Nickel Beer Company- Julian
Nickel Beer Company was a welcomed respite from the heat of the desert. I had just come up Banner Grade and Route 78 from the Salton Sea through Ocotillo Wells and Anza-Borrego, and I was hot, sun burned, and my mouth was dry. It was cool in Julian, and a nice breeze was blowing on the deck of the brewery.
Inside, the tasting room was busy with people watching a March Madness game and ordering from the list of at least 13 brewery fresh beers. When the friendly bartender asked me for my selection, my mouth was so dry I could barely speak. Somehow in a raspy voice I was able to tell her, “Julian Pale Ale, please.” I was quickly accommodated and stepped outside to the deck which was crowded with locals and weekenders. Here are my tasting notes for Julian Pale Ale, 5% ABV:
Dark golden in color, clear, with a white head, and good retention. Gentle aromas of orange, apricot, passion fruit, vanilla, and pepper. A little bit of caramel in the taste, a nice blast of hop bitterness, then some apricot, vanilla, and pine flavors come forward. Mouthfeel is slightly creamy, moderate carbonation, and there is a clean, lasting bitterness to the aftertaste. Overall, this traditional style of Pale Ale is obviously well made and very easy to drink. After drinking a pint I could speak normally again and my body was refreshed and hydrated.
As mentioned in other posts, I have learned that Pale Ales may be paired with just about any food. I’ve been on a cheese kick lately, so when I was drinking this beer all I could think about pairing it with were cheeses: Gouda, Fontina, Colby, Munster, Feta, and Goat would all be great with this beer.