Wheat wine is still pretty much in it's infancy as far as fancy ale's are concerned but out of nowhere already many different tweaks on it have already began. Two of the one's we really liked here at Smashin' Transistors headquarters have been Founder Nemesis and New Holland's Pilgrims Dole. Both of them were excellent and quite original with what they're doing but the style, like it's older sister Barley Wine, a little of them can go a long way (and can lay down some hurt in the morning too). That doesn't mean we're gonna shy away from them. Just have to practice a bit of moderation when they come around.
Rumor is only a couple of cases of Short's 6th Anniversary Blood Orange Wheat Wine even made it to St. Clair County. Luckily, having a good rapport with a couple of the beer sellers in town we've been able to give it taste and since they're only allowing one bottle per customer per visit we can be moderated on how many we can drink at a time.
The color here obviously resembles blood oranges. A clear dark red color that borders on ruby. No head but a orange ring all the way around the top. The nose is quite interesting here. A orange blast comes out on top. Right after pouring it and giving it a moment to breathe the aroma could be noticed rising out of the glass and filling the room. Raising it up to give it a whiff the hops, which have a citrus aroma to them anyway, accentuate the scent even more. There's also a slight detection of the green peppercorns that we used in the brewing process too. If we were to judge this beer just off the scent alone it would be a winner.
First sip and it's made known that the smell was just teaser. The flavor hits the tongue & mouth just like a freshly peeled orange on a sweet summer day. The +11% abv sends quite a warm rush through the body on the first sip too but all and all the high booze content in the brew is hardly detectable. The middle has something similar to a very bold Sweet Tarts candy giving way to some more of the damp hop characteristics. Pepper comes out a bit in the finish but doesn't overwhelm any of the other flavors that this has offer. Orange flavors, some grassy spices and the dry hang of other wheat wines we've tried sticks around slightly in the end but for the most part it's very clean-n-dry and refreshing. Another way of looking at it is the strangest but tasty Sangria side road people can ride on. Even for those who aren't much into fruit/vegetable beers, present company included, will most likely wanting to have more than just one of these a session. In that case, I guess it's a good thing that, in this town at least, there's a one bottle per visit on these because I'm feeling good off just one 12 ounce bottle and could definitely be in the mood to down some more but then would most likely in the A.M. be thinking "Damn, how can something that tastes so good last night make me feel this spun out this morning".