#306 Green Flash – Rayon Vert

Name: Rayon Vert
Brewery: Green Flash (San Diego, California)
Style: Belgian Pale Ale
Source: Galbraith’s Alehouse
ABV: 7%

When I was little, someone told me about the green flash. Not the beer – I was only drinking the foam from my Dad’s Guinness back then – but the green flash of light that can appear just after the sun slips below the horizon.

It was probably Dad, and maybe I was drunk from the Guinness foam, but somehow I interpreted it to mean that every time the sun set there would be a green flash. To this day I have spent every single would-be romantic sunset looking for it, and not once, not bloody once have I ever seen it.

Thank you for nothing, science. 

The good news is that this beer (who’s name means Green Ray in French) was as wonderfully weird as that optical phenomina, although it did take me quite a few sips to properly warm up to it.

The aroma was strange – it seemed medicinal at first, but then I recognised it as that same dusty, horsey smell you get from lambic beers – caused by the wild yeast brettanomyces.

In the mouth  it tasted of fruity hops (lemon, orange and grannysmith apples) and of a horses stable (the leather saddle, the hay, and the horse itself). It wasn’t really sour – lightly tart perhaps, but bitter and very dry at the finish.

The Rayon Vert reminded me of one of my favourite beers, Orval, but it was a little more intense in both brett and bitterness. And speaking of bitterness, here’s a picture of the phenomena that I’ve wasted approximately 598 sunsets trying to see:

Green Ray

Not even that cool is it?
OK fine it is.

Published in: on June 25, 2012 at 2:34 pm  Comments (2)  

#36 Green Flash – Hop Head

Green Flash Hop HeadName: Hop Head
Brewery: Green Flash (San Diego, California)
Style: Amber Ale
ABV: 7%
Source: The Beer Store

Sometimes a beer is so delicious that it’s gone before I’ve made any notes. This was one of them.

It always looks so wrong to me when I type swear words, but I’ll have to do it anyway because this beer was f**king delicious. (the stars help a bit, no?)

As soon as I smelled it, two distinct childhood memories of my parents in the kitchen came to mind. One was of Dad making dark bread – the jug of frothy yeast and sticky dark malt from a tin, and another was of Mum’s marmalade – bubbling hot and on the verge of turning to toffee. It was a heavenly and nostalgic aroma, and I sniffed it like a maniac because only the cat was watching.

The taste, I think, was the similar – but richer, spicier, and with a dry bitterness that lingered on the roof of my mouth. It was full-bodied, refreshing, and cruelly moreish.

I wish I could tell you more, but all that’s left is some foamy lacing on the glass. Thankfully this beer isn’t too hard to find, so hop on down (pun intended – always intended) to your nearest craft beer outlet and try some for yourself!

Published in: on September 13, 2011 at 7:02 pm  Leave a Comment