Total Score: 8.1/10
Boy-howdy* this is going to be fun! I’ve got a panel of great beers tonight from 3 of my favourite brewers: To Øl, Omnipollo, and one of the greatest of all: Mikkeller! So yeah I’m real excited to be bringing these reviews, starting with one of To Øl’s Reservoir Dogs series: Mr. Blonde (2018 Edition). I haven’t tried the original Mr. Blonde, however based on current reviews this Mr. Blonde is looking a bit more extreme (i.e. better!), a Gose-style with vanilla, peach and raspberry – yum!
Poured from a 500ml can into a Duvel tulip.
A: Wow, wasn’t expecting this – Mr. Blonde pours a cloudy amniotic-fluid pink-coloured body, with a wispy pink-hued white head that slowly settles to a nice tight 1 cm head leaving behind honeycomb lace-work. Looks great, and bizarre. 8/10.
S: Peach and raspberries for days, hint of vanilla too, along with a classic Gose tartness and a touch of salt. Pretty interesting interpretation of the style: there’s the classic lemony touch as well but the peach and raspberry really shine through… less so the vanilla but all in all this is a stellar Gose aroma. 9/10.
T: Sour lemon straight up and all over the palate – this is a reasonably sour beer, it’s not fantastically sour, however it’s definitely right there in sour territory. Which is generally not great for me (I’m not a fan of sour beers, however I can appreciate them regardless). The peach and raspberry that was quite prominent in the aroma has taken a bit of a back seat with the flavour, never mind that happens, however there are some great background notes of the above: peach, raspberry, vanilla, salt, along with pink grapefruit, Brett funk, and slight barnyard characters. 8/10.
M: Mid to light bodied with a decent amount of carbonation, it is a 4.5% ABV Gose after all – so it was always bound to be a fizzer – it’s certainly to style. 7/10.
D: This is a real palate-cleansing ale that is well-balanced (though a bit too sour for my liking), refreshing, and typical of To Øl: a different take on a (now) well-worn style (i.e. Gose, which has really taken off as a style in the last 5 years). If I can say one thing about sour beers such as this one that has helped me over the years: as they warm the sourness abates slightly. For Mr. Blonde 2018 this has magnified just how complex the flavours underneath are – this is up there with the best Gose’s I’ve tried. 8/10.
Food match: Sharp cheese platter and an antacid or Vietnamese Bun Thit Nuong.
*Wow, I promise never to say “boy-howdy” again – this isn’t the 1950’s.