Thursday, April 19, 2012

Oskar Blues and a Deviant (Beer)

After hearing the announcement at the Denver airport, I decided it was my duty to check out a few more of the Colorado breweries. Most of my previous trips to the state were in the Denver area, this time my business was in Longmont, CO.

As it turns out, there was an Oskar Blues location right across from my hotel. Well, not exactly right across, walking there required a number of interesting diagonal street crossings and back-tracking. As the hotel desk clerk informed me, "It's close but you can't walk directly there."

Upon arrival I took a seat at the bar, and noted some 40 tap handles, but decided to focus my attention on the 7 devoted to Oskar Blues beers. One of the beers I tried out that evening was Deviant Dale's IPA. That's certainly not one of the Oskar Blues beers we get back East. Like all the brewery's beers, it is shipped cans, this one in a 16 ounce "tall boy." But, like the other beers I enjoyed during my visit, it was served on draught. The beer was a clear amber-orange color with a thin off white head. It looked almost indistinguishable from Dale's Pale Ale. However, the appearance was the only similarity. The aroma was a mix of pine hops and malt, with some grapefruit zest in the background. The sticky, resinous mouthfeel was immediately evident. The flavor was somewhat sweet with strong pine and malt notes. The stickiness lingered bitterly for a quite some time afterwards. I enjoyed Deviant Dale's as I slowly sipped and savored the bold flavors.

For my entrée I selected the Blue Burger and a side of corn and crab fritters. The burgers was enjoyable but I enjoyed the fritters the most. The were crispy on the outside and the crab meat was prominent. I would be inclined to make a meal of them alone.

Oskar Blues has several outposts around the area, and I am told they are looking at other locations as well. It's easy to see why. Even on a Wednesday evening the place was packed. I got there early enough to get a seat at the bar, but soon folks were standing two deep to order their drinks. Good food and good beer. They have it.

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