There are some people who turn their nose up at a “fruity” beer. I am not one of those people. Okay fine; I can be one of those people, if the beer in question is a syrupy mess. Or the fruit used is, well, ill-designed for pairing with a mixture of hops and barley. But when it’s done well? It’s absolutely lovely. I’ve been a fan of Flying Dog’s Bloodline for a while now, as I can grab a fresh one anytime I’m at Camden Yards. Maryland breweries, y’all! But when my local pub had Bloodline on nitro, I wondered how this delicate, lightly sweet brew would hold up. Quite well, in fact.
When I pour myself a pint of the usual Bloodline, there’s a head of course, but it’s not particularly substantial. Fades rather quickly, lasting just long enough to get a nice head built up, without overstaying its welcome. But when on nitro? Creamy, creamy head. I actually stuck my nose into it and the whipped creamyness was a glorious thing to behold. (Sadly, once on my nose, the head did what it typically does on a regular pour, and dissipated quickly. So scratch the idea of a beer action shot for this piece.)
Nose of sweetness and clean linen. Perfect for a summer day. The blend of blood orange fruit, hints of malt, and my beloved barley is delicious. Just delicious. As for the power of the fruit, and the sweetness? Think hints Starburst and echoes of barley. Stay with me here; I’m talking that first taste of sweetness and hint of tang when the candy hits your mouth. Not the overkill of chewing it into oblivion. Bloodline just might be the perfect blend of IPA and fruit. Things even out beautifully with a slight bitterness at the end of the sip.
While this is a high bar to cross for fruity IPAs, that doesn’t mean that it’s perfect for everything. With the high(ish) alcohol content, it’s definitely not one to pour immediately upon coming inside after a day of yardwork. And it’s bit too substantial for apre-lawnmowing. Instead, Bloodline is beer to drink in the a/c, or while you’re relaxing as the grill does its magic. Perfect with Jamaican jerk wings, or grilled corn. Mmm, grilled corn. Makes a damn fine shower beer as well. Trust me on this.
So if you can find Bloodline on Nitro? Give it a try. It’s more of the gloriousness that you dig from the original brew, but creamier. A bit weightier, which is lovely with that burger you’re thinking of having right now.
Flying Dog Bloodline (Nitro Pour)
Style: Blood Orange IPA/American IPA