Monday, March 24, 2014
Goose Island 312 Urban Wheat Ale
Brewery: Goose Island Beer Co.
Location: Chicago, IL
Style: American Wheat Ale
Today, I am checking out a beer I have had countless of times and have never sat down to review. Goose Island's 312 has been a welcomed site on many of my business travels that have me flying through Chicago. It's also a beer that is pretty new to the Florida market--distribution has only been in Florida less than a year.
Although Goose Island is now owned by Anheuser-Busch (AB-inBev), it is one of the few breweries, post-purchase, that remains reputable in the craft community. Regardless of its current owner, Goose Island beers are frequently found in craft drinker's fridges and cellars.
312 is an unfiltered wheat ale that is meant to appeal to the masses. It's often referred to as a "Gateway" beer, making Bud-drinkers into craft-beer-converts!
312 pours slightly hazy with a bright yellow hue and a quickly fading head.
The smell is mild. I detect traces of citrus (maybe lemon) and some grassy-yeast aromas. But so far, this is a light looking, lighter smelling beer.
The taste brings a bit more to the table, but it's still not going to knock your socks off. The flavor begins with some lemon and sour flavors, followed by bold wheat flavors, and finishes with a hint of herbal notes and yeasty flavors. It's a fairly clean finish with a pleasant touch of lemon that lingers on the palate.
Overall, this is a refreshing beer. It's enjoyable and easy to drink. 312 isn't going to impress anyone, but it'll certainly quench your thirst on a hot day.
I recently read a review of this beer where the writer said, "I've moved on to bigger and better things." While I, too, find myself enjoying bolder beers, I don't discredit 312 for being a light and refreshing beer. There's a time and place for beer like this. Let's not be snobs about it!
Lest we forget whence we came.