Sean Coughlin's picture

Judge's Review: 94 Rating - LMN ADE by Wild Leap Brew Co.

March, 2021
Judges Rating: 
94
Aroma: 
21 / 24
Appearance: 
6 / 6
Flavor: 
38 / 40
Mouthfeel: 
10 / 10
Overall Impression: 
19 / 20

LMN ADE by Wild Leap Brew Co. is being evaluated as as American Fruited Sour Ale using the 2021 Brewers Association style guidelines as the 2015 BJCP guidelines haven't quite caught up to newer kettle sour styles such as this beer. Evaluation of this beer includes ingredient considerations of Meyer lemon, vanilla bean, and lactose.

The beer initially smells like a traditional Berliner Weisse with a lemon-forward lactic aroma but as the beer is agitated, fresh fruit-derived lemon makes an appearance. The aroma is reminiscent of freshly squeezed lemon juice along with a bit of lemon pith and zest. There is a complete absence of grain and hops – if I were smelling this blindfolded I might guess that someone sat a glass of lemonade in front of me. This beer is an extremely hazy blonde with a creamy white head that has better retention than most other beers across this style.

After experiencing the aroma, I was expecting a lemon juice bomb but was pleasantly surprised at the amount of malt flavor coming through. There is a large biscuit presence up front that gives way to lemon, which carries across the finish. Acidity is moderate and is likely tempered some by the lactose and residual sugar from the malt. Any hop bitterness is appropriately very low as the acidity is taking care of the balance in this beer. There is no vanilla flavor present, but it also may act as a balancing agent to keep the tartness from overwhelming the palate.

The lemon + biscuit + appropriate balance of sweetness makes this beer reminiscent of the Girl Scout Lemonade Cookies. For those who enjoy pairing Girl Scout cookies with craft beer, this would be a home run pairing. LMN ADE does a great job of maintaining a beer-first, fruit-second balance, and is sure to be a warm-weather rock star for Wild Leap.

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