Sierra Nevada – Sidecar

The Sidecar I know is a classic cocktail. cognac, Cointreau (or, if you’re cheap like me, triple sec), and lemon juice. Although I personally preferred the White Lady variant, which replaces the cognac with gin. For a time after I turned 21 I became obsessed with cocktails and mixing drinks. I charitably blame my mother, she knows why! I quickly became bored with modern staples like the Long Island Ice Tea and the AMF and (because I was/am insufferable) began to focus on the classics and their variants. The sour, the daquiri, the negroni, martini and yes, the sidecar.

Like I noted in my review of the IPApaya, fruit forward IPAs are the new ‘it’ thing. This I suppose is a variation of that because Sierra Nevada took their famous pale ale and added a citrus twinge to it. The result is nothing like the sidecar cocktail (which uses lemon juice, not orange juice anyway, maybe they should have called it a screwdriver?) but is a solid, fruit forward beer with a refreshing bright profile.

I have to wonder how long this fad will last. It’s definitely more interesting than “moar hops iz moar better” but it must be harder to market. With fruit forward beers the advertising and labels have to focus around fruit, and fruity drink are what GIRLS drink. Not manly men in plaid flannel and beards with axes who drink craft beer. Hop heavy beers had incredibly violent names with a focus on nuclear explosions and other weaponry. New Belgium’s newest mascot for their line of IPAs is a skeleton. A SKELETON.

Still, definitely a better alternative to the tepid torrent of shandy variants Leinenkugel puts out in an attempt to capture the Mikes Hard/Smirnoff Ice market.

Mouthfeel: Bright and happy

Aroma: Like a Florida summer. You be the judge of that

Hops: Citrusy hops. What else would it be?

Je Ne Sais Quoi: Doesn’t live up to its own hype. Could work as an obnoxious drink alternative on St. Patrick’s Day though.

Overall: B-