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<strong>The Disgruntled Chemist</strong>

3/15/2007

Beer Blogging - Karl Strauss Red Trolley Ale

I left work early today to come watch the NCAA tournament (well, I'll be looking up papers too, but mostly it's about basketball), so I thought I'd have a beer or four. First up: Karl Strauss Red Trolley Ale. Ahh, the San Diego red trolley. I've ridden it down to Mexico (well, to the border) for many a drunken evening. Oh, the memories.



This beer is very appealing to pour. It's a nice, reddish amber color, and there's just the right amount of carbonation. The head is light and fluffy and not persistent at all - it gets out of the way quickly. The aroma is really malty, with just a hint of floral hops - it smells pretty interesting for a red ale. Edit: I looked it up, and this is actually supposed to be an "American red ale", whatever that is. They also say it has 5.8% ABV, which seems about right.

The taste follows the smell pretty faithfully in this beer: it's mostly about the caramel malt, which is nice and sweet without being cloying. There's maybe a little taste of vanilla as well. The hops are barely there at all - they try to come in during the aftertaste, but even if you're trying to taste them it's hard to do with all that malt. Really, this beer almost tastes more like a bock than a red ale, but it's a little lighter than the typical bock. It definitely doesn't follow the style of a red ale [edit: or an amber ale, for that matter. It's very drinkable - I can see having several of these on a warm, sunny day (like today, in fact). According to the brewer (see link above), I'm supposed to be tasting toffee, raisins and currants; I suppose I can see the toffee, but I'm not getting anything like raisins or currants from this. Maybe the malty sweetness is just drowning it out. They're certainly right about it being "quaffable", though.

Rating: 6/10. Recommended for people who like sweeter beers.

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