Seattle, Washington has a fantastic beer scene and today I found one of their newer breweries that I hadn’t ever seen before - Bizarre Brewing.
Bizarre is situated right near Salmon Bay, in the Industrial Magnolia neighborhood, and has been around for just under two years, opening in the summer of 2022. And they made a big splash almost immediately, being named as one of Hop Culture’s Best New Breweries of 2022.
Having never tried them before, when I saw a few of their cans for sale on Tavour, I jumped at the opportunity.
Today I will try their Ghost Bird Sings, an Extra Pale Ale.
Ghost Bird Sings was brewed with Pilsner malt, flaked barley, their Kolsch yeast, and then hopped with Citra, Chinook Lupomax, and Harlequin hops. But they weren’t done there. Oh no, to live up to their name, it was then conditioned on Western Red Cedar planks and dry-hopped twice more with a bunch more Citra hops. It’s a lighter beer, sporting a 4.8% ABV, and did cost a bit more - at $7.50 per 16-ounce can.
This XPA poured a hazy, muddled straw color with minimal head. No more than half a finger of off-white foam appeared and, almost immediately, it dissipated down into a thin ring around the edge of the glass with a single cloud floating across the middle. There was some lacing but, for the most part, the sides were left clean.
The aroma was beautifully inviting and I couldn’t wait to dive in. It was super light and fruity with a slew of tropical fruit notes coming through. Orange, lime, mango, and guava being the most prevalent. Underneath the fruits is just a touch of earthiness from the cedar planks and the hops but, make no mistake, this brew is very fruit forward and smells absolutely AMAZING.
Each sip starts off slowly, with just the tiniest hum of carbonation buzzing across the taste buds to start with. The body was quite light and watery, making it very easy to drink. After a moment of effervescence, the cedar kicks things off with some soft woody and earthy characteristics and a touch of hoppy bitterness (but it is a very light bitter twinge).
Crawling out of those earthy beginnings are some amazing tropical fruit flavors. It begins with some pithy citrus - mostly tangerine/orange, lemon, and lime zest - that quickly turns juicier. And that’s when those mango and guava notes, alongside a dash of pineapple, appeared.
From there, the fruity and juicy qualities controlled the taste and never let go. It was absolutely crushable and quite delicious. There were a few times throughout the pint that the lime characteristic peaked and added a bit of tartness to the flavors but, otherwise, it was a very consistent beer. It even finished super cleanly, with just a touch of dryness that didn’t last too long at all. I loved every moment of this pint.
This is an early contender for my Beer of the Year and if you can get your hands on it, I highly recommend it…even if it is a bit pricier than most lighter/pale ales. It’s totally worth it.