The fruit beer craze is definitely over, not that that’s a bad thing. Most of the remaining fruit beers are very worthwhile and quite tasty. Beers such as New Glarus’ Raspberry Tart, Unibroue’s Quelque Chose or Great Divide’s Wild Raspberry Ale spring to mind. But a local favorite has to be Shaun O’Sullivan’s Watermelon Wheat, that has become as much a sign of summer as the first robin is of spring. A ubiquitous sight at 21st Amendment during the warm weather, Watermelon Wheat is very refreshing with strong watermelon aromas and flavor from the many pounds of watermelon added to each batch.
Shaun has now given several barrels to Vinnie Cilurzo at Russian River Brewing and he’s put them in oak barrels and sparked them with the Belgian yeast Brettanomyces. Nobody knows what this experiment will taste like, but I for one hope to be around when we find out. It should, at the very least, be quite interesting.