Odell Levity Amber Ale and IPA

A thousand apologies for the lack of posts this past week. The problem with writing is that, occasionally, you don’t know what to write. Stories sometime come naturally to me, but there is a rare occurrence when nothing is new or exciting. It is then when a break must be had. Thank you for your patience.

To make up for it, tonight is a double (oh no, he didn’t!) review on two of Odell’s fine brews: the Levity Amber Ale and the IPA.

First, let’s take a moment to talk about the Amber Ale. Of ambers, the Levity, as the name might imply, is on the lighter side. While still a middle range beer, it would certainly be one to pick up if you are inching your way down the road of beer. The foggy, yellow-tan liquid is not very amber, and, according to the bottle, it’s Odell’s “lighter take on an amber ale.” Because of this, however, it feels like I’ve been to this place before with a different sort of beer. It isn’t bad or undrinkable, by any stretch of the imagination, but I want it to be more.

I like the idea of the Levity, giving a different take on a very good style of ale. The flavor, as the color and text suggests, is not as robust as cousin ales, which generally have a little more edge.  As the beer enters the flavor pallet, not a whole lot happens. With a little wait, you get light honey, nut, and almost a creamy profile. The ale bounces along your tongue like a dog running around; it doesn’t really care where it’s going, but it’s going somewhere. With the subtle sweetness, it is very drinkable and enjoyable, if you are looking for something you can drink without thinking too much about, although, if you think about it for a bit, it’s not a half-bad beer. Could you sit and have a long, enthralling conversation with this in your hand? Yes. Could you drink it, but forget what it tasted like after or during afore mentioned long, enthralling conversation? Yes.

But I think I may be taking the beer a little to seriously. “We could all use a little levity once in a while,” the bottle tells us. And that is very true.

On that note, if you are on the market for a decent flavorful, slightly complex light beer, then the Levity is far from a bad choice. In fact, I would recommend it over a lot of the lighter beer out there, but there are still some that are above beyond the Levity.

But as a coin has two sides, so do lightly colored brews. Although IPAs are lighter in color, they generally punch you in the neck (which is quite different than the Levity). Frankly, I’m sort of biased. If I had to only drink IPAs for the rest of my life, I think I would be strangely comfortable with it. And if this IPA happened to be from Odell Brewing Company, well, you would be driving a hard bargain.

The initial punch is bitter, crisp, and pretty great. As your pallet wades through the jungle of flavor, vanilla, spices, toffee, and molasses, with, of course, an interesting hops blend that feels good all the way down to the small intestine, you sit back and smile at the wild ride that happened for a sense that there aren’t enough thrill-seekers for. The ale left my mouth very dry, which only made me want to go back for more.

But despite the bitterness and the dryness, the Odell IPA is very smooth and hides quite a few subtleties in its brash exterior. It sends a shiver down my spine and a happiness to my heart.

But, then again, if I ever find an IPA that’s handcrafted that I don’t like, I’ll let you know first. And if you passed up a chance to enjoy this one, boy howdy, I might feel sort of sorry for you.

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