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Peter LaFrance

Saturday, January 16, 2010

A taste… of UFO Pale Ale

Massachusetts Bay Brewing Company
Harpoon Brewery
306 Northern Avenue
Boston, MA 02210
(617) 574-9551

Preface: This 12 oz. bottle of UFO Pale Ale was purchased for $1.75(USD) at Peas & pickles Grocery in Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn, NY. There was no “Best by” date on the bottle neck.
The following notes are made after a mouth wash with room temperature sparkling water. These notes have not been influenced by reading promotional material or any other review of this brew.
I am including this preface to inform the reader of any and all circumstances that might be conceived of a creating a biased review or a conflict of interest regarding the choice of words used in the following review. I could go on and on with semi-legal jargon but I guess you will just have to trust me eh?
The following are my tasting notes:

Appearance: Here is a traditional honey colored cloudy brew topped with a dense head of small bubbles that form a slightly rocky head and leave just a trace of lace on the glass.

Aroma: The first impression is a citric aroma a second visit finds the scent of chopped fresh dandelion greens by the third visit to the aromatics they seem to have blended together into a homogeneous aroma of freshly cut vegetation after a warm spring rain.

Mouth feel: The mouth feel is creamy and fairly full bodied. The yeast suspension also adds to the rich full feel.

Flavor: First impressions are sugar rock candy with flavor spikes of lemon and a burnt candy accent. The second impression is more metallic rather than citric with a dry touch, not sweet at all. The third swallow revealed a smoothing out of the sharp spikes and a sense of banana that was almost not there. None of the flavors dominate and all seem rather shy if the truth be told.

Finish: There is a refreshing finish with a surprisingly long lasting sour-bitter-dry sensation that is hops at its best.

Comments: The idea of a wheat beer with ale esters and hops no longer surprises me. The traditional Bavarian wheat brew with its unique clove, banana and bubble-gum aromas is still safe in Bavaria. The wheat beers (both ales and lagers) are as different from their Bavarian cousins as “India Pale Ale” brewed in Canada and the United States can claim relations with the India Pale Ale of England. Which brings me to the use of the word “style”… no, I’ll save that for another time.

Food & Beer: I would love to have had this beer with a fried (in Promise Margarine) bologna (Oscar Meyer) and cheese (Kraft) sandwich (Wonder Bread) and a slice of crisp dill (Vlasic) pickle.
I received no compensation for the above product placements.

The Brewery: http://www.harpoonbrewery.com/

Style: UnFiltered Pale Ale
History:brewed since 2009*
Original Gravity: 14.5 P
ABV: 5.3%
IBU’S: 34
PAIRING SUGGESTIONS: spicy seafood, a hearty beef dish, and/or Buffalo wings.

What others say:

BeerAdvocate: http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/10097/53007

RateBeer: http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/harpoon-ufo-pale-ale/112112/

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