You remember it like it was yesterday. The beer flowed like music. The music was all that mattered. What mattered most was that nothing else mattered at all and the world outside fell away as a dream disappears upon waking, ephemeral and vaporous. You cradled her in your hand, lips trembling, her citrus suchness a swarm of expectation in your mind, her carbonate beauty as satisfying as it was overwhelming. You were new to this dance but she was not. Taking her in completely she seized your senses and you were consumed by the luminous passion, her residual sweetness, and the tart earthiness of her grin… This brew is dedicated to the real Aunt Sally. You know who you are. And you know why.
While I highly doubt that we’ll ever find out who the real Aunt Sally is, a quick bit of Googling reveals several other Aunt Sally possibilities…
- Aunt Sally, The Game: A traditional Cotswolds/Oxfordshire summer game that is still played in many pubs in the area. The dolly (a 4 inch high ball or skittle) is placed on a metal spike normally around 3 feet tall. Players (typically two teams of 6) take turns to throw 6 sticks at the dolly. The aim is to knock the dolly off the spike, without hitting the spike. Aunt Sally, The Game looks something like this:
- Aunt Sally’s Pralines: A combination of fresh cream, cane sugar, and Louisiana pecans that have been made daily in the New Orleans French Quarter since 1935.
- The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn’s Aunt Sally: Tom Sawyer’s gullible and lovable aunt.
- Worzel Gummidge‘s Aunt Sally: Check this out…
Google here. Google there. All this typing and clicking has got me nowhere! Oh well. I guess we’ll never know who the REAL Aunt Sally is. Let’s move on to our review.
Here’s what I thought of Aunt Sally, The Lagunitas Beer…
- Appearance: Pale orange color. A full inch of fluffy white foam that lingers for quite awhile and then settles down to a thin, clingy layer.
- Aroma: Very bright and aromatic with hints of tangerine, some pine, and a smattering of funk. Also getting some honey and lemon zest.
- Taste: Light and fizzy carbonation that starts off surprisingly tart. I say surprising because the nose said Belgian IPA while that first sip says Sour Ale. This is an odd little beer that messes with my expectations. The beginning reminds me of a Lemonhead candy, i.e. it has that initial lemony tang but then some sugary sweetness comes through. Once you get past the sour/sweet stuff, the hoppyness comes back around and you think you’re drinking a Belgian IPA again. A touch of tartness comes back in the finish followed immediately by a good bit of hoppiness before it all fades away.
- ABV: 5.7%
It’s an IPA.
NO! It’s a Sour!
NO WAIT! It’s a BELGIAN IPA!
You can call it Aunt Sally, or Aunt Sybil, or maybe even Aunt Evelyn if you like. I’ll call it a fun and funky hybrid of a beer. Bravo Lagunitas!