When I saw the description of Northern Brewer’s Synchronicity recipe kit I was hooked. The official description of the deliciously named Synchronicity Extraordinaire Wheaten Saison Extract Kit says that this beer possesses a “supercharged burst of fresh citrus flavors paired with the slick smoothness of silky wheat.”
It sounded like the perfect beer for cool summer nights following sun baked days. It’s well-known that I have a certain predilection for Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy and I think that a lot of that attraction has to do with the citrus flavors. Heck, I usually choose citrus flavors for almost everything I consume so why should beer be any different?
The recipe kit included organic sweet orange peel and organic dried lemongrass in addition to the usual malt extract, honey, and hops. Everything was brewed up and I waited the requisite time before cracking open the first bottle, which I have increased from two to three weeks because the increase in time really does seem to mellow any harsh notes out. The result:
After the insane amount of carbonation in about half the bottles of my Chinook IPA batch and the experience of being nearly drowned by Lightning Thunderweizen I was pleased to open a beer with a gentle amount of head. Whew!
According to iBrewMaster calculations this beer should clock in at 3.8 ABV and 50 IBU. At that low of an alcohol you are starting to get into Berliner weiss category of low alcohol. In all honesty, the beer does not taste that low in alcohol nor does it taste like a 50 IBU beer. I have beers with IBU ratings around 30 that tasted more bitter.
I would like to attribute the smooth drinking to the addition of sweet orange peel and lemongrass, but neither of those flavors is really prominent in the final product. This is really surprising considering that when I poured the beer into the carboy it smelled like an orange explosion. Little if any of these aromas survived several weeks in the carboy and another three in bottles.
All in all, Synchronicity is a really good recipe kit and an especially welcome beer during the summer. I have a get together in St. Louis planned for about a month, so two more batches of beer are bubbling away right now: a batch of Lefse blonde and a batch of Phat Tyre Ale. It’s a risk to take an unproven beer down to my friends–fierce beer critics all–but I am feeling the beer vibes after several successful batches without a hiccup. Okay, some of those Chinook IPA bottles were a little over carbonated.