Like everyone else I’ve been running around more than normal this month, it being the holiday season and all. Whenever I’m the designated driver I drink one beer at most. That was again the case last night—but boy, I chose well. When I noticed at Neon’s a Three Floyds beer on the board, I asked the bartender to describe it. He told me it was a wheat pale ale and it was kind of hoppy, but not too much. Those comments didn’t influence my decision to order a Gumheadball—it was kind of a no-brainer as it was a Three Floyds I’d never tasted before—but, I was curious.
Located in Indiana, Three Floyd’s is a brewery I take quite seriously, as do many other people. Because of archaic, illogical and business-unfriendly state laws Three Floyds used to be impossible to obtain in Ohio. For this reason me and my posse used to make the trek to Indiana to stock up and imbibe. Driving the back roads to bars and liquor stores that sold the stuff, we passed Amish families riding in buggies. (We also stopped at their farm houses to buy some of their some rhubarb). In Indiana and Ohio I have tasted some superb Three Floyds, but Gumballhead was favorite—by them or by anyone.
Here’s my low-level analysis of what I consumed last evening. I can never get too crazy about beers that are weighed down by extraneous flavors, and there was a citrusy undertone to the Gumballhead, but just enough that you could notice it (crucial). Beers that are too hoppy make my stomach hop, but there were just enough of the right kinds of hops to give the beer a wee bit of an edge, which I consider an asset. It was a highly drinkable beer, but it wasn’t one of those wimpy “gateway” craft beer bars serve to placate the unenlightened. It had body, but not to the point where I felt as if were drinking oatmeal, and it was flavorful.
And there’s one other thing. In audiophile circles folks talk about what’s called “tonal balance.” Perhaps you got your lows, mids or highs just right—but the trick is blending them all together seamlessly, and in a way that’s pleasing aesthetically. Those same attributes apply to the beer I drank last night. It warrants a trip to Neon’s—where a friendly and informed bartender also gushed about some European imports presently on tap.
Finally, mark your calendars now for the Three Floyd’s beer tasting taking place at MOTR Pub on March 5. That may seem a long way away, but I would hate for someone to double book on that night. After all, this is serious business.