841: Boont Amber Ale

841 - Boont Amber AleName: Boont Amber Ale
Brewery: Anderson Valley Brewing Company
Country of Origin: United States
City & State: Boonville, California
Style: American Amber / Red Ale
Alcohol Content (ABV): 5.80%
First Brewed: 1987
Price: $1.99

Tasting Notes
Bright, clear brown in color with a very thick tan head. The nose is sweet and fruity mouthfeel. Soft malt and subtle rich, roasted quality make this amber ale clean, simple, and easy drinking. The finish is tart and lingers a long time.

Ricky’s Thoughts

I’ve never been a huge fan of Anderson Valley Brewing Company. Their beers are always just OK. I did grab a 12-pack around December when they went on sale at Total Wine & More, but they are just decent. Beers like this are a good way to introduce someone to craft beer. I actually didn’t plan on this beer being in the sampler pack that I bought, so we lucked out. It was on sale for $6.99 from $12.99, so even if the beers are bad, I figured I would get them anyway! The IPA was also in there, and it’s a good daily drinking IPA.

Until we started reviewing this beer, I had no idea where Anderson Valley Brewing Company was. Cool story about the small town and their language. I would love to meet someone from there just to see how they talk. Fun! Hopefully the beer is good, and I am looking forward to reviewing it. Bottoms up, people!

In the Glass: I could smell this as I was pouring it. The last time I had this, I just drank it from the bottle. I know, I know… I do NOT recommend ANYONE drink ANY beer from a bottle. Grab a cup, even if it’s a red Solo cup, and drink from a glass. So I am sure I will enjoy this more in a glass. In the glass, it has a nice dark tan color, with a VERY thick and frothy head. I also didn’t realize that the brewery was solar powered. It says that on the cap, anyway.

Nose: As I was pouring, I could smell the malty goodness. When I stick my nose in the glass, it has a nice rich caramel aroma and a lovely malty finish. A second whiff I am picking up some nice sugary aromas. This beer has a lot of promise.

Flavor: Considering my experience with Anderson Valley beers, I didn’t have a lot of expectations with this one. Also, not usually a fan of amber ales. But this one isn’t bad. At first, there is a rich copper flavor. Imagine licking a penny. Then it mellows out, and provides a nice malty flavor that lingers on the back of the tongue. There is a nice little hint of hops toward the back of the palate, but that’s it. For a guy that likes hops, I am impressed that I like the flavor so much.

Mouthfeel: While I am thinking about it, why does the bear on the label (and on the Anderson Valley website) have horns? Do bears in northern California have horns? Anyway, the mouthfeel is nice, and actually changes as you drink the beer. At first, a ton of bubbles hit the front of the palate then it settles to a nice malty flavor at the back of the palate. A subtle dryness creeps in, and then settles to a smooth finish. I would say the aftertaste is the best part of this beer.

Aftertaste: This is nice. It starts with a rich copper flavor, then as you swallow the malty flavors lessen and you are still hit with the malty flavors. The hops really come out in the end. The aftertaste lasts for a few minutes, too.

Anderson Valley has a lot of beers in their portfolio. From their Winter and Summer Solstice to their Oatmeal Stout and IPA, they have a wide range of flavors. Out of the ones I have had, the Boont Amber Ale is nice. If you haven’t had the Winter Solstice, grab one next year. It’s one of the better holiday beers.

Boont Amber Ale – The bottle says: “Deep copper with a creamy light tan head. Rich aroma of caramel and a sun-toasted grain elegantly meshed with a mellow noble hop aroma. A full-bodied malt flavor is supported by a refreshing mild hop bitterness with herbal hoppy aromas – lending itself to a long, clean finish.”

Rating: 3/5

Sheryl’s Thoughts

I hope I am able to do an unbiased review today.  I didn’t get much sleep last night as one of my dogs wasn’t feeling well and refused to lay down and sleep, keeping me up.  Once again I don’t know anything about the beer we are doing today.  So let’s just see how it goes.

The beer looks kind of reddish-orange in the glass and kind of thick.  It’s not transparent, that’s for sure.  Cloudy, that would be a good way to describe it.  There wasn’t a lot of head when Ricky poured it out, but what is there is… creamy.  That’s also the best way I can think to describe it.  It doesn’t look very carbonated; I don’t see any bubbles really floating to the top.  And on my first sniff, I smell bread.  It smells like bread, and maybe a hint of spice.  It’s not a strong smell, but what is there, smells pretty good.  I like it.  Now let’s see what it tastes like.

First drink and there’s not really much taste there.  I took a second drink mostly to try to get some flavor out of it.  It does taste like the bread and spice that I smelled, but there’s just not a lot of taste there.  There is an aftertaste that lingers for a while, though.  It’s not really hoppy – that’s not how I’d describe it.  The beer has way more of an aftertaste than a flavor, though.  The aftertaste is bitter.  The one thing about this beer is that I keep drinking it to figure out what the flavor actually is.  It’s not my favorite.  And probably not one I’d buy again.  It’s just… ok.  For a recommendation, I’d say – well, pick something else with more flavor, at least that’s what I’d do.

Rating: 2/5

840 bottles of beer on the wall…

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