Schlafly has been brewing beer in St. Louis, MO since 1989. That’s an eternity in the fast-paced world of craft beer, so it might be understandable if Schlafly settled for being a revered pioneer in the micro-brewing movement, resting on its original portfolio of beers. Instead, Schlafly has continued to expand, both in the size of its operational capacity and the number of beers it produces. With dozens of different main line and specialty brews, it offers something for everyone, from fans of sweet wheat ales and bitter IPAs, to those who crave barrel aged sours or thick coffee stouts.
One of Schlafly’s most exciting new additions to its stable is Hibiscus & Lemongrass Blonde Ale. Perfect for summertime porch drinking, this 4.8 percent alcohol by volume golden elixir weaves a delicate complexity into easy drinkability. Blonde ales sometimes get a bad rap for being too simple, but it’s precisely this unassuming base style that makes it ideal for experimentation. Schlafly has accepted that challenge by introducing the complementary additives of hibiscus and lemongrass to the recipe. While both of these ingredients can be subtle on their own, together, blended in the right proportions, they elevate the beer into a delicious tasting experience.
Founding Brewer Stephen Hale says, “It’s a versatile brew with assertive hops and a serious depth of flavor. You get a punch of citrus without any actual citrus at all. The tropical, fragrant lemongrass gives aromatics of lemon while the hibiscus lends complex berry-rich and tart lemon flavors.”
That quote is spot on. From the opening pop of the cap, a sharp citrus candy aroma fills the room. That primes the palate for a medium mouthfeel beer that is refreshing with a bright carbonation. The hibiscus adds just a touch of pucker, but the malt base’s sweetness balances it back to center. It’s the sort of beer you could serve in lieu of wine at a nice dinner or enjoy at a picnic. It pairs nicely with light summertime fare from fresh cut fruit to salads or burgers.
Hibiscus & Lemongrass Blonde Ale is a part of Schlafly’s cellar selection, along with beers like Kentucky Mule Ale and Raspberry Chipotle Brown Ale. It’s available in a 750ml bottle adorned with a die-cut paper label and separate neck tag, which makes for an upscale presentation. The bottle’s look is a nice, unexpected touch at the affordable $13.99 price point. Find out more about this beer at schlafly.com.