Adelbert’s Brewery in Austin, Texas was founded in 2011 and since then they have cranked out enough innovative Farmhouse and Belgian-style beers to earn themselves a solid reputation in this city. Most of their beers are heavy in alcohol content and at the same time, totally drinkable!
My favorite, Scratchin’ Hippo, is a bottle-conditioned, French-Farmhouse ale. Highly-carbonated, malty, and with a 6.9% ABV, this beer meets all of its marks. It’s one of those beers that comes in a large, single bottle and is sealed with a cork. Generally, I have always stayed away from those just because of my own naivety and taste preferences, but Adelert’s Brewery has changed that and opened a whole new game for me!
It was a rainy, stormy night when I decided to “study” this lofty animal, and its label was what I noticed first. On the side, Adelbert’s listed all the 411 on Scratchin’ Hippo and how it’s intended to be enjoyed (always appreciated!). First thing at the top is a recommendation to serve this brew at 45–55 degrees for the best experience. So go ahead, let this beer warm up for a few minutes before pouring. This threw me through a loop at first, I love my beer to be icy-cold, but taking their advice made a huge difference in the taste and smell.
The head is a creamy, off-white with tight, foamy bubbles, all this carbonation means that you should pour slow and be patient. The hazy amber-reddish color is very appropriate for the taste.
There is a lovely, light toastiness that reminded me of caramel or burnt sugar, SO GOOD. The malt-driven flavor is quite complex but the mild sweetness keeps it grounded. Scratchin’ Hippo generally, just really reminded me of a clean Wit beer mixed together with a not-so-nutty Amber.
Overall, Adelbert’s describes it as “an amber animal,” and I could not agree more! If you’re ever presented with an opportunity to experience this beer, do not let it pass by!