BREWERY: Southern Tier
BEER: Phin & Matt’s Extraordinary Ale
STYLE: Pale Ale
FROM THE BREWERY:
“To say a beer is extraordinary is to trust its ingredients from the start. Crystal clean filtered water, whole hops, and the choicest malted barley create this American-style pale ale we are pleased to call Phin & Matt’s Extraordinary Ale. The character of an American Pale Ale varies from region to region and is dependent upon the ingredients used. In ours, you can expect harmony between malt and hops without dominating tastes of sweet or bitter. A classic tribute to the ingredients of our nation, for a pale ale we are proud to call our own.”
Phin & Matt’s Extraordinary Ale by the Southern Tier is one that I don’t commonly see around the city, even though Southern Tier is local to the area. Its been rebranded a few times since 2004, at one point being called ‘PMX’, the abbreviation used in the brewery for the beer. I’ve had this beer a few times, and its been consistent from year to year, even as the names have changed. I picked this one up in a ‘Build Your Own 6 Pack’ at Fairway Market on 86th, which has a fantastic beer selection. Not to mention, if you buy two of the 6 packs, you get an even better deal (1 for $10.99, 2 for $20 – tough to beat!). Leggo!
This beer has a great, golden color with a touch of amber. Its strong, crisp white head really brings out the color. It has a very nice, mild hop aroma and a mild hop aftertaste. Tough to place an exact hop profile, but its definitely more of a grassy flavor than a citrus taste. For a pale ale, it has a surprisingly lengthy hop taste. It has a great mouth feel and body, and really is an ‘extraordinary’ ale.
This beer is claimed to use 3 types of hops, along with 3 types of malt. I didn’t find any specifics on that, but the malts definitely have some biscuity, roasty notes (though not overly so). The hops are present, but mild. A good compromise between a pale ale and an IPA.
CLOSING THOUGHTS and WHERE TO BUY
This beer has few flaws. It doesn’t stand out in any one category of note, but manages to do a lot of things quite well. One quip against it is its seemingly lack of availability. Southern Tier beer is quite common locally, but this one isn’t found that often. Its definitely worth a try if you come across it in the wild, or on tap. I have a feeling this one on draft would be delightful, yet I have not seen it available as such.
RATING: 3.75 out of 5