This is one of several articles I wrote a while ago for a new platform called Tidbitts.com. The idea was to write at least one short, exclusive article per week, for which I could round up many subscribers willing to part with a mere 99¢ a month to read on their phones. Well, that never worked out as a business model, so the site went down, and I have some articles from there that I am slowly working over to where my readers really hang out.
I am well disposed toward Victory Brewing Co. of Downington, PA. Their Prima Pils is reckoned one of the better American-made Pilsener style beers. I have in my cellar their Golden Monkey Belgian-style Tripel from 2002 and their Old Horizontal Barley Wine from 2005, waiting for a special visit guests who don't have to drive somewhere very soon. So when I was offered some of their seasonal release, the Moonglow Weizenbock to talk about, I said sure (I trust that meets the requirements of Disclosure).
Weizenbock is, first off, a Bock, the slightly stronger German style made for spring and fall months. The Weizen part refers to wheat, which is in a large proportion in the malt. Like other German wheat beers, it ferments with a high ester profile, meaning that the yeast makes some flavors of its own that would be missing from, say a lager. And it's usually darker in color than the summertime hefeweizens, with more alcohol to play with.
Victory's Moonglow is a good example of that style. My photo shows it poured into a smaller weizen glass (okay, it's a Goose Island 312 glass. Hefeweizen glasses are amazingly fragile). It can also go into any German handled beer stein. This pour kicks up a big ocher head, but that just helps spread the aroma of spices; some of that ubiquitous pumpkin pie spice, but I also get notes of carrot cake. Taste brings in some big malts, kilned to offer caramel and toffee sweetness, with only enough hop to keep it from being too sweet. Here, the unfiltered yeast gives it the note of banana and bubble gum you get from the usual wheat beer profile. But there is plenty of malt to keep that at bay, and to hide its 8.7% alcohol by volume. Though it's unfiltered, there was very little yeast at the bottom of the bottle, and only a bit of yeast "bite" towards the end of my glass.
This a a very hearty beer. The first instinct might be to save it for dessert or after dinner, but at any holiday feast, I think it can go with the main course, especially upcoming courses of turkey or ham.