Raising a glass to the 1955 Dodgers
A Review of Pennant Ale 55 by Brooklyn Brewery
Posted on 10/21/2012 by Chops
The Brooklyn Brewery is one of the most respected establishments in the entire craft beer world. Their brewmaster, Garrett Oliver, is one of the world's foremost experts on beer. So when it comes time to sample a new beer from their amazing arsenal, it comes with a guaranteed level of quality. You would think that a highly elevated level of expectation would be stressful for a brewery, but Brooklyn seems to relish in it. I am consistently blown away by their beers and I respect every bottle I acquire. On a recent trip to my local beer store, I scored some Pennant Ale 55, an English Pale Ale created in tribute to the 1955 World Champion Dodgers baseball team.
In the glass, this beer has a coppery brown coloration. It comes with a frothy white head that dissipates normally. On the nose, I found the sweet malty aroma of a good standard English bitter, complete with an under layer of toasted bread crust. I should note that the term ''bitter'' often appears next to English Pale Ales (Ordinary Bitter, ESB, etc.), but rarely is this a primary trait. It's confusing, I know, but is also a necessary bit if knowledge going into these beers.
Pennant Ale 55 is very warm tasting with a toasted bread crust base. Resting on top is a tame citrus and a faint spiciness. The hop profile is very pleasant and nicely balanced with the crusty malt flavor. The beer has a medium body and is buttery smooth. The hops and spiced do add a tangy quality, but it's not distracting at all. To be honest, I found this beer to be really clean and accessible for the style, which opens it up to a lot of different drinkers. The beer finishes dry with a moderately bitter malty aftertaste.
Overall, Brooklyn's Pennant Ale 55 is a delicious brew with a clean and savory character. It has a lot of great flavor and is very easy drinking, making it a great option for any and all beer fans. English Pale Ales can be difficult beers for novices to wrap their heads around and Pennant Ale 55 provides a much needed bridge into the style. On the flip side, seasoned drinkers will appreciate this beer as a wonderful session version. So once again, I have to tip my drinking hat to Garrett Oliver and the Brooklyn Brewery. I also offer a Pennant Ale toast to the 1955 Dodgers. Cheers!