Second Wind is one of two canned beers Mother Earth produces. This one is a 5.2% pale ale that’s not that impressive, but still a solid entry into the style.
The color is a really hazy sunset yellowish color. There’s a weak head as with the others. Lacing’s a bit stronger on it but the alcohol legs are still weak.
There’s a sort of weak pine and citrus hint on the nose. Slight citrus with orange juice and tangerine being kind of noticeable with a bit of a maltiness to it, too. Nothing really stands out, though.
The taste starts with a slight bitterness on the front of the tongue. The carbonation’s pretty good throughout the mouth. The orange flavor is very pronounced on the back with a lingering piney hoppiness. There’s a bit of a biscuity hop character that lingers as well. Kind of a cracker taste on the finish, too. Not the best pale ale I’ve had, but certainly not the worst.
The alliteration-happy Weeping Willow Witis a spicy Belgian-style wit beer that clocks in at 5%. It’s got that classic Belgian wit appearance, with a slightly hazy deeper straw yellow color. There’s about two fingers of a big, foamy head on top that dissipates pretty quickly. Really nice lacing around the edges and just some slight alcohol legs.
I’ve been told this wasn’t supposed to be a funk-forward beer, but when I took a whiff, I got a big barnyard funk on the nose. It was very pungent and musty and really biting, but not in an infected sort of way. There’s a good soft wheat flavor on the back with a little orange and coriander, but just slightly.
There’s just a very mild citrus bite on the front of the tongue followed up with a very smooth and rich flavor across the palate with just some mild carbonation through the mouth. The finish is very deep and rich with a big hit of coriander and orange peel on the back. There’s a very slight citrus bite that sticks to the back of the tongue. Overall, it’s incredibly drinkable.
One of the beers I was the most excited to try was Old Neighborhood, their 5.5% oatmeal porter. I wasn’t disappointed with the result.
It poured a deep, dark brown color. There was a little bit of light getting through the top. It had a filmy brownish head that disappeared as quickly as it was poured. The lacing also fell off quickly but there were some nice alcohol legs that held on.
On the nose is a light roastiness. The maltiness had kind of sweet, nutty malt character to it and a sort of plum sweetness. No hoppiness. Just a mild nose all around.
The taste is much better than the nose. It starts off with a big bite of bitterness on the front of the tongue. There’s moderate carbonation but a sort of lighter mouthfeel. The first flavor to pop up on the back is a syrupy dark chocolate flavor that gives way to a mild roasted flavor that lingers nicely. There’s a good bit of a hop bite on the back as well.
Last but not least is Sunny Haze, a 5% Americanized twist on the classic German hefeweizen. The color is a bit clearer than you’d expect from a hefe, but still had that hazy straw yellow appearance. There was a finger of a light head that settled fairly quickly. Weak lacing but nice looking alcohol legs.
The nose is more of less a classic hefe. Bananas, cloves and bubblegum are all present with a sweet wheat character and maybe a little candied fruit and honey as well
There was a slight tart bite on the front of the tongue, mild carbonation and a sweet and rich mouthfeel. The bananas and bubblegum were really strong on the end, and it finishes with a honey and sweet wheat note that lingers nicely.
All in all, not one of these beer disappointed. I’d put Dark Cloud, Sisters of the Moon and Weeping Willow at the top and Sunny Haze, Second Wind and Endless River toward the bottom, but none of them were bad. If anything, they just made me even more jealous that they’re all just out of reach. (Can we fix that, Mother Earth?)