Brewery: New Glarus (New Glarus, WI)
Style: Cream Ale
Commercial Description-Brewed with flaked barley and the finest Wisconsin malts. We even give a nod to our farmers with a little hint of corn. Naturally cloudy we allow the yeast to remain in the bottle to enhance fullness of flavors, which cannot be duplicated otherwise. Expect this Ale to be fun, fruity and satisfying.
New Glarus Brewery is a smaller operation and its products are only enjoyed upon visiting Wisconsin. This limited distribution does two things: It maintains the quality and consistency of the product and it also creates a demand among beer enthusiasts. Every time I visit Wisconsin, buying some New Glarus beer is at the top of my list before leaving. On my most recent trip, thanks to business, I opted to pick up a couple 6-packs of Spotted Cow. While not one of those “come-to-Jesus” beers the appeal for me comes from it being a cream ale style. Not something you get to enjoy often.
As you pour a spotted cow out of the bottle you’ll be hit with the aroma, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Your glass fills with a light golden color carrying hints of amber or orange that are capped off with a nice, light and fluffy head. As the head dissipates and you examine the beer you’ll notice a small amount of cloudiness because Spotted Cow is bottled with the yeast. She’s a very appealing beer.
You’ll want to get your nose in the glass before the head expires. You’ll get a fruity smell at first which is most likely due to the yeast. It only makes the beer more inviting. The maltiness soon hits your senses with a hint of the corn. From the aroma you will already know this beer is about to be very refreshing. It’s clean with the slightest hint of hops.
When you take your sip you’ll notice that New Glarus has certainly perfected craft. It’s smooth and has medium mouth feel while being refreshingly light in the finish. The first taste you’ll notice is a bit of the fruitiness that I can’t quite pin point, maybe strawberries. The stars of the show are the malt varieties as they hit your taste buds. It is this flavor that will bring you back for another one almost immediately after taking the first sip. I hate to overuse this this term but the taste is very clean. The flavor profiles make this beer perfect for the summer, but its quality makes it too difficult to turn down as I relax on this February night.
Overall this beer rates as an 85/100 for me. I could never really see myself saying “I’m not in the mood for a Spotted Cow right now” with this beer. It’s refreshing and pairs well with almost anything. How well-crafted this beer is makes it one of my favorite low hopped beers. The fact that nothing blows me away about this in particular is a good thing. Sometimes keeping things clean and simple are exactly what a man needs.