It was a beautiful San Diego day when I received a text notifying me I would not be needed at the restaurant later that evening. My excitement rose as earlier I spotted something I wanted to try, Lost Abbey - Avant Garde.
The monk-like artistic renderings on the label caught my eye, then turning the bottle over to see it was made in San Marcos California; Sold. I brought it home and let it chill further in the fridge while I waited the decision of my management team before allowing the temptations get the best of me. Now capable of enjoying the brew I poured it into a pint glass and watched the soft white head form as the light orange-brown coloration filled the glass, reminding me of a lager. It was slightly clouded, hinting at being unfiltered, or at the almost apparent and true Monastic brewing traditions of Belgium.
The aromas quickly filled the once unexciting air around me, wheat, ripened citrus, especially orange and even banana excited me. The company's slogan written across the bottle, "Inspired beer for sinners and saints alike," prodded at my taste bud's want for this succulent inoculation.
Though boasting a 7.0%ABV it held a velvety mouth feel, attributed to the Malt used including: two row malt, honey malt, and a port custom toast malt, made in their own pizza ovens. A variety of hops came to the head, though undetectable by me at this point, including, German Brewer's Gold, Strissespalt Spalt, and Czech Saaz.
This is the lightest of the 6 year-round beers produced and was the very first Lost Abbey beer made when the doors opened in May 2006. Hats off to this ambrosial brew by Tomme Arthur, fittingly named for its innovative nature.
Lost Abbey is based in San Marcos California and open their tasting room doors daily, but with varying hours. Please check them out at www.lostabbey.com for their capturing story and to see what other sensations their brewing up.