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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Walking Man Shin Splint Imperial Red (Cask)


Shin Splint Imperial Red
Style: American Red Ale
Serving Type: Cask
Served at The Red Hot. Tacoma, WA

I had the opportunity to talk about the brewing and conditioning process of this Cask ale with the Walking Man brewer. They conditioned this ale for 2 weeks in the Cask, and primed it with corn sugar. While I have read articles discussing the use of clarifiers such as Gelatin or Isinglass in cask ale, Walking Man uses no such thing in their casks.

Aroma: Pleasantly and heavily hopped boasting a citrus hop character up front. Other aromatics are light with subtle caramel and toffee malt in the nose.

Appearance: Deep red to brown with an off white head. Good retention, though the head does fade to a thin coating at the top of the beer, good lacing down the sides. Yeast haze as expected from a Cask conditioned ale.

Flavor: Caramel malt character with rich citrus hop bitterness riding in the forefront. Yeast character is certainly noticeable with this cask ale. Toffee and biscuit barley profile comes out in the end before finishing with another round of citrus and some pine hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Med body with low carbonation. Natural carbonation from the cask comes off bright and sparkly. Bread character in the mouth from the yeast presence.

Overall: While this beer seemed served too cold for a cask ale, the hop and malt character present themselves well with the youthful exuberance of a Cask ale. As the beer warms caramel and biscuit malt complexity give way to citrus hops, but it is not unbalanced by any means. A well presented Cask Ale, nicely conditioned and naturally carbonated for a bready mouthfeel.

I rated this beer a B+ on BeerAdvocate.

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Beer enthusiast and advocate. Recognized beer judge and traveler of west coast beer destinations.