There are stereotypes about seasonal beers and there are truths. It’s nice when a beer comes along that meets some of that expectation but surprises style-wise. That’s what Bauhaus Brew Labs, who are barely one year old, have been doing consistently with their seasonals. Hairbanger, a self-described “toasty and tropical” Belgo-Style American Pale Ale is just that.
The beer, which has an orange-tan hue with a nice head retention and translucent complexion, matches its style descriptor well with tropical and fruity elements that complement a crisp and easy drinking pale ale. It’s a unique take on the lighter summer fare, offering a more complex profile that utilizes the Belgian yeasts for an orange and coriander aroma that is downplayed in the flavor with a biscuit malt-driven pale ale that ends in a dry, hop-bitter finish that fizzles away cleanly.
While the “Belgo” takes prominent location in the style descriptor, this is a pale ale at heart with a bit of English IPA bitterness at the finish. The Belgian complexity is played under the surface, maybe something like a 35/65 Belgian to pale ale ratio and gives depth while the sessionable nature of the pale ale takes precedent. The beer’s “tropical and toasty” byline is to the point and accurate. Overall this is a really solid beer and a good way to mix up that summer sampler flavor profile.
Oh, and check out this commercial.
Brewery: Bauhaus Brew Labs
City: Minneapolis, MN
Availability: 16 oz. cans