Dogfish Head Craft Brewery in Milton, Delaware is known for aggressively pushing the envelope with new recipes. Noble Rot is just one of their new grape-based microbrews.
I heard about Noble Rot several weeks ago and finally found it at a local Wegmans. It’s been chilling in the fridge while I was waiting for a nice occasion to bust it open. I decided that the Friday night before my week off was perfect.
Noble Rot is sold in single 750 milliliter bottles, ironically the same as a standard bottle of wine. Enough for two generous glasses. The name Noble Rot comes from the botrytis-infected Viognier grape must used in it’s production. The ABV is 9% which is on the high side for a medium bodied beer but lower than your average bottle of Viognier. At fourteen bucks a bottle, it’s not the most reasonably priced brew on the market but worth it for the experience.
A nice, cold beer on a hot June afternoon is a welcome treat. And I have to say this to those (including myself) who questioned this concoction, which is targeted at the wine crowd … it works. At the first sip I really tasted the fruit. A well balanced hybrid of white wine and ale, it would be a great beer with meals. The high sugar level and tartness from the grapes is reminiscent of Corona with the lime twist, only heavier and more intense. This brew has presence and a lingering finish but isn’t overpowering. It doesn’t pretend to be anything more than what it is, which is a tasty, refreshing ale.
Hats off to Dogfish Head, with help from Alexandria Nicole Cellars for a fine summer beer. This recipe had a tremendous potential for disaster as the wine and beer people tend to reside on different planes. I would definitely buy it again.