This beer provided a lot of firsts for me. It was my first Braggot, my first beer made with pear juice (something I have always wanted to do myself), my first Widmer Brothers beer and my first beer aged for more than 1 year (bottled in March, 2011). I was really looking forward to trying it.
What also intrigued me about this beer was its display. It sat in a classy looking, long cardboard box with an orange and brown label that wrapped around it. The Widmer Brothers Brewing logo was watermarked on the top and contained prints of both the Widmer brothers’ signatures (Kurt and Rob). It looked more like I was buying a fine cognac or wine rather than a bottle of beer.
Widmer Brothers Brewing releases limited, one-of-a-kind beer under their “Brothers’ Reserve” series. This means that once all the bottles have been purchased, regardless of how popular the beer is, it will never be produced again. It’s actually a genius way to stay relevant in the craft beer industry. They can continue to gain popularity but as long as they continue to release these limited release beers they can keep their loyal and hardcore craft fans happy (without appearing like sell-outs)
After reading the box and examining the bottle I was finally ready to try it. The beer poured an incredibly pretty golden orange color that almost matched the print ink on the label. The head was weak and faded quickly without leaving too much lacing on the side of the glass (this may be due to aging). The aromas were sweet and fruity with hints of alcohol and malt.
The first sip contained nice, clear pear and honey flavors that provided an almost herbal tea-like property. The alcohol content (10% ABV) was not overpowering at first and allowed these simple and delicate flavors to shine through. There was also a sweet honey tea aftertaste. The following sips allowed the alcohol flavors to take over a bit and blocked out some of the other delicate flavors. There was only a faint lingering of pear and honey at the end.
Overall, this was a pretty good beer but I would have preferred a bit more body as it sat a little too lightly on the tongue. I would also have preferred the pear and honey to shine through a bit more because when they did it was really great.
Song Pairing: She’s Gone – Hall & Oates
A very a calming song for a gentle beer. This song should pair perfectly with the tea-like flavors in this beer. And just like the song this beer could use a bit more depth and body but definitely a nice song and a nice beer.