Review: Renewale—Mason's Irish-Style Red Ale, Ninkasi

Renewale:  Mason's Irish-Style Red Ale
Ninkasi Brewing Co. — Eugene, Oregon

  • Style:  Red Ale
  • Bitterness:  40 IBU
  • ABV: 5.2%
  • Starting Gravity:  1052
  • Malts:  Not available
  • Hops:  Not available 
  • Sampled: 22 oz. bottle

Description:  "A New Year a New Beer! Each year Renewale will be something new and special to enjoy while winter runs its course. For 2011 we brewed a delicious Irish-style red ale that’s smooth and refined with a hint of toasted malt and a clean finish. A great beer for a new year, cheers!
"  — Ninkasi Brewing Co.

Random thoughts:   I love Ninkasi's idea to produce a different late winter seasonal each year.  For the homebrewers out there, you'll be happy to know that Brew Your Own magazine worked with Ninkasi to publish the recipe for this beer in last month's issue.  For this review, I tried something different.  I tasted this beer along with another red ale, Woodshed Red by Southern Oregon Brewing.  This review will focus on Renewale.  Woodshed Red is up tomorrow.

The tasting:   Reddish-orange (very hazy) with a white head that dissipated slowly, leaving no lacing on the glass.  Aroma of bready malts, lemon, and some faint grassy hops.  Flavor of bready malts, grassy hops, and yeast.  Light to medium in body with an effervescent mouth feel. Finishes with citrus flavor and a slight hop bitterness. 

Rating:  3 star.  Good.  I would drink this again if someone gave it to me.  Mason's Irish-Style Red Ale is a malt-forward beer.  It's actually Ninkasi's second least bitter beer (as measured by IBUs).  Last week, I reviewed Ninkasi's Spring Reign which is the least bitter.  If you want to try Renewale, you better get moving!  It's disappearing from store shelves.  Tomorrow, I'll publish my review of SOB's Woodshed Red.

Have you tried any vintage of Renewale or other Ninkasi beers?

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