Tracy Hensley's picture

95 Rating: Fresh Bongwater Hemp Ale by KettleHouse Brewing Co.

December, 2017
Judges Rating: 
23 / 24
5 / 6
39 / 40
9 / 10
Overall Impression: 
19 / 20

KettleHouse Brewing Company's Fresh Bongwater Hemp Ale was evaluated as a Spice, Herb, or Vegetable Beer with a base beer style of Blonde Ale (2015 Beer Judge Certification Program [BJCP] Category 30A and 18A, respectively). For this combination, one anticipates a well-integrated hemp and nutty characteristics in an easy-drinking malt-forward beer.  Overall, Fresh Bongwater Hemp Ale is a complex evolving sessionable ale with refreshing fresh grassy and nutty notes.

The aroma starts out with light green grass, white cherry, and vanilla blossoms and is followed by light pleasing warm yeast, fluffy white fresh baked bread, and blanched almonds with sesame seeds.  The hazy dark gold beer has a fine creamy ivory head.

The flavors begin as a light dusty freshly ground millet with low supporting vanilla shortbread.  The beer is crisp and mouthwatering with a pithy bitter yet complex character that coats the mouth and is slightly numbing when combined with the pleasing low alcohol.  The flavors continue to evolve over time, revealing subtle grassy flavors, including sugar cane stalk.  Solidly made beer.  Well-balanced and lengthy but subtle.