By Iron Chef Leftovers
If there is one thing that you can count on from Deschutes Brewing out of Bend, Oregon is consistency; there beers are easily a great “fall back” if you’re looking to have a couple and don’t want to break the bank doing it. You can never go wrong cracking open a Black Butte, Mirror Pond, Inversion or Red Chair. They also produce a special series of beers; usually hop monsters, in their limited Bond Street series, which usually border on spectacular. This year, they produced a fresh hop beer, Chasin’ Freshies as part of the series. The beer was available in 22 oz. bottles and ran about $6 at your local bottle shop.
From their website:
Alc. 7.4% | IBUs 60
22 oz serving
Like fresh powder, it’s a seize-the-moment thing. At harvest, we rush Goschie Farms’ Cascade hops fresh from vine to kettle. Not any Cascades, mind you, but an heirloom strain, from a single field, restored from the original rhizome. Hope you’re as hopped up as we are.
Malt: Pilsner Malt, Flaked Oats
Hops: Bravo, Fresh Heirloom Cascades
The beer pours a very pale yellow in color, almost surprisingly so – I looks like it could pass itself off as a saison. Any confusion over what you are drinking is eliminated when you smell the beer – the nose is dominated by floral and grassy hops and something that I couldn’t quite idenitfy, which might have been the oats included in the brew process. The initial taste is more malt forward than I was expecting, but it is a brief hit of malt and is followed by a huge punch of citrus with hints of resin and grass in a long and pleasant finish. The beer is not overly bitter and the hops are the star of the show, but still show great balance between the malt, bitterness, alcohol and citrus. Despite its light color, the beer drinks like a much bigger beer and does a fantastic job of displaying exactly what I want in a fresh hop beer and showcasing its pedigree.
This is definitely not a beer that you would want to drink if you did not like hops, but if you do, you should be chasing this one down during its limited run next winter.
Chasin’ Freshies gets run down with a high-speed 5 Smokey and the Bandits out of 5.