A Tropical Island Vacation in a Bottle
A Review of Citra Blonde Summer Brew by Widmer Brothers Brewing
Posted on 7/15/2011 by Chops
                   
Great
I never thought I would find a beer that deserves its own tiny umbrella and pineapple slice. Citra Blonde Summer Brew by Widmer Brothers Brewery transported me to a seaside tiki hut before I even took the first sip. This is a beer that happily mingles among Sea Breezes, Mai Tais and Bahama Mamas. But here's the thing, it's not a fruit beer. It's a blonde ale that apparently has figured out how to look, smell, taste and feel like a tropical drink. I can't be around this beer without hearing steel drums.

In the glass, this beer takes on a pure golden coloration. It's a shade darker than a typical blonde ale, but it's certainly in the ballpark. Going in for that first whiff, you're expecting a slight tang and some muted hops, but this beer has something else in mind. A little Rastafarian jumps out of the glass and starts shoving oranges, pineapples and mangoes up your nostrils. The smell is intense and very rewarding. It's has a very big body for a blonde ale, but you don't really care at that point. All you want to do is take that first sip.

Amazingly enough, the taste is right on par with the aroma. There are a lot of big tropical fruit and citrus notes, almost too many to name. It's as close as a beer can get to a tropical mixed drink. The hop profile is significantly muted as if to hide from the flavor assault. The mouthfeel is crisp, smooth and leaves no lingering aftertaste. Simply delightful.

Overall, Citra Blonde Summer Brew is a fabulous summer seasonal. It pains me to rate it as a blonde ale because it really needs to be part of a new ''beach brew'' category. I can recommend it to any level of beer fan. Novices will adore this beer for its smooth, flavorful persona. Based on taste alone, this might actually be an ideal bridge to better beer. It's certainly an eye opener for the average piss water drinker. On the flip side, fans of darker brews will certainly appreciate the tropical escapist qualities. Just close your eyes, take a sip and feel the white sand beneath your feet.

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Citra Blonde Summer Brew by Widmer Brothers Brewing
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