I picked the Block 15 Flanders Red ale because I know Block 15 mostly for IPAs. They do some awesome IPAs, but I love this style and am hoping to see some skill on display!
I can feel the tartness in my nose when I breathe it in. Unripe strawberries or really tart raspberries come to mind. The first sip resembles this, too; the inside of my mouth puckers at the first couple sips of ale.
So I let it sit a little. Very slowly, I start to get a ghost of chocolate in the middle, and that goes a long way for giving this beer some dimension.
By my second glass, I’ve gotten used to this and the scents are not nearly as intense in the nose, anymore. I can even pick up some sweeter qualities in the scent. But the first sips are still muting the sweater elements so I hold off on drinking this quickly.
With the familiarity under my belt, I start to pick up something unusual in the scent, too; almost phenolic, medical in it’s sharpness. I clear my palate and smell again; it’s incredibly faint now, but it is there. It’s not enough to throw me off the beer, but it’s an unwelcome discovery.
Still, while the tartness is within tolerance ranges for me, I just prefer my Flanders red ales to be a little sweeter than this.