Next up, an Olde Ale by Terminal Gravity Brewing Co. of Oregon. It’s no surprise that Festivale Strong Winter Ale is loaded with hops and balanced with rich malts.
Festivale pours ruby brown with a thin tan head of foam. My nose picks up sweet malty notes, with a bit of dried dates. The flavor begins with hop bitterness, slight citrus, then moves to sweet caramel malts, bread, yeast, raisins and some coffee. It’s medium bodied with a bitter finish. The carbonation and mouthfeel are pleasant. It is 8.4% ABV with no indications of booziness.
The brewery calls Festivale an Olde Ale. To me, Festivale’s 72 IBU (International Bitterness Units) put it more in the style of a West Coast Barley Wine.
I’d like to have Festivale after a year in the cellar. It feels like this beer would express more flavors and subtleties that are just below the surface. The best bet would be to drink a few bottles now and put the rest of the 6 pack in the cellar for next Christmas. Which is one of my standard practices with Christmas beers, by the way.
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