Voodoo Brewery, owners of the worst website in all craft beerdom, must be working their black magic on me, because I keep buying and enjoying their beers.
First it was their Big Black Voodoo Daddy, a powerful and well-crafted imperial stout that managed to be huge on flavor but still very drinkable. It let me know Voodoo could do big dark beers.
But what about something golden, where there’s less malt and toastiness to hide behind? Well, one try of their Pilzilla convinced me they could nail those too. This was later confirmed when I had their Four Seasons IPA. Voodoo’s beers are big, bold and very original – if Jimi Hendrix brewed beer, he’d brew for Voodoo. Image THAT company holiday party!
I think this positive opinion of the brewery helped me enjoy their Voodoo Love Child, a tart and dry beer that tastes a lot like a sour in my book.
If you know me, you know I struggle with sours. But just like Charlie Brown with that stupid football, I keep going back again and again hoping I’ll connect this time. I’ve had some success, but generally I run for the hills when super-tart sours are about, or just pour them down the drain.
Now, this beer isn’t technically a sour. It’s a super-fruity Belgian Tripel. I’ll let Voodoo do the heavy lifting here:
This is our Belgian Style Tripel aged on intimate fruits of Passion Fruit, Raspberry and Cherry. Lightly spiced with corriander and curqua orange peel and other spices of passion. Light Reddish hue and with an alcohol strength of 10.5% and nicely carbonated in the bottle.
So it’s not a sour, but it has the pucker-factor of one, and it got very close to tripping my “sour detector” (also know as my gag reflex), but it stopped just short, so I persevered. And it turns out, I really enjoyed this beer.
The pour was a golden orange with a hint of ruby and a white head that was a couple of fingers thick. Voodoo Love Child is bottle conditioned, and lots of floaties played in the glass after the pour, but they settled down soon enough and didn’t interfere with the enjoyment of the beer.
The nose was led by raspberries, with cherries hanging in the background, adding a scent of sweetness to an otherwise tart aroma. There was also a little spicy funk of Belgian yeast in the mix.
The first sip struck me with its dry tartness, but unlike some sour beers, my palate was able to adjust and pick out the flavors. Like the nose, there was a lot of tart raspberry, with just enough sweetness from the cherries to keep me going. There was also a grassy flavor which played quite nicely with the fruits and the spicy Belgian yeast. The finish was very dry, leaving only the slightest fruity tartness to let you know you had sipped anything at all.
To be honest, this isn’t my kind of beer and I won’t be buying it again. That said, I happily finished it, only pacing myself because of the absolutely hidden 10.5% ABV this fruity puppy packs. With other tart beers, I usually take a couple of sips, let it warm, take a couple more, and then bail. This wasn’t the case with the Voodoo Love Child.
I think the same beer brewed in less skilled hands would be one I poured down the drain. But the Matt and the gang over at Voodoo Brewery seem to have a knack for pushing the boundaries and brewing high-character and ultimately drinkable beers. These mofos have their mojo working.