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Belt’s Beer Garden: Color Me Impressed!

TEAL, from Southern Grist, is a crushable all-day drinker!

Southern Grist Brewing Co. is one of the best breweries, not just in Music City, but in the country. The Nashville based brewery opened back in 2015 on the city’s East side and then, almost exactly three years later, opened a second location on the west side of the city in The Nations neighborhood, which is now their main brewing facility.

Up until last year they were only available in Davidson County (where Nashville is) however, they finally began to expand their reach and can now be found in Kentucky, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, and in Washington, DC...with occasional drops ending up in Chicagoland these days too (but hopefully full distribution will happen very, very soon!)

Today I feature one of their newest IPAs - TEAL. This hazy IPA has a 5.8% ABV and was brewed with Citra, Mosaic, and Rakau hops. A four-pack costs a very reasonable $13. My can was packaged on April 1st and this was written on May 4th.

TEAL poured an insanely cloudy straw color with less than a finger of head ever building up. The eggshell white foam quickly fizzled into a razor thin layer atop the beer.

On the nose the brew had a quite balanced smell of hops and flaked grain. The wheat and oats provided a semi-sweet cereal aroma while the hops added notes of citrus and berries, with orange and papaya leading the way and a dash of strawberry hiding underneath.

The sip begins with a tiny rush of carbonation and a resinous hopsting before the flavors begin to creep forth.

Initially it’s the oats and barley, which provides a biscuity characteristic that softens the hops. The fruit notes slowly build with the strawberries taking a much larger role in the taste than in the aroma. Joining the strawberries are hints of papaya, orange, and a slight grapefruit resin.

Just as with the aroma, the taste is incredibly balanced. That balance makes for a very easy going IPA that’s as crushable as it is sippable. This is the type of beer that you could quickly down a four-pack in an hour or drink continuously over the course of the day (depending on your intentions when drinking).

On the finish there is a tiny twinge of bitterness and it ends a bit dry with a light sticky feeling to it but, all in all, it’s a rather clean ending.

It’s sweet and malty enough that fans of lagers won’t hate it (and would actually enjoy it) while having just enough hop bite/flavor to keep hopheads happy as well. SGBC calls it a “dependable, everyday drinker” and they are 100% correct in saying that. Looking back, I wish I had grabbed more than one now.

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