Le Roi Rouge Imperial Red from GrassLands Brewery

GrassLands Brewery is a new craft brewery 'in planning' out of Tallahassee, Florida. Owner Gabe Grass recently gave Pensacola Beer the opportunity to review the first version of one of GrassLands' eventual flagship beers: the Le Roi Rouge (the Red King) Imperial Red.

Gabe describes the beer as a 'higher gravity and earthy hopped American Amber/English Pale hybrid with select specialty malts'. He's shooting for a 'medium to slightly full bodied ale with a complex malt backbone, complemented by spicy and floral hop flavors/aromas and some dark fruit flavors/aromas' (7.8% ABV, 15 SRM, 53 IBUs).

The beer was brewed June 30th and bottled July 24th. We received the beer on August 13 and reviewed it on August 22nd using the Beer Advocate Ratings System.

Le Roi Rouge (the Red King) Imperial Red

Appearance: A brackish brown with a hint of red. A large white head (2 fingers) and heavy carbonation. Not the most inviting beer appearance wise, though the appearance may be common for this type of beer.

Smell: A strong floral aroma with a hint of dark fruit. A few roasted malt notes.

Taste: Spicy in the beginning with noticeable alcohol. A smooth middle balanced between roasted malts and floral notes. A short finish highlighted with a hint of fruit.

Mouth Feel: Medium body with heavy carbonation.

Overall: A very drinkable beer. Besides the initial alcohol bite, it was smooth and balanced. I could easily see myself enjoying a couple at one sitting, or recommending it to someone that doesn't normally drink beer.

Final Score: 3.63

Comments: I'd love to see the flavors (floral, malts, spices) brought out and intensified to leave a more memorable and lasting impression. Still, an impressive and unique drinking experience. We're expecting great things from GrassLands Brewery.