Beer Review 0188: The Bruery Trade Winds Tripel

The beer up for review this time is a new brand to this website. The Bruery produces beer out of Placentia, California, and like most craft breweries, everything began with home brew.

Patrick Rue, his brother Chris, and wife, Rachel, brewed a batch of amber ale with Cascade hops. Apparently it tasted pretty good, because Patrick abandoned his future as an attorney (he took up home brewing as a distraction from law school) and became a brewer.

The Bruery makes a variety of beers, but all of them are unfiltered and unpasteurized; they are also all bottle conditioned, meaning the carbonation naturally occurs through a secondary bottle fermentation.

The name “Bruery” is a fusion of the word ‘brewery’ with the family name Rue.

Trade Winds is the beer on deck for today, and it is a seasonal summer offering in the Tripel style. This is a Belgian-style golden ale brewed with rice instead of the traditional candi sugar, which lightens the body of the brew and increases alcohol content (8% ABV, or alcohol by volume, here). Trade Winds is also brewed with Thai basil.

The pour produced a large head, bright white that stood briskly atop the liquid, creamy, frothy, and extremely long lasting. The color of the beer was a nice gold with tons of bubbles quickly streaming to the top of the glass. The body was very slightly cloudy with some light sediment floating throughout. The second glass I poured (this comes in a big 750 ml bottle) was significantly more clouded thanks to the settled yeast. Lacing was fair but the head retention was outstanding. Trade Winds is a looker of a beer, nice and pretty.

Good news continues on the nose, offering a wonderfully complex and pungent dose of scents — the Thai basil really takes center stage, pairing expertly with a funky, earthy and musty yeast. There’s mild citrus notes in the form of grapefruit and orange, along with hints of banana and bubble gum. I detected a slight spiciness, which coupled well with the average amount of sweet malt to be found.

As the beer touches your tongue, it unleashes some of that spice, opening with flavors of citrus and basil, before transitioning to a complex finish of sweet malt, earthy yeast, touches of banana and clove, and green apple skins. The mouthfeel was crisp, thin but refreshing, and foamy. As the flavors continued to tell the story of this beer, it almost verged on cookie dough, and the banana notes picked up. It’s sweet, but there’s a mild dose of bitter here, too. (25 IBUs on this beer, International Bitterness Units).

For my first offering by The Bruery, color me extremely impressed. This is an awesome beer, certainly head of its class when it comes to the summer seasonal. Not only that, but Trade Winds is a classic style with a twist of basil that adds a pleasant dimension to the beer.

I can’t wait to have my next one from The Bruery!

The Bruery Trade Winds Tripel, 95 points. Price: $9.99 US for one 750 ml bottle.

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