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Belt’s Beer Garden: Volt for Me

4 Hands + Southern Grist + 80s cartoons = Voltron Vol. 2, a fruited hazy IPA with mango and kiwi

If you’re a fan of classic 80s cartoons, then do I have a beer for you!

Today I’ll be trying Voltron Volume 2, a collaboration between St. Louis, Missouri’s 4 Hands Brewing and Nashville, Tennessee’s Southern Grist Brewing.

Voltron V2 is a fruited hazy IPA brewed with mangoes and kiwi and hopped with Mosaic, Nelson Sauvin, and Riwaka hops. It’s got a 7% ABV and a single can cost me about $5.

It poured a very murky, dark orange color with minimal head. No more than a finger of wispy, eggshell white head that ever appeared and what little foam did show up, quickly fizzled down into a thin ring around the edge of the glass.

There were clear notes of kiwi and mango on the nose but, surprisingly, the aroma was mostly very muted and quite subtle. Outside of the fruits and a bit of tartness from the additives, there wasn’t too much to the smell…a bit of orange and flaked grain underneath but that’s about it. It was so soft and inviting, more like a juice cocktail than a beer.

Each sip begins with a thin and watery mouthfeel with just a hint of carbonation fizzling underneath. The kiwi and mango hit almost immediately with some sweet juicy notes of the tropical fruits. The mango punches first with the kiwi building after a moment or two. There is a slightly sour characteristic that builds with the kiwi, not enough to make one pucker but it is noticeable.

As that sour note hits full crescendo a few seconds in, the grains and hops kick in with a bit of pithy bitterness and a cerealesque breadiness that cuts into those initial fruity flavors. The Nelson hops add a bit of grape and some dry notes while the Mosaic and Riwaka add some notes of tangerine and guava.

The beer ends rather quickly and cleanly after that. There is a bit of a sticky sweet resin left from the mango/kiwis but, outside of that, Voltron V.2 finishes super quick and super clean. It’s a very easy beer to put down, even at 7%.

However, it does not sit as light as it drinks. There is a bit of heft to this one that you don’t get in the mouthfeel or while drinking. Which is nice because it slows you down some so you can’t just chug it.

Overall, it’s a very easy to drink and a solid beer but it doesn’t really amaze. Yes, the flavors are nice and the mango and kiwi are front and center for most of the sip…but it’s too subtle otherwise. It starts and finishes fast with a brief burst of fruit in the middle.

Worth a try, sure - especially if you’re a fan of mangoes or kiwi.

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