ClubGonzo + Tom’s Beetnik Brew

Beetnik Brew by ClubGonzo + Tom, Imperial Brown Ale, Spice/Herb/Vegetable, 8.5% ABV, 55 IBU.

An imperial brown ale with beetroot juice and ginger. That sounds lovely, doesn’t it?

ClubGonzo + Tom's Beetnik Brew, batch no 21.

ClubGonzo + Tom’s Beetnik Brew, batch no 21.

In the glass it has a deep brown to copper body with a large, creamy, very long-lived, light tan head that leaves some lacing.

The aroma is strong with lots of crisp, spicy and somewhat soapy ginger notes on a modest, sweet malty caramel background with hints of dark dried fruits. It’s tempting and fairly interesting.

Beetnik Brew in the glass. This rating is not sponsored by Café Sara.

Beetnik Brew in the glass. This rating is not sponsored by Café Sara – one of the best places in Oslo to get new Norwegian microbrews on tap.

The flavour is quite strong and is dominated by ginger. Or as my co-rater this evening, Mr. Father-in-law, puts it: «this is concentrated ginger!». There are also hints of caramel and some hoppy notes, although it’s hard to be more specific than “hoppy”. Ok, I’ll try, let’s call it “floral”. Some of the floral stuff may also be caused by the beetroot. And, of course, this being a ClubGonzo beer and I’m me and all, of course I get quite much alcohol, and I must admit that I find these notes fairly unclean. The taste is moderate sweet and moderate plus bitter.

It has a pleasant mouthfeel, with a smooth and creamy texture, despite the quite lively carbonation. It’s a full-bodied beer, but the general impression suffers from the unclean alcohol in the finish.

Conclusion: a nice one if you love ginger, but it’s a bit one-dimensional and the alcohol is too obvious. And where’s the beetroot? But, as my co-raters says, “this is different”.

Aroma:      6/10
Appearance: 4/5
Taste:      6/10
Palate:     3/5
Overall:    10/20
Ratebeer score: 2.9/5.0

One comment on “ClubGonzo + Tom’s Beetnik Brew

  1. Different indeed. Not a great beer, all in all, for several reasons: 1.) The beetroot-thing. Didn’t really work out. It was actually a last-resort solution to the fact that the beer wasn’t half as red-hued as we hoped for (BeerSmith is crap with color indications!), more than an actual, planned taste component. 😛 2.) The stinging alcohol tones. I know Terje is way more prone to detect these (particularly in my beers) than I am, but this one I totally agree on; there is a sharpness there, possibly accentuated by the ginger, that kinda messes with the entirety of the beer. Drinkable, but not very enjoyable. But different? Yessir! 🙂

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