Beau’s Haters Gonna Hate Imperial Kölsch, Van Kleek Hill, Ontario, Canada (Alcohol 8%) LCBO $7.95 (600ml)
Yip. Haters Gonna Hate. And not all of our GFR readership are going to like this gottle of geer [sic]. If like me, however, you like a bit of a bite to your beer, then perhaps this will do just the job.
Beau’s Haters Gonna Hate is apparently the result of a fortunate accident at the brewery some 10 years back, where a batch of their flagship Lugtread was buggered up due to some malfunctioning beer-making apparatus. According to Beau’s lore, this gave birth to a random oddity that was so well-received that it won “Best Of The Fest” at the Golden Tap Awards (Ontario’s Most Democratic Beer Awards™).
I was struggling over how to classify it though… as it’s not quite a kölsch… more an America IPA/Kölsch hybrid. But the malty undercurrent kept on bringing me back into Bock territory. It’s confusing for a hypomanic soul like myself who likes to categorise, but I won’t let that get between me and a good beer.
The nose is all about grapefruit, citrus, overripe melon, and musky tropical fruit notes. It’s been said that it has a distinctively “cat-like” aromatic, but I don’t get that. Maybe that’s because I used to feed my cat a lot of mangoes, pineapples, and kiwis?*.
It’s a medium-plus hoppy beer, which is usually not really my bag, but the distinctive spicy grass Nelson Sauvin hop profile sits delightfully with the higher 8% alcohol, both on the plate and the nose. It doesn’t really smell or taste as boozy as it is, so be very careful.
I do love the delectable label also, although not the loafers the tweedy, ginger cat-man is wearing. Maybe in orange or red, but cream? Ugh. Then again, what do they say?… haters gonna hate?
(Four and a half apples out of a possible five)
*Denotes bad joke.
Edinburgh-born/Toronto-based Sommelier, consultant, writer, judge, and educator Jamie Drummond is the Director of Programs/Editor of Good Food Revolution… And drinking these higher alcohol brews is actually kinder on the pocketbook.