Brewery: Sea Dog Brewery, Portland Maine
Beer: Wild Blueberry Wheat Ale (aka Blue Paw)
Sea Dog brewery’s “Wild Blueberry Wheat Ale” is a well-known summer beer in New England, especially in Maine. It is a frequent find on tap at local bars, and you need only ask for a “Blue Paw” and the bartender will know exactly what you mean. The blueberries in the beer are from Maine, so I give this one an automatic thumbs up for staying local with their ingredients.
When you take the cap off the bottle (even before pouring) you get the immediate smell of mashed up blueberries, and your brain tells you that the beer that comes out of the bottle has got to be blue. (It isn’t, of course.) When poured it is a light, warm yellow. Some of the powerful blueberry smell goes away when you pour it into a glass and it gets a little head.
When you bring the glass to your face, you still get a light blueberry smell, but the taste is actually very subtle, which I was happy about. You can taste the wheat of the beer and a slight tartness. The taste fades quickly but the overall impression is good.
This is the best blueberry beer that I’ve tasted because it is very well balanced, and the wheat blends seamlessly with the fruit. I applaud this beer for not going overboard on the blueberry and still making it taste really interesting. I’m not a pairing expert, but I kind of have to say that I would want some sweeter bread to go with this to bring out some sweetness/tartness in the beer.