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Belt’s Beer Garden: Crantastic!

New Heights’ Mr. Crantastic sour ale

This week things get sour...as I try a sour ale with quite the assortment of additives from Music City’s New Heights Brewing.

New Heights Brewing began in Nashville, Tennessee back in 2014 after the husband and wife duo moved there from San Diego. From super hopped up IPAs to rich stouts and everything in between, New Heights brews beers that they want to drink.

On my last trip to Nashville I saw one of their beers - Mr. Crantastic - that had a blend of three flavors I enjoy all mixed into one beer...so I made sure to grab myself a can before I left.

Mr. Crantastic is a Sour Ale brewed with cranberries, blood oranges, and ginger. It has a modest 4.9% ABV and just 10 IBU. A four-pack of 16-ounce cans costs $15, so it’s not the cheapest but it’s not too expensive.

The brew poured a translucent golden copper color with just under a finger of off-white head topping it off. The foam quickly fizzles down to a razor-thin ring around the glass with one other thin patch of bubbles floating in the middle.

The aroma is super tart and features a bunch of the cranberry and ginger, with the cranberry holding a slight advantage over ginger. The blood orange was nowhere to be found in the smell. Based on the scent, I had a feeling this brew was going to be mouth-puckering sour.

My first swig began with a minimal amount of carbonation before a flash of sour lemon had my cheeks tightening up. The sour rush was strong and the cranberry quickly joined in with some additional tartness.

However, after a second or two, the sour levels began to drop drastically and make this a much more palatable brew.

Helping the beer lose its sour feeling were the ginger and blood orange. The ginger gave it a bit of spice while the orange added a juicy flavor that washed the sour right off the tongue.

Joining the blood orange was a sticky resin that coated my tongue. And, from there, Mr. Crantastic ended slightly dry with some cranberry notes lingering underneath.

All in all, it was a nice mixture of flavors that worked really well together. The ginger and blood orange really balanced that initial shock of cranberry tartness. And, with each passing sip, the brew seemed to lose some of that sharpness the first sip hit with.

A very solid Sour Ale.

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