ Alberta Benefit Brew, wherein they petition votes for the most worthy charity or cause to funnel the full proceeds of the beer’s sales towards. This year, it’s the Edmonton & Area Land Trust, a non-profit organization that promotes conservation efforts for the natural heritage of Edmonton.  Oh, and the brew – it’s an ‘oatmeal brown ale’.

This 650ml bottle pours a clear, dark orange-brick brown colour, with a teeming tower of puffy, finely foamy, and fizzy tan head, which leaves some layered sudsy cloud lace around the glass as it quickly dissolves.

It smells of grainy, biscuity pale and caramel malt, a twinge of earthy and slightly testy yeast, bittersweet chocolate, a suggestion of dry cafe-au-lait, and mild leafy, citrusy, and piney hop bitters. The taste is bready and lightly crackery caramel malt, watered-down cocoa powder, a small pithy nuttiness, ethereal day-old coffee notes, and more laid-back leafy, weedy, and citrusy hoppiness.  The carbonation is nice and gentle in its mostly just frivolous frothiness, the body a decent medium weight, and generally smooth, that oatmeal lazily flexing its metaphorical muscles in its usual place of business. It finishes off-dry, the still sort of nutty and mutt-ish malt lingering without much hope of further contact.

Overall, a simple and unchallenging version of the style, with the extra oatmeal thrown in to soften any edges that might have popped up. Yup, this is a brew aimed at satisfying a broad audience, and that makes a whole lot of sense, since the more they sell of this, the more some (admittedly organized and updated) pond and tree huggers get to help keep my burg green and healthy (I hope).

Brady White

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