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Review of New Albanian Solidarity

05 May
Hello guys.  For today’s craft beer review I’m going to be sampling the New Albanian Solidarity produced by the New Albanian Brewing Company located in New Albany, Indiana.

Let’s skip all of the small talk and just jump to the website, newalbanian.com, to see what we can find out about this beer.

Solidarity or Death.

Baltic Porter is the best way to tip your hat to the activists in the Solidarity independent trade union, and a robust reminder of Baltic foresight in activism and strong beer. 

How ’bout a pour?

This Porter has an ABV of 8.5% and it comes in a 22 oz. bottle with one of the coolest labels I’ve ever seen.

It poured a very dark brown to black color with plenty of ruby highlights showing through around the edges.  It had a very nicely sized tan/khaki colored head that was very smooth, creamy and soft.  The retention time was adequate and the lacing looked pretty good too.

The nose presented some milk chocolate aspects.  Also, I found some clean bread and grain hints.  They were slightly toasted and earthy.  The grainy tones really started to come to the forefront a bit more as it warmed.  It almost had a “cardboard” type of smell too.  Hmm.  I didn’t really find any type of coffee or espresso aromas either, which usually accompany these Baltic Porters.  Overall, I found the nose to be a bit subdued and restrained. 

The taste began with a nice dose of sweet chocolate malt and creamy milk flavors.  Some roasted and toasted grains and breads.  A smidgen of that Lager yeast became apparent as well.  A touch of coffee bean was found, but it wasn’t very strong or robust.  I could barely detect it actually.  Oh well.  It still tasted pretty nice I thought.     

The mouthfeel was medium to medium/thin.  A bit thinner than I like to be honest.  It was very smooth, slick and slightly creamy.  It wasn’t as dry as I had hoped either.  The carbonation was good though, however only an average amount of flavor was left behind on the palate after each gulp.

Well, this beer was ok I guess.  It just fell a tad short I thought.  Nothing bad or off putting, yet mostly average all the way around.  It definitely did not drink like an 8.5% ABV beer that’s for sure.  I was taking huge gulps without even batting an eye.  I received absolutely no alcohol in either the aroma or the flavor.  I’d say that the New Albanian Solidarity could be a great introductory Porter for someone interested in exploring the style.  I would never turn it down and I would suggest that you give it a try if you see it, however don’t expect to be blown away or anything.  With that being said, let me know what you think of it if you try it or have tried it.

Thanks for checking in on another review guys.  I really appreciate it.   I have many more to come. 

Until next time.  Cheers.

Score:  3.55 out of 5
Grade:  B  

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